Episcopal Church to Offer World Religions Classes in Penn Yan, NY

August 19, 2004

Source: The Finger Lakes Times


On August 19, 2004 The Finger Lakes Times reported, "her idea is neither new nor profound, but in small-town America where Christianity remains the norm and church-goers often sit in the same pews as their grandfathers, the Rev. Denise Yarbrough’s proposed world religions class appears somewhat radical. The course, scheduled to begin early next month at St. Mark’s Episcopal Church, includes Wednesday in-class sessions and Saturday field trips to religious centers, such as the Islamic Center and the Temple Sinai, both in Rochester. Yarbrough, the outspoken and offbeat rector of St. Mark’s, has long been intrigued by other faiths. She said her upbringing in a largely Jewish town opened her eyes to America’s diversity at a young age... Yarbrough plans to avoid a lecture-style format by fostering open discussions of the texts, including works by Diana Eck, a leading religious scholar at Harvard University who spent a year in India. Students will be expected to write their reflections in a journal. Yarbrough hopes that these notes will help students become aware of how visiting different environments affects perceptions of their own faith."