Multi-faith Chaplaincy gathered with students on the campus greens to celebrate this year’s International Day of Peace. The event on September 20 reflected on the meaning of reflection, dialogue and personal growth.
Students were invited to have open conversations about the day’s topic, with TRU chaplains Jeff Torrans, Ani Gawa Khandro and Pat Davies.
Each person was given a piece of paper with a question or conversation opener related to peace and had to write their answer in a flyer that was hung around Campus Green. People from all over the world with different views of peace got to share their understanding of the word and the importance it carries.
From a simple answer like “peace is respect for others” to something more personal like “peace is the feeling of finishing an exam” campus green was soon filled with colourful flyers representing the diversity of TRU.
Everyone involved was invited to treats courtesy of the chaplaincy. Students also had the opportunity to speak with the Chaplains not only about peace but about any spiritual guidance they might have needed.
The afternoon’s event gave students the opportunity to learn more about different religions that revolve around the university, opening a safe space for spiritual conversations.
“For me, peace is having a relationship with God,” Torrans said. He also believes that the most important thing to do in order to keep a peaceful environment is to respect everyone’s beliefs, as he states, “Just because we believe in different things does not mean we cannot be peaceful towards each other.”
Torrans hopes that by showing how we can connect with people from different backgrounds we will be able to create a close-knitted community that focuses on the well-being of others. He also states the importance of valuing interrelationships with people, a community, and faith.
Davies and Gawa Khandro spoke with the participants of the activity by reflecting on the questions and by helping them get to a conclusion of their prompt. Even those who did not share the same relationship with spirituality came together to help others; demonstrating the power a community can have on each other.
For students in need of spiritual connections and resources, the Multi-faith Chaplaincy encourages thoughtful reflection and open dialogue for those that are part of a religious community.
The chaplaincy has nine chaplains from different religions that go from Roman Catholic to Buddhism and everything in between.
The objectives of the group are to participate in all aspects of TRU from a religious perspective, to provide spiritual and religious care for the community, exemplify inner-faith and dialogue working as a team, to support the TRU community in their relationship with religious or spiritual concerns and finally to serve alongside TRU student services and other support providers to ensure a well-rounded experience for the students.
If those objectives correlate with your needs, the Multi-faith Chaplaincy is the place for you.