JTS Welcomes His Eminence Kurt Cardinal Koch to New York on October 31

Press Contact: Eve Glasberg
Office: (212) 678-8089
Email: evglasberg@jtsa.edu

October 18, 2011, New York, NY

The Jewish Theological Seminary’s new Milstein Center for Interreligious Dialogue (MCID) will welcome His Eminence Kurt Cardinal Koch to JTS on Monday, October 31. An invitation-only luncheon in the cardinal’s honor will take place on campus (JTS, 3080 Broadway at 122nd Street, New York City). Cardinal Koch is visiting from the Vatican, where he is the president of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity, the organization that includes the Commission for Religious Relations with the Jews. This is Cardinal Koch’s first visit to New York City in that capacity. Cardinal Koch has served in this role since 2010, when he was appointed by Pope Benedict XVI. Cardinal Koch is also the bishop emeritus of Basel, Switzerland, having served from 1995 until his resignation in 2010.

“We welcome His Eminence Kurt Cardinal Koch to his sacred task,” said Rabbi Burton L. Visotzky, director of the Milstein Center for Interreligious Dialogue and Appleman Professor of Midrash and Interreligious Studies at JTS. “It seems that, more than ever, good relations among the world’s religions is essential for our survival. At JTS, we look forward to keeping the best possible relations between the Church and the Jewish people, while working together to address the manifold needs of God’s creatures. We hope to be able to move past a ‘dialogue of grievances’ and toward constructive work among religions for the betterment of humanity.”

The guest list for the luncheon includes leaders of the Jewish, Catholic, and Protestant communities and, as such, symbolizes the MCID’s commitment to interreligious dialogue and partnership. Following the luncheon, the cardinal and other guests will be treated to a tour of the JTS Library’s Rare Books and Manuscripts Room—a precious legacy of the Jewish people. The tour will be led by Dr. David Kraemer, the Joseph J. and Dora Abbell Librarian of The Library and professor of Talmud and Rabbinics at JTS.

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