School of Theology and Ministry
News and Events

Interreligious Initiative

  • All across the globe, there is lively debate over the implications of today's multicultural and multireligious society in civic, religious, and educational institutions. How we shape a positive pluralism is one of the most important questions American society faces in the years ahead. Seattle University's School of Theology and Ministry is committed to assisting in this endeavor by both transforming itself and helping to educate our community-at-large through its "Interreligious Initiative".

    The School's Interreligious Initiative is a direct extension of its foundational ecumenical value of rootedness in tradition while openness to and dialogue with the "other." The Intereligious Initiative's phase one has begun with a three-year effort to:

    • introduce interreligious perspectives to our faculty, staff and students; 
    • begin to incorporate interreligious content, where appropriate, into the curriculum; and
    • extend and promote interreligious dialogue in the general community

    The Interreligious Initiative is funded by the Henry Luce Foundation, the Seattle based Tillie and Alfred Shemanski Testamentary Trust and generous individual donors.

    Select Programming Examples

    As part of this initiative, the school hosts:

    • Faculty retreats and seminars with visiting scholars, such as Dr. Frank Clooney, S.J., of Harvard Divinity School, one of the foremost Christian scholars of Hinduism and Dr. Philipp Renczes, S.J., Director of the Cardinal Bea Center for Judaic Studies at the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome;
    • Public events such as the “Faith and Values in the Public Square” lecture series and an on-going blog of the same name (, which explore how faith and spirituality intersect in the 21st century global community with its unique tensions and questions; and
    • On-going outreach efforts and dialogues with community leaders of the Jewish, Islamic, Hindu and  Buddhist faiths on issues of mutual concern.