Program Introduction

Students in professor Ronney Mourad's religious studies class.

Why study religion?

Only a few students enter Albion intending to study religion or to pursue a major or minor in religious studies. Most of our students select a course in religious studies as part of their core requirement and then take more courses with us for one reason: fascination. A survey of the courses we teach, their content, and their methods explains why so many students take more than one course with us.

  • Would you like to know about the first-century environment of Jesus and the early church?
  • Have you wondered about the differences between Judaism and its daughter religion, Christianity, and why they separated?
  • What do women’s experiences bring to different religious traditions?
  • How can an understanding of Islam shed light on current political developments in the Middle East?
  • What about the relationship between philosophy and religion? Or science and religion?
  • Would you like to know more about Asian religions—Hinduism, Buddhism, Confucianism, and Taoism?
  • What about ethical questions in a time when our society is debating issues such as AIDS, abortion, euthanasia, racism, and other matters that will affect us for many years to come?

Many of these questions have their roots in religious perspectives that are a part of our multicultural inheritance. We cannot afford to ignore them. Religion is a vital part of our world. It is as current as today’s news yet reaches back to our earliest beginnings as a species.