On Wednesday, November 1, faculty, staff, and students gathered to celebrate the Festival of Faiths, an interactive exploration of various faith traditions where the community can come together to celebrate religious diversity, express gratitude for unity, and strengthen the role of religion in the community through action.
“For the diversity of our community of learners; for people from many nations and cultures who enrich all of our lives; for people of different faiths or of no faith who offer new perspectives and expand our understanding of the human condition, we give thanks”—excerpt from Litany of Thanks.
On Wednesday, November 1, faculty, staff, and students gathered for the Festival of Faiths, an interactive exploration of various faith traditions where the community can come together to celebrate religious diversity, express gratitude for unity, and strengthen the role of religion in the community through action. The event was sponsored by the Office of Student Diversity and Multicultural Affairs, Office of Campus Ministry, Center for Faith and Public Life, and Office of Residence Life.
"All faiths can come together today and see the similarities and differences in different faith traditions," stated student Amira Ebrahim '20. “This year's theme for the Festival is Thanksgiving, and essentially all faiths are centered around giving thanks both in and out of the community. Students will be able to see how communities can come together towards a similar goal."
The festival kicked off with the Thanksgiving Interfaith Prayer Service where faculty, students, and staff recited prayers from a variety of faiths including Judaism, Christianity, Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism, Lakota, and Secular. The prayer service concluded with the Litany of Thanks lead by Interfaith Peer Ministers Hope Bahnke ’20, Walid Hussain G’18, and Connor Logsdon ’20.
Following the service, attendees were able to explore the different faith traditions with a variety of different stations, activities, and clubs including the South Asian Student Association, Campus Ministry, Students for Life, Catholic Relief, Bennett Center for Judaic Studies, Muslim Student Association, Center for Faith and Public Life, Center for Ignatian Spirituality and more.
Peer Minister Connor Logsdon ’20 said, “This event is really important to show diversity on campus, and to show students that they should never feel closed-off or trapped; there's always something new they can learn about to find themselves and connect with themselves and others spiritually."