by Fr. Chris Valka, CSB
It seems like just about every other conversation on the University of Windsor campus has been about the strike that almost was. No doubt many students are now frantically trying to complete the assignments and/or study for the exam that they thought would be delayed.
However, the other news on campus is that students now have a place to offer a few last minute prayers before they begin their exam since yesterday, the University dedicated a Multi Faith Space in the lower level of the CAW. The dedication was attended by over 50 people, with remarks from Dr. Wildeman, three students and prayers offered by representatives of seven different faith traditions.
In a previous interview with The Lance, I commented that,
“For many students on campus their faith is important to them. If a university limits education to academics, it misses a part of the education that is found in relationships with culture and tradition.
I think this offers a unique opportunity for dialogue among people of different faith and traditions. The world is often complicated by the inability for people to understand each other. Anything that brings people together into one space, any place that brings people from different traditions has to be seen as a benefit to education.”
To that end, I can say that I have already learned a lot in the process of planning this space. In fact, I have been quite humbled by how much I don’t know about things I thought I did.
The space is a neutral space with moveable partitions to accommodate the needs of groups who desire to use it for different prayerful gatherings. In addition to a bookable space, there is always a space open to anyone who just needs a moment of silence. The room is available 24/7 using your Uwin Card during most of the day or through the Information Desk late at night.
So congratulations to the University for not only avoiding a strike that would have decreased the education of students, but for giving them a place to integrate that which they learn in the classroom with their person.