CJCUC RESPONSE TO “BETWEEN JERUSALEM & ROME”

The Center for Jewish-Christian Understanding and Cooperation in Jerusalem (CJCUC) applauds the recent statement “Between Jerusalem and Rome” of the Israeli Chief Rabbinate, the Rabbinical Council of America and the Conference of European Rabbis. The statement confirms the growing awareness among Jews—and particularly religious Jews—throughout the world that the Catholic Church has transformed its teachings about Jews and Judaism, that Christianity is no longer a threat to the Jewish people, that religious Jews and Christians face many of the same challenges today, and that it is essential for both communities to cooperate with each other if we are to flourish in the future.

Religious Jews and religious Christians today are blessed to live in a new era of fraternal relationship, one that is far from the hostilities, tensions and rivalries of the past when Christians oppressed Jews. Despite their critical religious differences, .Jews and Christians today can approach each other seeking understanding and respecting each other’s religious commitments, without in any way betraying their religious traditions.

In a world filled with secularism, moral relativism and religious extremism, Jews and Christians today have more in common than what separates them. If so, Jews and Christians need to shed their outdated attitudes of hostility toward each other to cooperate and strengthen each other in order to ensure that the future for our children and grandchildren is better than our painful past.

Neither community can realize God’s prophetic mission for His children by itself. Only together can we fulfill what God asks of us, to create a world where there will be “neither famine nor war, neither jealousy nor strife, but one where blessings will be abundant and within the reach of all” (Maimonides).  As our prophet Isaiah promised, then “the earth will be filled with the knowledge of the Lord, as the waters cover the sea.” (11:9)

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