Mount Zion Award 2017
29. September 2017
The winner of this year’s Mount Zion Award is the Israeli writer Amos Oz. The famous and renowned writer, born in Jerusalem in 1939, will receive the award in recognition of his 2014 novel Judas (the original Hebrew title: הבשורה על פי יהודה, translated into English in 2014).
The novel raises important social, religious, and existential questions – about war and peace in the Holy Land, about Jesus and Judas, about contrasting political visions, and about guilt, love, despair, and hope. Like his great-uncle, the scholar Joseph Gedaliah Klausner, who wrote Jesus of Nazareth: His Life, Times, and Teaching, the first scholarly interpretation of the life of Jesus from a Jewish perspective, so too in this work Amos Oz sheds new light on the figures of Jesus and Judas and on the relationship between Judaism and Christianity.
The novel provides an interesting literary stimulus for Jewish-Christian dialogue. This year’s award highlights the undervalued role of art, and in particular of literature, in the dialogue between the three great Abrahamic religions. The award sends a message that the religions of the Holy Land reflect their own distinctive aesthetic search for faith, which is an important method of interreligious dialogue in the present and in the future.
This award is bestowed by the Institute for Jewish-Christian Research (Institut für Jüdisch-Christliche Forschung - IJCF) at the University of Lucerne in collaboration with the Benedictine Abbey of Dormition in Jerusalem on behalf of the Mount Zion Foundation. The Mount Zion Award is given to individuals or organizations that work for greater understanding between Jews, Christians, and Muslims in Israel/Palestine. It is awarded every two years on the anniversary of Nostra Aetate. The Foundation, which was founded by Rev. Dr. Wilhelm Salberg (1925-1996), has its seat at the IJCF in Switzerland.
The award ceremony will take place on October 29, 2017 at Dormition Abbey in Jerusalem. Prof. Dr. Verena Lenzen of the IJCF and the Rev. Dr. Nikodemus Schnabel, OSB, the Prior-Administrator of Dormition, will present the award.