Panel Discussion, Prayer Service Mark Holocaust Remembrance

Wednesday, April 7, 2010

PHILADELPHIA (April 7, 2010) - Saint Joseph’s University’s Institute for Jewish-Catholic Relations (IJCR) will host “Why Christians Must Remember the Shoah,” a panel discussion exploring the importance of remembering the Holocaust. The panel will be followed by a prayer service of commitment to interfaith amity. The event, held at SJU’s Chapel of St. Joseph-Michael J. Smith, S.J., Memorial, Sunday, April 18, at 4 p.m., will mark Yom Hashoah, Holocaust Memorial Day.

“The building of the new relationship between Jews and Catholics can only advance if together we honestly confront the dark chapters of our history,” observes Philip A. Cunningham, Ph.D., professor of theology and director of the IJCR, who will moderate the panel. “This is one reason why it’s important for Catholic universities in particular to remember the Shoah, the Holocaust.”  The panelists, members of the Christian Scholars Group, will relate how the Shoah has affected their academic concerns and activities drawing from both personal and scholarly reflections.

The prayer service will include reflective readings, the praying of the Kaddish and a Christian prayer of penitence. It will conclude with a pledge to continue building understanding between Christians and Jews.

The panelists:

Philip A. Cunningham, Ph.D., moderator, is professor of theology and director of the IJCR.

Mary C. Boys, Ph.D., is professor of practical theology at Union Theological Seminary and co-director of the Lilly Endowment-sponsored “Religious Particularism and Pluralism” project.

Katharina von Kellenbach, Ph.D., professor of religious studies and former chair of the department of philosophy and religious studies at St. Mary’s College of Maryland, studies the cross generational impact of the Nazi genocide.

Bjorn Krondorfer, Ph.D., is professor of Religious Studies and chair of philosophy and religious studies at St. Mary’s College of Maryland. He is the facilitator of the International Summer Program on the Holocaust and participating scholar of the Stephen Weinstein Holocaust Symposium.

Rev. Jean-Pierre Ruiz is a Roman Catholic priest and editor-in-chief of the Journal of Hispanic/Latino Theology and associate editorof the Catholic Biblical Quarterly. Father Ruizhelped organize Comunidades y Convivencia, a program for Latinos in ministry, co-sponsored by the American Jewish Committee and Chicago’s Bernardin Center, Catholic Theological Union.


Media Contact

Patricia Allen, Associate Director of University Communications, 610-660-3240,


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