Washington, DC, July 27, 2004 … Catholic school educators from around the country are gathered in Washington, D.C. to participate in the nationally acclaimed Holocaust education program developed by the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) in partnership with the U.S. Holocaust Memoriam Museum and the Archdiocese of Washington, with the support of the National Catholic Educational Association and the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops.
Bearing Witness, which has been cited by the Vatican as one of the most important programs in improving relations between Catholics and Jews, will allow 40 Catholic educators from schools as far flung as Mobile, Alabama and Seattle, Washington to examine anti-Semitism from its earliest manifestations 2,000 years ago, through the Holocaust and continuing into the present day. The Catholic school teachers will participate in five days of sessions, July 26 – 30, led by prominent scholars, theologians and rabbis.
In its seventh year, ADL's Bearing Witness: Anti-Semitism, the Holocaust and Contemporary Issues includes tours of the permanent exhibition at the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum, lectures on anti-Semitism by prominent academics and historians, and speeches by Holocaust survivors and interfaith experts.
"This is an historic program," said Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National Director and a Holocaust survivor. "Almost 60 years after the Holocaust, Catholic schools are taking concrete and meaningful steps toward ensuring that the next generation of young people will understand the terrible implications of anti-Judaism, anti-Semitism and the Holocaust." Mr. Foxman, who survived the war as a hidden child in the care of his family's Polish Catholic nursemaid, will address the Catholic educators as part of the program.
The Catholic educators also will hear from Theodore Cardinal McCarrick, Archbishop of Washington, Dr. Pamela S. Nadell, Director of the Jewish Studies Program at American University; Rabbi Gary Bretton-Granatoor, ADL Director of Interfaith Affairs; Dr. Dennis McManus, Associate Director, Secretariat for the Liturgy, U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops; and Dr. Eugene Fisher, Associate Director of the Secretariat for Ecumenical and Interreligious Affairs, U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops.
Participants in this year's program are from Alabama, Arizona, California, Connecticut, Hawaii, Illinois, Indiana, Louisiana, Maryland, Massachusetts, Michigan, Minnesota, Mississippi, Montana, New York, North Carolina, Ohio, Oklahoma, Pennsylvania, South Dakota, Texas, Washington and Wisconsin.