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The Jay Phillips Center for Interfaith Learning

28 September, 2020 16:34
The Jay Phillips Center for Interfaith Learning

Saint John's University

The Jay Phillips Center for Interfaith Learning at Saint John’s University serves the CSB/SJU community and hosts events open to the public. The center collaborates with the Jay Phillips Center for Interfaith Learning at the University of St. Thomas, promoting dialogue, understanding, friendship, and civic engagement across lines of difference. Both centers do this by sponsoring a host of interfaith activities, including artistic performances, lectures, panels, conferences, retreats, and service programs.

By promoting interfaith learning, friendship, and service, the Jay Phillips Center is carrying out a mandate of the Vatican Council II (1962-1965) and subsequent official Roman Catholic teaching, and it is thereby supporting the Catholic identity of its host universities.

The Jay Phillips Center has its roots in the Jay Phillips Chair in Jewish Studies, established at SJU in 1969. Remaining deeply committed to the promotion to Jewish studies and the enhancement of Jewish-Christian relations, the center is now equally committed to its expanded mission of carrying out the wider interfaith mandate of Vatican II as an essential feature of Catholic identity — and therefore SJU’s identity — and as an indispensable means of strengthening the fabric of community.

History

The Jay Phillips Center for Interfaith Learning at Saint John’s University has its roots in the university’s Jay Phillips Chair in Jewish Studies, established in 1969 upon the recommendation of SJU president Fr. Colman Barry and named after the Jewish philanthropist who endowed it. Rabbi Nahum Schulman served as the chair's first occupant until 1983, followed by Rabbi Michael Goldberg (from 1983 to 1985), Rabbi Mark Verman (from 1987 to 1993), and Rabbi Barry D. Cytron (from 1996 to 2009).

The Jay Phillips Center, first called the Jay Phillips Center for Jewish-Christian Learning, was established in 1996 upon the recommendation of SJU president Br. Dietrich Reinhart OSB and Fr. Dennis Dease, president of the University of St. Thomas, as a joint SJU/UST enterprise by bringing together SJU’s Jay Phillips Chair in Jewish Studies and UST’s Center for Jewish-Christian Learning, to which Jay Phillips had also contributed endowment funds. Rabbi Cytron served as the newly configured center’s director while also holding the chair in Jewish studies until his retirement in 2009.

In 2009, at the request of Edward Phillips and Dean Phillips, grandson and great grandson of Jay Phillips, and upon the recommendation of UST president Fr. Dease and SJU president Fr. Robert Koopmann OSB, the center’s mission was expanded beyond the promotion of Jewish-Christian learning to interfaith learning in general and it was given its new name to reflect that expanded mission

About the Program

The Jay Phillips Center’s Student Interfaith Research and Leadership Program, which serves students enrolled at the College of Saint Benedict and Saint John’s University, promotes advanced interfaith learning for prospective interfaith leaders and the interfaith civic engagement that potential leaders should have…As a result of their research and interfaith engagement, participants in the Student Interfaith Research Leadership Program share their findings with interested parties at CSB/SJU, e.g. with those working in offices of Campus Ministry, Student Development and Intercultural and International Student Services, as well as in public forums.

Funding for this program provided by the Jay and Rose Phillips Family Foundation of Minnesota

Contacts

  • Address: Jay Phillips Center for Interfaith Learning, P.O. Box 2000, Saint John's University, Collegeville, MN 56321, USA
  • Email: jpc@csbsju.edu
  • Website: csbsju.edu
Category : Islamic Studies Centers  |  
The Jay Phillips Center for Interfaith Learning
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