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United Religions Initiative

URI – Yesterday, Today, and Tomorrow

URI – Yesterday, Today, and Tomorrow

by Victor Kazanjian

Imagine watching the news or viewing your Facebook feed each day and seeing thousands of positive stories of people from different religions, spiritual practices, and indigenous traditions working together…

Appreciative Inquiry and the United Religions Initiative

Appreciative Inquiry and the United Religions Initiative

by Sally Mahé

At the birth of the United Religious Initiative (URI) 20 years ago, Appreciative Inquiry (AI), a transformational philosophy and methodology for positive change, served as midwife.

URI in the World

URI in the World

by Azza Karam

URI envisions a world at peace, sustained by engaged and interconnected communities committed to respect for diversity, nonviolent resolution of conflict, and social, political, economic, and environmental justice.

URI in Jerusalem

URI in Jerusalem

by Nicholas Porter and Jack Karn

Across the world millions of Christians, Jews, and Muslims pray for the peace of Jerusalem each night. It is an ancient prayer with modern aspirations…

URI's Impact in Asia

URI's Impact in Asia

by Abraham Karickam

Those of us in South Asia came to know about the birthing of a new international interfaith organization destined to change the world during the voyage of Bishop William Swing around the world in 1996.

Voices of Hope

Voices of  Hope

by URI Members

The United Religions Initiative enjoys a kind of latitude and scope that invites the whole world in, but does so while honoring each of us and where we come from. That approach makes it a very personal

What Makes URI Unique?

What Makes URI Unique?

by Paul Chaffee

In The Coming United Religions (1998), William Swing wrote “I began a long and inward journey in February 1993. During a 24-hour period in my life, I moved from…

Analyzing the Intangible

Analyzing the Intangible

by Gaea Denker

Every nonprofit wants to think it’s helping the world. But in a field as intangible as peacebuilding, where small interactions slowly build trust over generations, how can peace proponents know their efforts are really working?

A Summer of Exciting Interfaith Events

A Summer of Exciting Interfaith Events

by Robyn Lebron, Megan Anderson, Tahil Sharma, and Johnny Martin

URI North America Regional Assembly - Reimagining Interfaith Cooperation - NAIN Connect 2018

Laughing, Learning, Listening

Laughing, Learning, Listening

by Sari Heidenreich

Laughter, listening and learning — these are the three things that come flooding back to me as I look at photos from the weekend I spent at Kashi with peacebuilders from half a dozen southern states.

An Heroic Opening Gambit

An Heroic Opening Gambit

by William E. Swing

On Tuesday afternoon, April 2, 1996, I had just presented a paper in Oxford on “The Coming United Religions.” It would be mild to say I failed in gaining backers. Afterwards, a young doctoral student from Germany, Joseph Boehle, came up to me and asked, “Would you like to have a conversation with Dr. Hans Küng?”

Peacemaking with "the Other"

Peacemaking with "the Other"

by Paul Chaffee

What does living life as an ‘interfaith activist’ mean? Millions have joined the cause in recent months, so we can well ask ourselves: What do interfaith activists share in common within our own communities and in the world? A quick, simplistic answer might be that all of us are striving towards peacemaking with ‘the other.’

Women Transforming the Globe

Women Transforming the Globe

From Women's Earth Alliance and United Religions Initiative

URI and WEA come together at a critical time – when efforts to build bridges across nations, learn from each other, and activate people power are needed more than ever. Our partnership enables both organizations to reach deeper and wider, catalyzing a global ripple effect that begins in our communities. The time is now.

“I’d Like to Help” – A Conversation with Charles Gibbs

What can we learn from a pioneer who co-created the largest grassroots interfaith organization in the world? A conversation with Charles Gibbs gifted us with answers to this question.

URI India Holds it Sixth National Assembly

This report was written and edited by: Dr. Abraham Karickam (URI Asia executive secretary), Biswadeb Chakraborty (URI national coordinator), Subhi Dhupar (head of Reporting Committee CC, liaison officer, North Zone, India, Asia), P.K. Ramachandra (CC member, South Zone), and Savita Malpani (CC member North Zone).

Grassroots Interfaith Education Goes Global

The boarding school for missionary children in northern India that I attended 50 years ago was about seven miles across mountain roads from a new school for refugee Tibetans streaming out of their war-torn homeland. The Indian government provided the buildings, CARE packages helped clothe the kids, and food was found. But they had no teachers. So, as young Tibetan Buddhists who had lost their parents, they used the tools at their disposal to start their education.

William Swing’s A Bishop’s Quest: Founding a United Religions

On the afternoon he received the life-changing call, William E. Swing had been the Episcopal Bishop of the Diocese of California for 14 years. At 57, his life was richly framed by four vows, as a husband, a deacon, a priest, and a bishop. He left a vibrant pastoral ministry in Washington DC in moving to San Francisco as a bishop. From Grace Cathedral atop Nob Hill, he quickly became known as a pioneer in responding to HIV/AIDS and homelessness, and a major stakeholder in addressing the needs of the elderly, immigrant ministries, and drug and alcohol rehab programs. Some touted him as a future presiding bishop of the Episcopal Church. His new book, A Bishop’s Quest: Founding a United Religions (2015), tells the historic story of what he did instead.

Empowering Grassroots Interfaith in India

Recent major media stories about religion in India have focused mostly on tensions between Hindus and both Christians and Muslims over issues of conversion and diet. Flying under the media horizon are 180 United Religion Initiative (URI) Cooperation Circles in India, referred to as CCs, self-governing groups which support URI’s commitment to daily interfaith cooperation, ending religiously motivated violence, and promoting peace, justice, and healing. CCs in India have four coordinators working in the nation’s north, south, east and western regions. They are particularly active in youth projects, women in interfaith, cross-cultural dialogue, and environmental issues.

Interfaith Network is Responding to Religious Violence

URI CCs encourage one another, pray for one another, share feelings and actions. A recent response shows actions of solidarity arising…