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The Belmont Initiative for Jewish Engagement

The Belmont Initiative for Jewish Engagement has been created to sponsor a number of interfaith activities as a part of the work of the Rev. Charlie Curb Center for Faith Leadership. This endowed program is a multi-pronged endeavor that includes lectures, classes, travel experiences, and conversations that will help to provide dialogue, perspective and understanding across these two major faith traditions. 

Brief History

Over the past number of years, Dr. Jon Roebuck, Director of the Rev. Charlie Curb Center for Faith Leadership, and Rabbi Mark Schiftan, Lead Rabbi of The Temple, formed a friendship that provided opportunities for conversations and learning experiences in both institutional and congregational settings.  Growing out of that relationship, Roebuck and Schiftan sought to include others in their shared experiences.  In the Spring of 2020 as the pandemic forced shut-downs in every area of life, a weekly Jewish-Christian dialogue was started through Zoom which provided space for 30 individuals to discuss the intersection of faith and culture.  (Those weekly conversations have continued each week for well over a year.) 
 
Additionally, Roebuck and Schiftan took on the challenge of leading a 6-week community-wide Bible study which focused on the Sermon on the Mount contained in the Gospel of Matthew.  The study was well attended and universally praised.  Because of its success, conversations then occurred that dreamed of a more structured and sustainable way for dialogue opportunities to exist between Belmont University and the greater Nashville Jewish Community.  Dr. Bob Fisher, then University President, added his blessing along with suggestions on the ways in which the initiative could grow and flourish.  The dream was extended to students and members of the greater Nashville Community.  As news of the initiative began to spread, several families welcomed the open opportunity and provided endowment gifts to the University to aid in the creation of this initiative.  Plans are currently underway to provide lectures, Maymester experiences, and other teaching opportunities that will build-out the scope of the initiative.

Featured Media

Recent Events

Program Goals

March 3, 2021 Announcement on Belmont News:
https://news.belmont.edu/the-rev-charlie-curb-center-for-faith-leadership-announces-judeo-christian-studies-initiative/

April 13, 2021 Article in the Tennessean:
https://www.tennessean.com/story/news/religion/2021/04/13/belmont-university-jewish-perspectives-rev-charlie-curb-center-for-faith-leadership/4843119001/