Social Awareness Table Conversations: Reinvigorating Our Communities Through Dialogue

When: Sunday, Aug 30th, 2:30-4:00p.m.

Where: Inside the Indiana War Memorial, 431 North Meridian Street, Indianapolis, IN 46204


As advancements in technology continue, face-to-face dialogue is beginning to feel like a relic of the past. Table Conversations are a way to talk with members of our Indianapolis community, consisting of diverse backgrounds, faith traditions, and social orientations, in a small round table environment about current events that affect our community.

With the backdrop and diversity of the Festival of Faiths, these Table Conversations will illuminate how people of different backgrounds and beliefs feel about pertinent issues that face our community today. In the setting of a round table discussion, community members and leaders will discuss current topics, ranging from RFRA, to race, to environmental intervention, and more. Participants will have the opportunity to partake in 3–4 separate conversations based on topics of their choosing.

Why table conversations?

Citizens have valuable knowledge and perspectives critical to developing and sustaining a healthy, vibrant community. These Table Conversations will provide a platform for concerned citizens of different traditions and faith backgrounds to come together and talk about the issues affecting our community. By creating a space for structured conversations led by facilitators, participants can share their opinions and experiences in a focused and meaningful manner. These conversations will also provide insight into how we can best serve in a manner that is truly reflective of the needs, desires, and priorities of the people we engage.


The event will begin with a brief introduction, welcome, and overview. The eight topics will also be shared during this time. There will be two facilitators assigned to each topic and each topic will have a designated table. The room will be set up with 8 tables with 10 chairs per table. There will be four, twelve-minute rounds. After each round, participants will rotate between the tables that have topics that most interest them. During each round, one of the facilitators will take notes.

At the end of the four rounds, one facilitator from each table will give a brief, but precise five-minute presentation that will summarize the highlights of the conversations. The event will close with a reflection and an appearance by a special guest.


Join Jane Henegar, American Civil Liberties Union; Tim Swarens, Indianapolis Star; Don Knebel, Barnes & Thornburg; David Shaheed; Marion Superior Court; Matthew Boulton, Christian Theological Seminary; Daniel Meyers, Center for Faith and Vocation; Anne Williamson, WayFinding; David Sklar, Jewish Community Relations Council; Fady Qaddoura, RISE; Jesse Kharbanda, Hoosier Environmental Council; Lev Rothenberg, Jewish Community Center; Hazem Bata, Islamic Society of North America, Michael Saahir, Nur-Allah Islamic Center, Kizito Kalima, Peace Center for Forgiveness & Reconciliation, Martha Lamkin, Your Life Matters Task Force, Rene Stanley, Indiana Bicentennial Commission & Douglas Hairston, Mayor’s Front Porch Alliance as we learn through our community’s diversity and reinvigorate our community through dialogue.

What is a Table Conversation?

A Table Conversation is a round table discussion, which will be facilitated by two local members of the community. The Conversations will start at 2:30p.m. and will run about 1.5 hours.

The event is a collaboration of the Desmond Tutu Center at Butler University and Christian Theological Seminary, Center For Interfaith Cooperation, Center For Faith and Vocation at Butler University & Global Indy.

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