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 Note: The schedule is  under construction.  As proposals for talks and panels are received, the plenary sessions may be readjusted.


Sacred Texts and Human Contexts: Poverty and Wealth in the Sacred Texts of Judaism, Christianity, and Islam

Fatih University, Istanbul

June 9 and 10, 2014



Conference Organizing Committee Fatih University, Istanbul:

Prof. Muhit MERT, Assist Prof. Cihat ŞEKER and Assist Prof. Cemal ÖZEL

Conference Planning Committee at Nazareth College, Rochester, NY, USA

Prof. Nathan Kollar, Prof. David Hill, Prof. Thomas Donlin-Smith, Bluent Ozdemir,

Prof. Mustafa Gokcek, Prof. George Eisen, Murat Kaval and Prof. Muhammad Shafiq


Monday June 9, 2014

Opening Remarks: 8:30am


1.      Sarif Ali Tekalan, President Fatih University, Istanbul, Turkey

2.      Daan Braveman,  President Nazareth College, Rochester, NY  USA

3.      Murat Kaval, Peace Islands Institute

4.      Muhammad Shafiq, Professor and Executive Director, Hickey Center for Interfaith Studies and dialogue                         Dialogue, Nazareth College, Rochester, USA

5.      Bluent Ozdemir, Director, Peace Islands Institute, Rochester, NY



1.    Concurrent Sessions: 10:30-12pm


A.     Wealth and Poverty and Sufi Dimensions

Moderator:  Thomas Donlin-Smith

Hussam S. Timani: “Wealth, Poverty, and the Doctrine of Fana’ in the Islamic Scripture”


Ismail K. Poonawala: “Wealth and Poverty in the Epistles of the Brethren of Purity (Rasā’il       Ikhwān al-Ṣafā)”         Ikhwān al-Safā)”


Zeki Saritoprak: “The Story of Koran”


B.     Wealth and Poverty and Philanthropy

Moderator: Ibrahim Siyar

        Kenan Cetinkaya: “The Relationship between Faith and Charity in the Bible and the Qur’an”


     Cihat Seker: “The Relationship Between Tzedakah and Salvation in Judaism”


    George Heyman: “The Widow’s Mite (Mark 12:41-44) and Christian Zakat (Al-Baqarah 2:271)”





Break: Lunch and prayers: 12:00-1:30pm

Moderator:  Prof.Dr. Mohamed BAKARI,  

Luncheon Keynote Speaker:  Rev. James Maher, C.M., President, Niagara University, Niagara, NY



2.     Concurrent Sessions: 1:30-3:00pm


A.     Wealth and Poverty and Issues in Globalization

Moderator:  Zeki Saritoprak

        Andrii Krawchuk: “Orthodox Christian and Muslim Teachings on Wealth and Poverty: the Quest for Collaboration on   for Collaboration on Economic Justice in Russia”


       Jason Rekon: “A Christian-Muslim Critique of Globalization: Addressing an Impoverished Egypt”


      Regina A. Boisclair: “Lectionary Readings on Poverty and Affluence in the Eastern and Western Churches”                    Churches”



B.     Reassessing Sacred Texts

Moderator: Mustafa Gocek

 Nadine Dawson: “The Sacred Texts in Context with the New Role of Religions in World Affairs: Political,                Affairs: Political, Economical and Social stability”


Richard Salter: “Sacred Texts and Secular Civil Religions:  Examples from the US and Argentina”


 John McCarthy: “Too Sacred Texts Too Sacred Religion”


3.     Concurrent Sessions: 3:15: 4:45pm


A.     Sacred Texts and Gender Justice

 Moderator: Sara Varhus

 Suraiya IT: “The Position of Women on Wealth and Poverty in Islamic Tradition”

Zainab Alwani: “Social and Gender Justice in the Qur’an: Modern Challenges”

Ghada Abdel Monien El-Gemaiey: “Social Solidarity Foundation in Middle age Between Inscription texts and the value”                             Texts and the Value”



B.     Sacred Texts and Business and Economic Dimensions

         Moderator: Nathan Kollar

Bahauddeen Hudawi: “The Qur’anic concept of Business: A review on the Current Economy”


 Marinus Iwuchukwu: “Promoting Dialogue of Action Among Abrahamic Religions toward bet                                   h                                      Better Social and Economic Welfare of Citizens.”

Sheila E. McGinn: "What stories from sacred Scriptures Illuminate Judgments about how to Treat wealth and pover  Wealth and Poverty?"


Dinner and Keynote Speaker: 6:30pm, Dinner Keynote Speaker: Prof. Dr. Mohamed Bakari , An expert of Phonologies of Bantu Languages, African Literature and African Languages as well as Islam in the Contemporary world


Tuesday June 10, 2014


4.    Concurrent Session: Keynote panel 9:00-10:30am


A.     Sacred texts, Theology and Social Vision

Moderator: George Eisen

Reuven Firestone:  “Theology and Social Vision and Examination of the Role of Wealth in the Visions of                      the Visions of Society and Community between the Hebrew Bible and Qur’an                            Qur’an”

Jamal Badawi:  “Zakah in the Islamic Sacred texts and human context”

Leonard Swidler: “Wealth and Poverty: A Christian Response”


5.    Concurrent Sessions: 10:45AM- 12:15pm


A.     Sacred Texts and Care for the Needy

Moderator:  David Hill

       Michael Calabria: “Mughal Munificence: Care and Concern for the Poor in Islamic Hindustan from Tuladan to the   from Tuladan to the Taj”

      Clare Amos:      “Overflowing Riches: Generosity, Divine and Human”

              Steve Kepnes: “The Face of the Poor is the Face of God”


B.     Distribution of Wealth


              Daniel Lehrman: “Wealth and Poverty of Spirit and Manna”


            Muzammil Siddiqi: “Money as a Blessing and as a Trust”


             Thomas Decker: “Job 19 - Agents of God’s Malfeasance?”


Lunch Break and Prayers: 12:15: 1:30pm

Moderator: Prof. Dr. Nader

Luncheon Keynote: Prof. Mehmet Niyazi ÖKTEM

6.    Concurrent Sessions: 1:30- 3:00pm


A.     Sacred Texts and Ethics of Human Welfare

Moderator: NADA Sabahattin ATALAY

Douglas Jacobsen and Rhonda Hustedt Jacobsen: “The Parable of the Good Samaritan: Connecting Universities with Basic Human Needs”              Universities with Basic Human Needs”


 Musharraf Hussain: “Scientific Studies on the Effects of Practicing Moral and Spiritual Values on human welfare;          Human Welfare; is this a New Way of Promoting Human Relationships?”


 Azeez Badmus: “Values and Ethics in the Islamic Labour Services: Effects on Economic Growth of a Man”            of a Man”


B.     Sacred Texts and Living a Good Life: Property, Pleasure and Piety in Jewish, Christian and Muslims Revelation

Moderator:  Muzammil Siddiqui

Scott Alexander, Ghulam Haider Aasi, Malka Zeiger-Simkovich, Panel presentation


7.    Concurrent Sessions: 3:15: 4:45PM


A.     Sacred Texts and Liberation Theology

Moderator: Jean Landes

       Denise Yarbrough: “Mary’s Magnificat, the Anawim and Church on the Margins”

      Josh Mugler: "Liberation Theologies in Present-Day Palestine."

Adem Carroll, Occupy Wall Street, Occupy Faith: Some Thoughts on Contemporary Religious Discourse on Wealth and Poverty in NYC


B.     Wealth and Poverty in the Sacred Text


Abdullah Allheedan: “View of Poverty and Wealth in Islamic texts and its effects on material wellbeing”                              wellbeing”

Abdul Majid Khan: “Concept and Processes of Wealth and Poverty in the light of Islamic Tradition                                   Tradition”

          Nazir Khaja, “Overcoming The Limits Of The Past To Create A Much Different Future”



Dinner and Keynote: 6:30pm


Closing Remarks and Sufi Music: 8:30pm

Ibrahim Siyar, Peace Islands Institute

Sarif Ali Tekalan, President Fatih University, Istanbul, Turkey

Sara Varhus, Vice President Nazareth College, Rochester, NY  USA

George Eisen and Muhammad Shafiq, Nazareth College




















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