Exploring the Christian foundation for interfaith engagement
The Christian Leadership in a Multifaith World Curriculum explores the Christian foundation for interfaith engagement, builds students’ religious literacy, and gives students the tools to lead bridge-building activities in diverse workplaces and civic spaces. It is comprised of a series of online activities that can be used in sequence or as a stand-alone experience. Activities are intended to be accessible to students on Christian campuses who are new to interfaith engagement. The curriculum was designed by the Council for Christian Colleges and Universities (CCCU) and IA in partnership with Bethel University (MN) faculty Marion Larson, Amy Poppinga, and Sara Shady.
Development of this curriculum was made possible by generous funding from the Arthur Vining Davis Foundations.
There is no “right” way to use this curriculum. Some instructors may choose to integrate one or more complete modules into their course or program. Other instructors may choose to use 1-2 activities. The curriculum is designed to be adaptable. Instructors are free to cut and paste content from the curriculum into the learning platform of their choice (Moodle, Canvas, etc.) to use with their students. For suggested approaches to using activities in the curriculum, please review our Educator’s Guide.
The Christian Foundation for Interfaith Bridge-building
This module introduces key concepts of interfaith cooperation, explores the Christian foundation for engaging religious diversity through a look at scripture, prompts students to begin thinking about their own faith story, and tackles questions that arise for Christians when considering how to approach religious diversity.
Introduction to Interfaith Cooperation
This activity will introduce students to key concepts of interfaith cooperation (including what it is and what it isn’t) and showcase concrete examples of how Christians have engaged in interfaith action.
Virtues for Engaging Religious Diversity as a Christian
In this activity, students will be introduced to three key virtues that help Christians constructively navigate interfaith engagement in a manner that is consistent with their faith commitments.
A Fresh Look at 1 Corinthians 13
In this activity, students will read and analyze 1 Corinthians 13 through the lens of loving someone who orients around religion differently. Key focus is given to concepts like love, truth, faith, and hope.
A 21st Century Good Samaritan
In this activity, students will revisit the Parable of the Good Samaritan, seeking to draw lessons for interfaith engagement from this familiar story.
Exploring a Biblical Foundation for Interfaith Engagement
In this activity, students will learn about theological and biblical reasons for Christian participation in interfaith cooperation with a particular focus on themes of hospitality and love.
Big Questions That Arise in Interfaith Engagement
In this activity, students will reflect on key questions that arise when Christians engage in interfaith cooperation activities.
Stories of Interfaith Engagement, Part 1
In this activity, students will explore how people from various faith traditions connect their faith and vocation, and they will begin to write their own story of interfaith engagement as a means for serving others in their future vocation.
Knowing basic information about diverse religious traditions is a key element to becoming an educated person, a global citizen, and a contributor to our religiously diverse democracy. The activities in this module facilitate exploration of diverse religious beliefs and practices and help students develop an approach to religious literacy that depends on asking good questions and listening well.
Introduction to Religious Literacy
In this activity, students will learn why it is essential as Christians to develop an understanding of other religious beliefs and practices. They will also be introduced to the idea that religious literacy involves learning to ask the right questions and seeking robust answers.
Seeing the Religious Diversity Around You
In this activity, students will broaden their view of religious diversity in the United States and begin thinking about important questions to ask when cultivating their religious literacy.
Walking in Another’s Shoes
In this activity, students will expand their knowledge of religious experience and practices in the United States and continue to engage in empathetic thinking toward diverse religious identities.
Observing Religion Through Practice
In this activity, students will explore practices and expressions of belief from varying religious traditions.
Stories of Interfaith Engagement, Part 2
In this activity, students will explore how people from various faith traditions connect their faith and vocation, and they will reflect on what they can learn about different religious practices through personal stories.
In this activity, students will take virtual visits to sacred spaces of their choosing and reflect on the ways in which religious commitments are expressed and hospitality is extended.
Interfaith Cooperation and Civil Rights
This module explores the connections between interfaith cooperation and the historic movement for civil rights in the United States. The activities in the module ask students to reflect on the interfaith leadership role they might play at the intersection of religion and race in contemporary America.
The curriculum for this module is available via three playlists on the LRNG digital learning platform. It also includes a primer for Christians who are planning to use the LRNG Interfaith Cooperation and Civil Rights playlists. The primer frames the LRNG curriculum with two principles central to the Christian faith: loving one’s neighbor and pursuing justice.
Interfaith and Racial Justice from a Christian Perspective
In this activity, students listen to a podcast featuring three campus leaders from Calvin University and their perspectives on why Christians should embrace interfaith racial justice work.
LRNG – Interfaith Cooperation & Civil Rights: Reflect
Using this playlist, students can reflect on what inspires them to be an interfaith racial justice leader and learn about core concepts relevant to interfaith leadership and racial justice.
LRNG – Interfaith Cooperation & Civil Rights: Connect
Using this playlist, students can connect with historical figures who helped drive movements of interfaith cooperation for racial justice in the United States and around the world and reflect on how they serve as models for interfaith work today.
LRNG – Interfaith Cooperation & Civil Rights: Act
This playlist invites students to act on their commitments to interfaith leadership in the racial justice context by considering important questions like, What are the needs in your own community and how can you act on them? How can you be an “upstander” and build relationships to advance interfaith racial justice efforts?