The Sathya Sai Sai Baba Centers of Denver Colorado held a joint Baba’s Birthday celebration in 2018 at the Grace United Methodist Church. The event was made extra special by the participation of 20 new Sai Spiritual Education (SSE) students and  their family members from a local neighborhood. The students were all unaffiliated with the Sathya Sai Centers. They were attending a human values class offered by an SSE teacher, who was guided to offer these classes to her neighborhood children since July 2018. The weekly classes are held outdoors in the neighborhood park, with some of the mothers and grandmothers in attendance.

The children and family members participated, along with the other Sai Center SSE students, in putting on plays at the Birthday celebration. The Sai Centers lovingly embraced this opportunity for inclusion. The neighborhood SSE children adopted the theme of ‘Unity of Faiths’ for their twenty-minute play. The play featured “representatives” from each religion, ably played by the children, describing each of their faith. 

The children and their families, led by their SSE teacher, immersed themselves in writing the script, rehearsing and creating props and costumes. Many of the mothers participated throughout the process. They learned multi-faith chants and prayers, and diligently researched the core teachings of each faith. They also prepared signs with important spiritual quotes from each religion. The mothers, who had attended the SSE classes regularly, enthusiastically hand-made all the costumes, the symbols and signs for the “representative” of each faith. In doing this, the mothers found a renewed purpose and meaning in their lives beyond their routine worldly tasks. They felt they had made a heart-to-heart connection with others and were making a valued contribution to the community. In short, they were transformed by the experience.

One new mother shared, “This experience has been much more than attending the program; it has been transformational for our whole family!  We have also been singing devotional songs and chanting 108 Gayathri Mantras each week, along with internalizing the weekly SSE lesson. Now I feel I have a purpose in making good use of my time. We are so grateful.”

Attending the dinner following the event were also 13 homeless children and family members housed at Grace United Methodist Church, the venue for the SE Denver Sai Center.  Love was evident from beginning to end- culminating in one golden thread of love connecting all, heart-to-heart, beyond race, creed, culture, or religion.