I'm Andrew Willson and I am the UK and Ireland representative on the board of CEUC. Meeting with other chaplains in Higher Education across Europe has been very inspiring. It has also generated shared projects between Chaplains from different nations.
So, I am especially keen to promote the conferences and practical co-operation between colleagues in Europe.
Here is a little about my situation. I work in London, at Imperial College's Chaplaincy Multi-Faith Centre, along with a team of Buddhist, Jewish, Muslim, Hindu and Sikh chaplains, volunteers and visiting faith advisors. We serve the science, engineering, medicine and business communities of Imperial, the artists and designers at the Royal College of Art and the musicians at the Royal College of Music.
There is the multi-faith provision - helping students and staff to practice their faith or religion while in the university. So, the student faith groups use the Chaplaincy Multi-Faith Centre for worship, discussions, social events and meditation.
There is also an important interfaith dimension - promoting good relations and deeper understanding between people of different faiths. Sharing the same space - the multi-faith centre - helps this. But we also work with the students to help with small dialogue meetings, and interfaith speaker events.
The multi-faith provision and the interfaith relationships can create new opportunities. For example, the student society for Shia Muslims started a campaign to raise awareness of poverty in the UK. They also worked with a wide range of students to raise money for Muslim, Christian and secular charities who work together running Food Banks for people on very low incomes.
These Muslim students joined with students from the Catholic society to help take the collection during our College Carol Service at Christmas. You can read more about the service here.
A partnership arising directly from meeting chaplains at CEUC was the 'Night of Engineering Philosophy' which we did at Imperial with colleagues from MOTIV at the Technical University of Delft, Netherlands.
It's been great to work in partnership with chaplains from CEUC.
Join the network, the conversation, and the partnerships!
UK and Ireland representative on the board of CEUC