Tenth annual Salad Bowl on its way

Ten years ago Bishop Larry Robertson from Emmanuel Apostolic Church led a countywide gathering of different races, religious denominations and cultures for the first Salad Bowl Sunday in Kitsap County.

During the years the event has grown and been held at various locations throughout the county before finding a home at Crossroads Neighborhood Church in Bremerton last year, where the event drew a packed house as Crossroads Pastor Gary Tangeman and Robertson washed each other's feet in a demonstration of what it means to be a servant.

This year's event is set for 4 p.m. Sunday, Feb. 22 at Crossroads, 7555 Old Military Road, but people are encouraged to arrive early to ensure they get a good seat in what will undoubtedly be another packed house.

In the past, Robertson said the event is called a "salad bowl" rather than the "melting pot," which was often used in the past to describe America, because each culture adds to the flavor of a community and doesn't lose its identity like it would in a melting pot.

For Tangeman and Robertson, the event comes just weeks after the first countywide men's retreat at Fort Flagler State Park, where more than 70 men from at least seven different churches across the county came together and formed new bonds of brotherhood and unity.

"What I've learned on the retreat and from this event is that you're missing out on something when you don't reach across racial and denominational lines," Tangeman said.

At this year's event, Tangeman said he expects 15 to 20 churches to participate and there will be speakers talking about multiculturalism and unity, which is what the event is designed to bring to the community.

Additionally, there will be a community choir composed of singers from all the different churches represented at the event and performances by other groups as well, he said.

"It's really great for people to come together and experience worship in a different way," Tangeman said.

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