Classrooms Without Borders is honored to convene a panel discussion featuring religious leaders from the three major monotheistic faiths: Judaism, Christianity, and Islam. Moderated by Dr. Carol Rittner RSM, Distinguished Professor of Holocaust & Genocide Studies Emerita, and Dr. Marsha Raticoff Grossman Professor of Holocaust Studies Emerita, Stockton University, this panel features Rabbi Aaron Bisno of Rodef Shalom Congregation, Rev. David Poecking of Archangel Gabriel Parish, and Imam Chris Caras of the Islamic Center of Pittsburgh.
This discussion is in partnership with Rodef Shalom Congregation, the Roman Catholic Diocese of Pittsburgh, and the Islamic Center of Pittsburgh.
Rabbi Aaron Bisno
Rabbi Aaron Bisno holds the Frances F. and David R. Levin Senior Rabbinic Pulpit of Rodef Shalom Congregation in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania. He has been the senior rabbi to the community since June 2004. Bisno has been recognized specifically for his work in the areas of interfaith and inclusion. In 2010, His Holiness Pope Benedict XVI conferred upon Rabbi Bisno a Benemerenti Medal for “outstanding contributions to interfaith relations.” Today, Bisno continues his work to strengthen interfaith dialogue and partnerships in our community and beyond.
Imam Chris Caras
Imam Chris Caras, originally of Peoria, Illinois, is a convert to Islam who earned degrees in traditional Islamic studies in Saudi Arabia and Malaysia from 2007 to 2016. He was then active in Islamic outreach for several Muslim institutions in St Louis Missouri. In the summer of 2019, he became the imam and religious director for the Islamic Center of Pittsburgh. Chris is married with three rambunctious children.
Rev. David Poecking
Fr. David Poecking began adult life as a math and physics teacher, but a childhood encounter with the writings of J.R.R. Tolkien ultimately led him to the Catholic Church and to the priesthood. He has served at several churches in the Pittsburgh region and as the director of continuing education of clergy, and is currently pastor of Archangel Gabriel Parish in the Diocese of Pittsburgh.
Discussion Moderator: Dr. Carol Rittner, RSM
Dr. Carol Rittner, RSM is Distinguished Professor Emerita of Holocaust & Genocide Studies and the Dr. Marsha Raticoff Grossman Professor Emerita of Holocaust Studies at Stockton University in New Jersey (USA). She is the author or editor of 18 books and numerous essays in various scholarly and educational journals about the Holocaust and other genocides of the 20th and 21st centuries. Dr. Rittner has lectured around the world – Canada, England, Ireland, Australia, South Africa, Sweden, Cambodia, Palestine, and Israel, to name a few places outside the USA. She is included in Paul R. Bartrop and Steven L. Jacobs’ book, Fifty Key Thinkers on the Holocaust and Genocide (2011). She is the Executive Producer of The Courage to Care, an Academy Award-nominated (1986) documentary film about non-Jews who rescued Jews during the Holocaust, Triumph of Memory (1987), a documentary film about non-Jews who survived Nazi concentration camps during WWII and the Holocaust, and of a documentary about nuns in America, Sisters (2013). Professor Rittner has organized several international seminars for scholars held at Campion Hall, Oxford University, including “How Do You Teach about Rape as a Weapon of War & Genocide?” Dr. Rittner teaches courses about the Holocaust, Human Rights, and Genocide.
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Interfaith clergy panel discussion on Sin & Forgiveness
Tuesday, September 22 @ 4:00 PM - 5:30 PM
The full inclusion of people of all abilities is a core value of the Pittsburgh Jewish Community. Please discuss accessibility accommodations with the contact person for this event.