12:00 pm - 01:30 pmEvent Category:Click to Register
Shoulder to Shoulder Campaign
Our Coalition was intentionally established as a place for Christians, Jews, and others to work together to counter anti-Muslim discrimination. In this work, we often discuss how anti-Jewish and anti-Muslim discrimination are connected to each other in the United States. Yet, we still hear from our coalition members that for some in the Jewish community, there is a question about whether they have to choose between addressing discrimination and violence that targets Jews or the discrimination and violence that targets Muslims.
This conversation was planned back in June in response to those conversations and experiences. With recent events, this conversation is as important as ever. While this event is designed by, and for the Jewish community, it is an open space.
Addressing Islamophobia & Antisemitism Together: As a Jew, do I have to choose?
As a Jew, why should I care about anti-Muslim discrimination and Islamophobia while also facing anti-Jewish discrimination and Antisemitism myself? If we’re deep in the work of addressing the hate-fueled attacks on our own community, how can we and why should we also work to address hate-fueled attacks on Muslim communities as well? Where are the fault lines and what’s at stake in building Jewish-Muslim relationships here in the United States? How can we stay in conversation when things get rough and/or why even try?
Join Shoulder to Shoulder on Tuesday, November 21st from 12-1:30 pm ET for a special virtual conversation featuring Andrea Hodos with New Ground: A Muslim-Jewish Partnership for Change, Associate Director; Rabbi Esther Lederman with the Religious Action Center for Reform Judaism, Director of Congregational Innovation & Leadership; Rabbi Burton Visotzky with the Jewish Theological Seminary’s Milstein Center for Interreligious Dialogue, Director; Rabbi Elyse Wechterman with the Reconstructionist Rabbinical Association, Executive Director, who will offer different perspectives, approaches, strengths, and challenges of addressing Islamophobia & Antisemitism together.
This event is coordinated by Shoulder to Shoulder and the Milstein Center for Interreligious Dialogue.
The Shoulder to Shoulder Campaign: Standing with American Muslims, Advancing American Ideals is a national multifaith coalition of religious denominations and faith-based organizations who are committed to ending anti-Muslim hatred, discrimination, and violence in the United States of America. While our work is to connect, equip, and mobilize people of all faiths and cultural backgrounds, we are committed to creating faith specific resources that will support and challenge our partners, such as this event particularly designed for Jewish communities.
The Milstein Center for Interreligious Dialogue sponsors timely discussions and activities among diverse leaders, continuing JTS’s decades-long commitment to interreligious engagement. The center focuses particularly on fostering Jewish-Christian and Jewish-Muslim understanding and partnership, and has been a trailblazer in each of these areas. Among its many programs, the Milstein Center cosponsored a major celebration of Jewish-Catholic relations on the 50th anniversary of Nostra Aetate, featuring Archbishop Timothy Dolan. Under a Carnegie Corporation grant it ran three years of workshops on “Judaism and Islam in America,” in collaboration with the Hartford Seminary and the Islamic Society of North America. And it hosted a series of Jewish-Christian-Muslim dialogues around the 10th anniversary of 9/11. The Milstein Center has published guides such as Sharing the Well: A Resource Guide to Jewish-Muslim Engagement, and copublished A Dialogue of Life: Towards the Encounter of Jews and Christians. In addition to interreligious programming, the center supports student-driven interreligious activities and engages in a broad range of dialogue beyond JTS, in places such as Rome, Madrid, Doha, Qatar, and Muskat, Oman.
Andrea Hodos is the associate director of NewGround: a Muslim-Jewish Partnership for Change. She has co-facilitated NewGround’s flagship Professional Fellowship since 2016. Andrea has trained as a facilitator with Resetting the Table through its partnership with the Jewish Federation of Greater Los Angeles. She has been a fellow with the Jews of Color & Allies Leadership cohort from Dimension Educational Consulting and Leading from Within’s Courage to Lead program. Also a theater and movement educator, Andrea’s creative project, “Sinai and Sunna: Women Covering, Uncovering and Recovering”, initially brought her into the realm of Muslim-Jewish engagement.
Rabbi Esther Lederman (Shoulder to Shoulder Campaign Co-Chair) is the Union for Reform Judaism’s director of congregational innovation and sits on the Central Conference of American Rabbis’ task force on the experience of women in the rabbinate. She is a board member for T’ruah.
Rabbi Burton L. Visotzky, PhD serves as Appleman Professor of Midrash and Interreligious Studies Emeritus at the Jewish Theological Seminary, where he joined the faculty upon his ordination in 1977. Visotzky was a dean of the Kekst Graduate School and founding Rabbi of the egalitarian Women’s League Seminary Synagogue. He currently serves as the Louis Stein Director of the Finkelstein Institute for Religious and Social Studies at JTS, programming on public policy. Visotzky also directs JTS’s Milstein Center for Interreligious Dialogue. Rabbi Visotzky also serves on the Executive Committee of the Shoulder to Shoulder Campaign: Standing with American Muslims. In 2012, he was awarded the Goldziher prize for his work in Jewish-Muslim dialogue. In 2022, he was awarded the Shevet Achim Award for Outstanding Contributions to Jewish-Christian Understanding by the Council of Centers on Jewish-Christian Relations.
Rabbi Elyse Wechterman came to the Reconstructionist Rabbinical Association as CEO in the fall of 2015. During her tenure she created the Office of Rabbinic Career Development to serve the professional needs of rabbis in any field of work. She has also spearheaded a revised communications strategy and a renewed partnership with the movement’s rabbinical college and national association. As one of the founding faculty at Camp Havaya, she has served on the summer faculty for many years.