Seeking Justice Together: A Virtual Conference with CPJ


Seeking Justice Together 
is a virtual conference hosted by Citizens for Public Justice from May 17 to 20 exploring how we are called to seek justice together through intersectional, interpersonal, and interconnected approaches. ICS/CPRSE is one of the event’s supporters, sponsoring a workshop on the 19th on decolonization processes within faith communities, under the leadership of Decolonizing Christianity Canada and Kenosis.


Through a variety of additional keynotes and workshops, participants will explore living examples of what it looks like to seek justice as people connected to one another and to the lands in which we live. Participants will consider how our identities, histories, systems, and geography shape our experiences of power and privilege, and how this informs the ways in which each of us are called to seek justice together. Speakers and facilitators will address issues of racism, Indigenous/settler reconciliation, 2SLGBTQQIA+ rights, disability rights, poverty in Canada, climate justice, and refugee rights.

If you'd like to join all or part of this conference, visit the event website here for more information on keynotes and workshops, as well as instructions for how to register: https://cpj.ca/seeking-justice-together.

Free to Believe, Responsible to Act - Online Conference on Religion in Canadian Society


 May 4, 2021, 1:00 - 4:30pm EDT

The Canadian Interfaith Conversation, in partnership with the Manitoba Multifaith Council, is sponsoring an online version of Our Whole Society (OWS), the fifth iteration of a conference that aims to foster a new dialogue about the changing role of religion and faith in Canadian society. ICS President Ronald A. Kuipers has been serving as a member of the OWS Steering Committee as a representative of ICS and the CPRSE.

The Charter Vision of the Canadian Interfaith Conversation commits to work for the greater realization of the fundamental freedom of conscience and religion for the sake of the common good and engaged citizenship. This series of OWS conferences builds on this Vision and draws on insights from diverse religious and secular traditions of thought in order to find common ground that helps us to build a society that is more unified amidst its diversity.

The theme for this year's conference is: Free to Believe, Responsible to Act.

This year's conference will be an online event and will be bilingual, with simultaneous translation in English and French. Registration is free, but a small contribution to offset the costs is welcome.

For more information, visit www.ourwholesociety.org
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Conference Highlights

PANEL 1: Addressing Challenges to Freedom of Religion or Belief (1:00 - 2:30pm EDT)

Canada’s legacy of protecting religious freedom is mixed. Early on the First Nations of Canada experienced the denial and suppression of their right to freedom of religion or belief. Traditional spiritual and religious ceremonies were banned and suppressed, while the Indian residential school system was designed to replace their own identity with another one. Despite long-standing legal protections for religious freedom reaching back to the Quebec Act of 1774 through to the 1982 Charter, this right continues to be debated in public and contested in court. Furthermore, new challenges are emerging from social media and other on-line platforms, which propagates hatred and prejudice that can generate real-world violence and persecution.

What role does protection for freedom of religion or belief play in fostering social understanding in a diverse Canadian society, in fostering reconciliation? To what extent does this freedom extend to protections for organizations, institutions, or even the natural environment? What new and old challenges are facing traditional, religious, spiritual and other communities as they seek to exercise these rights? How should we respond to the growth of religion- based prejudice in Canadian society, especially as it affects Indigenous and minority populations?

Panelists:
Professor Lori Beaman (Professor, University of Ottawa)
Bishop Bruce Myers (Bishop of Quebec, Anglican Church of Canada)
Rabbi Reuben Poupko (Co-Chair, Canadian Rabbinic Caucus)


PANEL 2: Building Social Solidarity (3:00 - 4:30pm EDT)

It seems that almost every social cleavage in Canada is deepening under the pressures of a divisive political discourse. These cleavages can be traced according to region, language, identity, class, or the religious-secular divide. Furthermore, the need to build social solidarity acquires greater urgency in the wake of the coronavirus pandemic.

What does it take to work across these divides and heal the body politic? What is the potential and actual contribution of religion and spirituality to this process? Where do we see new approaches to addressing inequality, fostering reconciliation, responding to the climate crisis, and building community at the grassroots of society?

Panelists:
Jamileh Naso (President, Canadian Yazidi Association)
Shannon Perez (Director, Indigenous Family Centre)
Akaash Maharaj (CEO, Mosaic Institute)

April 1: Scripture, Faith, and Scholarship Symposium with Dr. Nadine Bowers Du Toit

Born Free? South African Young Adults, Inequality, and Reconciliation in Stellenbosch:
A Conversation with Dr. Nadine Bowers Du Toit

Date:
Thursday, April 1st at 1:00pm EDT
via Zoom (details below)

We would like to invite you to join our next Scripture, Faith, and Scholarship symposium, taking place virtually on April 1st. 

To lead us in this edition of our semiannual symposium, we welcome Dr. Nadine Bowers Du Toit, Director of The Unit for Religion and Development Research (URDR) at the University of Stellenbosch. The majority of Dr. Bowers Du Toit's research has focused on the intersection between religion, poverty, and inequality, with a special focus on the role of local congregations and Faith Based Organisations in addressing these pressing concerns within the South African context. In her opening presentation, Dr. Bowers Du Toit will share with us her most recent research on Christian youth and inequality in post-Apartheid South Africa.

In keeping with our current institutional focus on race relations and systemic racism, we have invited Dr. Bowers Du Toit to offer her insights into the ways in which Christianity-–and in particular biblical interpretation–is shaping the responses of South Africa youth to issues of inequality, marginalization, and violence. We are thrilled that Dr. Bowers Du Toit has agreed to join us, and we look forward to reflecting with her on these community-driven, scripturally-informed responses to systemic oppression.

This event is sponsored by the Centre for Philosophy, Religion, and Social Ethics.   


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Join Zoom Meeting Here:

Meeting ID: 851 2836 5893

Find your local number: 

Call For Papers: Christian Left Conference Cohosted by CPRSE

ICS's Centre for Philosophy, Religion, and Social Ethics is joining Emmanuel College’s Centre for Religion and Its ContextsTrinity St. Paul's United Church, and the Toronto Mennonite Theological Centre to host the second Christian Left Conference (free and online) on July 23-24, 2021. Conference details and Call For Papers (due March 19) follow below:

Rethinking the Christian Left from the Belly of Empire:
Charting New Paths Beyond Colonization


What does it mean to speak of a Christian Left? Who is included under the label the Christian Left? In the last decades, the Christian left has been undergoing enormous reconfiguration: new actors, issues, and concerns have uncovered the colonial underbelly of the Christian Left. From the Suffrage movements through to the Social Gospel, and continuing through liberation theologies and political theologies to today, these reconfigurations have included an emergence of different approaches to reading the Bible, the articulation of alternative approaches to theology and ethics, and the crossing of disciplinary boundaries. These various actors have complexified idealized notions of the Christian Left in Canada and across the globe, and invite us to critique and dismantle its colonizing features.

Call for Papers


The Christian Left Conference invites proposals that intentionally reflect on the emergence of historical “new” actors and voices in the Christian Left. Proposals can be related to (re)tracing the historical, theological and biblical-hermeneutical developments of the Christian Left and its present disciplinary reorientation. Topics related to the interconnection between social movements and actors, the disciplinary cross-fertilization on the areas of interreligious collaboration, the dismantling of traditional canons of theology and biblical hermeneutics, and the reconceptualization of the human experience are especially welcome.

This conference is interdisciplinary and welcomes papers from many fields, primarily theological studies, biblical interpretation, preaching and worship, congregational and community ministry, history, ethics and political theology, as well as religious studies, sociology, anthropology, literary studies, philosophy and the humanities broadly understood. Papers engaging with Canadian contexts are particularly encouraged; we also welcome papers from across the world.

Proposals are due March 19, 2021 and can be submitted online here:
https://bit.ly/cfpchristianleft2021


If you have any questions, please email: ec.events@utoronto.ca.