The film “Pentecostalism in the Prisons of Rio” will be screened at 7 p.m. Wednesday, Feb. 19, in the Anderson Student Center’s Woulfe Alumni Hall on the St. Paul campus of the University of St. Thomas.
Following the film, which documents the work of Minnesotan Andrew Johnson on why Pentecostalism thrives among inmate populations in Rio de Janeiro, local prison chaplains Rashed Ferdous, Robert Klanderud and Rabbi Lynn Liberman will participate with Johnson in a panel discussion on the role of religion inside prisons in Minnesota and elsewhere.
The program is sponsored by the Jay Phillips Center for Interfaith Learning in collaboration with St. Thomas’ Department of Justice and Peace Studies, Department of Sociology and Criminal Justice, and with the Spirituality Institute of the St. Catherine University-University of St. Thomas of School of Social Work.
Johnson, who earned his doctorate in sociology at the University of Minnesota, teaches sociology at Minneapolis Community and Technical College and is a research associate for the Center for Religion and Civic Culture at the University of Southern California. He recently served as a visiting fellow for the Center for the Study of Religion at Princeton University.
Ferdous, a speaker for the Islamic Resource Group, is a software engineer by profession who volunteers at the Federal Medical Center in Rochester, a federal prison providing specialized medical and mental-health care for male inmates, the Olmsted County Adult Detention Center, and the Minnesota Correctional Facility-Red Wing.
Klanderud, of Dakota and Lakota heritage, served for eight years with the Division of Indian Work, in partnership with the Minneapolis Council of Churches, in a mentorship program for incarcerated men. He also served in the chaplaincy program of the Minnesota Department of Corrections, caring for prisoners in Hennepin, Stearns, Steele and Anoka counties.
Liberman is a resident chaplain in Clinical Pastoral Education at Abbot Northwestern Hospital in Minneapolis, an on-call chaplain at Regions Hospital in St. Paul, and a volunteer chaplain for the Mendota Heights and West St. Paul police and fire departments and at the Minnesota Correctional Facility-Shakopee.
Scene from the film “If I Give My Soul: Pentecostalism in the Prisons of Rio.”