Tuesday, 29 December 2015 15:20

Foundation and History

The history of the Youth Association for the Study of Religions started in July 2001. On that day young religious studies scholars, participants of the International Youth Summer School for Religious Tolerance, laid foundation to the Youth Association for the Study of Religions (YASR) – a youth branch of the Ukrainian Association for the Researches of the Religion. The first president of the YASR was Denys Kirukhin, soon to be replaced by Arsen Marchyshak.

During the first three years YASR members were primarily engaged with organization and hosting of the second (July 2002), third (July 2003) and fourth (July 2004) summer schools as well as the 1st Festival of Religions (March 2004). The latter event constitutes a milestone in the history of YASR as it was during the Festival that YASR members decided to obtain the state registration of the organisation. The General Meeting of YASR approved its Charter on 23 April 2004. On the same day Larysa Vladychenko was elected as President and Vitaliy Khromets as Vice-President of the YASR. There were also undergraduate and postgraduate students of Kyiv National Taras Shevchenko University, National Pedagogical Dragomanov University, National University “Kyiv-Mohyla Academy” and H.S. Skovoroda Institute of Philosophy of National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine.

YASR activity is primarily aimed at the manifold development of the study of religions in Ukraine, unification of scholars and encouragement of the research. Throughout its history YASR held a variety of academic events: debate clubs, open lectures, festivals, seminars, roundtables, conferences and summer schools. YASR has collaborated with educational establishments, non-government and religious organizations, funds and charity organizations, such as Ukrainian Association Researches of Religion, Department of Religious Studies of Kyiv National Taras Shevchenko University, Department of Cultural Studies of National Pedagogical Dragomanov University, H.S. Skovoroda Institute of Philosophy of National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine, Department of Religious Studies and Theology of Yuri Fedkovych Chernivtsi National University, Laboratory of Translation of the Sacred Texts of National University of Ostroh Academy, Institute of Religious Studies of Jagiellonian University (Krakow, Poland), Moscow Religious Studies Society, Religious Studies Society of Belarus, Journal Researches in Religious Studies (Moscow, Russian Federation), Independent Centre for Scientific Research (Volgograd, Russian Federation) and other organizations. In 2009 the Youth Association for the Study of Religion-Lviv was established (YASR Lviv) and another one – Donetsk region Youth Association for the Study of Religions (DoYASR) – in 2010. Though legally unrelated they both pertain to YASR in their activity. A new religious studies journal was founded in 2010 – Essays on Religious Studies while in 2012 a collection of writings De Religione was issued. YASR consists of the following branches: Judaic Research Center (since 2010), Centre for the Academic Study of Islam (since 2010), Centre for the Study of Philosophy of Religion (since 2011), Centre for the Study of Religious Education (since 2013). Iryna Fenno was elected for the position of YASR President in 2011, and Oleg Kyselov – for the position of Vice-President, who would later become YASR President after the 2013 General Meeting (Iryna Fenno was Vice-President) and re-elected as President in 2014 (Volodymyr Kochergin became Vice-President).

Last modified on Tuesday, 29 December 2015 15:26