Faith, feminism focus of forum at Niskayuna synagogue

Reverand Sara Brown of the 1st United Methodist Church, Schenectady speaks at a panel discussion that was held at Congregation Agudat Achim about being "Faithfully Feminist: Can I live a religious life as a Feminist?" on Sunday March 13, 2016. Sister Carol Davis, O.P., Dominican Retreat House and Conference Center, and Dr. Mussarat Chaudhry, Islamic Center of the Capital District and Al-Hadiya Center listen in. (Marc Schultz/Gazette Photographer)Reverand Sara Brown of the 1st United Methodist Church, Schenectady speaks at a panel discussion that was held at Congregation Agudat Achim about being "Faithfully Feminist: Can I live a religious life as a Feminist?" on Sunday March 13, 2016. Sister Carol Davis, O.P., Dominican Retreat House and Conference Center, and Dr. Mussarat Chaudhry, Islamic Center of the Capital District and Al-Hadiya Center listen in. (Marc Schultz/Gazette Photographer)

BY JEFF WILKIN
Gazette Reporter

NISKAYUNA — Feminism was linked to faith Sunday at Congregation Agudat Achim in Niskayuna.

A panel of four women leaders from the Methodist, Islamic, Catholic and Jewish faiths, discussed how members reconcile their faith with their feminism.

“I was struck by the shared wisdom and the similarities that existed across our traditions,” said the Rev. Sara Baron of First United Methodist Church in Schenectady. “There was much more that we shared than that which we differed on, and our differences taught us about our own traditions.”

The discussion was sparked by the book “Faithfully Feminist: Jewish, Christian and Muslim Women on Why We Stay,” a collection of 45 essays that was released last September.

“These are mostly young women who are talking about the tension between what it is to be religious, but to be religious in a religion that demeans women sometimes, or doesn’t allow women full access to the practices of religion,” said Mishka Luft, chairwoman of the congregation’s Rosh Hodesh — a women’s learning and study group that sponsored the program.

Just getting together is a way to help reduce some of that tension.

Read the full story at dailygazette.com.