Three years ago, on Novermber 5th, 2018, at its convening in Toronto, Canada, the Parliament of the World's Religions honored OMNIA with the prestigious Paul Carus Award. Rev. Abare Kallah (National Coordinator for Nigeria) and Ms. Soraya Deen (Coordinator for Women's Initatives and Partnerships) also received the award.

Given in recognition of excellence in interfaith action, the award is in memory of Mr. Paul Carus, one of the founders of the first Parliament in 1893 and is given by his grandson, Mr. Blouke Carus of Peru, Illinois.

Please click the link for the news release of that event.

OMNIA Receives Parliament of the World's Religions' Highest Award

OMNIA and Parliament have enjoyed a long relationship. OMNIA's president having served on its board for six years, and having participated in all but one of its convenings. OMNIA's board chair, Dr. Larry Greenfield is the most recent past executive director of the parliament, and many past board members of the parliament offer leadership to OMNIA.

The Parliament's 8th convening is October 16-18th, 2021. At this convening, OMNIA will feature 10 events, based on issues arising from the ground-up from our Interfaith Peacemaker Teams. Many of them will focus on OMNIA's current emphasis: Dismantling Supremacy. Dr. Paul Knitter, a renowned authority on the subject provides leadership to that effort at OMNIA. Ms. Soraya Deen's work on Dismantling Patriarchy through Interfaith Peacemaker Teams will also be featured.

To attend the Parliament convening, please click here to register.

The following is a listing of OMNIA-related events at the Parliament:

All times listed are US/Canada Central Daylight Time

Sunday, October 17th

10:00 a.m.       Israel, Palestine and the Bible – Bishop Munib Younan

10:00 a.m.       Siblings of the Sages in the Human Family: An Inclusive and Participatory Seminar – Dr. Larry Greenfield

11:00 a.m.        Plenary (OMNIA will present a statement on Anti-Supremacy) featuring Dr. Paul Knitter, Ms. Soraya Deen and Dr. Shanta Premawardhana

2:00 p.m.         Dismantling Supremacy – Dr. Paul Knitter

6:00 p.m.         Dismantling Traditional and Religious Legitimations of Child Marriage in Bangladesh – Ms. Daisy Roy, Mr. Nurul Islam Sitol, Ms. Umey Pro Marma

7:00 p.m.         A Religious Movement Vital for the 21st Century – Interfaith Peacemaker Teams – Dr. Shanta Premawardhana

8:00 p.m.         Religious Supremacies and the Dismantling of Democracy: Lessons from India and USA – Dr. Larry Greenfield.Dr. Jeannine Hill-Fletcher, Dr. Baiju Markose


Monday, October 18th

9:00 a.m.        Interfaith Peacemaker Teams: A Powerful Tool for Building Peace and Justice Around the World – Rev. Abare Kallah, Bishop Kumara Illangasinghe, Rev. David Das

10:00 a.m.      What Community Organizing Can Teach the Interfaith Movement: A Short Training – Dr. Shanta Premawardhana

12:45 p.m.      Dismantling Patriarchy: A Challenge to All Religions -- Ms. Kate McElwee, Ms. Shreen Saroor, Bhikkuni Uppalawanna, Moderated by Ms. Soraya Deen

Further programming on Dismantling Supremacy will be forthcoming.

If you like to participate, please click here to sign up

Shanta Premawardhana


Shanta Premawardhana is president of OMNIA Institute for Contextual Leadership. Prior to OMNIA, he served as the Director for Interreligious Dialogue and Cooperation at the World Council of Churches in Geneva, Switzerland. He was also the Associate General Secretary for Interfaith Relations at the National Council of Churches, USA. While serving as pastor of Ellis Avenue Church in Chicago, he engaged in community organizing in the Southside of Chicago. He is an emeritus trustee of the Parliament of the World’s Religions, National Council of Churches, USA, and Common Cause Illinois. He earned his Ph.D. at Northwestern University in Evanston, Illinois.


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