Feb 24, 1999
Dear Father DeMartini, I am the new Southwest Arkansas Director for RAIN (Regional AIDS Interfaith Network) and I am hungary for resources to help me reach members of different faiths. I have made a number of one-on-one contacts, but I need help in interfacing with the more fundamental and sometimes judgmental religious bodies in our area. AIDS is still extremely misunderstood and the prejudice guided by fear is astounding.
Our organization organizes careteams for education, spiritual, social, and emotional support of people living with HIV/AIDS. We are an interfaith group and usually are associated with a congregation although careteam members do not have to be a part of that congregation.
Response from Father DeMartini
Dear Johannah, Thank you for your letter. I am familiar with the wonderful ministry of RAIN and how it has touched the lives of many people--especially those who have felt marginalized from their religious community. It is a marvelous model of collaboration and a witness to people's ability to work for the good of others despite differences in religious belief and practice. I spent the last few days in San Francisco for a meeting with the Council of National Religious AIDS Networks which is a project of the AIDS National Interfaith Network. I heartily recommend called ANIN at 202-842-0010 or visiting their web site at www.anin.org. You could then find links to various faith communities with HIV/AIDS ministries and resources like those of the National Catholic AIDS Network (www.ncan.org) which I direct. Please feel free to contact me directly by phone at 707-874-3031 or e-mail at ncan@sonic..net if I can provide more specific information. Blessings on your ministry, Fr. Rod
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