By Darla Shelden
City Sentinel Reporter
As part of their Lenten Series, on Sunday, March 6, St. Paul’s Episcopal Cathedral and the Kirkpatrick Foundation will feature guest speaker Phil Arkow, coordinator for the National Link Coalition (NLC). His topic will be “Animals and People Create a Community: The Spirituality of Caring for All God’s Creatures.”
The NLC is the national resource center on the link between animal abuse and human violence.
His discussion, beginning at 5 p.m., will focus on respecting the dignity of every human being and protecting all of God’s creation.
Arkow told The City Sentinel, “It will be both a spiritual look at the history of people and their animals and the philosophies about animals and how animal abuse affects people.”
The event will be held in Saint Paul’s main cathedral at 127 NW 7th Street in Oklahoma City. A light supper and fellowship will follow from 6 to 7 p.m. in Dean Willey Hall, which is free and open to the public. Childcare is available. RSVP is encouraged, by emailing [email protected]
An acclaimed lecturer, author, and educator, Arkow has conducted more than two hundred trainings internationally and authored dozens of books, chapters, and articles.
He chairs the Latham Foundation’s Animal Abuse and Family Violence Prevention Project and is an Instructor of Animal-Assisted Therapy at Harcum College & Camden County College in Stratford, New Jersey.
A consultant to the Animals & Society Institute, Arkow is editor of NLC’s monthly LINK-Letter and is an advisor to the Oklahoma Link Coalition.
“We at the National Link Coalition, and our local chapter with the Oklahoma Link Coalition, are working to prevent all forms of family violence through public awareness, new laws, academic research and programs that bring the humane and human services sectors together,” Arkow said.
Arkow co-founded the National Animal Control Association, the Animal Welfare Federation of New Jersey and the Colorado Federation of Animal Welfare Agencies. He is an authority on the human-animal bond, violence prevention, humane education, animal-assisted therapy and animal shelter management.
He has served on boards and committees with the American Veterinary Medical Association, the Delta Society (Pet Partners), the American Humane Association, and the American Association of Human-Animal Bond Veterinarians.
“It was Mahatma Gandhi who said that we can judge the moral character of a country by the way it treats its animals,” Arkow stated.
Saint Paul’s “Journey Through Lent” series began on February 14 and runs through March 20.
The series is available for all ages, offering a children’s program, youth program and an adult program. Children meet in the undercroft, youth convene in the board room, and adults in the cathedral. All sessions begin at 5 p.m.
During Lent each Sunday evening attendees will learn about a different tradition or spiritual practice. Children will assist in creating different items that represent the spiritual journey.