Interfaith Encounters Day 7

Our last time together was spent at the Germantown Jewish Centre.


We had a bit of an orientation on Friday with Rabbi Reena and therefore were somewhat familiar with the building and what to expect in the morning Shabbat service.


This particular day was important to this community, as they were remembering and honoring an individual who worked for many years as the building maintenance manager. Though he was a Christian, this Jewish community considered him “one of theirs” and he was especially beloved.

Also, the synagogue community was preparing for a panel on racial justice and conversation related to the life and example of Rev. Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.


After hearing Hebrew prayers and watching the Torah scroll make its entrance and exit, it was time for the Alvernia group to go back to school.

It was an outstanding week of learning, interacting, and questioning.

I was impressed with the students’ curiosity and willingness to stretch their comfort zones. I was also very grateful for the enthusiasm and leadership of Brian, their campus ministry leader.

I am sure this week will continue to shape me for a long time.

Thanks for journeying with us!

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Josh grew up in the Midwest before completing a B.A. in Theatre at Northwestern College [IA] and a Masters of Divinity [M.Div.] at Princeton Theological Seminary [NJ]. An ordained minister in the United Church of Christ [UCC], Josh has lived and worked in the Midwest, East Coast, Hawai’i, and Mexico. He is the co-founder and Executive Director of The Welcome Project PA, host of the Bucks-Mont PRIDE Festival, and he is Pastor of Love In Action UCC, an open and affirming congregation featured in a Vox Media episode of Divided States of Women with Liz Plank and in the Philadelphia Inquirer. Josh has 20+ years of nonprofit experience, including leading workshops and training in corporate, medical, and academic settings, focused on diversity & inclusion, grant writing, fund raising, and program management. Josh is a fellow of Interfaith Philadelphia, and designs and coordinates HS and University student groups for interfaith immersion service-learning weeks. Josh also co-facilitates Ally trainings for LGBTQIA+ inclusion and interfaith cooperation. He is a founding member of The Society for Faith & Justice, and a Collaborator for Nurturing Justice, and a member of the Driving PA Forward team via New Sanctuary Movement. He also performs regularly with the dinner theatre company, Without a Cue Productions, and has developed theatre arts curriculum for use in religious and secular settings. Josh also enjoys running, singing, traveling, learning languages, or making strange and funny faces. He lives in Center City Philly.

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