Questions & Answers Session - 39th WRC

39th World Religions Conference - Experiencing God in Today's World

The concluding session of the 38th World Religions Conference (Theme: How to Establish a Just Society) consisted of a lively question/answer session. Dozens of question cards were collected for each speaker from the audience and from #AskWRC twitter at the event on September 22, 2019. However due to limited time at the conference, only a few could be presented to the speakers to answer at the event by the moderator. As the moderator advised, all the received cards would be provided to the respective speakers and the speakers would submit written answers that would be posted on the conference website. The answers are therefore presented here from speakers representing Islam, Sikhism, Indigenous Spirituality, Hinduism and Humanism. The speakers representing Christianity and Judaism have not submitted their answers. 

Some questions from the audience may never be answered, since they were either unclear, not relevant to the conference or were not in line with the objectives of the conference of promoting peace, respect and understanding for all faiths. However, it is upto the speaker to make such calls.



Hinduism: Questions Responded by Chaitanya Jyoti (39th WRC)


Indigenous: Questions Responded by Prof. Malcolm Saulis (39th WRC)


Islam: Questions Responded by Imam Imtiaz Ahmed (39th WRC)


Humanism: Questions Responded by Doug Thomas (39th WRC)


Sikhism: Questions Responded by Navdeep Singh (39th WRC)




2019: How to Establish a Just Society

Sunday, Sept. 22, 2019 (12:30 pm ~ 5:45 pm) 

Humanities Theatre, Hagey Hall, University of Waterloo                   

Theme: How to Establish a Just Society [View Promotional Video]

Canada's Largest Multi Faith Event

View Entire Conference video as it was live streamed here

The 39th World Religions Conference was successfully held on Sunday, September 22, 2019 at the Humanities Theatre, University of Waterloo, Ontario, Canada.  Scholars from various religions and philosophical traditions participated. 

Moderator (39th WRC)

Speaker Profiles (39th WRC)

Program (39th WRC)

Electronic Poster and Promotional Material (39th WRC)

News Coverage (39th WRC)

Abstracts - (39th WRC)

Pictures from 39th World Religions Conference

Questions & Answers Session - 39th WRC

Message from Dignitaries (39th WRC)


Message from Dignitaries (39th WRC)

The World Religions Conference (WRC) is a multi-faith event which brings together well-known scholars from the world’s major religions to speak on a common topic from the point of view of their respective religious traditions. For 39 years, the WRC has served as an invaluable forum for different religious and ethnic communities to gather in the spirit of tolerance, peace, cooperation, and understanding. The WRC serves the noble purpose of educating members of the community regarding interesting and relevant topics by providing a platform where all major religions can pool their collective wisdom and teachings regarding the topic. Continually on the rise in terms of organizational standards, quality of content, and attendance, the WRC has become Canada's largest and longest running event of its kind!

The conference has a long tradition for bringing together renowned scholars for a deep and thought-provoking exchange of ideas. The event aims to explore the teachings and practices of different religious and philosophical traditions, with the hope that such mutual exploration will encourage better understanding and promote harmonious co-existence among the members of the society.

Participating Religions and Philosophical Traditions:

Christianity, Islam, Sikhism, Hinduism, Indigenous Spirituality, Judaism and Humanism (Atheism and Agnostics)

Speakers and Partner Organizations:

The 39th World Religions Conference was held on September 22, 2019 at the University of Waterloo. The conference has been organized in Canada since 1981. It has a long tradition for bringing together renowned scholars for a deep and thought-provoking exchange of ideas. The event aims to explore the teachings and practices of different religious and philosophical traditions, with the hope that such mutual exploration will encourage better understanding and promote harmonious co-existence among the members of the society.

Theme: How To Establish A Just Society

The theme selected for this year's conference was "How to Establish a Just Society". In the current age, there is a sharpened awareness of the so many injustices happening around us. Scholars from various faiths and philosophies took on this daunting task to present the unique perspectives offered by their respective traditions in establishing a just society.

Date of Event: Sunday, September 22, 2019. 12:30pm to 5:45pm
Venue: Humanities Theatre, University of Waterloo 

A more-detailed program can be viewed here: Program (39th WRC).

Entire Live Streamed Video can be viewed here.



For more info call:  1-877-INFO-WRC

Venue and Directions (39th WRC)

Humanities Theatre
J. G. Hagey Hall
University of Waterloo

200 University Avenue West
Waterloo, ON, Canada N2L 3G1

The GPS coordinates: 43.4723° N, 80.5449° W

Venue of the 39th World Religions Conference


The "Humanities Theatre" is located at the J.G. Hagey Hall of the University of Waterloo
in City of Waterloo, Ontario, Canada.

The twin cities of Kitchener-Waterloo are located less than one hour west of Toronto -- Canada's largest city -- and a couple of hours from the American cities of Detroit and Buffalo via highway 401.


World Religions Conference Complementary Parking Arrangement

Sunday, September 22, 2019

Parking Lot H of the University of Waterloo.

The World Religions Conference organizing committee has made special arrangements with the University of Waterloo parking services to provide free parking to all attendees and volunteers of the conference at Parking Lot H, located directly across from the Humanities Theatre, J. G. Hagey Hall. Follow posted "World Religions Conference" parking signs to be directed to the parking lot. Vehicles with passengers my use the drop off location at the gate of Humanities Theatre, but should park in Lot 'H' as noted in the map below. 

Taking the ION Light Rail Transit to University of Waterloo:


GRT Light Rail Transit run from Fairview Park Mall (Kitchener) and from Connestoga Mall (Waterloo) and numerous other location through the Cities of Kitchener and Waterloo to the University of Waterloo. The Waterloo Regions newly running Light Rail Transit can be used to conveniently reach the University of Waterloo for the conference. 

More infor about the ION light rail can be found here:

About the Humanities Theatre:

The Humanities Theatre located in the J. G. Hagey Hall of the University of Waterloo is a state of the art, prestigious and signature performing arts centre. The World Religions Conference has been hosted in this theatre for numerous years since 2001. 



Program (39th WRC)

Sunday, September 22, 2019

J. G. Hagey Hall (Humanities Theatre), University of Waterloo

THEME: How to Establish a Just Society


12:30p Doors Open
          — Welcome and Registration
          — Visit to World Religions Displays

12:50p Opening World Religions Multi Media Presentation

1:00p Welcome by the Presiding Chair
          — Angela Vieth, Councillor City of Waterloo

1:02p Opening Reading from a Holy Scripture

1:05p Opening Ceremony
          — Introduction of Speakers and Dignitaries
          — Unveiling of the World Religions Conference Plaque
          — Singing of O'Canada - National Anthem of Canada

1:16p Introductory Remarks
          — Lal Khan Malik, National President,
              Ahmadiyya Muslim Jama`at Canada

1:19p Speaker’s Introductory Teaser Remarks

1:20p — Hinduism: Swami Chaitanya Jyoti – Kitchener
1:22p — Christianity: Revd Preston Parsons – Kitchener
1:24p — Judaism: Dr. Michael Grand - Guelph
1:26p — Indigenous Religions: Malcolm Saulis - Ottawa
1:28p — Islam: Imam Imtiaz Ahmed – Toronto
1:30p — Humanism: Doug Thomas - Elmira
1:32p — Sikhism: Navdeep Singh - Cambridge

1:34p Messages and Greetings from Guest Dignitaries

- [Names To Be Announced]

1:50p Break Time and Social Interactions
— Complimentary Refreshments

THEME SESSION - "How to Establish a Just Society"

Speakers present his/her view of their respective faith on the theme (13 minutes each). Each presentation will be followed by a presentation of recitation from the Holy Scriptures (3 minutes).

2:15p Introduction to the Theme Session — Moderator

2:18p Hindu Perspective — Swami Chaitanya Jyoti
2:31p Hindu Holy Scripture Recitation — Hindu Community

2:34p Christian Perspective — Revd Dr. Preston Parsons
2:47p Christian Holy Scripture Recitation — Christian Community

2:50p Judaic Perspective — Dr. Michael Grand
3:03p Jewish Holy Scripture Recitation — Jewish Community

3:06p Indigenous Perspective — Prof. Malcolm Saulis
3:19p Indigenous Holy Scripture Recitation — Indigenous Community

3:22p Islamic Perspective — Imam Imtiaz Ahmed
3:35p Islamic Holy Scripture Recitation — Muslim Community

3:38p Humanist Perspective — Doug Thomas
3:51p Presentation of Secular Principles — Humanist Community

3:54p Sikh Perspective — Navdeep Singh
4:07p Sikh Holy Scripture Recitation — Sikh Community

4:10p Coffee Break — Complimentary Refreshments and Social



4:40p Introduction to the Q/A Session — Moderator

4:42p Open Question & Answer Session
         — with all speakers of different faiths and philosophies

5:40p Vote of Thanks - Recognition of Speakers and Volunteers
         — Nomaan Mubashir, President WRC Organizing Committee

5:42p Closing Remarks — Moderator & Chair

5:44p Silent Multi-Faith Prayer — All Faiths

5:45p Dinner and Social

6:00p Dinner and Social

(* The order of presentations was determined via random draw at the last World Religions Conference, held Sept 16, 2018)



Refreshment and Dinner Menu (39th WRC)

As traditional, the World Religions Conference food organizing committee has made arrangements for all guests of the conference to an attractive refreshments and dinner menu at the venue of the conference at the upcoming 39th World Religions Conference on Sept 22, 2019



Famous WRC Samosas

Baked Goods:

Marble Pound Cake

Pound Cake

Chocolate Chunk Cookies

Tim Hortons Timbits


Fresh Fruit



Pizza Hut Pizza

(Vege & Chicken Options)

Caesars Salad



Water, Ginger Ale and Cola

Tim Hortons Coffee and Green Tea


Note: Refreshments and dinner provided at no cost by the premier sponsor of the conference.

[Dislaimer: Refreshments and Dinner Menu subject to change by event organizers]