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Saturday, April 07, 2012

Passover and Easter - Interfaith Dialogue With Hope for Political Application: On Morning Joe

On Good Friday, Morning Joe's Faith special feature hosted a hopeful interfaith discussion about Understanding Holy Week, especially this particular year 2012, when Passover and Good Friday occur on the same day.  Their discussion filtered a subliminal message about political discourse and how to improve the caustic dialogue we are subjected to today.

Passover celebrates the liberation of the Jews, the liberation of the Israeli People, led by Moses.  Good Friday is the beginning of  the three days between the ignominious death of Jesus on the cross  and the Resurrection on Easter Morning.

Donald Cardinal Wuerl, the archbishop of Washington DC, led the religious level of the discussion by describing the Easter Story as witnessed by the disciples of Jesus.  Rabbi Steve Gutow spoke about how Passover is a universal celebration because it exemplifies the miracle of people overcoming oppression.  Both of the Christian and Jewish holidays are rooted in reality- something happened and it was witnessed.  Cardinal Wuerl explained how faith is rooted in reality.  Father Kevin O'Brien, of Georgetown University, said to become a good Christian, we should understand how to be a good Jew.

Religious significance notwithstanding, during this co-occurring celebration of Christian and Jewish traditions, it  was evident that the interfaith understanding should be reflected in American politics.

In fact, Father Kevin O'Brien, chaplain of Georgetown University, acknowledged this reality by suggesting this as a lesson on cooperation.  If the Jewish Council of Public Affairs, the Cardinal of Washington DC and the Chaplain of Georgetown University can agree on faith forming principles, then the same values should be reflected in our elected politicians.

Christians and Jews express hope for the redemption of mankind through the Passover and Easter experiences.  Christians believe the hope comes through redemption.  Jews express hope through  overcoming oppression.

As Americans, who live in an environment of religious freedom, perhaps the hopeful relationship between Passover and Easter can translate to more collegiality and hopeful political discourse as well.

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