Local residents from various faith traditions are gathering to celebrate Thanksgiving.

The 15th York Community Interfaith Thanksgiving Celebration is at 7 p.m. Tuesday at the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of York, 925 S. George St. in York City.

The event is held by the York Interfaith Dialogue Forum, which gives the public opportunities to learn about the faith traditions practiced locally.

"We want to (show) that during this national holiday, one of the things we are grateful for is our freedom of religion, the freedom to practice our own religion and to support and respect one another in the exercise of those religions," said the Rev. Kate Seitz Bortner, a forum member.

More than 150 people attend the annual Thanksgiving celebration, she said.

This year, attendees are asked to bring donations of nonperishable food to benefit St. Paul Lutheran Church food pantry, said Bortner, also an associate minister at UUCY.

Event details: The main speaker for the interfaith celebration is Rabbi Jeffrey Astrachan, spiritual leader of Temple Beth Israel in York Township.

Also participating are representatives from the Baha'i, Buddhist, Christian, Jewish, pagan and Unitarian Universalist faith traditions, Bortner said.

Their presentations include musical selections, readings and a Buddhist chant, she said.

Choir: Songs will be performed by the Interfaith Choir consisting of congregants from Luther Memorial Lutheran Church in York Township, St. Paul Lutheran Church, Temple Beth Israel and UUCY, according to Bortner.

People who want to sing with the choir can attend its rehearsal an hour prior to the service, she said.

"We just want everyone to know that everyone is welcome to attend (the event)," Bortner said. "We want to (show) that we are citizens together and we can all be faithful together."

-- Reach Eyana Adah McMillan at emcmillan@yorkdispatch.com.