When religious leaders—in this case, the pope himself—offer nothing but bromides instead of practical ideas that can work, many of the faithful tune out or just check out altogether.
The Orthodox Jewish community was particularly hard hit. Observant Jews can only eat kosher food; little was available in Houston after Harvey. Then two pastors remembered their Jewish friends.
Reflecting, as people often do before the New Year upon the friendships that help us through the tough times, we couldn't help but think about who was there for us as a faith community and who let us down. The brutal murder of four rabbis praying in a Jerusalem synagogue, three of them Americans, kept disturbing our thoughts.
As the vice-moderator of Committee 4 she recommended approval of a group of anti-Israel resolutions by the delegates of the Presbyterian Church (USA) in Detroit last week. Indeed, the 221st General Assembly of PCUSA will most be remembered as the one when its extremist anti-Israel lobby succeeded in getting the church to stick it to the Jews.
As two rabbis involved in interfaith activity, we have had the opportunity to both reflect on the unique contributions of other faith communities, as well as on the responsibility to respectfully speak out when we see historic mistakes being repeated. This is especially true during our High Holy Days, a time of personal reflection and communal judgment for all of G-d's children.