Two major Jewish and Muslim organizations unveiled an interfaith dialogue curriculum yesterday and are urging their hundreds of thousands of members to use it. Both sides say it is the broadest Jewish-Muslim interfaith effort in the continent's history.
Rabbi Eric H. Yoffie, president of the Union for Reform Judaism, North America's largest Jewish movement, announced the partnership with the Islamic Society of North America at his group's biennial convention in San Diego.
"As a once-persecuted minority in countries where anti-Semitism is still a force, we understand the plight of Muslims in North America today," Yoffie said yesterday. "We live in a world in which religion is manipulated to justify the most horrific acts, a world in which -- make no mistake -- Islamic extremists constitute a profound threat. For some, this is a reason to flee from dialogue, but in fact the opposite is true. When we are killing each other in the name of God, sensible religious people have an obligation to do something about it."
This summer Yoffie became the first major Jewish leader to address ISNA, the continent's largest Muslim organization with 30,000 attendants coming to its annual convention. ISNA President Ingrid Mattson will address the 980-congregation Jewish group today, the first leader of a major Muslim group to do so.
"There exists in our community a profound ignorance about Islam, along with a real desire to learn about what moves and motivates Muslims today. We must respond to this desire with serious programs of education," he said.
Both groups already have dialogue programs with various other faith groups, but on a much smaller scale.
Sunday, December 16, 2007
Oh, No, COEXIST Won't Ever Happen
Something tells me Charlie and his fellow squawkers won't be covering this story from the Washington Post: