“… any established norms, interventions, contextual characteristics, and leadership qualities that strengthen the durability of interreligious agency? ”
This comparative, regional, and empirical study seeks to better understand what nourishes interfaith agency and programming since the post 9/11 days which produced an immediate outpouring of inter-religious conversations and learning options, but not necessarily with sustainable or durable institutions and behaviors. By using different but complementary methodologies, this research aims to produce a type of “deep description heuristic” of interfaith agency to better understand: 1) the relationship between the interfaith institution and its context; 2) any evolving typology of actions and interventions; 3) any common set of institutional norms bridging the agencies studied within the region; 4) the influence of agency leaders and local clergy on interreligious programming; and begin to examine 5) any lasting change upon the participant of interreligious programming. As a heuristic study, this research seeks to develop deeper and stronger questions for further study from which to better analyze and understand the trajectoriesfor durable and growing interfaith agency and intervention. Though religions can be origins of negative social behavior and conflict, they can also provide social stability, identity, and positive forms of growth and celebration, while interreligious dialogue can expand knowledge and deepen the understanding of one’s own faith perspective.