Intercultural CANR: Exploring our Spirit

In 2019 Building an Intercultural CANR: Exploring our Spirit was an exploration of the religious and spiritual diversity in our MSU and mid-Michigan community.  

This initiative provided an opportunity for faculty and staff in the College of Agriculture and Natural Resources to explore the variety of religions, faiths, and spiritual practices that make up the tapestry of our spiritual lives in the college and the surrounding communities.

Differences in our traditions inform the way we see our relationship with each other and with the natural world. Since religion and spirituality are so rarely discussed in public and professional settings, we are in danger of getting it wrong. We may make judgments based on stereotypes and assumptions, and we could miss the many ways in which world religions and traditions are more alike than they are different. 

The events were part of the broader Intercultural CANR initiative and were hosted by the Office of Diversity, Equity and Inclusion.

Faith community tours

Nominated faculty and staff from CANR departments participated in a bus tour of different faith communities on March 14, 2019. 

The tour visited five local religious faith communities. At each stop, faith leaders provided a tour and a presentation on the faith tradition with time for questions from the participants. During the travel time between site visits, a moderator facilitated discussion and space for participant reflections.

Faith leaders panel discussion

A breakfast and panel discussion open to the CANR community took place on March 15, 2019.

This moderated panel of faith and community leaders provided an overview of different religious traditions and perspectives. There was also time for questions about religion, spirituality and those who choose to live in the absence of religion or spirituality.

These shared spaces and stories help expand the way we see the world to form a more informed, engaged and inclusive CANR.