Interfaith Dialogue explores leadership and community

What does leadership look like in a Catholic, Jewish, Anglican or Buddhist community?

What are the differences? Are there any similarities?

Those questions were answered last week at the Diocesan Ecumenical and Interfaith Council’s first Interfaith Dialogue event.

Almost 50 people were lucky enough to hear from Jonathan Mantel (Jewish), Father Greg Barker (Catholic), Bishop Peter Stuart (Anglican) and Greg Heathcoate (Buddhist) as they spoke about their different approaches to leadership and how it impacts their faith community.

A common thread among the presenters was that good leadership is not possible without consulting the people  it impacts.

Attendee Moira Gordon thought the event was fantastic.

“I relished the opportunity to gather with others while we thought about what Leadership might mean to us and how different people might approach the topic,” she said.

“All four speakers were quite unique and sparked different flavours of thought.”

For Project Coordinator, Pastoral Ministries Alyson Segrott, the Interfaith Dialogue gave her a chance to connect with people from different backgrounds.

“It is important that we learn from each other and continue to develop friendships with other faiths,” she said.

She believes the event shows how important learning about leadership across diverse faith communities is.

“It is the faith communities that drive the leadership. When change happens, it is important not to leave behind any of our community members, which is why it takes time to bring about change,” Alyson said.

“In our learning the presentations challenged us to know more about our own faith leadership. They asked us to question whether this is the best model, could we do better with change, and what would we need to consider when making leadership changes moving forward?”

The Ecumenical and Interfaith Council are excited to host more events like this in the future – they’re preparing for a big 2023.

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