The Wheeler Centre
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In 2001, 19% of people aged under 24 identified as not religious. By 2016, the figure had increased to 35%. We're losing our religion – fast. What might we be losing along with it? And what's it like to be a young believer in an increasingly secular society?
For this conversation, we brought together three young people from different faiths – Amal Ibrahim, Nevo Zisin and Brooke Rutherford – to discuss the role religion plays in their lives.
Can religious institutions change the way they talk to young people? How does religious faith enrich the lives of young Australians? How is faith tested or altered during adolescence and young adulthood? And how does faith intersect with questions of race, gender and sexuality?
Fatima Measham is a writer and speaker living west of the Werribee River on Wadawurrung country. Her recent work focuses on nature, conservation, and the tensions inherent in our claims of love for animals. She is also a conservation volunteer.
She was formerly a consulting editor, columnist and podcast producer for Eureka Street, where she focused on issues of social justice, identity and politics. Her work has appeared in Meanjin, the Guardian, America magazine and other publications. She grew up on the traditional land of the Higaonon in the Philippine south.
Amal Ibrahim is a writer, poet and educator based in Melbourne. Her work explores the way identities intimately intersect. She has read her work at the Melbourne Writers Festival, the Digital Writers Festival and the Emerging Writers Festival, among others.
Nevo Zisin (they/them) is a queer, non-binary, Jewish writer, performer, activist and public speaker based in Naarm / Birraranga / Melbourne. They run workshops in schools and professional development trainings in workplaces around transgender identities. Author of award-winning Finding Nevo (2017), a memoir on gender transition and The Pronoun Lowdown (2021), a useful guidebook on all things related to pronouns.
Brooke Rutherford is a Christian who works in marketing in Melbourne. Growing up as the daughter to two Baptist pastors, faith plays an integral role in her life, giving Brooke a unique insight into Christianity as a both a family tradition and a worldview.