Theology school integrates studies of different faiths

CLAREMONT, California (AP) — The venerable Claremont School of Theology, which has taught Methodist ministers and theologians for more than a century, will try an unorthodox approach this fall: cross-training the nation’s future Muslim, Christian and Jewish religious leaders in classrooms scattered around Southern California as they work toward their respective degrees.

The experimental approach launched last week is intended to create U.S. religious leaders who not only preach tolerance in an era of religious strife, but who have lived it themselves by rubbing shoulders with those in other Abrahamic faiths.

The idea already faces resistance from more conservative elements in some religious communities; its architects say that only underscores the need for such an approach.

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