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Congressman Bobby Rush Addresses the Opening Plenary

Congressman Bobby Rush addressed the Opening Plenary at the 2023 Parliament of the World’s Religions in Chicago, USA.

Sweet Home Chicago, Sweet Home Chicago, for the last eight or nine months I have been a trustee of this great gathering of faith groups from around the world and it’s been the highlight of my life to see so many different faith groups coming together under the umbrella of love to attack the problems of the world.

I joined with you. I commit myself to you. Together you and I can change the world. Together you and I can make a difference in every land and every faith and every human being in all the world. We can make a difference. We can be better. You and I and we must be better. Through faith, through faith, through faith. 

In my faith, in the Holy Scripture, there is a story of a prodigal son who prematurely left home to his inheritance, went into faraway lands and squandered his inheritance. And so he found himself in a different land destitute, without food, without shelter, without even decent clothing. And so in his desperation, he remembered home. So he decided to come back home. And so when he came home, his father saw him from afar. And his father said, told his servant, “Get prepared for my son because he was lost and now he’s found, he’s coming home.” And so they prepared a party for him, a great party. But the story goes, there was another son who had been there dutiful with his father all along while the son, the young son was squandering his money and having a good time. The son who remained home felt indignant, “I have been here working to do the things that I was supposed to do while my nearest possible brother was somewhere having a good time.” The father told him, “Your brother has come home. He was once lost and now he is found.” And I’m telling the Parliament right now, welcome home, but we cannot leave home again. 

We’ve got work to do right here in this great city that we love Chicago. We have to bring the faith community together right here at home to help solve Chicago’s problems that are here at home. Only the faith group, only the faith, different faiths can come together to solve this problem of difference and the vision that reminds our city. And once we can take care of home, then we can take care of other homes around the world. But I tell you, welcome home, home sweet, home home is where the love is. Welcome home Parliament of the World’s Religions.

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