Biography - Rabbi David Rosen

Rabbi David Rosen
International Director of Interreligious Affairs

Rabbi David Rosen is the International Director of Interreligious Affairs of the American Jewish Committee. He was born and educated in Britain, continuing his advanced rabbinic studies in Israel, where he received his ordination (semichah). In addition to military service in the armored corps of the IDF, he served as Chaplain to the forces in Western Sinai.

From 1975 to 1979, he was the Senior Rabbi of the largest Jewish congregation in South Africa and rabbinic judge on the Ecclesiastical Court (Beth Din). He was also founder/chairman of the Inter-Faith Forum, the Council of Jews, Christians and Muslims.

From 1979 to 1985, Rabbi Rosen was Chief Rabbi of Ireland where he founded, together with the Christian Primates of Ireland, the Irish Council of Christians and Jews. He was a member of the Academic Council as well as lecturer at the Irish School of Ecumenics.

He returned to Israel in 1985 to take up the appointment of Dean at the Sapir Center for Jewish Education and Culture in the Old City of Jerusalem and subsequently became Professor of Jewish Studies at the Jerusalem Center for Near Eastern Studies.

Having served concurrently as the Anti Defamation League's Director of Interfaith Relations in Israel and as the ADL's co-liaison to the Vatican, in 1997 he was appointed to the position of Director of the ADL Israel office.

Rabbi Rosen is a founder of the Interreligious Coordinating Council in Israel that embraces more than seventy organizations in Israel involved in interfaith relations. He is a member of the Permanent Bilateral Commission of the State of Israel and the Holy See that negotiated the normalization of relations between the two; and he serves as a member of the International Jewish Committee for Inter-Religious Consultations which represents organized World Jewry in its relations with other world religious bodies.

He is President of the World Conference on Religion and Peace (WCRP), the all-encompassing world inter-faith body (incorporating fifteen religions in over fifty countries), and is a charter member of the International Advisory Committee of the Council for a Parliament of the World's Religions (CPWR). He is Honorary President of the International Council of Christians and Jews (ICCJ), the umbrella organization for more than thirty national bodies promoting Christian-Jewish relations. The ICCJ's Abrahamic Forum promotes dialogue between Muslims, Christians and Jews.

Rabbi Rosen has been an active advocate for respectful coexistence between religious communities throughout the world and particularly in Israel and the Middle East.

Among the number of major events that he has addressed and organized in the region was the interfaith summit in Alexandria at the beginning of this year - a historic gathering for the first time of the Jewish, Christian and Muslim leadership of the Holy Land. The leaders issued a landmark declaration which inter alia condemned violence in the name of religion as a desecration of religion itself.

Subsequent to that summit, Rabbi Rosen was one of the religious leaders invited by Pope John Paul II to participate in the World Day of Prayer for Peace that the Pontiff convened in Assisi.

In July Rabbi Rosen and Prince Hassan of Jordan, who are close colleagues, addressed a special gathering of the American Jewish Committee in New York on the subject of Jewish-Muslim relations.

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