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  • Sacred Sites Quest 1 (2010-2011)

    In 2011, SSQ enrolled 24 students from more than a dozen different high schools throughout greater Houston. This multifaith group was intentionally diverse—as were the college student mentors and adult chaperones working with the SSQ cohort.

    About half of the 2011 SSQers were Ismaili Muslims. A handful were Jewish. Most of the remaining participants had been raised in various Christian denominations, with some still indentifying as Christian and others now describing themselves as agnostic, “uncertain, questioning” or “actively exploring” their faith commitments and religious beliefs.

    Of the three SSQ college student guides and mentors (two from Rice University and one from the University of St. Thomas), one had been raised in a Buddhist home, one was a practicing Hindu, and one was a Sunni Muslim. The four adult SSQ chaperones and project leaders also represented a spiritual mix.

    The 2011 SSQ was generously funded by a grant from the Albert and Ethel Herzstein Charitable Foundation.

    "Thus far, the quest has been amazing. Despite not being a part of any of the religions we have dealt with thus far, I feel at peace at each sacred site. I feel interconnected with people of all faiths and have actually noticed more similarities than differences. Every religion places value in light--illumination--and in the earthly elements."