Beatriz Mendivil, born into and raised in a devout Catholic family, now finds the higher power in that which she loves the most: nature, her dogs, her family and her partner. Her belief that life has a funny way of guiding our hearts toward our purpose has led her unexpectedly to pursue an undergraduate degree in Conservation Biology, arising from her passion to help people build more sustainable communities. In church she felt judged; in nature she reaches a place of peace and clarity, and is drawn more deeply into her desire to give back and give to the earth the love it deserves.
Jenan Mohajir, Leadership Curriculum Consultant for Interfaith Youth Core in Chicago, Illinois, has led skills-based trainings on interfaith service and cooperation in the United States and around the world. She has spoken widely on issues of disaffiliation and works among various churches and faith traditions to help build understanding, and to articulate the issues relevant to the lives of youth and young adults today. A committed Muslim, she is deeply inspired by the Qur’an and the teachings of the Prophet Muhammad to build a world where we can live together in equal dignity and mutual harmony.
Fr. Joe Muth is a Catholic priest and pastor of St. Matthew Church in Baltimore, MD, a diverse faith community made up of people from 45 different countries. The parish established the Immigration Outreach Service Center (IOSC) to assist people with political asylum, status adjustment, and family reunification. Fr. Joe is the spiritual director of the parish outreach for gay and lesbian people, an initiative known as LEAD—LGBTQ Educating and Affirming Diversity. In 2016, Fr. Joe and the pastoral council initiated an interfaith partnership with the Muslim community that connects and engages elementary school children in regular meetings and prayer services with the Ahmadiyya Mosque and the Al-Rahmah School, a Muslim pre-K, elementary, middle, and high school.
Josh Packard, PhD, sociologist, professor and researcher at the University of Northern Colorado, serves as the Executive Director of the Social Research Lab and the CEO of The Packard Group, a strategic innovation consulting firm. Josh’s research has appeared in numerous academic and trade publications, and his recent book, Church Refugees: Sociologists reveal why people are DONE with church but not their faith (Group Publishing), explores how religion drives people away from church, but not from God.
Kerri Miller is an award-winning public radio journalist who currently hosts a new national radio show, Flyover from MPR News, which provides a platform for listeners across the country to participate in the dialogue and bridge the divides facing the nation today. In addition Kerri hosts a daily show, MPR News with Kerri Miller, and Talking Volumes, a live literary series featuring interviews with best-selling authors.