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Shem Center Gingko Tree

As the oldest surviving species of tree known to exist, the Ginkgo tree has become a symbol of strength, hope and peace. Shem Center supports other organizations whose work, like the Ginkgo tree, symbolizes and embodies strength, hope and peace in our world.

2023 Chicago Parliament of the World’s Religions

The World’s Largest & Most Diverse Interfaith Convening Returns to the Birthplace of the Modern Interfaith Movement

At the Closing Plenary of the 2021 Parliament of the World’s Religions, hosted virtually from October 16-18, Parliament Chair Nitin Ajmera shared a special announcement with attendees. Chicago is to serve as the host for the 9th Parliament of the World’s Religions.

The 9th global Convening of the Parliament of the World’s Religions will take place on August 14-18, 2023, returning to the United States and the birthplace of the modern interfaith movement, Chicago.

Chicago Mayor Lori Lightfoot addressed the 2021 Convening stating, “I look forward to the continued success of the Parliament and making history once again with your support. See you all in August of 2023.”

The Call for Programs is NOW OPEN!

Every attendee of the Parliament Convenings brings unique wisdom and world views from their religious traditions and lives, their scholarship, their artistic talents, and their activism. At the 2023 Parliament of the World’s Religions, attendees from around the world are answering a call to conscience.

Programming for the 2023 Parliament will focus largely, but not exclusively on:

  • The theme of “A Call to Conscience: Defending Freedom and Human Rights”
  • Faith and interfaith understanding
  • The broad critical issues of our mission statement: justice, peace, and sustainability
  • Our critical constituencies: Indigenous Peoples, The Next Generations, and Women & Girls
  • Our signature document, Towards a Global Ethic: An Initial Declaration (also known as The Global Ethic)

The theme of the 2023 Parliament of the World’s Religions,”A Call to Conscience: Defending Freedom & Human Rights,” is anchored in a call to action first endorsed by the world’s religions 30 years ago in its foundational document Towards a Global Ehic to defend freedom, human rights, and democracy around the world.

Parliament Executive Director, Rev. Stephen Avino, affirms that the 2023 Parliament Convening will serve as, “…a place of open minds and open hearts where we can all express the wonder and dignity of our religious and spiritual traditions against the backdrop of the majestic beauty of Lake Michigan. But we could not do all this without addressing the foundational issue of our time; the threat to freedom and human rights. We must defend freedom and human rights together and find solutions to the rise of autocracy in our world.”

Do you have a bold idea for a program, performance, religious observance, art exhibit or film? Answer the call, submit a proposal today.

Shem Center for Interfaith Spirituality
708 North Harvey Avenue
Oak Park, IL 60302

(708) 848-1095

Photo Credits: Emory Mead, Stephen B. Starr, Joseph Kilikevice

The Shem Center for Interfaith Spirituality website is awarded a 2022 American Digital Design Award for excellence in design and user experience.

2022 American Digital Design Awards