Rabbi Jack Moline

If I wanted to be credible in my work toward societal justice, then it was essential that I make him one of my mentors.

Interfaith Alliance
Virginia
A Jewish Perspective

Where did you first encounter Heschel’s work?

I first encoutered Heschel in United Synagogue Youth.

How did Heschel and his thinking inspire your work, religious life, or civic engagement?

Heschel’s activism in the Civil Rights Movement, especially his presence in Selma, Alabama, was a powerful example to me. I wish I could say it motivated me directly to my engagement in interfaith and civil rights causes, but more accurately it was his impact on the non-Jews that I encountered in my rabbinate that inspired me to be that kind of rabbi. The activists I encountered always wanted to know if I knew him, did I hear him speak, did he influence me. If I wanted to be credible in my work toward societal justice, then it was essential that—across a generation and the gap between our adult lives—I had to make him one of my mentors. When I had the privilege of marching across the Edmund Pettus Bridge with John Lewis, many years later, I felt like my legs were in Heschel's minyan.

Additional Texts:

Cosmic Outrage

A Life to Emulate

Playing Dice with the Universe—Leviticus 8:8

Comfort, Comfort

This Is Not a Sermon

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