The Diocese Welcomes Rabbi Raachel Jurovics as Diocesan Rabbi-in-Residence
The Episcopal Diocese of North Carolina is pleased to name the Rabbi Raachel Jurovics, Ph.D. as the diocesan rabbi-in-residence for the Diocese of North Carolina. This new, non-stipendiary role was created out of the Diocese’s deep commitment to interfaith conversation and born of an ongoing interest in learning from one another as we explore the historic connection and contemporary expressions of the relationship between Judaism and Christianity.
"I am delighted Rabbi Jurovics has accepted this appointment,” said the Rt. Rev. Sam Rodman, bishop of the Diocese of North Carolina. “The roots of Judaism and Christianity are inextricably linked, and in learning more about one another, not only will our relationships grow stronger, our understanding of our own respective traditions will expand, and our faith will deepen.”
Jurovics will work in partnership with the bishops of North Carolina and the Rev. Dr. Jim Melnyk, diocesan ecumenical and interfaith officer, on a variety of opportunities for dialogue and education, including:
- Developing retreat programming (open to all) on topics to be identified, including using Under One Crown(recently published by R. Jurovics and colleagues) as a way into the midrashic process that could then be applied to selected New Testament texts
- Developing presentations ahead of Easter applying the spiritual orientation of deep ecumenism to the Gospel Passion Narratives
- Cultivating relationships with the wider body of the diocese, with clergy and lay leadership, starting with small group conversations at clergy clericus meetings and other convocation gatherings
- Being available as a spiritual director to clergy and laity.
The announcement is a natural next step in a fruitful relationship already in place. Jurovics has worked with the Diocese in the past, including serving as co-leader of the 2019 Lenten Retreat Day for clergy, where she and Melnyk led discussions on the opportunities and challenges of dialogue between the two faith traditions.
Creating this first “faith leader-in-residence” relationship is an intentional commitment to the Diocese’s ongoing engagement and conversation with those who practice faiths different from Episcopalians.
“When we talk about Becoming Beloved Community, we include those of all faiths,” said Rodman “The traditions we hold dear are enriched when we learn of the faith of others, and in sharing our own, we increase our personal understanding of why we believe what we do. Increasing this understanding is part of our lifelong formation journey, and we look forward to the opportunity to learn from one another as this partnership unfolds and we strengthen our commitment to deep dialogue and conversation.”
“I am profoundly appreciative of the Diocese and its leadership for this sacred opportunity,” said Jurovics. “I welcome the call of deep ecumenism, as it invites all of us to accept the consequence of divine oneness and its holy obligation to open our minds, hearts and souls to the reality that God loves diversity, nearness and surprise.”
Jurovics is Rabbi Emerita of Yavneh: A Jewish Renewal Community. She recently completed her term as President of OHALAH: The Association of Rabbis and Cantors for Jewish Renewal and has joined the Executive Committee of Ruach Hiddush: Rabbis and Cantors for Religious Freedom and Equality in Israel.
She begins her tenure as rabbi-in-residence March 1, 2020.
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