Interfaith conference inspires future action

By Reland Tuomi, News Writer

Interfaith CMYK
From left to right, campus ministry steward Christian Wold, University Pastor Nancy Connor and campus ministry steward Lucas Kulhanek pose in front of the Jefferson Memorial. They went to an Interfaith Conference in Washington, D.C. earlier this week to gain inspiration for the interfaith movement on campus.

Three years ago, President Obama started the Interfaith and Community Service Campus

Challenge, aka the Interfaith Service Conference, in Washington, D.C. to open lines of

communication between different faith communities in American universities. PLU has represented itself every year since it started, and this year was no different.

Senior Lukas Kulhanek, junior Christian Wold and University Pastor Nancy Connor attended this year to discuss interfaith and community service work on campus with other university representatives.

The three representatives landed in D.C. on Saturday and returned Tuesday night.

“We recognize the importance of interfaith dialogue,” Wold said. “We wanted to see what other campuses are doing with interfaith work to develop our own programs here.”

Campus Ministry has been trying to put together an interfaith council for students and thought it could gain inspiration from the Interfaith Service Conference.

Campus Ministry has put on events in the past, such as the Real Talk Religion events, for students to gain a better understanding of certain aspects of other religions. Real Talk Religion events will continue this year.

Wold said other campuses inspired some of the ideas for future events. One of the events focuses on incorporating community service with different faith groups based on and off campus.

“We would strengthen interfaith bonds with events like these,” Wold said. “We want to create a dialogue and understanding [between these groups].”

No definite plans for events have been made yet, but more information about interfaith can be gained at the Campus Ministry office in the lower AUC. There is also an interfaith council that will be meeting this year.

“We’re excited to take what we learned from the conference and put it into what we want to do this year to strengthen our interfaith component on campus,” Wold said.

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