Vallejo temple helps found new interfaith group

Congregation B’nai Israel in Vallejo was among 15 religious, nonprofit and labor institutions that came together June 23 to found Common Ground, an alliance that will seek to build relationships within and across communities in Solano and Napa counties.

Nearly 1,000 delegates from the 15 charter member organizations, as well as state and local public officials, attended the founding event at St. Patrick-St. Vincent High School in Vallejo.

“I loved the energy in that room,” said B’nai Israel Rabbi David White, who gave the closing call to action. “The people who were there understood there was a broad base of commitment to learn from each other, and they want to work together for the betterment of the communities.”

“When we bring all of our groups together and make promises that we will stand together, wonderful things happen,” said another attendee, Dean Vogel, president of the California Teachers Association.

Common Ground will join other Interfaith Alliance Foundation organizations across the Bay Area and the nation. The coalition hopes to equip members with leadership and organizing skills and act together on concrete issues facing their communities.