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Informal conversations with the Jewish community began in 1966. Formal relations with the Orthodox Union (OU) and their rabbinical arm, the Rabbinical Council of America (RCA), began in 1977 under the auspices of the Synagogue Council of America (SCA). When the SCA disbanded in 1987, a dialogue between the OU, the RCA, representing the Orthodox Jewish movement, and the USCCB was established.
Topics of dialogue have often addressed issues of common concern, such as the educational system, the rise of antisemitism, the role of faith in public life and the political process, the negative portrayals of Judaism and Catholicism as found on the internet, and the Middle East. One of its most recent documents, Created in the Divine Image: Orthodox Jewish-Catholic Statement on Marriage, addresses the common vision of marriage in both traditions.
While the dialogue with the Orthodox Union and the Rabbinical Council of America is currently at a pause, there are preparations in motion to reconvene in the future. Rebecca Cohen currently staffs this dialogue for the SEIA.
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