The 11th Annual Taha Al-Alwani Lectures in Muslim-Christian Dialogue will address a new form of Islamic Education in America: the rise of Islamic Seminaries for Imams and other religious leaders. These are different than Islamic Studies departments in American universities because they take the traditional subjects of Islamic schools (like the madrassa or university) in the Middle East and Asia and relate them to professional practice in a new context. The schools in North America are designed to generate leadership that is equipped to teach historic Islam with social and cultural awareness so that Muslim communities can live faithfully within and positively engage American society. These schools teach subjects that are related to other forms of theological education in the U.S., including Catholic, Protestant and Jewish seminaries, so they have much to teach us about the changing nature of education for religious leaders in America.
This year’s keynote is Dr. James (Jimmy) Jones of the Islamic Seminary of America. He will speak on The Rise of Islamic Education for Leaders and the Contribution to Theological Education in the U.S.
The event will be held on March 16, 2023 at the Howard University School of Divinity in Northwest DC. A reception will follow the program. A virtual option will be available for out of town participants or those unable to attend in person.
The annual Al-Alwani Lecture on Muslim-Christian dialogue is funded by the Heritage Trust, in honor of Dr. Taha Al-Alwani.
Dr. Jones is Executive Vice President of the Islamic Seminary of America in Dallas, TX. He is a Professor Emeritus of World Religions and former Chair of both the Department of World Religions and the African Studies Program at Manhattanville College (Purchase, NY). He also served on the faculty of the Graduate School for Islamic and Social Sciences, founded by Dr. Al-Alwani. Dr. Jones’s research focuses on the socio-cultural impact of prejudice and the intersectionality between sexism and racism. He has a Doctor of Ministry from Hartford Seminary (in Christian- Muslim relations) and a MA in Religion from Yale Divinity School. He has developed Islamic education programs at Yale and elsewhere. He served as a marriage counselor for more than two decades, is President of the Malik Human Services Institute, and is a member of the Association of Professional Chaplains and the North American Association of Islamic and Muslim Studies. Prof. Jones appears frequently in the media and is often invited to speak about religion, Islam, African American studies, and diversity in the United States and abroad.
A response will be offered by Dr. Larry Golemon, Executive Director of the Washington Theological Consortium, and author of Clergy Education in America: Religious Leadership and American Public Life (Oxford University Press), which covers the rise of theological education for Protestant, Catholic, Jewish and other communities in the U.S.
Howard University School of Divinity
2900 Van Ness Street NW
Washington, DC 20008
(parking is free, closest Metro is
Van Ness-UDC stop on the Red Line)