Guest Blog

Guest Blog

Interfaith Harmony!

A Catholic’s First Mitzvah

By Kathleen Rose-Johnsen, Interfaith Enthusiast

We’ve all heard the expression “actions speak louder than words” and after years of witnessing Soup-er Sunday behind the scenes my daughters and I put our Catholic faith into action and experienced our first Jewish Mitzvah with JTI at Soup-er Sunday 2018.

How did I witness Soup-er Sunday behind the scenes, you ask? I am JTI’s resident graphics and web designer since 2008. In this capacity, I get to see ALL their AMAZING teen programming in planning, photos, press releases, teen testimonials, blog posts and so much more.

This year my twin daughters, Emma & Olivia, are old enough to participate and need service hours for their confirmation service project. Enter JTI. The first program that came to mind was Soup-er Sunday but here’s the catch, we’re not Jewish.

Could this count as their Catholic service project? Should our Catholic faith preclude us from participating in a Jewish good deeds day? I was flooded with questions but driven to join!

Ultimately, after introspection, I concluded that in this very divisive world, we are just good people looking to Make the World a Better Place regardless of our faith. Those are literally words I’ve seen JTI putting into action year after year. Soup-er Sunday just felt right, a perfect fit. Next, I needed to get approval from the girls’ confirmation director and my JTI co-workers.

Yippie! It was a go on all sides. I’ve worked with these lovely JTI folks (that I’ve come to call friends) for years and was not at all surprised by how they welcomed us with open arms and made us feel like superstars!!!

It was such a wonderfully inclusive and rewarding (A++) interfaith experience for my family that we are already excited to volunteer for JTI’s upcoming J-Serve + NS Mitzvah Day on April 14th.

Thank you JTI from the bottom of our caring hearts ❤️! It really does feel good to do good for others! And putting kind words into action pays off tenfold for everyone involved regardless of faith!

Grades 9-12, you can help Make the World a Better Place with JTI this March 15-18, 2019 in Washington, DC!