In conjunction with Citizen Diplomacy International of Philadelphia and the US Department of State, on Monday, August 22, the Department of Religion hosted an informal luncheon for 10 Islamic leaders from Indonesia currently visiting the United States as part of a program entitled “Civil Society in Muslim Communities.” Given Temple’s long and storied history in Islamic studies and the notable scholars of Islam who have earned their doctorates in the Department, like Dr. Alwi Shihab, former Indonesian Minister of Foreign Affairs, the delegation had good reason to visit Anderson Hall.

They were warmly welcomed there by several graduate students and professors, including Dr. John C. Raines, who, in conjunction with Dr. Shihab, helped establish the Center for Intercultural and Religious Studies at Gadjah Mada University, in Yogyakarta, in 2000. It was a celebratory gathering, complete with Philly pizza and an engaging conversation in at least three languages! about religious diversity and all of its challenges and promises in our world today.

Please join us in celebrating Temple’s rich legacy in the study of religion in general and the study of Islam in particular, and please do email us with any questions or relevant stories: We love hearing from you!