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Katherine Marshall

Religions for Peace Looks to its Future

Religions for Peace Looks to its Future

by Katherine Marshall

The 10th World Assembly of Religions for Peace was held last month at in Lindau, Germany on Lake Constance. This was a large and diverse gathering, 900 participants from 125 countries…

Religion, Risk, Resilience, and Disaster Response

Religion, Risk, Resilience, and Disaster Response

by Katherine Marshall

Increased extreme weather disasters are an expected long-term effect of climate change. Already, changes occurring globally have increased the intensity and duration of heat waves, risks of drought, flooding….

Who is to Blame for Disasters?

Who is to Blame for Disasters?

by Katherine Marshall

Blaming God’s righteous judgment when people suffer disaster goes back at least to Noah. God causes the flood, the story-teller notes, because “the earth was corrupt in God’s sight and was full of violence” (Gen. 6:11).

A Compass for Saving the World

A Compass for Saving the World

by Katherine Marshall

A compass is sorely needed when navigating rough and uncertain terrain. That’s certainly the situation in today’s turbulent world. 

Ethics in the Swamp: the Rot of Corruption

Ethics in the Swamp: the Rot of Corruption

by Katherine Marshall

Corruption is a live topic today. Since 2005, international anti-corruption day has been “celebrated” on December 9, in hopes that a visible day marking the topic can raise awareness about corruption and bolster a sense that something can be done to combat and prevent it. 

Where's the Moral Outrage?

Where's the Moral Outrage?

by Katherine Marshall

“Where is the moral outrage?” A questioner at a recent Washington event demanded some explanation for the seeming indifference in the United States to hunger that affects tens of millions of people in Africa and the Middle East. Is it lack of knowledge? Citizens numbed by an unending deluge of horrifying news? A hardening of spirit accompanying Americans’ turning inwards?

Where We've Been – Where We're Going

Where We've Been – Where We're Going

by Katherine Marshall

Exploring the interfaith landscape drives home the dynamism and complexity of the array of formal organizations, initiatives, and largely unstructured efforts that fall under a loose interfaith rubric. They come in all sizes and shapes and touch on virtually every area of human endeavor.

Ethics in the Swamp: the Rot of Corruption

Ethics in the Swamp: the Rot of Corruption

by Katherine Marshall

Corruption is a live topic today. Since 2005, international anti-corruption day has been “celebrated” on December 9, in hopes that a visible day marking the topic can raise awareness about corruption and bolster a sense that something can be done to combat and prevent it. 

Shadowing the China G20 Summit: An Interreligious Gathering

Shadowing the China G20 Summit: An Interreligious Gathering

by Katherine Marshall

World leaders meeting in Hangzhou, China may be unaware that a few days earlier a shadow group of religious scholars met in Beijing. Their agenda was geared to the G20 and their meeting reflected a determined effort by Chinese scholars and counterparts from across the world to continue a tradition of gathering in parallel with the global encounters of national leaders

Nagging Tensions Around Development and Proselytizing

Last March the Religious Freedom Project at the Berkley Center for Religion, Development, and World Affairs published a series of short papers about proselytism in their publication Cornerstone. Each author was invited to respond to the following statement:

Can Things Get Better for Us All?

Trying to understand the scope of the word ‘interfaith’ is a never-ending exercise these days. Religion itself, in a remarkable turn-around, is taking center stage in the mainline media day after day.

Fragile States: Five Imperatives

Joel Hellmann argues persuasively that the challenges that fragile states present are absolutely central not only for those focused on international development and poverty but far beyond. They cut to the core issues for international relations, tightly linked to security, refugees and migration, and governance institutions, not to mention, inter alia, crime, humanitarian challenges, and the qualities of life that human rights are all about.

Publishing About Faith and Health

On July 7, the renowned medical publication the Lancet launched a series of articles on faith and health, led by Ed Mills. Lancet Senior Executive Editor Bill Summerskill made clear that this was a significant departure, a first. Speaking at the World Bank in Washington D.C., he and his colleagues did not shy away from the fact that the path to publication had not been easy. But they saw the opportunities and issues raised as vital to achieving universal health care, which in turn is at the core of the sustainable development goals (SDGs) that are close to being finalized at the United Nations. [Disclosure: I was a member of the author team and contributed to two comments that are part of the series].

A Kairos Moment: Faith Calls to Action

Over this six-month period, world leaders will meet time and time again. They face daunting agendas and the stakes are high. Hopefully they see starkly what seems so obvious: that the complex challenges are closely related one to another (peace and poverty, environment and political will), and that bold action is urgent.

The Parliament of the World’s Religions: 1893 and 1993

Contemporary reflections about interreligious institutions and practices commonly highlight an ambitious meeting in Chicago in 1893, termed the World’s Parliament of Religions, as a starting point of the modern interfaith movement.

Why is the Parliament of the World’s Religions Important?

Anyone who has attended one or more of the modern Parliaments (starting with the 1993 centennial celebration in Chicago) comes away with a multitude of stories and new friendships. Being with thousands of interfaith activists, by itself, tends to change your perspective on the world. TIO asked leaders from the interfaith movement to share with us briefly what they think is important about the Parliament of the World’s Religions. For a longer response, see Marcus Braybrooke’s reflection in this TIO on attending all the modern Parliaments.

A Sufi Parable in Fes

A band of birds of different species sets out on a perilous journey through the unknown, in search of their king. That is the story of The Conference of the Birds, the 12th century masterpiece of Persian poet Farid ud-Din Attar. Like Chaucer’s Canterbury Tales, it offers an amalgam of myths

The Interfaith Movement’s Evolution and Future Challenges

Bud Heckman, a frequent TIO contributor, has worked with many leading interreligious organizations, foundations, academic institutions, and community-based organizations.

"Top 10 Things You Must Know About ..."

During the month of February, Religions for Peace USA (RfPUSA) is releasing a series of short educational videos inspired by World Interfaith Harmony Week (WIHW). The videos are viewable here. In 2014, RfPUSA and the El-Hibri Foundation (EHF) co-sponsored a “Best of Interfaith Webinar Series” for WIHW, featuring leading experts in the field. A short summary video of the highlights from that series is available here and the whole series is viewable here.

Responding to Religion for Peace’s 9th World Assembly

Editorial