FaithFutures Foundation is a grassroots response to a widely perceived need for new ways to express and explore the sacred knowledge that we have inherited from the past through our religions and spiritual traditions.
Writing from within the Christian tradition, FFF Advisor Marcus Borg has described the root issue as follows:
Given who we have become, one of the imperative needs of our time is a re-visioning of the Bible and Christianity ... What is needed in our time is a way of seeing the Bible that takes seriously the important and legitimate ways in which we differ from our ancestors. [This] way of seeing ... leads to a way of being Christian that has very little to do with believing. Instead, what will emerge is a relational and sacramental understanding of the Christian life. Being a Christian ... is about a deepening relationship with the God to whom the Bible points, lived within the Christian tradition as a sacrament of the sacred. Reading the Bible Again for the First Time (HarperSanFrancisco, 2001) page 18
Borg's observations reflect one of the basic impulses driving this project: the need to re-conceive our religious traditions so that they can continue to serve as instruments of meaning and justice in human society. That may prove to be a painful process and it may provoke negative responses from those still attached to traditional forms of religion, but it strikes some of us as an essential task.
A second conviction underlines the formation of FaithFutures Foundation. We are convinced that the task of re-shaping our religious traditions is a collective responsibility. That belief explains the decision to structure the organization of the Foundation around cooperation circles in which people collaborate in extending human knowledge and adapting our religious practices in the light of that new information.
Vision and Values
The underlying Guiding Principles of the Foundation, and the Core Values that guide our work, express our aspirations to promote an understanding of religion as a traditional means to develop and sustain cultures of peace, justice and healing for the Earth and all living beings.
In pursuit of its overall purpose the Foundation's core activities are:
Identify, encourage and support grassroots organizations with a concern to integrate the practice of religion with insights from scholarship.
Raise and distribute funds to support research and publication in religion as well as the adoption and application of historical and scientific scholarship by religion scholars and religious communities.
Sponsorship of events designed to advance the integration of religion and scholarship and especially to make such scholarship more accessible to non-specialists.
Material relating to the processes and findings of religion scholars, as well as the application of their work to both traditional and experimental religious communities, will be published in digital form.
An Interfaith Project
The collective character of the process of integration and renewal extends beyond traditional religious boundaries. The initial focus of FFF will be re-framing Christian beliefs and practice since the results of critical scholarship perhaps impact most acutely on that faith tradition at present. As resources develop and its membership expands to include significant numbers of people from other religions and spiritual traditions, the Foundation anticipates that the focus on re-visioning Christianity will become just one among several lines of activity.
FFF welcomes the contributions that people from different traditions can offer one another in re-shaping their own personal and collective religious practice. Those who come from one of the Christian traditions gain important insights as they hear how others perceive and experience Christianity. Authentic information on other faith communities and forms of religious practice can also open up new possibilities for the renewal of one's own tradition.
The cooperation circles that comprise the grassroots membership of FFF are encouraged to include people from a diverse range of religious practice, and especially to welcome participation by people of other faiths. The end result will be a diverse and creative network that pursues the integration of religious practice with traditional knowledge and new information emerging from religion scholarship as well as other areas of research.
FaithFutures Foundation is incorporated as a non-profit organization in the State of Kansas. FaithFutures Foundation's 501c3 status has been confirmed by the IRS at the beginning of 2006. In addition, the Foundation has also been further classified as a 509a1 and 170b1A(vi) public charity within the United States.