2011-2012 Programs


Constitution Day Debate

The Supreme Court's First Amendment Free-for All: Funeral Protests, Campaign Money, and Video Games
Dr. Timothy O'Rourke, Vice President for Academic Affairs and Kenneth R. Perry Dean of the College, and Dr. Paul Rasor, Joan P. and Macon F. Brock, Jr., Director of the Center.

Thursday, September 15, 2011
3 – 4:30 p.m., Monumental Chapel


Nexus Interfaith Dialogue Series: Some Hard Questions About Our Faiths

All religions contain features that raise difficult questions for insiders and outsiders alike. These may be found in challenging texts, misunderstood practices, or elsewhere. Left unexamined, these hard questions too often become a source of misunderstanding and fear.

During the Nexus Interfaith Dialogue Series for 2011-2012, panelists from inside and outside particular faiths will discuss a range of especially challenging issues.

Program Dates and Panels:

Monday, September 26, 2011
Islam: Does Islam teach or implicitly condone violence?
What are the different understandings among Muslims today?
Panelists: Imam Vernon Fareed, Dr. Ahmed K. Noor, Dr. Hussam S. Timani
Moderator: Dr. Paul Rasor
Monday, October 17, 2011

Yoga: Is yoga a religion? Does it conflict with Christianity?
Panelists: Dr. Dilip Sarkar, retired heart surgeon and leading expert in yoga therapy; Kristy DiGeronimo, certified yoga instructor and founder of Christian Yoga Practice in Virginia Beach; Kim Austin-Peterman, certified Ayurvedic yoga practioner and co-founder of The Space Above Yoga Center in Norfolk
Moderator: Dr. Paul Rasor
Monday, February 13, 2012
Judaism: Can Judaism, a minority faith accustomed to surviving persecution, survive in a climate of acceptance?
Monday, February 27, 2012
Christianity: Does Christianity claim to be the only true path to salvation?
Are Jews, Muslims, Hindus, and atheists consigned to Hell?
Monday, March 26, 2012
Hinduism: Is Hinduism polytheistic?
Do Hindus worship may Gods or one God?

Cookson Religious Freedom Lecture: Dr. Charles C. Haynes


Dr. Charles C. Haynes, director of the Religious Freedom Education Project at the Newseum in Washington, D.C., and senior scholar at the First Amendment Center, will deliver the 2011 Cookson Religious Freedom Lecture entitled "From Battleground to Common Ground: Religious Liberty in Public Schools."

Program Date:
Wednesday, October 5, 2011
7:30 p.m., Monumental Chapel

[more information]

Fall 2011 Symposium: Religion in the Public Schools: Possibilities, Practices, and Pitfalls

A four-part symposium, October 5, 2011 – November 17, 2011

Fifty years ago, the U.S. Supreme Court ruled in Engel v. Vitale (1962) that public schools violated the First Amendment by beginning the school day with a state-sponsored nondenominational prayer. The following year, in Abington School District v. Schempp, the Court invalidated mandatory school Bible readings. These decisions have had a profound and lasting impact on the teaching of religion in public schools. This Symposium, which is part of Virginia Wesleyan College's 50th Anniversary celebration, explores the legacy of these Supreme Court rulings by examining some of the legal and pedagogical challenges faced by teachers, administrators, and students in the public schools today.

[more information]

[Symposium Brochure]

One Love Festival

An evening of music and the spoken word, demonstrating unity in diversity and fostering a closer interfaith community. Performers welcome.

Program Date:
Saturday, October 22, 2011
7:00 - 10:00 p.m., Boyd Dining Center

[More information]

Workshop: An Exploration of Gratefulness

Rabbi Shefa Gold, Director of the Center for Devotional Energy and Ecstatic Practice and faculty member of the Institute for Jewish Spirituality

Program Date:
Tuesday, November 29, 2011
7:30 – 9:00 p.m., Monumental Chapel

$10.00 admission; reservations recommended

[more information]

Religion on Campus: A Semester-Long Conversation

A six-part series, February 15, 2012 – April 22, 2012
This series of conversations will examine the ways students grapple with religious questions, expressions, and behaviors during their college years, as well as the ways faculty, staff, and administrators can help in this process. The program series will consider questions such as: How do college students explore their spiritual identity? How do they tolerate others who are doing the same? How do we all balance the need for civility with the desire for personal expression?

Program Dates:
February 15, 2012 – April 22, 2012

[more information]

Website Comments/Feedback

©2014 Virginia Wesleyan College