Religious representation at Quinnipiac

Brooke Reilly

Growing up, religion can be a big part of students’ lives. When they go off to college, many want to continue practicing their religions to the best of their ability. Quinnipiac is not affiliated with any specific religion, but space is provided in the Center for Religion and Herald House for students to practice their faiths.

The question that many are left wondering is if all religions are represented equally on campus. There are mixed opinions from the Quinnipiac community.

According to Father Jordan Lenaghan, Executive Director of University Religious Life, the university looks to incorporate all religions.

“We look for ways because the more religious voices we have in a conversation, the better our experience is and the better that the community is and the better our students are when they leave an event,” Lenaghan said.

Senior, Kezia Duarte, is Catholic, but she goes to events held by each different religion on campus.

“Seeing each group and being a little part of each group, and seeing it grow over the last four years definitely makes me feel like it’s represented,” Duarte said.

Campus Rabbi, Reena Judd, does not believe that all religions are represented equally across campus. She points out the population size of religions compared to the resources given to them.

“Jews are much smaller a group of religious students than Protestants,” Judd said. “There’s only a 10-hour-a-week non ordained Protestant Minister here.”

She believes this, among other issues with representation from different religions, can be fixed.

“That would take a huge financial investment… and it would take a shift,” Judd said. “I don’t know if that wants to be dealt with at this point.”

Judd does her part by keeping the doors of the Herald House open to all on Friday evenings for Shabbat, to celebrate different Jewish holidays or to just come in and say hello.

“Anything that’s done in the Jewish world at large we do here, every holiday,” Judd said.

Lenaghan thinks it’s important to keep the conversation open between different religions.

“We don’t ask for anyone’s religion at the door, and everyone is welcome here,” Lenaghan said. “I say the only faith I want in this space is good faith.”

As time goes on, religious involvement on campus is continuing to grow. Both students and faculty are working to make sure students of different religious backgrounds feel included.

“Seeing different religions and different views, what they think and what they believe, morals and values that they hold, you kind of take a little bit of each part, and you hold it to what you truly believe and what you truly feel,” Duarte said.