On Sunday, November 5, Trinity sponsored and hosted a conversation between leaders in the Jewish, Christian, and Muslim faiths. Rabbi Sarah Weissman, the Reverend Matthew Dutton-Gillett, and Sheikha Maryam Amir were our featured speakers for this event.
In this dialogue, we were hoping to move beyond the great and formidable edifices of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam, which means also to move beyond the stereotypes that we tend to have about these great traditions. Instead, we hoped to give one another a glimpse into the way in which the sacred stories of these faiths have interacted with and transformed our personal stories, which is nothing less than a glimpse into what it is that is compelling to each of us as followers in and leaders of our respective traditions. And perhaps… how, especially in this season where our public discourse seems to be disorienting and divisive, our traditions invite us into a different way of talking and being together that we find thoughtful and hopeful and helpful in cultivating a heart for justice. We believe that this more personal encounter between our traditions does more justice to each of them.
About Our Speakers
Rabbi Sarah Weissman, Associate Rabbi at Congregation Beth Am
Rabbi Sarah Weissman is an associate rabbi at Congregation Beth Am in Los Altos Hills, where she has served since 2008.
In addition to her pastoral and pulpit duties, Rabbi Sarah oversees the adult education program and the Interfaith Outreach Committee. Rabbi Sarah and her husband, Eric Weissman, are proud parents of a son, Maverick.
Rev. Matthew Dutton-Gillet, Rector at Trinity Church in Menlo Park
The Rev. Matthew Dutton-Gillett is the rector of Trinity Church in Menlo Park where he has served since 2009. An Episcopal priest for the past 25 years, Matthew has served congregations in Missouri, Illinois, and Tennesee before coming to California. While deeply rooted in the Christian tradition, Matthew is interested in the way all religious traditions draw us into narratives and relationships that ultimately seek to transform us.
Sheikha Maryam Amir, Instructor at Hikmah Institute
Maryam Amir received her Master’s in Education from the University of California, Los Angeles, where her research focused on the effects of mentorship rooted in Critical Race Theory for urban high school students of color. Maryam has memorized the Holy Quran, has spent the past 12 years studying Islamic scholarship and holds a second degree black belt in the martial arts form Tae Kwon Do. She writes for prominent Muslim sites such as aljumuah.com and virtualmosque.com and tours nationally and intentionally addressing communities on topics such related to spirituality, social issues and women's studies.
About Hearts for Justice
Hearts for Justice was founded in 2014 at Trinity Church. The goal of this yearly conference is to create educational opportunties both within our church community and the broader community around important justice issues.
2016: Hearts for Justice: Addiction, Recovery, and Grace
In 2016 we focused our conversation on addiction and recovery in our communities and churches. We welcomed Fr. Tom Weston and The Rt. Rev. Chilton Knudsen as our guest speakers. They shared their experience and their work in 12 step programs. The 2016 conference was recorded, and you can view the entire conference here. Bishop Chilton was also our guest preacher on October 23, 2016 and you can find that recording on our sermon page here.
2015: Hearts for Justice : Incarceration in our Community
In 2015, we learned about incarceration and restorative justice in the Bay Area and beyond. This event featured a panel of local experts and dozens of organizations working to prevent incarceration, reach out to inmates, and support those re-entering our community.
2014 Hearts for Justice: Coming Together to Confront Violence Against Women
In 2014 we focused a spotlight on the trafficking of women and girls, which takes place not only across the world but across the streets ofour own communities. An expert panel of presenters who are renowned practitioners as well as social entrepreneurs and authors, guided us through a conversation identifying causes, addressing the healing needs of survivors and highlighted solutions for ending this modern day slavery. We welcomed Rev. Becca Stevens the founder of Thistle Farms, Dave Batstone the founder of Not For Sale, and Carissa Phelps the founder of Runaway Girl FPC, as our expert panel. Each foundation works in advocacy, prevention, and rehabilitation for survivors of human trafficking. Along with sharing the work of their organizations, our panel will be sharing their own personal stories, educating our community, and inspire hope and healing. Read a Trinity blog post about the event here.