Jews in Dialogue: Jewish Responses to the Challenges of Multicultural Contemporaneity
The panel aims to explore the Jewish involvement in the interfaith and intercultural dialogue from historical, sociological, and theological perspective It is organised by the Free Ebrei (Online Journal of Contemporary Jewish Identity and Cultural Association) and will present the results of the research published in the volume Jews in Dialogue: Jewish Responses to the Challenges of Multicultural Contemporaneity (part of the Brill subseries “Studies in Jewish HIstory and Culture”). It aiims to encourage conversation among scholars of different backgrounds and exchange of research results in the field of intercultural and interreligious dialogue.
Raanan Mallek (Masorti Rabbi, Israel) - Innovative Halakhic (Traditional Jewish Legal) Approaches to the Non-Jew
Last week the World Council of Churches (WCC) Ecumenical Accompaniment Programme in Palestine and Israel made the decision to remove Ecumenical Accompaniers from Hebron (H2) due to concerns about harassment by the Jewish community of Hebron and the Israel Defense Forces protecting them. This was done at the same time that the Government of Israel decided not to renew the mandate of the Temporary International Presence in Hebron (TIPH) which has been in place since 1997.
The role of the WCC accompaniers is to serve as a peaceful protective presence for residents in Hebron (H2). They were asked to stand witness to the situation in Hebron by Palestinian church leaders in the region. Recent videos by Im Tirzu have not shown anything to the contrary although they have caused incitement to physically harm the Ecumenical Accompaniers.
Rabbis for Human Rights condemn harassment of any kind in Hebron or elsewhere and seek to be a channel for conflict transformation. We stand in solidarity with everyone who lives in fear and insecurity. Our attitude toward the non-Jewish public living in our midst and in our environment must serve as a model for morality in Israel and the world and not as an example of injustice and hatred.
We therefore joined the Ecumenical Accompaniers from EAPPI in Hebron on Tuesday, February 5 2019 in order to understand the situation better. We heard about the hopes and fears of the residents of Hebron. We also intend to meet with the representatives of the Jewish community in Hebron in order to hear their perspectives and try to calm the holy city for Jews and Muslims alike.
Parashat Terumah, which we read on Shabbat, deals with the construction of the Tabernacle. The Hebrew word for tabernacle is "Mishkan" and contains the word neighbor, which refers both to the person living beside you and to the verb "to dwell." We hope that the holy city of the Patriarchs and the Matriarchs will one day be an example of building good neighborly relations based on freedom, justice, and peace as envisioned by the prophets of Israel.
At the end of August, I joined the International Reference Group of the Ecumenical Accompaniment Programme in Palestine and Israel to discuss ways of increasing interreligious understanding through action.
A beautiful video featuring my teacher Rodef Shalom Eliyahu McLean and my ordination at the April 2018 Praying Together in Jerusalem - the video takes about 15 second to load