Last year Salem started an exciting partnership with Lutheran School of Theology at Chicago to provide high quality religious education classes taught by seminary professors.
This Fall we will be offering another class: Engaging Others, Knowing Ourselves: Lutherans encountering people of other faiths (with a focus on Islam) by Dr. Mark Swanson, Harold Vogelaar Chair of Christian Muslim Relations and Associate Director of A Center for Christian-Muslim Engagement for Peace and Justice. (Please see the bottom of this email for a full description.)
The class will begin on Sunday, October 16, and will run for 4 weeks. A difference this year is that the professor will offer the same class twice a week, once on Sunday at 1:30 CST and Wednesday at 7:30 CST via zoom. We hope this will offer some flexibility each week to allow for greater participation. Participants are welcome to attend either class each week.
If you’ll be joining us for this exciting new class , we invite you to register here: https://www.lstc.edu/…/learning-communities-individuals .
Engaging Others, Knowing Ourselves: Lutherans encountering people of other faiths (with a focus on Islam) by Dr. Mark Swanson, Harold Vogelaar Chair of Christian Muslim Relations and Associate Director of A Center for Christian-Muslim Engagement for Peace and Justice.
Many North American Lutherans have been struck by the development of a richly diverse ecumenical and inter-religious landscape in our cities, but also in smaller towns, in our lifetimes. The definition of being religious in North America is not (and actually never was) simply “Protestant, Catholic, Jew,” as in the title of Will Herberg’s 1960 “Essay in American Religious Sociology” Coptic Orthodox Christians outnumber Lutherans in southern California; Chicago has been described as an “America Medina,” and a city like Austin, Texas is dotted with Buddhist temples, monasteries and meditations centers. This four-session workshop is designed to call attention to this landscape, to explore its richness, and to ponder our engagement with neighbors of other faiths—as Christians, and, specifically, as ELCA Lutherans.
Week 1: Who’s in the neighborhood? (being attentive to the religious diversity around us)
Week 2: Faith’s motivations (the Christian case for inter-religious engagement)
Week 3: Similarity, difference, and the possibility of dialogue (the case of Christian-Muslim relations)
Week 4: The work of the ELCA with special attention to recent documents: 2019 ELCA Declaration of Inter-Religious Commitment, 2022 Declaration of the ELCA to the Muslim Community, 2022 ELCA Guidelines for Ministry in a Multi-Religious World