Ottawa School of Theology & Spirituality (OSTS)

Ottawa School of Theology & Spirituality (OSTS)

October 29, 2013 07:00 ET

Christians, Jews, Muslims Planning Ottawa Colloquium

OTTAWA, ONTARIO--(Marketwired - Oct. 29, 2013) - Christian, Jewish and Muslim groups are planning a one-day colloquium at Carleton University on Sunday, November 10, 2013. The theme to be addressed is: How can one be a person of faith in the 21st century in Canada?

"We want to fill the hall," says David Lee, one of the event's organizers. "We want to draw upon the experience and wisdom of these three faith traditions to address key issues regarding future challenges and possibilities for persons of religious faith in Canada."

Lee is involved with the Ottawa School of Theology and Spirituality (OSTS), which is celebrating its 50th anniversary of offering courses and is coordinating planning for the event. "Our people were enthusiastic about holding an inter-religious event of this kind and we made approaches to both the Jewish and Muslim communities. The response was encouraging."

OSTS President Karen Fee says, "It is rare for our three faith groups to cooperate closely on a public event of this nature. What brings us together is that we are people of faith. Our strength as a community stems from our diversity and our common desire for peace."

Lee adds, "Locally, there is a good deal of mutual respect among our three faith groups. We hope that, given the controversy over the Charter of Values in Quebec and the inter-religious and inter-cultural tensions in other parts of the world, our efforts at working together here offer at least a small beacon of hope for a future of cooperation."

Lee adds that it is not easy to be a person of religious faith in contemporary Canada and it is that question which the colloquium wants to pursue. "We have three excellent guest speakers who will present consecutively, and then a final panel session with all three in order to pull things together. They will do more than simply describe their respective religions. They will talk about how to actually be a person of faith in contemporary Canada, and address questions that all of us face as individuals and as citizens."

The three speakers are: Mary Jo Leddy, PhD, Order of Canada, and founder of Romero House Community for Refugees, Toronto, Adjunct Professor, Regis College, and Senior Fellow, Massey College, both at the University of Toronto. Ingrid Mattson, PhD, is the London and Windsor Community Chair of Islamic Studies at Huron University College at the University of Western Ontario. Dr. Mattson previously taught Islamic Studies at Hartford Seminary, and served for many years as the first woman president of the North America Islamic Society. David Novak, PhD, holds the J. Richard and Dorothy Shiff Chair of Jewish Studies as Professor of Religion and of Philosophy in the University of Toronto.

The colloquium occurs on Sunday, November 10 between 2:30 and 8:00 p.m. at Carleton University, River Building, Amphitheatre (Room 2200). Light refreshments will be served. The event is sponsored by the Ottawa School of Theology & Spirituality; the Anglican, Presbyterian, Roman Catholic, and United Churches, and the Islamic and Jewish communities in Ottawa. Other donors include the federal department of Citizenship and Immigration.

Ticket registration and more detailed information are available online at

Public Service Announcement:

Ottawa Christians, Jews, Muslims plan public discussion

Personal and public challenges of living a faith in 21st century Canada. Excellent speakers: Dr. Mary Jo Leddy; Dr. Ingrid Mattson; Dr. David Novak. Moderated discussion. Light refreshments. $30 early bird registration. $40 at door. $20 students. Sunday, Nov. 10: 2:30--8:00 p.m. River Building Amphitheatre (Room 2200), Carleton U. Tickets and full info:

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