Reagan Reads Rabbi’s Words

When President Reagan addressed the “Baptist Fundamentalism ’84″ convention last month in Washington, he said he “wanted to do something different.”

Addressing approximately 20,000 Christians, headed by the Rev. Jerry Falwell, Reagan spent the remainder of his time reading an article stressing the importance of America as a nation based on pluralism, where citizens could take pride in their particular religions, and yet work together “when the time came to help others, to comfort and to ease pain.”

The Office of the Fleet Chaplain Commander of the Sixth Fleet reported here today that the words were from an article written by Rabbi Arnold Resnicoff, the Navy chaplain who was present in Beirut at the time of the truck bomb attack on U.S. forces last October 23.

Resnicoff, part of a three-man Jewish-Catholic-Protestant chaplain team on the staff of the Sixth Fleet Commander, had arrived in Beirut days earlier to lead memorial services for a Jewish marine killed by sniper fire. On the morning of October 23, he, along with Father George Pucciarelli, a Navy Catholic chaplain, was among the first on the scene to begin rescuing and comforting the wounded. The article read by Reagan will appear in the summer edition of Outlook, the magazine of the Women’s League for Conservative Judaism.

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