Why to interview Rav Haim Fabrizio Cipriani? Twenty years ago, if pressed to answer this question, most scholars would likely have spoken in the sweeping language of the Vatican II (1962-1965) and its Nostra Aetate declaration, language evoking the cultivation of Jewish-Catholic dialogue by charting the courses of collective interreligious history. Today, while it remains crucial to continue fostering Jewish-Christian dialogue, it is possible to do so by following the narrower paths of individual (rather than shared) experience. The following interview addresses Jewish-Christian dialogue through the lens of Cipriani’s last commentary to the siddur, asking how this work’s many insights into prayer, charity, and the study of Torah, can teach us new things about interfaith fellowship.
Interreligious dialogue is fundamental to an integrated, whole, and healthy society. This paper presents two spiritual leaders of interfaith dialogue and introduces an initiative inspired by their example. The paper comes as a result of a conference in Reggio Calabria dedicated to human rights and commemorating the interfaith works of Rabbi Giuseppe Laras (Milan) and Monseigneur Ferro (Reggio Calabria). Both men have spent lifetimes striving to engage different communities in dialogue with each other, above all by finding practical remedies for age-old, stereotypical misconceptions. This article elaborates on the goals and findings of the conference, and it confronts various arguments on specific problems in the Italian social strata of Jewish Orthodoxy and Christianity.