To create bridges of understanding and tolerance between faith communities in Israel’s mixed cities, and to serve as “task force” of faith leaders to alleviate tensions – at times violent – that can surface without any advanced warning between interfaith communities.
This year’s program continues to be based on the two overarching goals of the Municipal Forum of Interfaith Leaders: (1) establishing a yearlong course for interfaith leaders in mixed cities to collaborate in building bridges of understanding, tolerance, dignity, respect and solidarity between the faith communities, and (2) empowering the faith leaders to create programs in their communities that will ward off friction and, should tensions and violence arise, to act as an emergency municipal task force for effective crisis management. During 2020-21 period, two new cohorts will be opened; one in the Nazareth\Shfar’am Region and one for women’s religious leadership in the Jerusalem-Judea/Samaria Region. An additional feature will be the establishment of an International Steering Committee under the leadership of Prof. Benny Ish-Shalom that will include Sheikh Ziad Abu- Moch, Henrique Cymerman, Rabbi Yisrael Samet. It is our intention to also bring in a representative of the Vatican and a Muslim leader from Abu Dhabi. During the coming year the partnership with the Ministry of Interior and the Ministry of Religious Services will be deepened. We will also increase social media presence, inaugurate an alumni network, and hold a number of public seminars and conferences.