Come Together

Eboo Patel unites hundreds at National Day of Prayer Luncheon

Eboo Patel unites hundreds at National Day of Prayer Luncheon

Anthony Kennedy Shriver, Eboo Patel, Alfonso Montiel, National Day of Prayer Luncheon
Anthony Kennedy Shriver, Eboo Patel, Alfonso Montiel Photo by Rhi Lee
Chris Slaughter, Linda Slaughter, National Day of Prayer Luncheon
Chris Slaughter, Linda Slaughter Photo by Rhi Lee
Chris Trowbridge, Rachel Trowbridge, Shelly Slater, National Day of Prayer Luncheon
Chris Trowbridge, Rachel Trowbridge, Shelly Slater Photo by Rhi Lee
Harriet Miers, Leslie Crozier, Betty Turner, National Day of Prayer Luncheon
Harriet Miers, Leslie Crozier, Betty Turner Photo by Rhi Lee
Kristianne Hinkamp, Nancy Kasten, National Day of Prayer Luncheon
Kristianne Hinkamp, Nancy Kasten Photo by Rhi Lee
Larry Patterson, Cheryl Patterson, National Day of Prayer Luncheon
Larry Patterson, Cheryl Patterson Photo by Rhi Lee
Chris Trowbridge, Ebby Halliday, Rachel Trowbridge, National Day of Prayer Luncheon
Chris Trowbridge, Ebby Halliday, Rachel Trowbridge Photo by Rhi Lee
Chris Slaughter, Bob Roberts, National Day of Prayer Luncheon
Chris Slaughter, Bob Roberts Photo by Rhi Lee
Don Glendenning, Corey Admire, Christopher Quadri, National Day of Prayer
Don Glendenning, Corey Admire, Christopher Quadri Photo by Rhi Lee
Peter Altabef, Ahurang Jain, Gunjah Jain, Jennifer Altabef, National Day of Prayer Luncheon
Peter Altabef, Ahurang Jain, Gunjah Jain, Jennifer Altabef Photo by Rhi Lee
Leslie Diers, Cynthia Melnick, Lester Melnick, Claire Albert, National Day of Prayer Luncheon
Leslie Diers, Cynthia Melnick, Lester Melnick, Claire Albert Photo by Rhi Lee
Eboo Patel, National Day of Prayer Luncheon
Eboo Patel Photo by Rhi Lee
Anthony Kennedy Shriver, Eboo Patel, Alfonso Montiel, National Day of Prayer Luncheon
Chris Slaughter, Linda Slaughter, National Day of Prayer Luncheon
Chris Trowbridge, Rachel Trowbridge, Shelly Slater, National Day of Prayer Luncheon
Harriet Miers, Leslie Crozier, Betty Turner, National Day of Prayer Luncheon
Kristianne Hinkamp, Nancy Kasten, National Day of Prayer Luncheon
Larry Patterson, Cheryl Patterson, National Day of Prayer Luncheon
Chris Trowbridge, Ebby Halliday, Rachel Trowbridge, National Day of Prayer Luncheon
Chris Slaughter, Bob Roberts, National Day of Prayer Luncheon
Don Glendenning, Corey Admire, Christopher Quadri, National Day of Prayer
Peter Altabef, Ahurang Jain, Gunjah Jain, Jennifer Altabef, National Day of Prayer Luncheon
Leslie Diers, Cynthia Melnick, Lester Melnick, Claire Albert, National Day of Prayer Luncheon
Eboo Patel, National Day of Prayer Luncheon

At the 32nd annual National Day of Prayer Luncheon hosted by the Thanks-Giving Foundation, more than 400 supporters came together at the Fairmont Hotel for a multicultural event focused on religious freedom, peace and prayer. 

The crowd was a beautiful mix of community leaders — all colors and religious backgrounds — which set the tone for tolerance and unity at the afternoon event. After a powerful invocation led by Rabbi Nancy Kasten and a performance by the St. Philip's School girls, Eboo Patel modestly took center stage. 

Patel, a two-time author and TED speaker, was named one of America's Best Leaders 2009 by US News & World Report. He also founded the Chicago-based Interfaith Youth Core and received the Roosevelt Institute's Freedom of Worship Medal. 

In his speech, Patel talked about religion as a bridge of cooperation, rather than a barrier. He told the audience that it's his unique background — Islamic faith, Indian heritage and American citizenship — that brought him to this conclusion. 

Peaceful devotees — including co-chairs Rachel and Chris Trowbridge, Don Glendenning, Christopher Quadri, Corey Admire, Peter Altabef, Ahurag and Gunjah Jain, Alfonso Mantiel, and Anthony Kennedy Shriver  applauded Patel and his message.

Later, Chris Slaughter, president of the the Thanks-Giving Foundation, led the room in the Unity Interfaith Prayer before the St. Phillip's girls closed the luncheon with a moving rendition of "God Bless America." 

To further support the Thanks-Giving Foundation — which maintains Thanks-Giving Square and promotes unity in our community, nation and the world — guests bid on art created by students who entered the Expressions art and essay competition. 

This year's Expressions theme was "I am Grateful for the Values of Sports," focusing on leadership, teamwork, friendship and cooperation in athletics. The winners will be recognized at an award ceremony in February 2014.