Faithful women. Indispensable yesterday, today and tomorrow.
National Council of Churches USA

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FAITH AND FEMINISM DIALOGUES

The main focus of Faith and Feminism Dialogues is to gather women of different races, ethnicities and backgrounds once a month at different locations throughout New York City in order to discuss the impact that their feminist principles have had on their faith, and vice versa. 

Women of all backgrounds have a specific dialogue, a special narrative of their own. Women know what it means to be different. Stories throughout history attest to the fact that women are one, if not the most oppressed, exploited and abused group of people in human history, simply because they are different. That is their dialogue, this experience of being different and its consequence throughout history.  Women know what it means for another woman in another country to give birth, nourish and love a specific human being. There is nothing relative about this. It is universal. 

Dialogue can play an important role in creating a culture of peace and understanding in the world. Dialogue between people of different backgrounds can contribute to personal healing and restored dignity. But this is only possible if we are able to create a “safe space” where stories can be shared without fear and harassment. These dialogues are important because they allow a person an opportunity to remember and share their own personal experience.  In general, dialogues remind us that life is a narrative, a story…and not a series of episodes with no connecting threads. 

People of faith and the women's movement must find a way to embrace and welcome each other to the “table.” There is enough room at such a table to welcome women of all backgrounds. Women, like some ethnic groups, are born into this world on unequal footing.  In order to achieve equality and freedom of expression, many must fight sexism on a daily basis.   Because all women are born with a sense of being different, they are the most capable of looking past the differences to embrace similarities to build a better world. Women need an opportunity to congregate with other women to discuss the problems that they share as women, regardless of their race or ethnic background, and how their faith and feminism has molded their lives. 

Faith and Feminism Dialogues are being sponsored by The Sister Fund, the Ms. Foundation, and co-sponsored by:  The Riverside Church, Union Seminary, Auburn Theological Seminary, Women for Afghan Women, Albanian American Women’s Organization, Over the Rainbow Institute for Ethical Living and The Interfaith Center of New York. 

Special Guests at the dialogues are women who have made a difference in the world through their faith & feminism. 

For more information on the dialogues listed below please contact: Shqipe Malushi at: 212-244-8440 or 201-313-0366 or 917-608-5443 Or email: shqipemalushi@aol.com 

If you are interested in Dialogue training or creating a Faith & Feminism Dialogue Series in your own area, contact joan@hunt-hendrix.com 

Faith and Feminism Dialogues schedule for the next six months follows: 

March 23, 2006; to be held at Central Presbyterian Church, (64th & Park Avenue), NY, 6:00 pm- 9:00 pm. 

Blu Greenberg is an author and lecturer who has published widely on the issues of feminism, Orthodoxy, and the Jewish family, as well as on other subjects of scholarly interest. Greenberg is the author of "On Women and Judaism: A View from Tradition," "How to Run a Traditional Jewish Household," "Black Bread: Poems after the Holocaust," and "King Solomon and the Queen of Sheba," a children's book co-authored with the Rev. Linda Tarry.                                                                                   

April 27, 2006 to be held at the James Chapel Union Theological Seminary, New York, 6:00 pm- 9:00 pm. 

Daisy Khan is the Executive Director of ASMA (American Society for Muslim Advancement) and wife of Imam Feisal Abdul Rauf of Masjid al-Farah in New York City. Ms. Khan mentors young Muslim women who face challenges of cultural assimilation in America, and counsels Muslims in marital and relationship issues. Having immigrated to the US at the age of 15, Ms. Khan is particularly effective with young adults grappling with issues of dual identity, gender relations and cultural integration. Ms. Khan leads a monthly discussion forum for young Muslim women and men who encourages them to search for "the highest" knowledge in Islam, assimilate the spiritual dimension of their faith and face challenges posed to them on integrating Islam with modernity. 

May 27, 2006, 6:00 pm to 9:00 pm  (Place to be announced) 

Visiting Professor of Christian Ethics
Emilie M. Townes is professor of African American studies in religion and theology at Yale University and Divinity 
School  in New Haven, Connecticut.  Professor Townes is the recipient of three degrees from the University of 
Chicago: A.B. 1977,  A. M. 1979, D.Mn. 1982. She received the Ph.D. in 1989 from Northwestern University. She 
is an ordained American Baptist clergywoman. 

June 29, 2006, to be held at Synod Hall Cathedral Church Of  St. John The Divine, New York, from 6:00 pm to 9:00 pm   

Uma Mysorekar, M.D.

President, The Hindu Temple Society of North America, was born and brought up in Bangalore, Karnataka State, where she completed her early education. She studied medicine at Grant Medical College, University of Bombay where she was awarded the Gold Medal for academic excellence. She came to the United States in 1970 and started her residency in South Carolina. Dr. Mysorekar trained in Gynecological Pathology at McGee University in Pittsburgh and Gynecological Oncology at Pondville State Cancer Hospital in Boston. She came to New York in 1973 and finished her Obstetrics and Gynecology residency in Long Island Jewish Medical Center. Dr. Mysorekar has been involved in helping the handicapped through “Heart and Hand for the Handicapped” organization since 1976 and served as its president in 1978 - 79. She pioneered the fund rising for “Aid to the Disabled, Orphaned and Poor” (ADOP) under the auspices of the Hindu Temple Society of North America. Dr. Mysorekar has contributed substantially towards the construction of a hostel for poor working women in Bangalore. In 1987, she was elected president of Kannada Koota, an organization interested in promoting the literary and artistic expressions of the Kannada speaking people in this country.  In 1988, as Chairperson of the Planning and Development Committee of the Hindu Temple  Society of North America, She conceived a plan to build a beautiful community center for the Hindu Temple in Flushing, NY. Dr. Mysorekar has contributed more than a million dollars to this project making her one of the largest single donors in all of North America. 

OTHER WOMEN PARTICIPANTS WHO ENRICH OUR PROGRAMS ARE: 

April Lynn James has sung in master classes led by Nico Castel, and for seven years was a principal dancer--specializing in male roles--with the Longy Early Dance Ensemble (Ken Pierce, director). She holds a BA from Queens College, CUNY and a PhD from Harvard University, both in music. Presently, Ms. James works and resides in New York City building bridges between communities regardless of sexual orientation, race, ethnicity, religion or culture, using   music as a vehicle of unity and  peace.  www.heroicmezzo.com 

Paula Allen has been a documentary photographer for almost three decades.  Her photographs have been widely published in The New York Times Magazine, Newsweek, U.S. News and World Report, The London Independent Magazine, Paris Match, Art in America, Mother Jones, Oprah, People, and Marie Claire, among others. Ms. Allen's work is dedicated to recording the courageous and often invisible struggles of women and girls in their confrontations with violence and oppression all over the world. www.speakingmatters.com

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