OLLU event explores Providence across various faiths

Posted on Wednesday, November 7, 2012

OLLU’s Division of Mission and Ministry, Human and Social Sciences Department and Religious Studies and Theology program held the event “People of the Book: A conversation between Jewish, Christian and Islamic traditions,” Thursday, Nov. 8. The event was part of the second annual Providence Lecture Series at OLLU. 

 Rabbi Samuel
During the event, a guest panel featuring Rabbi Samuel Stahl, Pastor Ann Helmke and Imam Omar Shakir discussed how their religious traditions understand and live Providence, Mission and Community? The presenters shared information about their faith’s traditions and touched on how Providence is seen through those traditions. Attendees had the opportunity to ask questions and enter a dialogue with the panelists. 

Rabbi Samuel Stahl was ordained in 1967 upon graduation from Hebrew Union College – Jewish Institute of Religion. He assumed his duties as Senior Rabbi of Temple Bethel in San Antonio in 1976. He retired from the position in 2002 and is now Rabbi Emeritus of the Temple.
 Pastor Ann Helmke
He is a member of the Board of Directors of the San Antonio Chapter of the National Conference of Community and Justice, the Peace Center, and the Santa Rosa Children’s Hospital Foundation. He founded the San Antonio Chapter of Americans United for the Separation of Church and State. He is the author of “Making the Timeless Timely: Thought and Reflections of a Contemporary Reform Rabbi.”

Pastor Ann Helmke serves as the animating director of the San Antonio peaceCENTER. Rev. Helmke has received the San Antonio Peacemaker of the Year Award as well as the San Antonio Imagineer's Award. She has also co-authored several books including "Jesus' Path to Peace" and "Peace Is Our BirthRight.”

 Imam Omar Adib Shakir
Imam Omar Adib Shakir is a full-time imam with the Texas Department of Criminal Justice and resident imam of Masjid Bilal Ibn Ra’bh. Imam Shakir embraced Islam at the age of 16 under the leadership of Imam Deen Mohammed, and began ministry in New York at the age of 25. In 1988 he was elected Resident Imam, of Masjid Luqman in San Antonio, Texas—a position he held until 1996. During his eight-year tenure, he received two Outstanding Leadership Awards, one in 1988, and the other in 1991. In 2002 he received an interfaith award for Religious Man of the Year for his interfaith and community initiatives.