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Jews and Anglicans in open dialogue

Jews and Anglicans in open dialogue

24 October 2013

The Jewish Community Council of Victoria (JCCV) hosted the Jewish – Anglican Friendship Dinner on Tuesday night at the Beth Weizmann Community Centre, which featured a Q and A Panel with a highly respected group of speakers from both faiths, including:

  • Rabbi James Kennard, Principal of Mount Scopus College
  • Bishop Philip Huggins, Anglican Diocese of Melbourne
  • Rabbi Ralph Genende, Chief Rabbi, Caulfield Hebrew Congregation
  • Assoc Prof Mark Lindsay, MCD University of Divinity
  • Rebecca Forgasz, Executive Director, Jewish Museum of Australia
  • Alison Preston, Middle East Program Director, Anglican Overseas Aid

The topics discussed included joint initiatives between Hadassah Hospital and Anglican Overseas Aid, inter-religious education in schools, treatment of asylum seekers, continuity of religion in the face of growing secularism and religion’s role in providing a moral compass.

Nina Bassat AM, President of the JCCV and the Most Reverend Dr Philip Freier, Archbishop of Melbourne welcomed the many community and faith leaders from the Jewish and Anglican communities represented at the event.

Mrs Bassat said that she was delighted to have the faith groups come together to discuss issues of interest with honesty and understanding.  She also welcomed some of the results of recently released “Mapping Social Cohesion” Report by Professor Andrew Markus which found that “we are on the whole a cohesive society, generally accepting of each other’s religion and ethnicity. That give rise to hope that religion will prevail over fundamentalism and that acceptance continues to be the prevailing norm in our society.”

Archbishop Freier said the he was looking forward to hosting the Jewish – Anglican Friendship Dinner in 2014 because it was a great thing to be able to share good fellowship and open communication across our faiths.

The Scanlon Foundation 2013 Mapping Social Cohesion Report is available online at


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