Institute for Jewish-Catholic Relations




Rabbi Elio Toaff and Pope John Paul II exchange gifts, April 13, 1986Beginning with the Second Vatican Council (1962-1965), relations between the Catholic and Jewish communities have developed in new and positive ways that are  unprecedented in the previous two thousand years. Founded in 1967, in the immediate aftermath of the Council, the Institute for Jewish-Catholic Relations has been a participant in this unfolding interfaith rapprochement.

Flowing from the Catholic and Ignatian identity of Saint Joseph's University, the Institute's mission is to increase knowledge and deepen understanding between the Jewish and Catholic communities. In keeping with the contemporary Ignatian vision of educating "men and women for others," the Institute is guided by the University's commitment to: Spirit - Intellect - Purpose. It pursues a vision of shalom (or "right relationship") between Catholics and Jews in partnership with scholars and religious leaders around the nation and the world.

This website offers information about the purposes and activities of the Institute. It also serves as a gateway to a wide range of resources in the field of Christian-Jewish relations. Click on the icons below.




The Popes and the Jewish People: The Story of a Transformed Relationship

A series on five Thursday evenings from March 20 - May 1, 2014, which will feature interfaith dialogues about the evolving new relationship between Jews and Catholics, culminating in the April 30 canonizations of Popes John XXIII and John Paul II by Pope Francis.

  • March 20: "When Racism and Theology Meet" - Guest speaker: Kevin Spicer, CSC, PhD
  • April 3: "Can We Begin to Talk to Each Other? (1960s)
  • April 10: "How Can 'The Dialogue' Continue When We Strongly Disagree?" (1980s-1990s)
  • April 24: "Can We Learn From Our Differences?" (2000-2014)
  • May 1: "The Legaices of Saint John XXIII and Saint John Paul II" (a panel discusson on the canonization homily of Pope Francis)


 Popes John XXIII and John Paul II


The Institute is a founding member of the Council of Centers on Jewish-Christian Relations:

 Council of Centers on Jewish-Christian Relations


The Institute cosponsors with the CCJR a major online library of resources in Christian-Jewish Relations called Dialogika ("items of dialogue"):



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A memorial endowment has been established in memory of the Institute's longtime director, Rev. Donald Clifford, S.J.  Details available HERE.

Donald Clifford, SJ


Consortium of Holocaust Educators of Greater Philadephia Friends-in-Faith