News and Events

Center for Catholic-Jewish Studies Presenting ‘Judaism is about Love’ on March 21 at Congregation Rodeph Sholom

This free event will explore how love is a part of the Jewish perspective on injustice and protest, family life, and responsibilities to our neighbors.

Tags: College of Arts Sciences and Allied Services Center for Catholic-Jewish Studies Religion Theology Religious Studies Catholic Identity Core Value
13 March 2024 - By University Communications

Saint Leo University’s Center for Catholic-Jewish Studies (CCJS) is presenting Judaism is about Love, 7 – 8:30 p.m., Thursday, March 21. This free event, hosted by Congregation Rodeph Sholom and Sacred Heart Catholic Church, will explore the misconception that the Jewish tradition is about the law rather than love. Join Rabbi Shai Held as he “recovers the heart of the Jewish tradition.”

This event will take place at Congregation Rodeph Sholom, 2713 Bayshore Blvd., Tampa, FL 33629. While the event is free, registration is required. Register at

Held is a philosopher, theologian, and Bible scholar. He is president and dean at the Hadar Institute and earned a PhD from Harvard University in religious studies. He received the prestigious Covenant Award for Excellence in Jewish Education, and has been named multiple times by Newsweek as one of the 50 most influential rabbis in America and by the Jewish Daily Forward as one of the 50 most prominent Jews in the world.

He says that a dramatic misinterpretation of the Jewish tradition has shaped the history of the West: Christianity is the religion of love, and Judaism is the religion of law. In the March 21 presentation, Held will discuss “the heart” of the Jewish tradition, offering the radical and moving argument that love belongs as much to Judaism as it does to Christianity. 


Held will discuss how love is foundational and a part of true Jewish faith and the Jewish perspective on injustice and protest, grace, family life, and responsibilities to our neighbors and even enemies. His presentation is based on his new book, Judaism is About Love that will be published this month. A question and answer session will follow.

For more information, contact Laurie Gens, CCJS administrator of programs and events, at or (352) 588-7711.