When Linda Sarsour got involved in planning a massive Women’s March for the day after President Trump’s inauguration, she needed dozens of speakers to give brief remarks onstage. Sarsour, a Muslim activist, quickly found diverse and willing participants of faith, including a rabbi from California and a nun who travels the country.

All were women she had last seen in November at a gathering of a new network of eminent religious leaders. This little-known group – which includes 18 members, all of them prominent in religious organizations and highly active in national politics – is quietly seeking to bring together a “Religious Left” to counterbalance the decades-old Religious Right by supporting liberal politics with the imprimatur of faith.

Among the members: Valarie Kaur, a Sikh activist whose prayer for America video gained national attention last month after the shooting of a Sikh man in Washington; the Rev. William Barber II, whose stirring address at the 2016 Democratic National Convention set social media aflame; and Gene Robinson, the Episcopal Church’s first gay bishop, who gave a prayer during President Barack Obama’s inauguration ceremonies.

“It’s sort of like getting the Martin Luther Kings, the Ghandis, the Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschels, the Dorothy Days, the Fannie Lou Hamers of our time together and creating a sense of community,” said the Rev. Katharine Henderson, the president of Auburn Seminary in New York.

The seminary – a bit of a misnomer, since it does not ordain any clergy nowadays, but does offer continuing education for faith leaders further in their careers – first convened the members of the network, whom it terms “senior fellows,” in 2015.

With funding from several philanthropic foundations, the senior fellows communicate year-round and meet in person twice a year. It is these meetings, the fellows put their heads together. Last month in Sedona, Arizona, much of the talk was about what each fellow’s congregants were doing to resist the Trump administration’s policies.