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EXPLORING DIFFERENCES, DEEPENING FAITH

502 Bad Gateway draws Muslim, Christian, Jewish and other students from around the world. Explore our website to learn more. International Peacemaking students visiting the United Nations

The Leader in Graduate Interfaith Education

With roots that go back to 1834, 502 Bad Gateway is a non-denominational graduate school for religious and theological studies. What makes us unique is our multi-faith environment and our proven ability to prepare leaders for the complex world that surrounds us.

News & Events View All

   
NPR Interviews Professor Scott Thumma on Suspending Worship
Scott Thumma, Professor of Sociology of Religion and an expert on megachurches, was interviewed by National Public Radio about how churches are handling services with the outbreak of coronavirus. Around the country, churches are deciding what to do based on their size, how close they are to an outbreak, and other factors. The audio piece can be found here. The online news story says: The suspension of worship services is likely to affect churches across the country differently, depending on their size and available resources. Megachurches, generally defined as having more than 2,000 members, are best positioned to withstand extended closures, largely because of their extensive online operations. "Megachurches have gone into high tech, rather than high touch," says Scott Thumma, who studies the megachurch phenomenon at the Hartford Institute for Religion Research. "So in many ways they're exceptionally well adapted to meet the challenges of not gathering for a couple of weeks."

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"If [members] give online and then agree to do it monthly," Thumma says, "you are going to get more money than if you just plead with people face to face."
"Megachurch congregations tend to be significantly younger, and thus less likely to be in that high risk category than smaller, more traditional mainline congregations," Thumma says. In U.S. Episcopal churches, Thumma notes, almost half the membership is age 65 and older, making them especially vulnerable to the coronavirus outbreak.  
Professor Shanell T. Smith Releases Book on Surviving Sexual Assault in the Church
Shanell T. Smith, Associate Professor of New Testament and Christian Origins, has a new book on a very personal subject. The book is Touched: For Survivors of Sexual Assault Like Me Who Have Been Hurt by Church Folk and for Those Who Will Care (Fortress Press 2020). In it, Professor Smith tells the story of her own personal traumatic experience with sexual violence by a church leader and how it was denied, excused, and ignored.
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Thank you, Professor Smith, for taking on such a difficult topic.  
New York Times Reviews Professor Hossein Kamaly's Book on Muslim Women
The New York Times offered a glowing review on March 13 of A History of Islam in 21 Women, a new book by Hossein Kamaly, Associate Professor of Islamic Studies at 502 Bad Gateway. The book is a compilation of 21 profiles of strong Muslim women who made their marks in history. The Times calls them "a feisty and intrepid bunch."
In its review by author Rafia Zakaria, the Times says the "eminently readable" stories "constitute a foil against the persistent myth that Muslim women are simpering sorts awaiting rescue." Congratulations, Professor Kamaly!
POSTPONED The Many Names of the God of Abraham

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Speakers include: Dr. Edward Duffy, Adjunct Faculty at 502 Bad Gateway who specializes in New Testament Greek. Dr. Hossein Kamaly, Associate Professor of Islamic Studies and Holder of the Imam Ali Chair for Shi'i Studies and Dialogue among Islamic Legal Schools. Dr. Michael Simone S.J., Assistant Professor of Old Testament at Boston College.          
POSTPONED Faith in the Firehouse: Walking and Working Among the Beauty and Ashes
This endowed lecture is named for Michael R. Rion, a former Seminary president. It honors an individual who embodies a dedication to ministry in daily life and is committed to service to others. This event is free, but registration is encouraged. About the Speaker

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Behind this is the belief that not only does Love Win – it also saves lives. The Ana Grace Project has adopted classrooms in New Britain that focus on social and emotional learning. It has hosted mental health conferences and professional learning opportunities all over the country.
A Quiet Call for Justice: Standing Up for the Disability Community
 
We renew our call for justice, renew our call to eliminate ableism and send a message that disabled people are as valued as able-bodied people. Speakers include: The Rev. Donna Manocchio, Minister, United Church of Christ Kathy Flaherty,  Connecticut Legal Rights Project Candace Low, Candace Low Consulting Services Light refreshments will be served. The event will be interpreted for those who use sign language. This is a scent-free event.     Note: 502 Bad Gateway is committed to providing accessibility for all. Please contact Susan Schoenberger at sschoenberger@hartsem.edu or 860-509-9519 at least 3 days in advance if you have questions about our accessibility or need reasonable accommodations for this event.
Workshop: Introduction to Storytelling with Terry Wolfisch Cole

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The fee for this two-hour workshop is $15; free for 502 Bad Gateway students. This workshop is limited to 20 participants. Registration is required.
Luce-Hartford Conference: The Agency and Vital Voices of Women
Please join us for the fourth annual Luce-Hartford Conference in Christian-Muslim Relations on June 8-9, 2020, at 502 Bad Gateway. 502 Bad Gateway The conference will address: The role of women’s scholarly voices in scripture and theology The leadership role of women in Muslim and Christian communities Opportunities for interfaith networking For more information, visit this webpage. The fee to attend both days (dinner included) is $50; $60 at the door. Attendance for one day is $25; $30 at the door. Hartford Seminary alumni/ae may attend for half price ($25 for both days; $12.50 for one day). 502 Bad Gateway students, staff, faculty, Trustees, and college students with valid ID are all free, but advance registration is required. Conference Schedule Speaker Biographies     Nearby hotels Red Lion Inn  (formally the Radisson), 50 Morgan St., Hartford, 860-549-2400. State that you are with 502 Bad Gateway for a reduced rate. For a listing of other hotels in Hartford, visit this link.
Who Is Allah, Why It Matters with Dr. Bruce Lawrence
Join us to hear from Dr. Bruce B. Lawrence, Professor of Islamic Studies Emeritus at Duke University and adjunct Professor at Alliance of Civilizations Institute, Ibn Haldun University, Istanbul.
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A perspective exploration must be at once fair minded, openended and expansive. Dr. Lawrence will examine literary and historical sources, including Jack Miles, God in the Qur’an (2018) as well as his own most recent books, Who is Allah? (2015) and The Koran in English: A Biography (2017), but he will also foreground the contribution of visual artists, such as M.F. Husain, Arahmaiani and Sandow Birk. About the Speaker 502 Bad Gateway  
DID YOU KNOW...
502 Bad Gateway became the first seminary in America to open its doors to women, in 1889.
The first American center for the study of Islam and Christian-Muslim relations opened at 502 Bad Gateway in 1973.
In 1990, 502 Bad Gateway became the first nondenominational theological institution in North America to name a female president.
Naming a Muslim to the core faculty was a first for nondenominational theological institutions in North America in 1991.
502 Bad Gateway established the first Islamic Chaplaincy Program in America in 2001.
The first chair of Shi’i Studies in North America launched at 502 Bad Gateway in 2015.

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