The Center for Multi-Religious Studies (CMRS) at Starr King School for the Ministry (SKSM) is a premier hub for the academic and vocational exploration of multi-religious identity and practice. The first of its kind, the CMRS offers research, symposia, and public programs that advance scholarship and dialogue about multi-religious spiritual formation, ritual arts, education, and their interrelated dimensions.
Bringing together progressive religious leaders, scholars, and social activists, the CMRS represents a radical approach to the study of the world’s diverse religious traditions within their own contexts, emphasizing interreligious dialogue, pluralism, and the SKSM pedagogical model of Educating to Counter Oppressions and Create Just Communities.
Welcome from the Director
“Many of us have grown into settings where religious identity and formation are of a binary nature: we’re Christian or Muslim, Buddhist or Hindu, Jewish or Bahá’í, spiritual but not religious,” says Dr. Som Pourfarzaneh, Assistant Professor of Islamic and Digital Media Studies at Starr King and Director of the Center of Multi-Religious Studies. “The CMRS intends to nurture the study of non-binary multi-religious identity, where all faiths and spiritualities are welcome as equal partners in educating to counter oppressions and creating just and sustainable communities.”
The CMRS offers:
- A Certificate in Multi-Religious Studies
- Sponsored sessions within the SKSM Annual Symposium and other public programs
- Multi-Religious chaplaincy training in coordination with the Chaplaincy Concentration
The CMRS was founded in 2021 to further the study of multi-religious identities, practices, ritual arts, and education, and honors the legacy of Dr. Ibrahim Farajajé‘s ministry in organic multi-religiosity.
Sample courses offered by affiliated faculty include:
- The Multi-Religious Intensive
- Introduction to Islam
- Transformative Ritual Craft
- Advanced Topics in Ritual
- Interreligious Dialogue
- Queer Studies: Multi-Religious Perspectives
- Queer Liberation Theologies
- Introducing Hindu Doctrines
- Womanism and Earth Justice