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January Tuesday Tabletalk - Rites of Passage

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DCM explores Rites of Passage from the perspective of four faith traditions on Tuesday, January 15 from 6 – 8 p.m. A warm meal is provided to participants at round tables comprised of persons from varying faith traditions.
DCM Tuesday Tabletalk Logo

DCM Tuesday Tabletalk Logo

Underwriting support from:
Imam Muaz Redzic

Imam Muaz Redzic

Rabbi David Krishef

Rabbi David Krishef

Dominican Center at Marywood (DCM) invites you to join us on Tuesday, January 15 from 6 – 8 pm as we explore Rites of Passage from the perspective of four faith traditions. Participants dine at round tables comprised of persons from varying faith traditions. DCM offers several Tuesday Tabletalk sessions throughout the year to celebrate and facilitate interfaith understanding. The evening begins with a brief presentation on a theme common to most faith traditions, followed by discussion among dinner companions and a large group Q and A. With respect to all religious dietary customs, only vegetarian meals will be served.

Rites of Passage are usually ritual events that mark a person's life transition from one status to another. These events are celebrated in various ways depending upon one’s cultural and faith traditions. Some commonly celebrated rites of passage are coming of age, marriage and death. Initiation ceremonies such as baptism or confirmation and Bar (son) or Bat (daughter) Mitzvah are also considered important rites of passage for people of their respective religions.

DCM’s Featured Panelists January 15, 2013

Imam Muaz Redzic (pictured at right) has been serving at the Bosnian Cultural Center in Grand Rapids, Michigan since 2009. He attended Islamic high school in Sarajevo, earned a BA in Islamic Studies at Kuwait University, an MA in Religion at Vanderbilt University, and then a PhD in Islamic Studies from the Graduate Theological Foundation, South Bend, Indiana. At the Bosnian Cultural Center, Imam Redzic sustains religious activities and prayers and supports the Bosnian cultural identity of many of the Center’s members. Prayers are offered and sacred texts are read in Arabic and then translated into Bosnian for his congregation, many of whom came to the area during the war in their homeland in the 1990′s. Imam Redzic also aspires to host open houses and educational classes for non-Muslims. “People tend to fear the unknown. Islam is still very much unknown ground for many Americans,” Redzic said. “We are more than happy to introduce ourselves.” Redzic has expressed concern that Islam is often portrayed negatively in the media: “The filter through which the media talks about Islam is the violence. I’m not saying all Muslims are angels. I’m talking about what Islam teaches. Islam is submitting to God’s will and finding peace in that.”

Rabbi David J.B. Krishef (pictured at right) graduated from the University of Minnesota with a degree in Hebrew and Jewish Studies. After two years as program director at the University of Minnesota Hillel Foundation, he entered the Jewish Theological Seminary of America. He was ordained in 1994. Since then, he has served as the rabbi of Congregation Ahavas Israel, a Conservative synagogue in Grand Rapids, Michigan. He has taught Beginning and Intermediate Biblical Hebrew at Grand Valley State University; and also Jewish Life, Literature, Culture, and History at Kuyper College. He is author of a CHAI curriculum revision published by URJ Press revising the CHAI Judaic curriculum to adapt the Reform curriculum for use in a Conservative or joint Reform/Conservative religious school. He also edited a section on Judaism for a World Religions textbook (published by Teacher Created Materials).

Michelle Ogren (not pictured) currently serves as Director of Music and Liturgy at St. Patrick Parish, Parnell, Michigan. She has worked as Liturgical Musician for the Motherhouse of the Grand Rapids Dominican Sisters and ministered as a Pastoral Musician and Liturgist for over 30 years. Past work includes coordinating care for Catholic patients at Spectrum Health and serving as Director of the Office for Worship in the Diocese of Grand Rapids. She is a guest conductor, clinician and workshop coordinator in the West Michigan area. She has been married to Bob for 36 years and is the mother of four children and the thrilled grandma of Desmond.

Beena Chandran (photo unavailable), is on the executive board of the West Michigan Hindu Temple (WMHT), where she helps promote and preserve Hindu culture and traditions within the region. She has been a resident of Grand Rapids for 16 years and has been an active member of the Western Michigan Hindu community throughout that time. Beena began her career in finance as a professor of commerce in India before moving to the United States 23 years ago. While in the US, she continued her work in the finance industry as an advisor to several Fortune 500 insurers on the East Coast and in the Midwest. She currently works at the New York Life Insurance Co. office based out of Grand Rapids.

Date – Time - Registration Options

The January event will be held on January 15 from 6:00-8:00 pm at Dominican Center at Marywood (DCM), 2025 Fulton Street East, Grand Rapids, MI, 49503.  Parking is free (see map to parking lot) and the DCM area is barrier free. The cost for Tuesday Tabletalk is $10.00 and this fee includes both the program and the dinner. Preregistration is strongly encouraged, as seating is limited. To register, call (616) 454-1241 (Option 5); or, for online registration for the January program, visit

For additional information and news about upcoming interfaith events, please visit the Kaufman Interfaith Institute.

submitted by: Rosemary Barber-Steers, Dominican Center at Marywood

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