Sara Jamil is a Muslim Woman, born and raised in Denmark, of Pakistani heritage, and she currently calls Toronto, Canada home. She is a Mother, Mentor, Author and Spiritual Activist. She is a skilled intercultural communicator, navigating various cultures as a world citizen. She engages with ease in interfaith dialogue and bridge-building. Sara uses her agency in disrupting stereotypical narratives and advocating for several initiatives near and dear to her heart.
Sara holds a Bachelor of Education and has 20 years experience of mentoring women and girls. She is the proud Founder and Visionary Leader of CompassionFirst, a mother-daughter venture on a mission to create a better world one woman at a time. Sara lives compassion by modeling the affirmation, which she coined: “A Better World Starts With Me“.
Lastly, Sara dedicates many volunteer hours as Co-lead Facilitator of the Charter for Compassion International Women and Girls sector.
Gray Henry-Blakemore is the founder and director of the interfaith publishing houses, Fons Vitae and Quinta Essentia, in Louisville, Kentucky, devoted to world spirituality. She is a writer and film producer under contract with the Book Foundation, and co-founder and trustee of the Islamic Texts Society of Cambridge, England. She has served as a contributing editor for Parabola magazine for over a decade. Besides having taught filmmaking at Dalton and Fordham University and world religions and art history at the Cairo American College, Cambridge University, Centre College and the Abbey of Gethsemane, she regularly lectures at such noteworthy venues as the 1995 Conference of World Spiritual Art in Tehran and most recently the September 2006 Congress on Islamic Spirituality in Singapore. In 1994 she arranged for His Holiness the Dalai Lama to speak in Louisville, and has in April 2006 organized the Dalai Lama interfaith congress in San Francisco in which the his main focus was to meet with Muslim dignitaries from the world over. Fons Vitae is now helping to arrange His Holiness’s visit December 2006 to Senegal and Ghana, which will continue the Buddhist-Muslim dialogue begun in San Francisco.
Gray is a founding member of the Thomas Merton Center Foundation and has organized a number of conferences focused on the work of Thomas Merton at Bellarmine University. She worked in Bosnian refugee camps in 1993, and subsequently published texts for their school system. Fons Vitae plays a key role in the annual interfaith festivals and programs sponsored by the Center for Interfaith Relations and Interfaith Paths to Peace Institute.
As a filmmaker, she produced Beads of Faith: The Universal Use of the Rosary, which is available both as a book and a video, Islam: A Pictorial Essay; Cairo: 1,001 Years of Art and Architecture; Ornaments of Lhasa: Islam in Tibet; and The Sacred Unconscious (Huston Smith). As an author she has written the classic, Understanding Islam and the Muslims, The Life of the Prophet Muhammad, articles for the “Fons Vitae Thomas Merton Series” (Merton & Sufism, Merton & Hesychasm, and Merton & Buddhism), as well as for Parabola and other journals.
Mrs. Henry received her B.A. at Sarah Lawrence College (Joseph Campbell was her don 1965, studied at the American and al-Azhar University in Cairo (1969-79), earned her M.A. in Education at the University of Michigan, was a research fellow at Cambridge University from 1983-1990, and is scheduled to receive her Ph.D. from the Faculty of Divinity at Canterbury, Kent in 2008.
Vince A. Di Dato – Earthian. Constantly thirsty of knowledge and always trying to learn Compassion. Don’t ask me where I come from. Ask me where I want to be and where I want to go. Share a bit of my way, if you like: traveling Life in good company is always more interesting. “Nemo Me Impune Lacessit”.
Strategy Designer, General Director of XERDAN Ltd. in Malta and 1st Captain of the Italian Army Special Reserve. He begins his career as Architect and Designer, mainly working on sustainability in industrial productions. He won the Compasso d’Oro in 1987 among many other important recognitions and prizes; his projects have been published and presented internationally, also at XVII Triennale di Milano and at Centre Pompidou in Paris. Later on, he re-oriented his activity towards systems analysis and their interconnections, until the most recent development of the
In June 2018, his Italian translation of Richard Buckminster Fuller“Operating Manual of Spaceship Earth” has been published by Il Saggiatore. He is now working on a new version of Sun-Tzu: “Vital Startegies, The Competitive Methods in the Vision of Life” and he collaborates with several magazines and media around the world.
I am grateful to each of my guests who joined us this first year of the Podcast. Together, with my Producer, Dennis Tardan, we published over 70 podcast episodes. Our guests joined us from: U.S., Kenya, Australia, Canada, Rwanda, Tasmania, Malawi, U.K., and Sardinia....
“Budd’s commitment to, and work on behalf of interfaith understanding is remarkable. There may be no greater challenge in our world than that of building bridges between religions and religious cultures, and I know no Christian who works harder at this or is more effective. From the interfaith pilgrimages to the courses he’s developed to his own writing and service, he’s a leader in this important and challenging work. And what Budd teaches us is that the more we learn about the faith and religion of others, the more articulate we become about our own, to others and to ourselves. He helps us let go of the threat and embrace the challenge.” – Rev. Dr. Sally Purvis Colleague and Author
Rev. Dr. Gilbert (Budd) Friend-Jones has led Jews, Muslims, and Christians on interfaith pilgrimages in Spain, Morocco, Gibraltar, and Turkey, and has preached and taught seminars in Russia, South India, Turkey, and the UK. – A native of West Virginia, Budd earned his doctorate at Howard University Divinity School in Washington, D.C., his M. Div. at Princeton Theological Seminary, and his Bachelor’s degree in Political Science at Frostburg State University. He has published two books and numerous articles. Dr. Friend-Jones is the Board Vice-Chair and Chair Elect of the North American Interfaith Network. He lives in Sarasota where he also serves as a Minister in the local Unitarian Universalist Church. Before moving to Florida in 2017, he served Congregational and UCC churches in Maine, Minnesota, Virginia, Georgia, and Illinois.
Rev. Dr. Gilbert (Budd) Friend-Jones North American Interfaith Network Unitarian Universalist Church of Sarasota First Congregational United Church of Christ