Date/Time: Sunday, January 29th from 12-7pm
Location: Howard University School of Divinity 2900 Van Ness Street NW
(near Van Ness metro; parking on site)
Note: Do not go to HUSD’s previous home in Northeast.
12:00pm – Doors open: Please confirm registration when you sign in. (Register here)
Lunch and Resource Fair: Meet and mingle with participants and learn more about the work of organizations throughout the city.
Lunch is graciously provided by the Guru Gobind Singh Sikh Foundation.
1pm – Introductions, reflections from pre-events, and overview of the day.
Music and invocation by SongRise.
2pm – Session #1: Join one of the following conversations.
(Please note the details and order of the workshops listed below are subject to change.)
1) Tzedek and Tzedakah / Social Justice and Grassroots Fundraising
In Hebrew, the word tzedakah (charity) shares a root with the word tzedek (justice), expressing how donating money isn’t just about generosity but points us towards the better world we want to bring about. Our faith traditions have a lot to teach about how to use money for good. Come reflect on faith-rooted teachings, learn the basics of grassroots fundraising, and bring more integrity to your personal giving.
Facilitator: Rebecca Ennen (Jews United for Justice)
2) Justice & Mercy: Interfaith Perspectives on Redemption
What does your faith tradition teach about redemption, and what examples of reconciliation are most central your faith community or most significant to you? Join us for a facilitated discussion as participants share their experiences and insights with each other from across many philosophies and religious traditions.
Facilitator: Chase Kimball (Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints)
3) Mindfulness: Discovering Our Innate Wisdom to Strengthen and Serve Others.
Mindfulness is the cultivation of non-judgmental, present-moment awareness. In this workshop, we will use Mindfulness to deeply explore our innate strength and wisdom, as well as our wounds that limit our potential to serve.
Facilitators: Rashid Hughes (Howard University School of Divinity Alum; The Compassion Corps), Dave Trachtenberg (Program Director of Minds)
4) Beyond Interfaith: Engaging the Whole Religious Self in Inter-Religious Dialogue and Action
Explore how religious individuals and communities construct religious identity in the United States, focusing especially on the intersection of religion and race. This workshop will challenge participants to consider how religious identity extends beyond “faith” to include other aspects of identity formation.
Facilitators: Kristen Looney, Benjamin Marcus and Sabrina Dent (Religious Freedom Center of the Newseum Institute)
5) Reflecting on the Role of Food in Faith and the Struggle for Food Justice through a Judeo-Christian Context
Examine Jewish and Christian texts on food connections to the Divine, ancestors, brothers, sisters & friends, and food justice. Participants will have opportunities to learn about one another’s traditions and how food is integral to faith expression. We will also discuss the impact that our food choices have on the environment and its connection to climate change.
Facilitators: Rachel Brustein & Catherine Goggins (Interfaith Power & Light)
6) Abolishing the Death Penalty: Combating State Sanctioned Murder and the Culture of Violence in the US
Learn about the efforts of abolitionist organizations around the world. Explore three levels of opportunities for involvement, including collaboration with international interfaith organizations, advocacy at the national level and interpersonal relationships with inmates on death row.
Facilitators: Athena Fulay & Dani Scano Clark (Community of Sant’Egidio)
7) Working With and Within the Government as a Person of Faith
A facilitated conversation on how faith and public policy intersect with a focus on the millennial perspective.
Facilitator: Aaron Jenkins (former Director of U.S. Department of Commerce’s Center for Faith-based and Neighborhood Partnerships), Naseem Kourosh (US Baha’i Office of Public Affairs)
8) El Gozo de Servir (Bilingüe)
En América Latina se ha popularizado un refrán de San Agustín que dice todo sobre la intersección entre la fe y la entrega al prójimo: “quien no vive para servir, no sirve para vivir.” Esta sesión pretende explorar las distintas maneras en que los hispanos y latinos en Estados Unidos viven su compromiso con la justicia social y el activismo, con la fe como motor e identidad.
Facilitators: Andrea Proaño (Annunciation Catholic Church CORE Member), Sara Benitez (Latino Program Director, Faith in Public Life)
3pm – Break
3:30pm – Session #2: Join one of the following conversations.
1) Airing Our Dirty Laundry In Public: Faith Communities’ Big Struggles
An opportunity to share about the political and practical divisions that challenge our communities, which we normally do not get to share with outsiders. We’ll learn how to be more compassionate and knowledgeable allies to people from other faith traditions.
Facilitator: Rebecca Ennen (Jews United for Justice)
2) Giving Voice to Trauma in our Work of Faith, Healing, and Justice
In this session, we will explore our relationships to trauma and justice so that we may be more intentional in our work and cultivate healing and resilience in our communities and ourselves. We will use creative expression to name these relationships and explore how we can listen to and use stories of trauma to transform our communities, our faith traditions, and our world.
Facilitator: Katie Byron (The Sanctuaries, Unitarian Universalist Church)
3) Scriptural Reasoning: Strengthening Ties & Deepening Understanding
Explore a practice of interfaith dialogue that involves deep reading of religious scriptures on a shared topic, not to find agreement, but rather to discover deeper understanding of differences.
Facilitators: Brad Seligmann and Seher Siddiqee (Georgetown University)
4) Beyond Beliefs: Reinvestment Strategies for Faith-Based Community Development
Engage in exercises on asset and wealth development and the intersection with community development, to advance sustainable economic development in low- and moderate-income communities.
Facilitators: Nicole Barden and Sheena Foster (National Community Reinvestment Coalition)
5) Women in Faith: Creating Spaces for Women Across Faith Communities
Learn about an initiative that provides women with an interfaith network of female leaders and practitioners, creating an environment for women to confidently discuss faith and religious life. Engage in reflective activities and find tools to foster space where women can share their experiences of identity and faith and learn how to sustain a conversation around this intersectionality of identities.
Facilitators: Khadija Mohamud, Paige Harouse, Ruth Henry, Piyusha Mittal (Georgetown University)
6) What Do We Mean When We Say ‘Interfaith’ and Why Is It Necessary?
Discuss our experiences of the stated and unstated meanings behind the term “interfaith,” why/if the the movement is necessary, and how we can build a deeper meaning.
Facilitators: Cassandra Lawrence (Al Amana International), Miranda Hovemeyer (Interfaith Families Project)
7) Art As a Tool For Spiritual Expression and Social Change
Participants will learn how to use their voice to create written artistic expressions for spiritual and social change as well as identify examples of existing media
Facilitators: Rev. Erik Martinez Resly and Osa Obaseki (The Sanctuaries)
8) Moving Forward: Establishing Routes to LGBTQ Inclusion and Liberation in Religious Institutions and Organizations
This session will offer strategies that can be used to advance the cause of inclusion in a variety of religious institutions.
Facilitator: Verdell A. Wright (Doctoral student at Howard University)
4:30pm – Break
5pm – Session #3: Join one of the following conversations.
1) Safe Space for All Faiths: Supporting Interfaith Expression & Experience in All Settings
Discuss programming and practices that can deepen opportunities for faith sharing and expression in all environments, including academic and classroom space.
Facilitator: Rev. Kanika Magee (Howard University School of Divinity)
2) Allyship: What Does It Mean? How Can We Do It Better?
This workshop will guide participants in a discussion of what it looks like to be an ally to individuals and groups targeted by recent waves of hateful rhetoric and action. The presenters will lead a discussion of specific areas of concern and action, as well as best practices on being an ally. While focused specifically on the trend of anti-Muslim bigotry and discrimination, participants will discuss being an ally more broadly as well.
Facilitators: Kristin Garrity-Sekerci (The Bridge Initiative), Catherine Orsborn (Shoulder to Shoulder)
3) Interfaith Healing Rituals
This workshop is designed to engage participants in Rituals of healing and self care through various faith traditions. The session will specifically explore IFA (West African) Tradition, African American Folk Healing, Buddhism, and Taoism. Participants should be comfortable barefoot or in their socks. Some floor sitting may be required.
Facilitators: Min. Hazel Cherry, M.Div. (Howard Divinity Alumna, Host of Sisters’ Speak Talk Host), Crystal R. West, M.Div. (Women & Girls Advocate)
4) Becoming a Constitutional and Human Rights Specialist on Issues of Religion and Public Life
Learn how acquire the skills to negotiate issues of religion and public life by becoming constitutional and human right specialist.
Facilitator: Sabrina Dent (Religious Freedom Center of the Newseum Institute)
5) Becoming A ‘Solidarity Congregation’
In response to deep concern over the targeting of faith and ethnic communities in our region, the IFCMW is launching WIROC (Washington Interfaith Response and Outreach Coalition), a new regional rapid response and pro-active programming initiative. This workshop will discuss the different aspects of WIROC and how you can get involved on an individual and congregational level.
Facilitator: Symi Rom-Rymer (InterFaith Conference of Metropolitan Washington)
6) Social Media (and Media) Strategies to Deal with Online Hate
While the internet is a marvelous medium for education, communication, and commerce, it is being used to disseminate and promote hateful and violent beliefs and attitudes. Learn how to fight this online hate.
Facilitator: Laila Alawa (The Tempest)
7) Storytelling: Connecting Narrative and the Arts to Justice Work
Facilitator: Jenny Suzdak (Muslim Writers Collective)
8) Where Do We Go Post-Election?
A highly interactive space to process and reflect upon the election, what it means, new challenges we’re facing, and what to do next.
Facilitator: Karen Leu (Interfaith Power & Light)
6pm – Prizes and closing reflections
7pm – End of program