Chilliwack Progress

Weighing the role of religion in politics

Chilliwack-Hope MLA Gwen O’Mahony is hosting a panel discussion Dec. 10 at Evergreen Hall tackling the sometimes thorny topic of religion in politics.

“Religion often has an uncomfortable relationship with politics and the political process. In recent years, the contribution of religion to the public discourse has been increasingly narrow and one-sided.

"For many involved in electoral politics, 'religion' has become little more than a demographic marker, like age, income or ethnicity," said O’Mahony in a news release.

"As a person of faith, I’m not sure that’s a positive development," she added.

The MLA invited the "three eminent scholars" to discuss how faith and politics inform each other. How can faith positively engage with the issues of the day, might be one of the questions.

Three experts will form the panel including Bill Blaikie, fellow at the Knowles-Woodsworth Centre at the University of Winnipeg; Ron Dart, professor of political science and religious studies at the University of the Fraser Valley; and Paul Rowe, assistant professor of religion at the Religion in Canada Institute at Trinity Western University.

"I hope the community will find the discussion valuable and join us to explore it," she said.

Beyond Secularism is free, on Dec. 10 at 7:30 p.m. at Evergreen Hall on Corbould St.

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