Welcome to One Hillsborough

One Hillsborough at Hillsborough's National Day of Prayer

The Hillsborough Interfaith Community hosted a brief service on May 2nd, 2024 to commemorate the 2024 National Day of Prayer at the Hillsborough Garden of Honor. Rev. Williams represented One Hillsborough.

Graphic logo illustrating community interconnectedness through ten small connected circles


Words delivered by Rev. Rod Williams at Hillsborough's National Day of Prayer 2024, held at the Garden of Honor.


"These are words common to every faith and every culture:

That which you hate to be done to you, do not do to another. Ancient Egypt

Do not do to others what you know has hurt yourself. Ancient India

What you do not want to happen to you, do not do it yourself either. Ancient Greece

That nature alone is good which refrains from doing to another whatsoever is not good for itself. Ancient Persia

Treat your inferior as you would wish your superior to treat you. Ancient Rome

One should never do that to another which one regards as injurious to one's own self. Hinduism

What is hateful to you, do not do to your fellow. Judaism

The most righteous person is the one who consents for other people what he consents for himself, and who dislikes for them what he dislikes for himself. Islam

A man should wander about treating all creatures as he himself would be treated. Jainism

Precious like jewels are the minds of all. To hurt them is not at all good. If thou desirest thy Beloved, then hurt thou not anyone's heart. Sikhism

What you do not wish for yourself, do not do to others. Confucianism

Regard your neighbor's gain as your own gain, and your neighbor's loss as your own loss. Taoism

For one would do for others as one would do for oneself. Mohism

Do not do unto others whatever is injurious to yourself. Zoroastrianism

The heart of the person before you is a mirror. See there your own form. Shintoism

All things are really our relatives and whatever we do to them we do to ourselves. First Nation Indigenous

We affirm and promote respect for the interdependent web of all existence of which we are a part. Unitarianism

That which ye deem harmful unto thyself, the very same shall ye be forbidden from doing unto another, for violence and hatred give rise to the same. Wicca

Try not to do things to others that you would not like them to do to you. Try to treat others as you would want them to treat you. Scientology

Ascribe not to any soul that which thou wouldst not have ascribed to thee, and say not that which thou doest not. Bahá'í

Before performing an action which might harm another person, try to imagine yourself in their position and decide whether you would want to be the recipient of that action. If you would not want to be in such a position, the other person probably would not either, and so you should not do it. Humanism

One who is going to take a pointed stick to pinch a baby bird should first try it on himself to feel how it hurts. Yoruba

Treat others as you would want them to treat you and can reasonably expect them to want to be treated. Atheism
Avoid doing what you would blame others for doing. Paganism

Do unto others as you would have them do unto you. Christianity

We have called these the Golden Rule and isn’t it interesting that it appears to be a most human principle that we have seemingly all but abandoned. As we have gathered here this morning, we should all first reflect upon the humanity of all of our fellow human beings and then lament the situation in which we find ourselves today. We have not only allowed ourselves to give into our baser instincts but in many ways, we have fully enabled them by refusing to do the righteous work of standing up for that which we know to be wrong. The truly American response has never purported to be one of fear and insecurity settling for easy answers and mediocrity but one of courage and the indomitable will to meet each challenge with decency and open arms.

So, when we leave this place today, let us recommit to the golden rule and ask our God, and ourselves, for the strength to be the best that we can be as humans –bravely caring for the downtrodden, embracing those who while not showing up as we have been accustomed– are still our human brothers and sisters, and winnowing out the hate and fear that has become far too deeply rooted in this nation that has yet to reach the potential greatness that will require every single one of us to achieve. Let us live the golden rule and help the helpless, feed the hungry and food insecure, shelter the homeless and housing contested, support the mentally and physically challenged and their families, and let us come together to love and accept and appreciate each other without conditions – because we would surely want the same for ourselves…"

Rev. Rod Williams
One Hillsborough
National Day of Prayer
May 2, 2024


Circular graphic with the symbols denoting twelve major world religions

About the National Day of Prayer
The National Day of Prayer is an annual day of observance held on the first Thursday of May, designated by the United States Congress, when people are asked "to turn to God in prayer and meditation". The president is required by law (36 U.S.C. § 119) to sign a proclamation each year, encouraging all Americans to pray on this day.
(from the Wikipedia entry for National Day of Prayer)




SECOND Town-Wide Community Conversation

One Hillsborough, a cross-cultural community advocacy coalition, invites all citizens to its SECOND town-wide platform for community conversations to be held on Monday 29 April 2024 from 5:30 pm –7:30 pm, with free dinner!

Many Faiths, One Hillsborough

A Celebration of Unity in Diversity

Flyer announcing the second town-wide One Hillsborough event on 29 April 2024One Hillsborough, a cross-cultural community advocacy coalition since 2018, in collaboration with the Hillsborough Y, invites all Hillsborough citizens to its second town-wide platform for community conversations to be held on April 29th, 2024, from 5:30–7:30 PM at the Hillsborough Y located at 19 East Mountain Rd, Hillsborough. Catered dinner will be served, again courtesy of the HEA Pride Committee.

One Hillsborough’s first event in January of 2023 discussed the functioning of local government, public safety, education, and community involvement. This time, this ongoing community effort focuses on the many faith communities that make up Hillsborough. Various youth groups and faith communities will give short presentations, to be followed by open conversations along the following lines:

  • How can faith communities in Hillsborough promote productive dialogue during these difficult and divided times and make everyone feel safe and loved?
  • What services do Houses of Worship provide to the community directly?
  • What activities are there for young people/youths in our Houses of Worship?
  • How can Hillsborough’s faith leaders be present and available to the wider community?
  • Ideas for Houses of Worship to collaborate displaying our unity and connections in a creative meaningful way? (i.e. cookbook, poetry, dance)

One Hillsborough is committed to continuing to develop and host this new platform for civic engagement to structurally provide forums and channels to broaden access and opportunity for all who reside within the township, particularly those from underrepresented and unheard groups. The principal objective is to promote equal communication with all community services providers and organizations without the boundaries of race, ethnicity, age, gender, religion, or political affiliation.

All are welcome to share in the goodwill that begins with basic conversations seeking to live up to the reputation of one of “the best places to live” for everyone…



National Day of Prayer 2024

The United States Congress designated (in 1952) the first Thursday in May as National Day of Prayer
  • What Promoting
  • When May 02, 2024 from 09:30 AM to 10:30 AM (US/Eastern / UTC-400)
  • Web Visit external website
  • Add event to calendar iCal

affiliated_event_200x200.pngThe Hillsborough Interfaith Community will be hosting a brief service on May 2nd, 2024, at 9:30-10:30 a.m. at the Hillsborough Garden of Honor in front of the municipal building. All are invited to attend.



The National Day of Prayer is an annual day of observance held on the first Thursday of May, designated by the United States Congress, when people are asked "to turn to God in prayer and meditation". The president is required by law (36 U.S.C. § 119) to sign a proclamation each year, encouraging all Americans to pray on this day.
(from the Wikipedia entry for National Day of Prayer)




October Brunch Meeting - Sat 10/28

Our monthly weekend meeting to get together and discuss the progress in steps to enhance goodwill, cooperation, understanding and justice in Hillsborough.
  • What Promoting
  • When Oct 28, 2023 from 10:30 AM to 12:30 PM (US/Eastern / UTC-400)
  • Where Ruiter residence, 635 Hillsborough Rd, Hillsborough, NJ 08844
  • Contact Name
  • Add event to calendar iCal

cc_lights_489x489.pngWe continue our our more flexible planning of get-togethers -- generally one Thursday night and one weekend meeting per month on dates that don't interfere with other goings-on ;-)

For Saturday October 28th – brunch at 10:30 a.m.

Agenda to follow about one week prior to meeting.





Advocacy reminder: please check our organization's efforts and how we define advocacy. http://hillsboroughcommons.org/explore/advocacy-and-support

To discuss further:

  • ongoing discussion on the June 14th meeting with the Police Department
  • update on the local concerns (warehouses, safety, mental health etc)
  • upcoming local events of note and how to best support
  • more thoughts on One Hillsborough visibility

NOTE: previous meeting Updates (minutes) on google drive.



Somerset Patriots Inaugural Negro League Tribute Game

A special Somerset Patriots event was held on August 27th, 2023, honoring the history and legacy of the New York Black Yankees.

Affiliated Event

On August 27th, the Somerset Patriots played in special jerseys with the logo of the Stoutsburg Sourland African American Museum (SSAAM) as well as a newly-designed logo honoring the Black Yankees. These game-worn jerseys were auctioned off live after the event to benefit SSAAM’s mission and educational programming.

SSAAM –as well as One Hillsborough –supported this event honoring the history and legacy of the New York Black Yankees: a Negro League baseball team of the 1930s and ‘40s. At a time when Major League Baseball excluded Black athletes, Negro League teams gave African Americans a path to play professional baseball.

Somerset Patriots logoThe Patriots took on the visiting Harvard Yard Goats as the "New York Black Yankees" to commemorate the Negro League team that played from 1932 until 1948. The Harvard Yard Goats played as the "Harvard Schoolboys" in honor of Connecticut baseball legend Johnny "Schoolboy" Taylor, who played in the Negro Leagues during the 1930s. He is regarded as one of the best players ever from the state of Connecticut, yet was never able to play in the major leagues.

Black Yankees Ball Club logo


About the Stoutsburg Sourland African American Museum

The Stoutsburg Sourland African American Museum is a history museum located in the Skillman section of Montgomery Township, New Jersey, United States. The museum is located at the Mount Zion African Methodist Episcopal Church, an African Methodist Episcopal church constructed in 1899. (Source: wikipedia)



Inaugural Town-Wide Community Conversation

One Hillsborough held its first town-wide platform for community conversations on January 20th, 2023, from 6–9 p.m. at the Hillsborough municipal building to commemorate Dr. Martin Luther King’s legacy of civil engagement, social justice and service to a greater good.


About seventy Hillsborough residents, students, community leaders, police and other stakeholders came together to listen, share experiences and exchange ideas on what works well and what could or should be improved in our community.

Mayor Lipani at MLK2023After initial welcome remarks, representatives of various institutions and organizations introduced our four topics for the night. Mayor Lipani spoke of government, police Chief McMahon shared some thoughts on the police department, education was introduced by Assistant Superintendent Feltre, and community involvement received remarks from Naz Cattelona, representing the Hillsborough YMCA Board, and Raina James, representing Hillsborough High School’s Student Diversity Initiative. 


Student artwork for MLK2023Some additional notable characteristics of the night included the exhibit of Hillsborough student’s artwork (see the photo collection of the event) celebrating Martin Luther King, the presence of all four additional Township Committee Members, the attendance of ten Hillsborough Police Officers, the Middle School principal, multiple teachers, and additional community organizations with information tables: the Stoutsburg Sourland African American Museum, BoroSAFE, the Hillsborough-Millstone Municipal Alliance, and the NJ Division on Civil Rights.


Breakout group at MLK2023A brief program break –refreshments courtesy of the Hillsborough Education Association–  allowed for participants to walk to four large Post-It boards to ponder and share their views on “What is going well” and “Where is there room for improvement?” on the four specific topics for the night. Four breakout groups were then formed to engage in a facilitated discussion on issues facing the community. Student Diversity Initiative co-facilitators were on hand, as were dedicated scribes to take notes. After well over an hour of earnest conversations and reflections, group summaries were shared and special guest Mrs. Patricia Williamson of the New Jersey Division on Civil Rights shared some observations on the importance of residents being engaged in their towns civic life. 

* * *

From most accounts, this inaugural town-wide community conversation seems to have accomplished the dual goal of fostering dialogue among and between community and leadership, and add to the growing recognition of One Hillsborough as a group platform for advocacy and activism, particularly on behalf of the unheard and underrepresented.

After the event, the Post-It boards were combined with the discussion notes of each group to generate written summaries for each of the night’s topics. These summaries have been sent to all participants and institutional representatives and are available here: government, public safety, education, community involvement. The full report covering all topics and Post-It boards is also available. 

One Hillsborough welcomes all residents to join in partnership and goodwill that begins with having good conversations. Our follow-up events will circle back to questions and concerns where possible, and the institutions were invited to provide feedback before our n​​ext community gathering.

PDFThe full Community Conversation MLK2023 Report


Photos MLK2023

Photo collection of the inaugural Community Conversation/MLK2023

Note: Journalist Rod Hirsch covered the event comprehensively online at TAPintoHillsborough.

One Hillsborough banner with motto


Save the Date: Night of Conversation 2023

Affiliated Event: Annually recurring BoroSafe event to promote mental wellness and provide tools for creating meaningful family dialogues. For 2023: to be held on March 30th at the Hillsborough Municipal Building from 6–8 p.m.
  • Save the Date: Night of Conversation 2023
  • 2023-03-30T18:00:00-04:00
  • 2023-03-30T20:00:00-04:00
  • Affiliated Event: Annually recurring BoroSafe event to promote mental wellness and provide tools for creating meaningful family dialogues. For 2023: to be held on March 30th at the Hillsborough Municipal Building from 6–8 p.m.
  • What Promoting Public Event
  • When Mar 30, 2023 from 06:00 PM to 08:00 PM (US/Eastern / UTC-400)
  • Where Hillsborough Municipal Building
  • Contact Name
  • Add event to calendar iCal

BoroSafe logoFree and open to the public. Dinner provided!

The event is hosted by BoroSafe, a community collaborative with an aim to provide access to mental health resources, emotional well-being best practices and suicide prevention resources across the entire Hillsborough Community. Our cause is to proactively connect the community with resources surrounding mental health for all community members. Ensuring the entire community is able to work on their emotional wellbeing, no matter where on the mental health continuum they may fall.

Affiliated EventSponsored by the Hillsborough Education Association and Hillsborough Township.

One Hillsborough amplifies this effort as an affiliated event.

Night of Conversation 2023 


Second Community Screening of Me, the Other

After receiving so much positive response from our initial screening of the feature documentary Me, the Other, a second screening was held on the night of October 15th, 2022, at the Ruiter home library.


Attendees to the second screening of Me, the Other

Nishat’s impression: “And what a night! This was our group who watched Me, The Other. The film was stunning and such a beautiful story about people who just want to belong and not be seen through their differences. We had a rich conversation after and discussed how so many more people should see this movie. (More to come on that front!) It was an honor hearing how the film was made from the Director. Can’t wait to see this again with a bigger audience! Also ps - every story resonated with each of us in different ways - and once again helping us see that we are so much more connected than we are different.

For the curious, there is some background of our first screening in 2021

About Me, The Other
English Feature Documentary (84 minutes) by director and co-producer Shidan Majidi.
Real stories of a diverse characters experiencing prejudice, with the intent to create conversations about what connects us and what keeps us apart. Available on Vimeo-on-demand. More info at www.metheotherfilm.com


Future Events