Our two faiths mark the Sabbath in different ways — different days, in fact. But the common thread we share is that it is a time when we pause from daily life for reflection and worship. This weekend, not only will the Sabbath be different from other days of the week, it will also be different than other Sabbaths during the year. Congregations across the country will participate in a gun violence prevention Sabbath.
In anticipation of this weekend’s gun violence prevention Sabbath, national faith leaders unveiled a new video urging Congress to pass sensible legislation to curb gun violence. Partnering with Mayor Bloomberg’s Mayors Against Illegal Guns, the faith leaders featured in the short video continue to sound a moral drumbeat for change. Read more…
This article was originally published on March 13 with Dr. Joel C. Hunter, senior pastor of Northland, a Church Distributed, as a column in The Washington Post’s On Faith feature, a forum for news and opinion on religion and politics.
One might guess that a politically conservative evangelical pastor and a politically liberal rabbi would have little in common, and it is true that we have our differences.
But we agree passionately about many things: that without robust religious liberty, democracy is weakened; that society is better off and the needs of the weak and the vulnerable can best be addressed when government and religion can partner effectively and within constitutional constraints; that America with its magnificent tapestry of religious identities and expression is one of the glories of America.
And we agree that no one with whom we have worked over our decades of public service to the religious community is more committed to this vision and more skilled at implementing it than Melissa Rogers, who has been appointed to serve as the new director of the White House Office of Faith-Based and Neighborhood Partnerships and as a special assistant to President Obama.
Next month we will mark one year since the horrific shooting of a Rabbi, his two children, and one other student outside of Ozar Hatorah, a Jewish school in Toulouse, France. As we approach the solemn anniversary of this tragedy, a new report suggests that the very anti-Semitism that fueled such a senseless act not only remains prominent across Europe, but is indeed growing. Read more…
- ‘Isaac and Ishmael join together to bury their father Abraham in the Cave of Machpelah…which is in Hebron, in the Land of Canaan,’ the Book of Genesis tells us. We ask: Will that bond be renewed to bless the living?
- One of the great Golden Ages in all of Jewish history flourishes in Spain during the early Middle Ages, under the reign of enlightened Arab, Muslim rulers.
- A vivid word portrait of Dona Gracia Mendes represents the safe haven offered by the Muslim Ottoman Empire to Jews fleeing the Inquisition.
- The literary editor of an Arabic newspaper in East Jerusalem (1980′s) sees compromise as the only solution: ‘Israeli writers say the same thing, don’t they?’
A nun, a priest and a rabbi walk out on the pulpit of a Presbyterian church… What sounds like the opening line of a bad joke, was in fact the description of an event that took place last month at Vanderbilt Presbyterian Church in Naples, Florida. I gave the opening invocation at the interfaith gathering with Reverend Kathy Kircher (an Episcopal priest) and Sister Simone Campbell, the guest speaker for the event.
When more than 10,000 members of the faith community called their Senators on Monday, the halls of the Capitol were ringing with the voices of gun violence prevention advocates. With 75 religious denominations and organizations participating in an interfaith call to prevent gun violence, it was clear that members of the faith community are ready for change.
The tragedy at Sandy Hook Elementary School has had a profound effect on the national conversation about gun violence prevention. There was something about those 20 children, something about that tight-knit community, some way that Americans from all backgrounds recognized that this tragedy would be the straw that broke the camel’s back. And more than anyone, it has been the faith community that has maintained the moral drumbeat essential to ensuring that the Administration and Congress implement gun violence prevention.