The Parliament of the World’s Religions developed an initiative to explore the importance of interfaith understanding for the curriculum and priorities of our schools. To this end, the Parliament created a Task Force of U.S. Seminaries to highlight the importance of interfaith understanding at the seminary level.
Strong acknowledgment was made concerning the urgency of interfaith engagement and the preparation of a religious leadership equipped with knowledge and understanding of the plurality of faith traditions in the contemporary world. Cultural and intellectual understanding of other religions, along with profound pastoral instincts, are increasingly essential for theological students as well as for those engaged in the academic study and teaching of religion. The very nature of world events today demands that effective religious leadership be able to identify and articulate the influence of religious traditions on these events. Theological seminaries, in particular, are obligated to equip students for meaningful pastoral practice and leadership of their communities in the midst of this growing diversity.