A great interview with Interfaith Youth Core founder Eboo Patel is up on Real Clear Religion. Patel, who wrote a nice review of Akbar Ahmed‘s documentary Journey into America, which I directed, is one of the most important leaders in the U.S. today for his impressive work in promoting pluralism and interfaith dialogue.
RealClearReligion: What is the Interfaith Youth Core?
Eboo Patel: We want to make interfaith cooperation a social norm in the United States. We think that is a generational endeavor. So, over the course of the next thirty years, we try to impact the conversation about religion in public discourse in moving the conversation from faith as a barrier to faith as a bridge, we partner with higher education institutions to help them model interfaith cooperation, and we train young people to be interfaith leaders.
RCR: Where’s the starting point for interfaith conversations?
EP: The starting point is: How does your faith or philosophical identity inspire you to serve others?
RCR: Only service?
EP: It’s service. It’s compassion, hospitality, and mercy. How does your faith tradition speak to those concepts and how are you inspired to apply them?