January 6, 2010
WOOSTER, Ohio - Boundaries can be viewed as obstacles or opportunities. It all depends on one's point of view. In some cases, boundaries define territory; in others they invite dialogue. The College of Wooster's 2010 Spring Academy of Religion will explore both options when it presents "Border Crossings: Good Fences do not Make Good Neighbors." The four-week lecture series is free and open to the public. Each of the sessions will be held in Lean Lecture Room of Wishart Hall (303 E. University St.), with the exception of the third lecture on Feb. 18, which will be held in Gault Recital Hall of Scheide Music Center (525 E. University St.). All sessions begin at 7:30 p.m.
"The world's religious traditions have long declared, but too seldom practiced, the need to breakdown barriers and borders," said Charles Kammer, The James F. Lincoln Professor of Religious Studies at The College of Wooster and academic dean of the Spring Academy of Religion. "Certainly one could argue that the human, perhaps the global, future depends on our ability to render
boundaries and borders into sites of creativity rather than danger. We are called to see the 'other' as a gift, a resource that brings richness to our lives, not as one who is a threat to our existence. Cultivating such attitudes, however, and creating the structures to allow for border crossings, is hard, sometimes dangerous work."
The four speakers will explore a range of boundaries, particularly those that exist between religions, nationalities, ethnicities, gender, and class. "Our speakers, using their experience, research, and wisdom, will help us to negotiate border crossings with the hope that we can become part of a movement that has the courage, the knowledge, and the commitment to aid in the destruction of walls and barriers so that a more just, compassionate, and inclusive future can be built," said Kammer.
The series begins Feb. 4 with the Reverend Dr. John Fife, presenting "Crossing the Line: Faith, Ethics, and Law on the Border." Fife is Pastor Emeritus of Southside Presbyterian Church in Tucson. He also is co-founder of the Sanctuary Movement and was moderator of the 204th General Assembly of the Presbyterian Church (USA).
The second session, which will be held Feb. 11, features Dr. K. Christine Pae presenting "Western Princesses in the Borderlands: Searching for Transnational Solidarity Countering Globalized Militarism." Pae is an assistant professor of ethics/Christian Ethics in the Department of Religion at Denison University.
At the third session on Feb. 18, Dr. Eboo Patel, executive director of the Interfaith Youth Core in Chicago, will present "Acts of Faith: Interfaith Leadership at the Crossroads of Inheritance and Discovery. Patel was recently named to President Obama's Advisory
Council of the White House Office of Faith Based and Neighborhood Partnerships.
The final session will be held on Feb. 25 with Professor Kammer presenting "Something There is That Doesn't Love a Wall."
Additional information about the Spring Academy of Religion is available by phone
(330-263-2473) or e-mail (firstname.lastname@example.org).
1189 Beall Avenue, Wooster, Ohio 44691. (330) 263-2000
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