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Council of Christians and Jews meets at Lambeth Palace

Tuesday 21st January 2014

Archbishop Justin hosts first meeting since taking office as CCJ presidents pledge ‘more upfront role’ at local and national level

Left to right: Archbishop Vincent Nichols, Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis, Archbishop Justin Welby and Rabbi Laura Janner-Klausner, Lambeth Palace, 20 January 2013. (Picture: Lambeth Palace)

The Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby welcomed the presidents of the Council of Christians and Jews to Lambeth Palace yesterday, for their first meeting since Archbishop Justin and Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis took office last year.

The presidents, including Archbishop Justin, the Chief Rabbi, the Archbishop of Westminster Vincent Nichols and Rabbi Laura Janner-Klausner, pledged to take a more upfront role in the CCJ activities at local and national level.

Among the topics discussed were the importance of encouraging local CCJ branches, the need to confront a worrying increase in anti-Semitism, and the role of CCJ in enabling churches and Jewish communities to discuss the situation in the Holy Land in a spirit of mutual respect and generosity.

Archbishop Justin Welby said: “I am honoured to continue in the role founded by my distinguished predecessor William Temple, and delighted that among my colleagues in CCJ I am quickly finding new friendships across the Jewish-Christian partnership.”

Bishop Nigel McCulloch, Chair of the CCJ, said: “I am delighted that the CCJ presidents resolved to take a more upfront role in exercising their influence over the direction and impetus of CCJ at both national and branch levels.”

The Archbishop of Westminster Vincent Nichols said: “Together we seek to demonstrate the importance of the gift of faith in God in today’s society, seeking always not only our own reconciliation but also the peace of peoples throughout the world. As Cardinal I am committed to this work, together with my Jewish and Christian brothers and sisters.” 

Rabbi Laura Janner-Klausner, President of the Movement for Reform Judaism, said: “The presidents of the CCJ had a convivial, thoughtful and engaging meeting where we discussed practical and important issues affecting the lives of Jews and Christians in Britain.”

During the meeting the presidents congratulated Archbishop Vincent Nichols on being made a Cardinal by Pope Francis earlier this month, and bade farewell to Rabbi Dr Abraham Levy who has recently stood down as Spiritual Head of the Spanish and Portuguese Jews’ Congregations.

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