Interfaith Dialogue Series Will Explore Issues Raised by Social Movements
Syracuse University will hold an interfaith dialogue dinner series this semester that will explore issues raised by social movements that address perceived injustices, interfaith tensions and timely issues of the day.
“Common and Diverse Ground: Raising Consciousness by Acknowledging the ‘Hidden’ Things that Divide Us,” will begin on Wednesday, Sept. 28. The first theme will be “#BlackLivesMatter.” Other themes to be explored include “Islamophobia on Campus” on Wednesday, Oct. 26; and “Beyond Inclusion and Accessibility” on Wednesday, Nov. 16.
Each gathering will be held from 6:30-8:30 p.m. in the Noble Room, located on the ground floor of Hendricks Chapel. American Sign Language (ASL) interpretation and inclusive food will be provided. Requests for accommodations or food queries should be made at least seven days before each gathering by contacting firstname.lastname@example.org.
The gatherings will include a shared meal; dialogue facilitated by chaplains, staff and students; and a time of mindful meditation. The series is co-sponsored by Hendricks Chapel and the Disability Cultural Center, and is made possible through the Co-Curricular Departmental Initiatives program within the Division of Student Affairs.
“At Hendricks Chapel, we believe in encouraging peaceful discourse and creative engagement in the face of differences that can and do cause conflict, on the SU campus as well as in the larger society,” says Bonnie Shoultz, the University’s Buddhist chaplain and co-organizer of the series. “The commitment of this dinner dialogue series is to model and facilitate such discourse and engagement for and with our students.”
A successful interfaith dialogue model was developed during the last academic year, and will be used for this series, says Diane R. Wiener, director of the Disability Cultural Center and series co-organizer.
“It has been our experience that by gathering together on common ground over a shared meal, we can create a vibrant environment of peaceful and life-giving conversation around important and potentially divisive issues,” she says.