Inter Faith Week, 13-20 November 2022

Inter Faith Week (13-20 November 2022) aims to strengthen good inter-faith relations, increase awareness of different and distinct faith communities, and increase understanding between people of religious and non-religious belief.

To mark the occasion, we’re hosting a number of events for staff and students of all faiths and none, and have been reaching out to students across our campuses to hear about their experiences of faith at uni.

What does faith mean to me?

Inter Faith week from the perspective of Kent PhD student and Quaker society president, Chima Rickards:

“I often hear Faith defined by Hebrews 11:1: ‘Faith is the assurance of things hoped for, and proof of things unseen‘.

“I strongly agree and ascribe to this, and it forms a beautiful reminder from Christian scripture of what my faith encompasses. Nonetheless, unchangeably faith for me is about belief. How that belief presents itself takes different shape over time, which I find comforting. Comforting because it always speaks to my situation in life, and is always accessible to my current circumstance.

“At this stage of my existence, faith for me means encouragement. I am encouraged remembering that God/Spirit/the Divine (or whatever other name one wishes to place upon that being) is always by my side, has my back, and always working for my ultimate good whether or not I am consciously aware. When all else in life seems to be lacking; when all materialistic forms of esteem are not visible; when the pains of humanity and the world create sorrowful confusion, I am encouraged ever more by my Faith.

“To offer tangibility to the practical expression of the above, this means trying to approach everything with the divine in mind. To paraphrase from the [Hindu text] Bhagavad Gita, this means offering all action to the divine. For faith is dead without action. It means living a life that holds the character of how I envision God to be. For me that means the character of love. Notwithstanding my humanity, and the endless fallibility that pervades that humanity, I am learning to acknowledge the grace required to know the pursuit is perpetually worthwhile, for I have Faith.

“Being part of a faith community at Kent is a means through which I keep that practice alive.”

Inter Faith Week events at Kent

At the centre of the celebrations on the Canterbury campus is our Faith and Food evening on Wednesday 16 November. Come along to listen to a series of mini talks by representatives of various traditions each spending a few minutes addressing the themes of food (feasting and fasting) from their own faith perspectives. A vegetarian and vegan buffet will be provided to allow people to continue their conversations, to share and learn more about how different faiths celebrate with food through feasting and fasting.

Over in Medway, Chaplain Lynne Martin will be hosting a ‘Chill and Chat’ pop up event on Wednesday to mark Inter Faith Week. Go along to meet other students, try out an inter-faith quiz, and help decorate a graffiti wall with a speech bubble completing the sentence “Faith is …”

Find out more

For full details of the range of events taking place this week and in the future, check out the Chaplaincy events calendar.

Be sure to follow the Chaplaincy Instagram account @UniKentChaplaincy to find out about faith meet ups, learn more about different religious and cultural festivities and practices, and be inspired to share your beliefs with a welcoming and inclusive community.

There are also several episodes of the Kent Voices podcast which include discussion on faith at uni. Listen on Spotify, Apple Podcasts, or search your favourite podcast service.

Written by Joshua Stevens, Student Services, 28.10.22