Milstein Center for Interreligious Dialogue

About the MCID

The Milstein Center for Interreligious Dialogue (MCID) 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 MCID 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 MCID recently published 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 MCID 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.

Leadership

Burton L.  Visotzky

Burton L. Visotzky

Nathan and Janet Appleman Professor of Midrash and Interreligious Studies

Burton L. Visotzky joined the faculty upon his ordination as rabbi in 1977. Visotzky was a dean of Gershon Kekst Graduate School and founding rabbi of the egalitarian worship service of the Seminary Synagogue. He now serves as the Louis Stein Director of the Finkelstein Institute for Religious and Social Studies at JTS, charged with programs on public policy. Rabbi Visotzky also directs the Milstein Center for Interreligious Dialogue at JTS. He has been visiting faculty at Oxford, Cambridge, and Princeton Universities; the Russian State University of the Humanities in Moscow; and served as the Master Visiting Professor of Jewish Studies at the Pontifical Gregorian University in Rome (where he met Pope Benedict in 2007). He recently served as Distinguished Visiting Professor at the Pontifical University of St. Thomas Aquinas (Angelicum) in Rome, where he met Pope Francis.

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