Studying and Experiencing Judaism in Israel as Christians. Enabling Encounters. Because Christian Identity Lives in Relationship to Judaism.
“Studium in Israel” is committed to a theology and church practice that perceives Judaism in its diversity, allowing the Jewish community to determine their own self-understanding. For a long time, Christian doctrine and church attitude towards Judaism was defined by demarcation and prejudice. After the Shoa a gradual rethinking began.
This rethinking continues today and aims to establish a theology that is sensitive to Judaism and critical of anti-Semitism at all levels of church activity. This also includes a rejection of mission to the Jews. “Studium in Israel” was founded in 1978 offering students of theology and related subjects the opportunity to live in Jerusalem for a year, to study at the Hebrew University and to get to know the diversity of Judaism in Israeli society.
In its almost 50 years of existence, the program has evolved and now also offers opportunities for learning and encounters in the context of student excursions to Israel and for professionals in theology and the church. Former participants of the program shape the Christian-Jewish dialogue in Israel and Germany. Through conferences and publications, the organization “Studium in Israel e.V.” promotes theological discussion and church practice in the German-speaking world. Those who study in Jerusalem with “Studium in Israel” gain perspective on both, Judaism and their own Christian religion.
Co-founder of "Studium in Israel" and Director of Studies from 1978-2003
„Diving into a new world”
A year of study with Studium in Israel is a unique opportunity for everyone who wants to learn about contemporary Judaism and its theology. Already in the first 25 years of "Studium in Israel" the experiences from this program had huge impact on theological approaches in Germany, but also elsewhere (I think of our friends in the Czech Republic, Austria, Switzerland or America). What we experience, do, and learn here cannot be experienced, done, or learned anywhere else. A whole new world is opening up that we never knew existed. It is important to emphasize that our studying in Israel is not a vote for any Israeli government. Our concern is a theological one.
The core of the association’s life in Germany is the annual alumni conference, which is organized by different groups from among the graduates and take place in different cities.
The theme is decided in the previous year and covers historical, theological, political and artistic subjects. In addition to the general meeting of the organization, the conferences include high profiled lectures, workshops, and the opportunity to meet and reunite.
The conferences are also open to those who are not graduates of “Studium in Israel”.