Rabbi Marc Schneier, named by Newsweek one of America's top rabbis, to deliver Fairfield University's 2009 Adolph and Ruth Schnurmacher Lecture in Judaic Studies on December 2


Image: Rabbi Schneier

Rabbi Marc Schneier, who has been named by Newsweek magazine one of America's top 50 rabbis and has been honored by the United States Congress, the state of Israel and the NAACP, will deliver Fairfield University's Adolph and Ruth Schnurmacher Lecture in Judaic Studies on Wednesday, December 2 at 7:30 p.m.

Rabbi Schneier, a sought after spokesperson for the Jewish community, will give a talk entitled, "Jewish - Muslim Dialogue: The Interreligious Challenge of the 21st Century." The event, free and open to the public, is presented by the University's Carl and Dorothy Bennett Center for Judaic Studies and is made possible by a gift from the Adolph and Ruth Schnurmacher Foundation. It will take place in the Dolan School of Business Dining Room. Reservations are requested and can be made by calling (203) 254-4000, ext. 2066.

Rabbi Schneier has long been celebrated for promoting dialogue and cooperation among the Jewish, Muslim, and Christian faith communities, and he occupies a prominent place in the world of interfaith dialogue for his efforts. For example, earlier this year, when a Catholic Bishop made controversial remarks denying the Holocaust, it was Rabbi Schneier who met with Pope Benedict to convey how American Jews felt. He was asked to attend a world conference on interfaith dialogue convened by King Abdullah of Saudi Arabia and hosted by King Juan Carlos of Spain. He was among the national religious leaders who led delegates in prayer at the 2008 Democratic presidential convention in Denver. It is no wonder why The Forward called him one of the most prominent Jews in the United States.

Rabbi Schneier, also a leader in strengthening ties among the Jewish, African-American, Latino and Asian-American communities, is the president and founder of The Foundation for Ethnic Understanding, a New York City-based national non-profit dedicated to strengthening relations between ethnic communities. The foundation is committed to the belief that direct, face-to-face dialogue between communities is the most effective path toward reducing bigotry and promoting understanding.

Rabbi Schneier serves as chairman of the World Jewish Congress American Section, as well as its Commission on Intergroup Relations. As an advocate for human and civil rights, he has been honored with numerous awards, including the NAACP Martin Luther King, Jr. "Measure of A Man Award." He is the author of the book, "Shared Dreams," (Jewish Lights Publishing, 1999) which documents Dr. King's relationship with the Jewish community.

He is also the founding rabbi of The Hampton Synagogue in Westhampton Beach and The New York Synagogue in Manhattan.

He has been interviewed by many media organizations, such as NPR, CNN, "The Today Show," "Good Morning America," "The O'Reilly Factor," and "CBS Sunday Edition."

For more information about the Bennett Center, visit www.fairfield.edu/judaic.

Photo credit - Richard A. Lobell Photography

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Media Contact: Meg McCaffrey, (203) 254-4000, ext. 2726, mmccaffrey@fairfield.edu

Posted on October 22, 2009

Vol. 42, No. 98