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Academic Dialogues


Interfaith Christian Dialogue

On March 21-22, 2019, the John A. Widtsoe Foundation–along with the support of USC’s Office of Religious Life and Chapman University’s Interfaith Center–launched an interfaith Christian dialogue that will focus on the teachings of the New Testament. Eight scholars representing eight different Christian traditions will meet every six months for the next three years to discuss their interpretations of sometimes contentious scripture passages. These closed-door dialogue sessions will be held in an atmosphere that promotes civil and respectful relationships. 

Through this dialogue, it is the Foundation’s hope that misunderstanding, misrepresentation, and inaccurate descriptions of others’ beliefs in the Christian community will decrease and eventually dissolve. During future dialogue sessions, the Widtsoe Foundation, USC, and Chapman University will sponsor events featuring these interfaith scholars that will be open to the public.

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Latter-day Saint-Jewish Dialogue

The John A. Widtsoe Foundation is proud to be a part of the Latter-Day Saint – Jewish Academic Dialogue project. These semi-annual events bring together Jewish and Latter-day Saint scholars and clergy from Brigham Young University, Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion, Loyola Marymount University, the Academy for Jewish Religion California, the John A. Widtsoe Foundation, and Congregation Kol Ami, Salt Lake City, with the support of these institutions and private donors.

This interfaith dialogue project consists of both private academic discussions and public presentations aimed at building bridges of common ground and friendship between members of the two faiths. The project also aims to promote greater understanding and appreciation for the similarities and differences in belief and worship. A special series of meetings took place in Jerusalem in 2019, which you can read about here.

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