Change and Conflict within Religious Communities

Interfaith conversation featuring Rev. Anita L. Bradshaw, Rabbi Norman Cohen, Imam Hamdy El-Sawaf, and Rev. Sosan Flynn

Date & Time:

Thursday, October 27, 2016
7:00 PM - 8:00 PM
October 27, 2016, 7:00 PM


free and open to the public


St. Luke Presbyterian Church
3121 Groveland School Road
Minnetonka, MN 55391

Change and conflict within religious communities are experienced by people in all faith traditions. And how they address this change and conflict is inevitably influenced by theologies found in their respective traditions. Rev. Anita L. Bradshaw’s Change and Conflict in Your Congregation is a guidebook to help Christian congregations navigate change and channel conflict into a stronger sense of mission and community. In this program, Rev. Bradshaw will summarize some of the principal ideas in her book and receive brief responses from Jewish, Muslim, and Buddhist religious leaders — Rabbi Norman Cohan, Imam Hamdy El-Sawaf, and Rev. Sosan Flynn — who will also speak about conflict resolution in their communities. These four presenters, along with audience members, will also engage in a conversation about what people of different religious traditions can learn from each other about creating stronger communities that lead to a more peaceful world. 

Rev. Anita L. Bradshaw, Ph.D., pastor of St. Luke Presbyterian Church in Minnetonka, is a theologian and consultant to congregations across the denominational spectrum, helping them grow through change and find healthy resolutions to conflict. Her book Change and Conflict in Your Congregation (Skylight Paths Publishing, 2015) reflects this expertise. She has taught at several universities and seminaries, including Yale Divinity School, Hartford Seminary, and Augsburg College.

Rabbi Norman Cohen is rabbi emeritus of Bet Shalom Congregation in Minnetonka, where he was senior rabbi from 1981 through 2015. He has been an adjunct faculty member at several colleges and universities, including St. Catherine University and St. Olaf College, and he is rabbi-in-residence with the Jay Phillips Center for Interfaith Learning.

Imam Hamdy El-Sawaf, Ph.D., an imam at Masjid Al-Iman Mosque in northeast Minneapolis and the founding director of the Al-Wafaa Center for Human Services in Minneapolis, is a psychotherapist actively involved in the Minnesota Council of Churches Healing Resources for Refugees initiative.

Rev. Sosan Flynn, an ordained Zen Buddhist priest, serves as the guiding teacher at Clouds in Water Zen Center in St. Paul. She has a M.A. degree in counseling psychology, specializes in premarital counseling, and frequently lectures and teaches classes on meditation and mindful living.

Sponsored by the Jay Phillips Center for Interfaith Learning in collaboration with St. Luke Presbyterian Church in Minnetonka

To make an accessibility request, call Disability Resources at (651) 962-6315.