The Interfaith Panel: Women’s Role in Public Life, was organized in celebration of International Women’s day. It consisted of five women from different faith backgrounds.

Ven. Jue Qian, from the Fo Guang Shan Temple of Toronto shared Buddhists’ views on women and their inclusion in the Buddha’s teachings. For them any sentient creature can achieve enlightenment and for many centuries now, Buddhists have welcomed nuns.

Marilyn Elphick, Christianity, from the University of St. Michael’s College spoke on her experiences within Catholicism and how many young people, especially young women were facing the changing landscape. She touched on her time of studying Theology, and her many female professors that provided a unique perspective.

Arliene Botnick, Judaism, of the Solel Congregation of Mississauga, turned to the role of women in Jewish scripture. She pointed out that Judaism, like many religions, placed women in secondary roles and indeed formalized this place. However she spoke on her mother’s and grandmother’s experiences and achievements despite women being seen as secondary. She explained that she grew up in a different world than them, in which the first female rabbi had been ordained in 1972. Women in Judaism, including the Orthodox traditions, have been making strides, but even before all of this women have shown themselves to be just as capable as men.

The moderator for the evening was Urz Heer, interfaith and human rights activist, as well as Rogers TV show host.

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Interfaith Panel

Woman’s Role in Public Life

In Celebration of International Women’s Day


Ven. Jue Qian, Fo Guang Shan Temple of Toronto (Buddhism)
Marilyn Elphick, University of St. Michael’s College (Christianity)
Arliene Botnick, Solel Congregation of Mississauga (Judaism)
Aysh Koca, Intercultural Dialogue Institute GTA (Islam) 

Urz Heer, Interfaith & Human Rights Activist/Rogers TV Show Host

Date: March 8th, 2015 – 2pm

Venue: Fo Guang Shan Temple of Toronto
6525 Millcreek Drive, Mississauga, ON, L5N 7K6

Refreshments will be provided

Faith and Women