The ninth annual New Providence-Berkeley Heights interfaith Thanksgiving service occurred on Monday evening, Nov. 23 at St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church in New Providence.

The participating worship communities were Faith Lutheran Church, Our Lady of Peace Roman Catholic Church, Islamic Society of Basking Ridge, Congregation Ohr Shalom-Summit Jewish Community Center, Bridgewater Gurudwara of Garden State Sikh Association, Little Flower Roman Catholic Church, Baha’i Community of New Providence, St. Andrew’s Episcopal Church and Westminster Presbyterian Church.

The service began with talks by New Providence Mayor, Al Morgan and Berkeley Heights Mayor, Robert Woodruff.

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The Thanksgiving homily was given by Dr. M. Ali Chaudry of the Islamic Society of Basking Ridge.  The homily’s title was, “Giving Thanks for America.”

The liturgy of the service consisted of prayers and readings, conducted by the various clergy, as well as hymns.   The music of the service featured a large interfaith choir.  It was led by Shayne Miller, Minister of Music at St. Andrews, with the organ being played by John Girvin, Minister of Music at Faith Lutheran.

The offering of the service was given to the StarFish Pantry, a combined Jewish/Christian organization in Plainfield, which provides emergency aid to about 9,000 people in that area, two-thirds of whom are children. Since the resources of the StarFish Pantry have almost been depleted, the food bought by the offering will help meet the needs of the Pantry throughout the winter.