Institute for Interreligious Dialogue and Islamic Studies

The Institute for Interreligious Dialogue and Islamic Studies (IRDIS), under missionaries of Africa (MAfr) and within Tangaza University College(TUC), is founded to address the increased needs on the field of dialogue and cooperation between religions and the studying of Islam in an East African context. IRDIS is founded under three pillars namely, Academic, Network and Services.

VISION

Kenya is peaceful and IRD is used as a tool for social cohesion by Catholic and faith based actors. A strong partnership is built and sustained by Missionaries of Africa (MAfr), Tangaza and their partners to promote Inter-religious Dialogue (IRD) for peace, justice and integrity of creation. Tangaza University College is a known national and international hub and hosts networks for academic and practitioners of IRD. It has developed full academic and pastoral programmes for interreligious dialogue. The university offers a variety of IRD trainings and outreach programs. IRD content is integrated in all academic programs and put into practice at grassroots levels.

MISSION

The Missionaries of Africa (MAfr) will appoint/ nominate an adviser to coordinate IRD activities. In partnership with Tangaza, will create an Institute to reach out to national and international actors/ partners on IRD matters. They will organize meetings and conferences and establish networks of IRD actors. The Institute will help Tangaza to revise existing and launch new academic programs from an IRD perspective. Specific trainings, summer courses and outreach programs will be designed and offered to reach a wider audience in Catholic and faith based actors to change their attitudes towards other religions and enable them to use IRD tools for peace and social cohesion. The school of theology will expand the curriculum of Islamic studies to develop a degree program in Christian- Muslim relations; and IRD, masters in Interreligious Dialogue Studies, Masters in Human Dignity and Religions (International) and PHD in Religious Studies.

IRDIS TEAM

  1. The Missionaries of Africa, also known as the White Fathers.
  2. Tangaza University College.
  3. AGIAMONDO.

SELECTED ACTIVITIES

  • International Conferences in Tangaza, e.g. on Integrity of Creation, with the School of Theology, Tangaza, or on Sustainable Peace and Security in Africa.
  • Umma-Tangaza Conferences, e.g. on Christian-Muslim engagement for social transformation in Africa, or the Role of inclusive Faith-based Education.
  • IRD Trainings on e.g. the Role of women in faith-based peacebuilding and IRD as space for Female Empowerment, or on Religious Minority Rights and Interreligious Literacy, with MUHURI, SUPKEM, Islamic Relief and NETWORK.
  • Annual Summer School on Islam and Christianity in Dialogue Africa, with IIIS Qom, Iran.
  • Public discussions, e.g. Msgr. Wolfgang Huber, President of Missio Munich: Current approaches, co-operations and challenges for IRD programmes, or Dr. Benjamin Opratko, University of Vienna: Islam as a projection surface for authoritarian movements in Europe.
  • Project implementation and advisory services, e.g. on Strengthening Community Capacities for Social Transformation, with Umma University, the County Government of Kajiado and the Diocese of Ngong, or The Power of Religions for Peacebuilding, with Exposure and Dialogue Programme, Germany.
  • Interfaith Forums, e.g. annually with Franciscan Youth Initiative on Building Peace through Environmental Initiatives.
  • Joint symposiums, with other Organizations such as the cultural council Embassy of Iran.
  • Advising and training Catholic and Faith-based organisations. Kenya Conference of Catholic Bishops (KCCB) and its agents throughout Kenya on Ecumenism and IRD.
  • Strategy Development of an organizational IRD focus at AGIAMONDO-CPS.
  • International and National Participation in Forums and Networks, e.g the Network for religious and Traditional peacemakers.