As-Salam-u-Alaikum. My name is Barbara Costigan. I am the Chair of the Board of Deacons of the Collegiate Churches of New York. I sit on the Governing Board of Intersections International, a global social justice ministry of the Collegiate Churches and I am a member of Marble Collegiate Church. The Collegiate Churches have a long tradition of promoting enduring interfaith relationships.
Personally, I believe that what happened in the mosques in New Zealand and what could happen here in New York is just geography. I believe that the only thing that can overcome fear and hatred is LOVE. We interfaith people must eat together, converse together, march together, and study one another's scriptures together as in Scriptural Reasoning.
I am very sorry for what happened to the Muslim community in New Zealand and what happened to the Jewish community in Pittsburgh. I also worry what could happen to Christian communities in Palestine and Pakistan. I have worked together with several interfaith brothers and sisters who are here today. We know our only hope is to continue to work together.