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Abstract

Rabbi Jonathan Sacks wrote his book, The Dignity of Difference, as a response to the tragic events of 9/11. He seeks to find—especially within the three Abrahamic monotheisms—Judaism, Christianity, and Islam—a road to tolerance, a road to coexistence, or better still, a respect for difference.

Only religion is strong enough to bring peace between religions, and if religion is part of the problem, for the sake of heaven let us make it part of the solution. Let us have the courage in the twenty-first century to heal those ancient rifts between Judaism, Christianity, and Islam, because that is what God is calling us to do. The hour is late; the challenge is great. Let us have the courage to stretch out the hand of friendship across the boundaries between faiths and turn strangers into friends.

Rabbi Sir Jonathan Sacks, Chief Rabbi of the United Hebrew Congregations of the Commonwealth, delivered this lecture on May 21, 2008, at the celebration of the fifteenth anniversary of Sacred Heart University’s Center for Christian-Jewish Understanding (CCJU). The program was sponsored by CCJU in partnership with the Anti-Defamation League.

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