Founded in 2008 with a generous grant from the Henry Luce Foundation, CIRCLE is a joint initiative of Andover Newton Theological School (ANTS) and Hebrew College (HC). CIRCLE’s mission is to help prepare religious and ethical leaders for service in a religiously diverse society. The work of CIRCLE is rooted in the cultivation of authentic relationships across lines of difference. It is our conviction that through study, dialogue, and joint action, we can help to heal and transform the world. CIRCLE engages seminary and graduate students, academics, and communal leaders locally and nationally through our in-person and online initiatives.
In 2001, Hebrew College (HC) moved from Brookline, Massachusetts to a new hilltop campus in Newton it would share with Andover Newton Theological School (ANTS). Two years later, Hebrew College, which began in 1921 as a secular cultural institution, created a rabbinical school. For the last ten years, the staff and students of the newest Jewish seminary and the oldest Protestant seminary in the country—Andover Newton’s roots go back to the founding of Andover Seminary in 1807—have formed a partnership that has changed the way both schools think about their educational goals and the nature of their communities. Newton’s “Institution Hill,” named for the other ancestor of Andover Newton, the Newton Baptist Institute, has become “Faith Hill.”
Scriptures travel. Many people talk about 'religious traditions' as if they were nation states with clear and tightly guarded borders, but of course the borders of a tradition are porous and the objects of tradition have a life of their own. So, like it or not, Scriptures travel into public spaces: they are played in store […]
Student Religious Life at Johns Hopkins University emphasizes interfaith education and collaboration. 15-20 students, many of them representing one of the campus' active student religious groups, participate in a weekly forum, the Interfaith Council. The subject matter of these meetings varies. Students may go around and share a particular aspect of their tradition, such as […]
I lead a scriptural reasoning group at the University of Toronto that has an open door policy. That means in any given week I do not know who will attend and who will not. It usually means a regular cohort will show up supplemented by newcomers from week to week. Because our purpose in meeting […]
in this issue, we explore issues of ethics and bioethics, particularly as they are played out and reflected in our religious and faith traditions and practices. These are often the questions that keep us awake at night, or around a dinner table, or at our own desks, studying, and pondering. What does a particular tradition’s text have to teach us about abortion, for example? What are our religious or ethical responsibilities to animals, or to the elderly, or to the dying? As an inter-religious publication, we are also interested, of course, in comparing what different traditions might say about the same topic. We welcome additional discourse—in letters to our editors, in our comments, and in future submissions—from you as you continue to compare, consider, and challenge understandings about ethics.
There are three ritual acts that pre-modern religions traditionally have in common: eating, washing and clothing. Ancient peoples engaged in rites of communion, wherein covenants with God and/or man were made and renewed through the partaking of food. Similarly, among most of the ancients, ceremonial washing was a requisite rite of passage with salvific connotations. […]
This paper begins by briefly sketching a ‘return to universality’ with what the author calls a ‘radical neo-Enlightenment’ that is driven by a revolutionary rationality. As part of this delineation, the essay discusses how this rationality is itself delimited, and how the apparently ‘unlimited’ figure of divinity is itself also delimited. The work then sketches […]