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The Voices of Women

On YouTube

September 28, 2022

10:00 AM (PDT) 1 PM (EDT)

8 PM (EAT)

YouTube will automatically adjust the time to your time zone.

You will be able to post your questions in the “live chat” comments section to the right of the video.

This event is free and open to the public but we ask that you register so we can plan on how many will participate.

Register here.
Global Ministries University, the Institute for Interreligious Dialogue and Islamic Studies at Tangaza University, Harmony Institute of Kenya, and the Tevere Institute of Rome are co-sponsoring the bi-monthly series, “Building Human Solidarity: The Voices of Women,” where women who are leaders in their fields share their diverse perspectives. This presentation is the fourth in the series.

In the era of transition that we are experiencing today, we need to explore the enormous capacities of women for breaking through and beyond the divisions that exist in our world: cultural, religious, economic, political, environmental, and technological. This is a critical expression of Pope Francis’ Universal Synodal Process. This series brings together women whose voices speak to these issues. These interactive presentations will be further explored with other significant topics in the February 2023 global interfaith conference, “Walking Together in the Spirit of Laudato Si’ and Fratelli Tutti.” Learn more at the conference website.


Munira Faraj Maftah is a human rights activist, with paralegal training, who works with Women against Radicalization, Violence and Extremism (WARVE). She volunteers with Wasafiri Consultancy, sponsored by Mercy Corps Kenya, an organization that supports youths and women to become peaceful and productive members of their communities through civil society engagement, connecting them with employment and entrepreneurial opportunities, and helping them build life skills. She also volunteers with local interfaith NGOs and groups such as Sauti ya Wanawake, Supreme Council of Kenya Muslims, Council of Imams and Preachers of Kenya (CIPK), a member of Coast Interfaith Council of Clerics (CICC), chairwoman of the women’s desk established by CICC and a member of Maryknoll’s Interfaith Affiliate Chapter in Kenya, a spiritual community that is devoted to interfaith collaboration for peace and justice through education, particularly in the coastal regions of Kenya. During the Covid-19 pandemic, Ms. Maftah was an active participant in the virtual WARVE program that discusses strategies for protecting human rights and preventing radicalization.

Ms. Maftah recently participated in International Visitors Leadership Program on “The Problem We All Live With: Dismantling Racial and Social Injustice,” which took place in the United States under the Department of State, Bureau of Educational and Cultural Affairs.

Rosemarie Milazzo, born in 1932 to Italian immigrants, was one of 10 children. She earned a BA in music education at Brooklyn College. After teaching in New York City public schools, she entered the Maryknoll Sisters Congregation in 1959,

Her first mission assignment was to Transfiguration School in New York’s Chinatown, where she taught for four years and then was appointed principal for four more years. She worked to transition Transfiguration School from a traditional parochial school to a community school involving many local people in the life of the school.

In 1971, she was assigned to East Africa, studied Swahili, and began teacher training in a Teacher Training College (TTC) in Kenya. She continued as Lecturer at TTC for 8 years. She was later assigned to the Bura Tana Irrigation Project in N. Kenya, an initiative set up by the World Bank and Kenyan Government to reclaim the desert. She worked there for 8 years helping people settle in, doing literacy work, helping form Small Christian Communities, women’s groups, etc. Much of her work there was building community as there were landless, homeless people brought to Bura Tana to work and live there. They were strangers to the desert, strangers to each other, and strangers to the nomadic people who inhabited the desert. In order to help people know one another better, she did group building exercises and communication work. The nomads living in the desert did not know Swahili, the National Language, so she taught Swahili there also.

Back in New York from 1991-1995, she served the global mission as a member of the Vocation Team at Maryknoll. After completing that assignment, she returned to East Africa, now to Mwanza, Tanzania, and began an AIDS project in the village, setting up support groups, and advocating for people living with HIV/AIDS. She worked with AIDS orphans and set up a school for special needs children.

In 2003, she was appointed Congregational Personnel Director at Maryknoll. When she completed this assignment, she joined Christian Peacemaker Teams (CPT) an international organization set up to support teams of peace workers in conflict areas around the world. Their aim is to offer organized, nonviolent alternatives to war. As a team, CPT members work using the power of nonviolence in their own lives and in the world. She has worked with them in Northern Canada, the Democratic Republic of Congo, Kurdistan, Iraq, and in refugee camps around the world.

Her topic is: “HOW DO WE NAME GREAT WOMEN?” The talk will introduce the audience to women who are nameless but who are selfless, and courageous in the face of injustice. These are women with whom Rosemarie has lived and worked in East Africa, Europe, the MiddleEast, and the USA.


Marita Grudzen, MHS, is Associate Director Emerita and a founding member of the Stanford Geriatric Education Center, a national center in ethnogeriatrics within Stanford University School of Medicine. She was co-recipient with Chaplain Bruce Feldstein, MD, of the Templeton Award (2001-06) for the medical school required curriculum they developed, Spirituality and Meaning in Medicine. Marita co-developed the curriculum for the Fremont Community Ambassador Program for Seniors, and 25-hour Hospital to Home Transition training for volunteers from the Ethnic Minority Senior Services Consortium of San Jose, CA. Since 2011, every year Marita with her husband have co-developed, implemented, evaluated, and revised a 40-hour Interfaith Leadership Program in partnership with Christian, Muslim and African Indigenous Religious leaders in Kenya. Currently she is the Chair of “Stewards of Our Common Home” for the Diocese of San Jose, CA, coordinator of the first Interreligious Maryknoll Affiliate Chapter which consists of Muslims and Christians of different denominations, a member of the Global Ministries University faculty and secretary of the global interfaith bi-annual Conference, Walking Together in the Spirit of Laudato Si’ and Fratelli Tutti.

This event is free and open to the public but we ask that you register so we can plan on how many will participate.

Register here.
September 28, 2022 10:00 AM - September 28, 2022