The President (Rector) of Hartford Seminary, Prof. Dr. J. Lohr, visited the Islamic University of Applied Sciences Rotterdam (IUASR) on the 20thof May 2019. Professor Lohr gave a lecture on the History of Hartford Seminary, describing how Islamic Studies and Muslim–Christian Relations came to be an educational focal point in its long and diverse history.
Dr. Lohr shared information on the student population at the Seminary, as well as its founding in 1834. He explained that Hartford Seminary Prof. Dr. Duncan Black Mc Donald (1863-1943) stressed the importance of learning Arabic for a deeper understanding of the Hebrew Bible, and although the Seminary had a Christian missionary focus in its early years, it was through encounters with Muslim people globally that the Seminary eventually shifted in its educational vision to that of mutual learning and understanding.
Before taking questions, Dr. Lohr concluded his lecture with a quotation from the mission of Hartford Seminary, as follows: ‘Hartford Seminary is an educational institution where a consciousness of God is cultivated and shared. We believe strong religious institutions and healthy communities of faith are necessary to the well being of individuals and society. We affirm the goodness of religious differences that exist in the world and we support faithful living in a pluralistic and multi-faith environment’.