Christian-Jewish Congress of South Carolina

1976 –

The organization’s motto was “conversation, not conversion,” and its objectives focused on education and cooperation. It sought to correct misunderstandings between the faith communities, especially forms of anti-Semitism and anti-Judaism that occasionally surfaced in communities across the state.

The Christian-Jewish Congress of South Carolina was formed in 1976 as the state’s first organization to foster dialogue and cooperation between Christians and Jews. It emerged out of conversations between the South Carolina Christian Action Council and the Jewish Welfare Federations in Columbia, Charleston, and Greenville.

The organization’s motto was “conversation, not conversion,” and its objectives focused on education and cooperation. It sought to correct misunderstandings between the faith communities, especially forms of anti-Semitism and anti-Judaism that occasionally surfaced in communities across the state. Chapters were established in Columbia, Charleston, and Greenville and met for regular meetings in living rooms or houses of worship. An annual meeting was held in Columbia from 1976 to 1988. Prominent national speakers addressed topics such as the plight of Soviet Jewry, prospects for peace in the Middle East, prayer in the public schools, and black-Jewish relations. The organization was instrumental in cohosting the Eleventh National Workshop on Christian-Jewish Relations, held in Charleston in March 1989. One of the major sessions of the national meeting included a Muslim leader, anticipating the more inclusive interfaith dialogues formed in the years following.

After the demise of the statewide organization in the late 1980s, local Jewish-Christian dialogue groups continued to meet in Charleston, Columbia, and other communities. During the 1990s leaders of interfaith dialogue established more inclusive dialogue groups to reflect the growing religious diversity of South Carolina.

Citation Information

The following information is provided for citations.

  • Title Christian-Jewish Congress of South Carolina
  • Coverage 1976 –
  • Author
  • Keywords cooperation, dialogue, growing religious diversity
  • Website Name South Carolina Encyclopedia
  • Publisher University of South Carolina, Institute for Southern Studies
  • URL
  • Access Date December 3, 2022
  • Original Published Date
  • Date of Last Update July 20, 2022
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