The Council’s objectives are:
- To promote the education of Christians and Jews so as to appreciate each other’s distinctive beliefs and practices and their common ground, recognising the significance of the Land of Israel to both.
- To promote the study of and research into historical, political, economic, social, religious and racial causes of conflict between Christians and Jews.
- To promote, for the benefit of the community, education in those fundamental ethical teachings common to Christianity and Judaism.
- To provide a forum for the discussion of issues of common interest or concern between Christians and Jews.
- To act in Western Australia as the spokesbody on all matters that come within the purview and purpose of such a council.
- The Council is not a missionary or political organisation; the aim of the Council is to promote dialogue, communication, harmony and understanding.
In 1993, following the success of the Councils of Christians and Jews both overseas and in other parts of Australia, local church bodies and Jewish communities were approached seeking their support in establishing a Western Australian branch of the Council of Christians and Jews. Both the Orthodox and Progressive Jewish communities and three Churches – Anglican, Roman Catholic and Uniting – responded in the affirmative.
Accordingly, in November 1993, a Working Group of representatives from all five communities was established. Its initial task was to develop a constitution and this was unanimously accepted by all five communities late in 1994 (amended 2019).
The Council of Christians and Jews, Western Australia Inc., was officially inaugurated on Monday, 4 September 1995.
It was formally launched by the then Governor of Western Australia, His Excellency Major General Michael Jeffery, at the Jewish Centre. The Chief Justice of Western Australia, the Hon. David Malcolm, gave the keynote address before a large audience, including the five presidents: the Anglican Archbishop of Perth, the Catholic Archbishop of Perth, the Moderator of the Western Australian Synod of the Uniting Church, the Rabbi of Perth Hebrew Congregation, and the Rabbi of Temple David. Since that launch, the Council has endeavoured to run at least four events every year to facilitate its objectives.
His Excellency the Honourable Christopher Dawson AC APM
Governor of Western Australia
Honorary Life Members
Mrs Judith Arkwright
Rabbi David Freilich OAM,
Emeritus Chief Rabbi,
Perth Hebrew Congregation
Dr Nathan (Norm) Hoffman OAM, FACE
Mr Edward Scott
Mrs Valerie Scott
Revd Prof. Rowan Strong DD FRHistS
The Rabbi, Perth Hebrew Congregation
The Rabbi, Temple David Congregation
The Moderator, Synod of WA,
The Anglican Archbishop of Perth
The Catholic Archbishop of Perth
The Revd Marie Wilson
Dr Judith Schneider
Mr Robert (Bob) Lockley
Dr Mary J. Marshall
Mr Trevor Creewel
Mr David Denver
Fr Michael Moore SM
Ms Shelley Rush
Ms Hilary Silbert