Interfaith group celebrates 20th anniversary with series of panels – Daily Breeze


by Bob Rothman, Contributing Writer

Who would have thought twenty years ago, after the 9/11 attacks, that Dawn Unity would celebrate 20 years of interfaith education? Some things are constant and others have changed over the course of our existence. We remain committed to educating people about the beliefs of their neighbors through scholarly discussions by qualified representatives of their religions. And we are committed to doing so with respect for all religions and their followers.

Some believe that the interfaith goal is to condense religion into a common religion. This is completely wrong. Every religion has a richness and beauty that has developed over the centuries, and Dawn’s goal is to bring them out and use them to enrich our lives. We are now listed by the Archdiocese of Los Angeles as an interfaith resource. Other organizations in the greater Los Angeles area have also expressed interest in our programming, so we will be live streaming all events to reach a wider audience thanks to the generosity of Drew Tyler. I remain privileged to be the moderator of all events.

Here is our lineup for Dawn Unity Group’s Interfaith Discovery Series for the 2021-22 season:

October 19, 2021, at 7:30 p.m. Four members of the clergy and I, all participating in this first panel in 2001, will reflect on Dawn’s story and then delve into the theme of the evening: “The Imperfect Families of Genesis.” This is a rich subject because the Hebrew Bible shows that the founding patriarchs and matriarchs were very imperfect people whose flaws are presented as well as their faith and piety leading them to be revered by Jews, Christians and Muslims today. ‘hui. Two members of the clergy remain in the same chairs, Mgr. David Sork at St. John Fisher and Reverend Jonathan Chute at Rolling Hills UMC, and two have changed – Rabbi Ron Shulman at the Beth El congregation in La Jolla and Reverend Reinhard Krauss now executive director of the Academy for the Jews, Christians and Muslims. Studies. The panel will meet at the site of the 2001 inaugural panel: St. John Fisher Catholic Church, 5448 Crest Rd.

January 18, 2022, at 7:30 p.m. The second panel will be “” Rites of Passage “at Congregation Ner Tamid, 5721 Crestridge Rd., To Rev. April Herron, Rolling Hills UMC, Rabbi Joel Rembaum, Congregation Ner Tamid, and Bro. Alexei Smith, Archdiocese of Los Angeles will compare the rites of their religions for life cycle events When does childhood end and adult responsibility begin? When is someone recognized as a member of the faith? to marry and what religious commitments are made during the wedding ceremony? What does it take to be lay and clergy leaders?

March 8, 2022, at 7:30 p.m.. “Interfaith Accomplishments Past and Present” will be explored at Rolling Hills UMC, 26438 Crenshaw Blvd by a panel comprised of Reverend Jonathan Chute, Rolling Hills UMC, Chancellor Michael Engh, Loyola Marymount University, Dean Jihad Turk, Bayan Claremont and Rabbi Zachary Zysman, Loyola Marymount University. The topic will give us the opportunity to review the progress made in our community, nation and the world. Do people develop genuine respect for others, or is political correctness the driving force? Who has benefited and what have been the contributions of community, religious and political leaders? Has the modern digital age of instant global communication been a positive or negative factor?

May 17, 2022, at 7:30 p.m. Our fourth panel will be “Am I my brother’s keeper? Will be presented at The Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints, 5845 Crestridge Rd. Panelists will be Rabbi Cassie Kail, Temple Beth El, Chaplain Laura Krauss, St. Joseph Hospital, Bro. Paul Joseph Spellman, Catholic Church St. Margaret Mary, and President Joseph Whitaker, Church of Jesus Christ of Latter-day Saints. What is our responsibility to help those in need? What are the roles of individuals, congregations, non-religious organizations, and government? Is there coordination or do they act independently? How important is the personal bond between the donor and the recipient? How to value the contribution of those who write checks over those who donate their work since both are essential to success? How important is donor recognition as a motivator?

Our annual Interfaith Bible Conference will be “Jesus Through Christian and Jewish Lenses” on Sunday April 24, 2022 at 7:30 p.m. at Rolling Hills UMC, 26438 Crenshaw Blvd. Reverend Reinhard Krauss, executive director of the Academy of Jewish, Christian and Islamic Studies, and Rabbi Joel Rembaum of the Ner Tamid congregation are two highly qualified religious scholars. The subject is fundamental to define the theology of each of the two religions which are intimately linked by common origins and writings. Many Christians want to understand why the Jews do not view Jesus as divine, and conversely, many Jews wonder why he is divine to Christians. We have to start in a first century mindset and then move through the centuries until today.

Bob Rothman is the founder and chairman of the Dawn Unity Group.

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