The Leader in Graduate Interfaith Education

With roots that go back to 1834, Hartford Seminary is a non-denominational graduate school for religious and theological studies. What makes us unique is our multi-faith environment and our proven ability to prepare leaders for the complex world that surrounds us.

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Dr. Hossein Kamaly to Give Talk at McGill University
Dr. Hossein Kamaly, Associate Professor of Islamic Studies and Holder of the Imam Ali Chair in Shi'i Studies and Dialogue among Islamic Legal Schools, will speak at McGill University's Institute for Islamic Studies at 3 p.m. (EST) on Tuesday, Oct. 19. The event is online. Register at this link. Dr. Kamaly will speak on "Nationalist Messianism: A Case of Literary Displacement" as part of the Persianate Studies Colloquium. A description of the talk: On the eve of the Constitutional Revolution at the turn of the 20th century, messianic tropes suffused Persian poetry and prose. With a twist. Unlike earlier warnings of imminent cosmic apocalypse, the new promise and expectation pointed to radical political change and the deliverance of the nation. This talk analyzes examples from the writings of constitutionalists, reformers, and later writers: Bahar, Mohammad Iqbal, Forough Farrokhzad, and Sadegh Hedayat.    
Sojourners Writes about Hartford Seminary Plan to Change Name
The nationally distributed magazine Sojourners published an interview on Oct. 6 with President Joel N. Lohr focused on Hartford Seminary's plan to change its name and logo. The article, "That Doesn't Sound Like a Seminary," is primarily a Q&A between President Lohr and Mitchell Atencio, assistant news editor at Sojourners, which covers faith, culture and politics. Among other topics, President Lohr addresses: Why Hartford Seminary felt it was necessary to rebrand How long a name change had been considered How much the change is related to the increasing number of people reluctant to identify with a specific religious identity How an older model of seminary education is not sustainable long-term And how the landscape of theological education is changing For the full article, click here.  
Students Learn about Jewish Holiday of Sukkot
With Muslim, Christian and Jewish students in attendance, Dr. Deena Grant, Associate Professor of Jewish Studies, gave a short lesson about the Jewish holiday of Sukkot and invited students to eat inside Hartford Seminary’s sukkah, a traditional temporary shelter built for the observance. Dr. Grant explained the theological underpinnings of the holiday, a seven-day occasion for rejoicing that reminds the Jewish people of the 40-year period during which they wandered in the desert living in temporary shelters. The shelters, she said, were flimsy because they could not be permanent, and the message is that man-made structures do not protect us but God does. Marni Loffman, a Jewish student in the MA in International Peacebuilding program, spoke about how Sukkot (the plural of sukkah) is one of three Jewish holidays related to pilgrimages. She also spoke about how different religious practices get transformed by different cultures, such as when American families go "sukkah-hopping" to view the different variations and sometimes collect candy. Before inviting participants to eat pizza in the sukkah, Dr. Grant demonstrated a traditional blessing involving a palm frond, two willow branches, three myrtle branches and an etrog, a type of citrus fruit native to Israel. Students, staff, and faculty took turns offering the blessing themselves.

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AARP - Faith in the Neighborhood Series
Hartford Seminary faculty and staff will supply the content for this free AARP CT Virtual U series. AARP membership is not required for this event. It will not be recorded, so live attendance is expected. AARP CT will welcome attendees from around the country for this opportunity to develop your professional toolkit and to create livable communities right in your neighborhood and for those you serve in surrounding communities in Connecticut. This 3-part “Faith in the Neighborhood Series” runs from October 14th through November 9th of this year. 10/14/2021 @ 12PM ET (60min) Religious Manyness:  The US—especially in certain urban areas—is intensely religiously diverse. Agreement with that statement is easy to find. But finding agreement on what “religion” is? That is not so easy! Yet, however it is defined, everyone is oriented toward it somehow. In this session, we learn about the scope of religious diversity in the US and how it came to be. We learn methods for understanding what “religion” is; obstacles to and options for interreligious engagement; and wise policies for navigating the multi-faith neighborhood. Additional Sessions in this series. Registration required for each at www.aarp.org/ctevents Tuesday, 10/26/2021 @ 7PM ET Clothing, Cuisine, and Calendars: Complexities of the Multi-faith Neighborhood Tuesday, 11/9/2021 @ 7PM ET What Goes on In There? An Introduction to America’s Religious Diversity in Ten Buildings This session is live and not recorded. ALL 3 Sessions are pending approval for (1.0) Continuing Education Units by NASW/CT and meets the continuing education criteria for CT Social Work Licensure renewal.  This approval is also applicable for license renewals for CT LPCs, LMFTs, and licensed psychologists.
Unequal Impact: Climate and Environmental Racism in a Warming World
As climate change continues to increase in intensity, the economic and health disparities are being born by poor and marginalized communities, both globally and locally. Join us for a 90-minute webinar featuring the Rev. Dr. Gerald Durley, civil rights activist, former pastor, and current Chairperson for Interfaith Power & Light, and Jehann El-Bisi, a Black indigenous climate activist working to fight Line 3, an oil tar sands pipeline. Rev. Durley and Ms. El-Bisi will discuss the disparate impact and unique experiences of Black and indigenous communities in the climate crisis. This free webinar is co-sponsored by Interreligious Eco-Justice Network and Hartford Seminary.       About the Speakers REV. DR. GERALD DURLEY was born in Wichita, Kansas. He grew up in California and graduated from high school in Denver, Colorado. Being endowed with exceptional basketball skills and a deep interest in improving the civil and human rights of African Americans, Dr. Durley chose to leave the west and venture south to Tennessee State University in Nashville, Tennessee. While earning a Bachelor of Science Degree in Psychology, playing on a championship basketball team, and serving as student government president, he became very active in the civil rights movement. After graduating, Dr. Durley became one of the first Peace Corp volunteers to enter Nigeria, West Africa. From Africa he ventured to Switzerland where he enrolled in postgraduate studies at the University of Neuchantel. While there, he was invited to play for one of the Swiss National basketball teams. When he returned to the United States, Dr. Durley enrolled in Northern Illinois University where he again became intensely involved in the struggle for human dignity, and earned one of the first Master's Degrees in Community Mental Health. He earned a Doctorate in Urban Education and Psychology from University of Massachusetts and a Master of Divinity from Howard University. Dr. Durley is the former Pastor of Providence Missionary Baptist Church, where he served for 25 years. Currently the Chairperson of Interfaith Power & Light, Rev. Durley is a highly sought speaker on civil and human rights issues. He and his wife, Muriel, have 2 children and 4 grandchildren. JEHANN EL-BISI has an earned doctorate from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, and an advanced graduate summer program certificate in the study of conflict zones, and transformation, from SIT Graduate School in Brattleboro, VT. She served on the faculty as an adjunct professor, teaching Multicultural Education at the Neag Graduate School of Education, at the University of Connecticut, at Storrs. Jehann completed her first 30 min documentary film, The River Cried, "Mni W'Coni!"- Service and Solidarity in Standing Rock, a personal reflection in 2017, and has been giving talks related to climate justice, from an indigenous perspective, using the film as an educational tool. Her second film, Reflections: An Interview with Lenny Foster, is currently airing on San Francisco public television.

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Hartford Seminary became the first seminary in America to open its doors to women, in 1889.
In 1902, Hartford Seminary was a founding member of the American Association of Schools of Religious Education.
The first American center for the study of Islam and Christian-Muslim relations opened at Hartford Seminary in 1973.
In 1990, Hartford Seminary became the first nondenominational theological institution in North America to name a female president.
Naming a Muslim to the core faculty was a first for nondenominational theological institutions in North America in 1991.
Hartford Seminary established the first Islamic Chaplaincy Program in America in 2001.
The first chair of Shi’i Studies in North America launched at Hartford Seminary in 2015.

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