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World Center for Jewish-christian Studies Proposed at Harvard Meet

October 24, 1966
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Creation of an international center for studies in Jewish-Christian relations was proposed here by a rabbi who participated in a four day international colloquium on Judaism and Christianity. The project, outlined at a dinner attended by 150 scholars from Europe, Israel, and the United States at Harvard Divinity School, was suggested by Rabbi Marc H. Tanenbaum, director of inter religious affairs department of the American Jewish Committee. “It would enable graduate and post-graduate authorities in Jewish-Christian relations to examine historical, theological, and sociological issues on an ongoing basis, located at a center of a major university of international reputation.” he said.

He proposed that the center would link together in scholarly dialogue Christian and Jewish scholars from Jerusalem, Rome, Geneva and Constantinople, and from American intellectual centers. He disclosed that he had explored the idea of such an international center with authorities at the Hebrew University in Jerusalem and with a number of Roman Catholic, Protestant, and Orthodox leaders. “Their reaction,” he said, “was one of deep and sympathetic interest. Its objectives would look to the broad aspects of dialogue between religion and society, and between Western religion and other religious faiths and ideologies, such as Islam, Hinduism, Buddhism, Marxism, and atheism.”

Dr. Samuel H. Miller, dean of the Divinity School, commented that such a center would enable theologians to engage in work on the “frontiers” of inter religious relations and in scholarly exchanges which would seek to exorcise the prejudices of the past.

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