Latin American Seminar on Religious Education in Intercultural Philosophy / Seminario Latinoamericano de Educación Religiosa en Clave Intercultural
May 22 – May 24, 2018
National University, Heredia, Costa Rica. Learn More »
Steve & Lynn Newsom
Quaker House is working to educate the public and the military on the issue of moral injury. This workshop provides information and tools for faith communities to help the soldiers who suffer with it. The relatively new diagnosis of Moral Injury, accepted by the VA, challenges us to step into a stronger, more revolutionary role in counseling our service members. It is important than we seek to understand that our service members are suffering in increasing numbers from the wounds brought on by the United States’ continued wars and we must be prepared to help them. These “invisible wounds” all too often lead to suicide or incarceration without adequate mental health care.
I just love my ego – don’t you? We get along so well together. And for so long – life-long, predictable, safe…more or less. Ok, we get angry, feel hurt, challenge our habitual responses, but oh, the seduction of familiarity, the tenacity of the patterns! Sometimes I’m free enough to say, I have an ego; most of the time, however, my ego has me! When we “break out of the box” we see things in a radically new light and/or behave in a totally different way. We’ve all experienced such turning points; we know that change is possible. But breaking free of life-long ego patterns can be difficult; even when we want to change, we don’t know how to get unstuck. Breaking up is hard to do…no matter how strong the desire to be free, we are still living within the story of our ego. It may have loosened, become less painful, but it is still doing its dance. The Enneagram is a particularly good tool for looking at ego patterns. The Enneagram describes the thought we think all day, it calibrates the energy levels we have for some things and the lesser energies we have for others. It portrays our biggest problem in life and our greatest gift -- and remarkably they are the same. People who know the Enneagram in a superficial way may think it puts people into boxes. But in fact, people find themselves breaking out of their own self-created boxes because they recognize their box is far too limiting. And as they continue to work with the Enneagram, they will see its brilliance and that there is always another level of discovery—all the way down to the realm of soul and mystery. Rev. Dr. Paul Hanneman has been learning and teaching the Enneagram for over 20 years. Attend this workshop to learn more.
George will read from his memoir the first half of the workshop, then facilitate a discussion, especially regarding the social forces at work in the SIN he was born into and to which he accommodated, and in the GRACE that upended him; i.e., his racism, sexism, homophobia, anti-semitism, economic elitism and environmental profligacy, and the signature social movements which overwhelmed him. Particular attention will be paid to the theological dimensions involved.
Many of us live, work, and are family with people of different belief systems. What does Jesus tell us about how we relate to “the other?” What can we learn from our own experiences? What of our Baptist heritage compels us to this invitation to love and know our neighbors? Join Jennifer Sanborn, pastor of Enfield American Baptist Church and admissions recruiter at Hartford Seminary (an interfaith seminary for the Abrahamic traditions), for an interactive exploration of relating between and among faiths. All attendees will contribute as “experts” on their own tradition and experience, and together we will dream about shaping the interfaith, global neighborhood we share.
In this workshop we will discuss the needs of citizens behind the bars and their return. Also discussed will be the importance of language and the stigmas that cause harm and the many ways that the Church can help.
Donna Lawrence Jones & Dee Dee Risher
How do we embrace our own stories in ways that strengthen our own liberation and the movement for human liberation? How do we keep our activism alive, grounded, and authentic? Using the powerful story of the Shunammite woman who builds the prophet Elisha a holy room (2 Kings), we will explore how our own work, including our specific racial, cultural, and gender identities—interact with moments in our lives that have had significant losses or failures. We will talk about how those moments can make us stronger people and stronger, more aware allies for justice. Donna Jones and Dee Dee Risher have co-taught several classes exploring interracial coalition building as well as telling our stories. As an African American and European American team, they lead sessions with a strong sense of how class, race, and background affect individual lenses.
Christianity – and society in general – has gotten a little crazy over these last few years. But Jesus is still cool – and radical. Join us as we study some of his teaching, do a little research, and find out just how cool and radical. You might be surprised… and inspired.
This workshop will look at Prison Reentry ‘Stations of Hope’ for citizens returning to their homes and how those welcoming them back can incorporate principles of Radical Hospitality and Restorative Justice in their welcome and in healing the community.
Advocacy is tricky. If you are in the privileged side you have power and influence but distance from the reality of the oppressed. So, it becomes very tempting to be FOR THEM. But the distance from the reality can blind so much that one may end up thinking one knows what is best for them even if they don’t know it. For example, many have a desire to help but never go beyond raising awareness. That is advocacy from power, if only I can let other people know! It assumes one has an audience AND that audience is listening and will be affected. On the other hand, if you are in the oppressed side there is neither power nor influence so it feels like nobody wants to listen. So the temptation is to get louder, shout, disrupt, release the frustration. But, far from helping the privileged listen it drives them away. What to do since escaping who we are is not a healthy way to advocate? “In Christ God was reconciling the world to himself…” (2 Cor. 5:19). The way to Christian advocacy is the difficult and painful path from US for THEM to US for US.
Paolo Salvatore Nicosia
This workshop will focus on what restorative justice means, how restorative justice works, and the relationship between restorative justice and healing memories. Participants will have the opportunity to shaire their own stories and experiences.
Given that the majority of people in the world are conflict averse there is great difficulty having necessary conversations when we are experiencing conflict. This workshop will help participants create safe space to have such conversations where personal relationships are at stake. It will also provide tools for entering these “unsafe” zones without resorting to reactive behavior.
Microaggressions are subtle slights, insults, and indignities expressed to persons of varied minority statuses. Although microaggressions are usually unintentional, they occur on a regular basis in education, the workplace, and daily life. Churches and faith communities that have long practiced justice on the macro level in relation to racism, sexism, heterosexism, etc. often have need of further attention to the ways prejudice continues to be perpetuated on the micro level in ways that those in the privileged or dominant positions don’t even see.
Although Bill Buffett knew prisons were overflowing, it was yet another social problem on the fringe of his attention. That all changed in 2014 when a PEN America’s program offered members a chance to mentor a prisoner in writing. Bill signed up and soon wrote a letter of introduction to Steve Thomas (#026260) who was in for life and in solitary down in Florida. They began a steady correspondence and now think of each other as close friends. Through Steve’s many letters, Bill learned about conditions in his prison. Though his prison is called a “Correctional Institution” a more honest name would be “Humiliation Institution.” In this workshop, Bill will share some of Steve’s life in prison and open the workshop to discussing how we can put more meaning into making Prisoners Lives Matter.
This workshop will expose the activism that ScholarshipsA-Z, a local youth-led Dreamer organization in Tucson, Arizona, has done in their community and state. From its creation back in 2009, ScholarshipsA-Z has grown both in its presence and impact in the Tucson community. In this workshop, you will learn about the creation of the organization, federal and state legislation that has affected and is affecting the undocumented community in Arizona, the changes and victories that ScholarshipsA-Z has made and celebrated, current projects that ScholarshipsA-Z is working on, and you will hear a personal story from someone that has been affected.
Examining the role of incarceration in US policy and its relation to healthcare, housing and community. This workshop encourages a forward-looking discussion concerning the challenges of incarceration and return to communities in the US. It is a challenge to service organizations, especially reentry organizations as well as a challenge to correctional organizations. The basic question is: Where have we come from and what is our aim in the future?
We live in an age of empire. Like those in the earliest days of the Christian faith, we struggle to live a vital faith based upon peace, justice, love and grace. Join us as we begin with the early church and travel across the centuries to explore the connections of then and now and how to remain faithful to the callings of peace and justice in our time.
This workshop is a look into the reasons for mass incarceration using Arkansas-based data with suggestions that can be applied nationally.
How can we get involved and become peacemakers when mass incarceration seems so prevailing? Get some tools to advocate and become a Station of Hope for those affected by the violence of mass incarceration, including the families of incarcerated persons.
Leslie Lee & Steve Gretz
Music is one of the most powerful vehicles for expressing emotion and moving spirits. This workshop examines how songs can comfort, encourage and inspire us, and in an age when words are so often used to divide us, how songs can still bring us together to stand up for truth and justice. This will be an interactive workshop. Participants are encouraged to bring instruments and songs to share.
Beth & Danice Carlson-Malena
Jesus prayed in John 17 that his followers would be one, but in many of our churches and parachurch ministries, theological and ethical debates about LGBTQ people threaten to divide us. In this workshop, we’ll wrestle with whether Jesus’ call to unity can be reconciled with our prophetic work for justice, especially when we have different ideas about what justice looks like. We’ll share stories and brainstorm ways to discern readiness, find entry points, evaluate overarching paradigms, diminish fear, and catalyze healthier dialogue about gender and sexuality within churches and faith-based organizations.
JoAnn & Larry Sims
Larry & JoAnn share their personal story from 2006-2016 about bringing together survivors of the Atomic Bomb in Hiroshima and Japanese Americans who experienced incarceration in the Northwest. The presentation highlights individuals, groups, and organizations. Photographs of current and historical events in a PowerPoint program illustrate both sets of stories and how their stories became connected. These stories were shared in communities of Hiroshima, Japan, Washington, Idaho, and New Mexico.
Many of us might have assumed that we were too enlightened to spend much time thinking about Revelation. Believe it or not, this fascinating but often overlooked or misused book in our New Testament still has valuable contributions to offer to our world. With insights into oppression, fear and the imprisonment of imperial thinking, Revelation is a rich treasure you can quickly come to appreciate. We will explore new and helpful ways of seeing this part of the Bible and what it means for our day. Join us and together let us recover a good and redemptive perspective to life and faith – so that you can be educated and informed on what Revelation has to say for us today.
An interactive time of conversation and interaction to encourage free-thinking about our communities after mass incarceration. Sometimes thinking of radially new ideas are so constrained that its hard to get out of the trap of usual ideas. We’ll spend some times shaking things up, throwing things in the air and we might be surprised where things land in the end.
The language often used by the Christian church around the theology of suffering and the crucifixion has a profound impact on our ability to speak to survivors of childhood and adult trauma. Well-meaning assertions such as “everything happens for a reason” can feel like assaults to trauma survivors. In this workshop we’ll have a facilitated conversation around some of the more problematic tropes of Christian theology as they apply to trauma, and explore together ways in which we can become a more supportive home to trauma survivors.
During this workshop, Ware will provide an overview of Restorative Justice as he’s practiced it in school environments. Participants will also be introduced to conflict resolution frameworks, skills and practices that are essential for strong and healthy relationships. The workshop will be interactive and facilitated through talking circle process in order to immerse participants into the experience.
Dave & Teresa Diewert
Is reconciliation possible without justice? In this workshop we want to think about settler colonialism as a structure not an event. Apologies, Inquiries and Commissions often further the idea that what happened to Indigenous peoples in Canada was something of the past, that Indigenous people need to heal and move on, and Indigenous people and settlers need to reconcile. But if settler colonialism is a structure not an event, it continues to operate and the oppression and elimination of Indigenous peoples for the sake of land carries on unabated. So what are the current manifestations of colonial domination? How are Indigenous people continually dispossessed of their land and traditional life-ways? And how are they resisting these current forms of colonial domination?
This nation is imploding under the weight of its centers of power’s efforts to maintain a white male hegemonic culture, epitomized by the evidences and consequences of mass incarceration. Companion to Mass Incarceration, Mass criminalization feeds on the demonization, dehumanization and dislocation of Black, Brown and poor bodies. The violence of incarceration continues beyond release as returning citizens are welcomed by barriers to employment, housing, familial reconciliation and health care. Faith communities—centered on love, transformation and mutuality—are poised to partner with the formerly incarcerated toward social integration, wholeness, authenticity and productivity. This session offers pragmatic and theological approaches to post-incarceration care and ministry.
Class Matters opens up the economic, social, and experiential world of people in poverty, revealing how the survival-based orientation of poverty impacts learning, work habits, and decision-making. Recent research has provided a deeper understanding of how people in survival face challenges virtually unknown to those in economic stability – challenges from both obvious and hidden sources.
In this session, you will: