Eight religious leaders brought their gatherings together for eight dates in one chamber. It was a dangerous move
In a small building in the foreboding shadow of Jerusalems Mount Zion, Rabba Tamar Elad-Abblebaum searched upon a gang sitting attentively before her. We have had a long way to go to prepare for this evening, she said with a soft smile. Today we all do something very brave.
Certainly this congregation was unlike any she, the leader of an Orthodox Jewish community in Jerusalem, was used to addressing. As well as the usual modest dress and kippah wear in her synagogue, there were some junctions worn around cervixes. Others sat in the traditional black cape of the Copts, another in the Muslim hijab and various nuns in their habits to gather at the back of the room. Numerous were wearing no religious outfit at all. But they were all there to pray.
Last week, and for merely eight eras, a music institution in the lowest depression of Jerusalem was transformed into a communal house of prayer, identified Amen, bringing together Jewish, Muslim and Christian religious leaders and their parishes to worship together in one room. It was a sight rarely seen in this segregated metropoli.
The project, the members of the Jerusalem season of culture, was initiated by Elad-Abblebaum and the Muslim Sufi Sheikh Ihab Balah nearly a year ago. They contacted out to six other religious anatomies two rabbis, a Franciscan monk, a Catholic priest, a Coptic deaconess and a female Muslim community leader who were very traditional in their beliefs and rules, but also open to discussions with other faiths.
Elad-Abblebaum said: I never felt something like this would be possible in my lifetime. Jews who live in the territories publicly praying along with Palestinians, this is a big danger and a great step. But this is not a political campaign; we wanted beings to come from the right and from the left and to show that faith is beyond dogma. Here, the administration is reshaping world and we are doing it through prayer.
She emphasised how Amen not only brought closer Israels discordant beliefs, but also men and women, which is almost unheard of in such inter-religious gatherings.
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