A very proud Rev. Dr. Neil Cazares-Thomas now has a Shalom Award among the many number of honors and recognition he has received.
Rev. Cazares-Thomas, Senior Pastor of the Cathedral of Hope in Dallas, received the Shalom Award from Temple Shalom Brotherhood at a presentation held Sunday, February 26th at the InterContinental Dallas Hotel.
“It was a truly wonderful, humbling and, in many ways, overwhelming experience,” said Rev- Cazares-Thomas, “that I will treasure for a long time to come.”
More than 300 guests filled the Malachite Showroom at the InterContinental to pay tribute to Rev. Cazares-Thomas, well known for his activism throughout the Metroplex, and spiritual leader to the world’s largest ministry with a primarily LGBT congregation.
It was the first time the Shalom Award was presented to someone outside the Jewish community. Reverend Cazares-Thomas’ passion and service strongly aligns with that of Temple Shalom’s mission which is to inspire an enduring relationship with God, Torah, Israel and the Jewish people through worship, study, gathering and community service. Temple Shalom’s Senior Rabbi, Andrew M. Paley, is a member of Faith Forward Dallas: Faith Leaders United for Peace and Justice. He and the Temple Shalom congregation have vowed to be inclusive and welcoming to the entire Dallas community.
“Honoring Rev. Dr. Neil Cazares-Thomas with the Temple Shalom Brotherhood’s Shalom Award allowed us to not only present our gratitude and esteem to a most appropriate and deserving community servant, but also to declare that in spite of the divisions and indifference we may encounter in our own city and around the country, we will not be discouraged in our attempts to bring a little bit of Shalom to this world. We have not put down the fires of hatred and hostility – yet – but we will continue to try. Temple Shalom and Temple Shalom Brotherhood are incredibly powerful forces in that effort and I am grateful to them and to our collaboration and friendship with the Cathedral of Hope, their leadership, their congregants and especially Rev. Cazares-Thomas,” explained Rabbi Andrew Paley.
Voices of Hope, a cross section of Cathedral of Hope choir singers, inspired the crowd with a musical performance. Temple Shalom Past President (Congregation and Brotherhood) Dennis Eichelbaum, the evening’s emcee, channeled the late Johnny Carson in performing a “Carnac the Magnificent” routine that cleansed the humor pallet after a delicious dinner.
Guest presenters included Bradley Laye, President and CEO of the Greater Dallas Jewish Federation and Cece Cox, President and CEO of the Resource Center of Dallas. Proceeds from the event benefit Temple Shalom Brotherhood, the Cathedral of Hope, and Dallas Hope Charities.