The purpose of the RPLP’s Religious and Civic Leader Gatherings is to bring together faith and community leaders in an intimate setting to talk about timely issues, engage with our research, and share resources. These gatherings have addressed some of the most contentious topics of our time, including religiously based hate crimes and how religious convictions shape Americans’ views on racial inequality. Read more about our efforts to promote the common good.
Our 15 invitation-only gatherings during 2018 and 2019 drew more than 150 civic and religious leaders, along with an additional 200 faculty, students, and community members from in and around Houston. We estimate that these leaders, who include religious leaders, nonprofit directors, academics, and politicians, reach more than 50,000 Houstonians.
In summer 2019, the RPLP issued a survey to regular attendees of these gatherings. We asked participants to “tell us a story of how these gatherings have been useful to you.”
“The [RPLP] gatherings give me an opportunity to visit with partner organizations and individuals while also getting access to new information. The meetings gather a group of people that doesn’t gather in any other venue that I know of. These meetings are a real asset.” – Pastor and nonprofit staff member
“I have been particularly impressed by the wide range of perspectives on the study of religion that are offered by attendees. … I value how these gatherings bring together people under the same roof who might not engage in constructive conversations in any other setting.” – University staff member