The Hilltop is an Interfaith Experience
February 1, 2012
The question was asked: “What interfaith event did you attend that made you want to be engaged in interfaith initiatives?” Our group looked at one another. Silence. We cautiously made eye contact. Silence. Someone finally said, “Well, I grew up in an interfaith neighborhood and we always celebrated each others’ holidays together. I can’t pin down one event, or celebration.”
Someone else spoke: “I went to college at a religious institution where I was not of that faith, and being around so many people of a different tradition, and learning about them inspired me, but no one event stands out either.”
Nods were coming fast and furious now. It turned out that all of us had multiple experiences with, and of, other faith traditions and had developed a respect for a pluralistic point of view, a desire to keep learning, and a love of spirituality – regardless of the source.
Then it was time for the group to share with the rest of the room. Imagine our surprise as we heard variations on this self-same theme from everyone else. Apparently, Georgetown University attracts people who care about religion in its broadest, most human sense. Not just in its undergraduate population, but among the staff and faculty, as well. The Ignatian slogans that occasionally festoon campus apparently are not just words on paper, but real, tangible principles that pervade the ethos of the University. The Hilltop is an interfaith experience. How cool is that?