The following is a selected list of religion-oriented seminars, conferences and exhibitions being offered this fall in the Washington area or nearby states. All are open to the public and most have registration fees. Call ahead for fee schedules, space availability, directions and other information.

* "A Future with Hope," the first national interfaith conference on restorative justice, will be held Friday and Saturday at Washington National Cathedral. This method of prison reform emphasizes redemption over incarceration and joint healing for criminals and their victims. Speakers include the Rev. Jim Consedine, a Catholic priest from New Zealand who helped develop a program for juvenile offenders in his country. 202-537-5205; www.us.net/edow/peace

* Winterthur Museum, near Wilmington, Del., on Oct. 22 and 23 hosts "The Visual Culture of American Religions," a conference that examines how religious artifacts and images illuminate the significance of religion in American life. Topics include New Mexican Santos, Protestant fascination with Catholic art, the Sioux sun dance and 19th-century schoolbooks. 800-448-3883; www.winterthur.org.

* "Treasures from the Royal Tombs of Ur" goes on display Oct. 17 and continues through Jan. 17 at the Smithsonian Museum's Arthur M. Sackler Gallery. The free exhibit will include artifacts from the ancient Sumerian city-state of Ur, traditionally known as the birthplace of biblical patriarch Abraham and located in what is now southern Iraq. 202-357-2700; 202-357-1729 (TTY). www.si.edu/asia

* The Alban Institute in Bethesda will hold its first national meeting exploring "The Public Significance of America's Congregations" on Oct. 21 and 22 at Christ Episcopal Church in Alexandria. Speakers include Martin E. Marty, historian of American religions; the Rev. Joseph Roberts of Ebenezer Baptist Church in Atlanta; the Rev. Susan B.W. Johnson of Hyde Park Union Church in Chicago; and Rabbi Sidney Schwarz, president of the Washington Institute for Jewish Leadership and Values. 301-718-4407; www.alban.org

* The annual convocation at Howard University School of Divinity on Nov. 3 and 4 is "Moral Obligations--Challenge for the New Millennium." The program focuses on such issues as maintaining proper relationships between pastors and lay members and the church's moral responsibility to the community at large. It features sermons by the Rev. Charles E. Booth of Columbus, Ohio, and workshops, lectures and panel discussions led by pastors from across the country. 202-806-0500.

CAPTION: "Great Lyre" will be at the Sackler Gallery.