In an effort to increase cultural awareness and foster an environment of educational interest, United Campus Ministries, Christus Rex, UND Health and Wellness, UND Diversity and Inclusion, Campus Ministries Association, Archives Coffee House and UND Student Organization Funding Agency have teamed up to host Interfaith Week at the University of North Dakota.
Beginning Saturday, Jan. 28, students at UND are invited to celebrate different religions with events on or near campus.
Sandra Mitchell, Associate VP for Diversity and Inclusion at UND, believes Interfaith Week is a crucial step in breaking down misconceptions about religious beliefs different from our own.
“I think it’s important because we’re an educational institution,” Mitchell said, “and it’s a part of our education to learn about different people and different ideas, and that’s what interfaith week is about.”
Teaming up with the Eye of the Hawk Lecture series, a series of public speaking engagements at UND, Mitchell helped to ensure Reverend Jaime Washington would be able to speak to students, staff and faculty during Interfaith Week
Mitchell refers to Washington as a “diversity specialist,” a phrase she doesn’t use lightly. Mitchell is excited for Washington to speak on campus because he will be discussing faith as a form of diversity, and examining diversity is something Mitchell is passionate about.
“I love anything that allows us to learn about other people,” Mitchell said. “So all of it’s exciting to me.”
Mitchell believes opening up to a different culture is important, especially on a college campus. She hopes students will take an opportunity to ask questions and learn a thing or two about a culture different from their own—a hope that is the driving force behind Interfaith Week.
“It’s about learning,” Mitchell said. “It’s not about throwing facts or throwing figures at people. It’s about actually sitting down and learning from someone who lives that life, and it’s really hard to hate someone that you know.”
List of events
Saturday, Jan. 28:
10 a.m., The Values of Buddhist Tradition, Lotus Meditation Center, 2908 University Ave.
Sunday, Jan. 29:
10:30 a.m., Christus Rex Worship Service, Christus Rex, 3012 University Ave.
7 p.m., A dialogue on Sanatan Dharma (Hinduism), River Valley Room, Memorial Union
Monday, Jan. 30:
12 p.m., Spiritual Wrappers Luncheon: A Panel Discussion on the Devotional Practice of Head Covering, River Valley Room, Memorial Union
4:45 p.m., Qi Gong, Lotus Meditation Center, 2908 University Ave.
5:30 p.m., Intro into Buddhist Vipassana Meditation, Lotus Meditation Center, 2908 University Ave.
5:30 p.m., Eye of the Hawk lecture: Diversity and Inclusion in 2017: Our Next Round of Work, feat. Dr. Rev. Jamie Washington, Gorecki Gransberg Room, 3501 University Ave.
7 p.m., Tearing Down the Walls: keynote and book signing with Shane Claiborne, Memorial Union Ballroom
Tuesday, Jan. 31:
12 p.m., Lunch with a Muslim, River Valley Room, Memorial Union
1 p.m., Support your Muslim students and staff in turbulent times: create safe spaces for those who feel fear and hate, Memorial Union Lecture Bowl
6 p.m., Baha’I conversation: learning about the Baha’I faith, River Valley Room, Memorial Union
7:30 p.m., Grand Forks Unitarian-Universalist Fellowship: who we are and how we came to be who we are, River Valley Room, Memorial Union
Wednesday, Feb. 1:
12 p.m., Use of sage, sweetness and cedar on UND campus, River Valley Room, Memorial Union
6 p.m., Tu B’Shevat (A new year for trees), River Valley Room, Memorial Union
7:30 p.m., A night of worship: expression through worship and pizza, Loading Dock, Memorial Union
Thursday, Feb. 2:
12 p.m., The Spiral Journey: Discovering Wicca, River Valley Room, Memorial Union
5:15 p.m., Candlemass (Feats of Light), Newman Center, 410 Cambridge Street
6 p.m., Have you met the Mormons? River Valley Room, Memorial Union
Friday, Feb. 3:
9 a.m., Multicultural programs and services breakfast, Multicultural programs and services, 3rd floor, Memorial Union
12 p.m., Taste of faith luncheon: an overview of traditions, Christus Rex, 3012 University Ave.
1 p.m., Observing the Muslim prayer, Islamic Center of Grand Forks, 2122 17th Ave. S.
Matt Eidson is the News Editor for The Dakota Student. He can be reached at [email protected]