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Interfaith Chapel allows students to explore religions

Kunihiko Terasawa
Kunihiko Terasawa, assistant professor in world religions, spoke at Interfaith Chapel in September. — Emily Novotny/ TRUMPET

This year Wartburg College and the religion department are starting a new program called Interfaith Chapel.

Interfaith Chapel gives thanks for a variety of religious traditions and provides a reflection and sacred writings from those religions within the context of a regular chapel worship, Ramona Bouzard, dean of the chapel, said.

“It’s an opportunity to hear about other religions,” Bouzard said.

Every last Wednesday of the month there will be a new speaker talking about their religion during the regular chapel time. Bonita Bock, co-director of Wartburg West, will be the speaker this month. While she is Christian, she will talk about her work with faith in Denver, Colo., Bouzard said.

This marks the first year of having Interfaith Chapel at Wartburg, but it has been in the works for a few years. In years past Wartburg would have faculty talk but at that time there was controversy, Bouzard said.

“We have done so much work to open up the community,” Bouzard said.

Micah Peters said having this opportunity is important to learn about others in the community so people can have a correct view of others and their religion.

“It keeps people from drawing conclusions about different faiths,” Peters said.

Going to Interfaith and having an opportunity to learn from others will benefit students, faculty and staff, she said. They can learn what it feels like to be part of religious rituals that are not part of their particular faith tradition, Bouzard said.

“We are trying for once a month to get area pastors to speak about their church,” Bouzard said.

Interfaith is a great way to connect with others you might not have connected with before.

“This is a great opportunity to learn about members of our Wartburg community and wonder about the mystery of God,” Bouzard said.

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