Following protests from SCoJeC and others to the Church of Scotland about the Church and Society Council report on The Inheritance of Abraham?, the Council of Christians and Jews (CCJ) arranged a meeting last week between representatives of the Church and the Jewish Community.
The Kirk’s delegation included the Moderator, the Principal Clerk, and the Convener, Vice-Convener, and Secretary of the Church and Society Council; the Jewish community was represented by the Director of SCoJeC, the Chair of the Defence and Group Relations Committee and the Interfaith Consultant of the Board of Deputies, the chair of the West of Scotland CCJ who is a former Chair of SCoJeC and President of the Glasgow Jewish Representative Council, the head of the Movement for Reform Judaism, and the Rabbi of the Edinburgh Hebrew Congregation.
The meeting took place over a kosher lunch at the Church headquarters in Edinburgh, and began with prayers from both traditions. The atmosphere was cordial, and the discussion of the concerns that had been expressed was frank. The Church representatives accepted that the report had given cause for concern, and acknowledged that some of the language used was unfortunate, and that the report would require to be revised.
After the formal meeting concluded with the all the participants reciting the Priestly Benediction in Hebrew and English, the following joint statement was issued: