Pastor Ben to travel to Europe for Interreligious Training

July 12, 2022

All the way back in July of 2018, Foundry’s Executive Director of Programs and Justice Rev. Ben Roberts was named to a two-year fellowship through the “United Methodist Ecumenical and Interreligious Trainings (UMEIT): Ecumenical and Interfaith Plunge.” He was selected by Bishop Hope Morgan Ward of the North Carolina Annual Conference to participate. After the many delays due to the global pandemic, the plunge is finally taking place beginning on July 17, 2022.

UMEIT: Ecumenical and Interfaith Plunge is a two-year formation opportunity for United Methodist young adults who want to experience ecumenical and interfaith relationships on a practical level. The Council of Bishops’ staff work to organize this opportunity and provide leadership as a part of our wider United Methodist Ecumenical and Interreligious Training ministry.


Pastor Ben now sets off for the first-year experience which includes a pilgrimage dedicated to the practical study of ecumenism. This first-year pilgrimage will take the group on a two-week trip to the World Council of Churches headquarters in Geneva, to The Ecumenical Institute (Bossey) also in Switzerland, and to Taizé in France. At each site there will be worship, formation, and fellowship with the leadership present.


The second year will include a self-guided pilgrimage dedicated to the practical study of interfaith relationships on a personal level.  Pastor Ben hopes to examine inter-faith cooperation in the public square in a non-Christian majority context for his second-year program. “I’m excited for both the learning and travel opportunity. I’m thankful to my Bishop (who’s now retired) for the opportunity and to the Foundry community for valuing learning and growth. I look forward to sharing insights, hopes, and challenges within ecumenical spaces when I return.” Please pray for Pastor Ben and the group as they travel and learn.


If you’d like to learn more about the United Methodist Ecumenical and Interreligious Trainings, you can do so on the Council of Bishops website