Film on nun's fight against anti-Semitism reaches Oscar shortlist

 'Sister Rose's Passion' - the story of a nun's effort to counter anti-Semitism in Catholic teaching, is one of five Oscar nominees in the short documentary category for the Academy Awards, which was presented yesterday.

The film, just under the 40-minute limit for the short category, features Dominican Sister Rose Thering, a retired education professor from Seton Hall University, a Catholic school in South Orange, New Jersey. It focuses particularly on her contribution to getting changes in Catholic school textbooks that included language traditionally used to blame the Jews for the death of Jesus.

For her doctoral dissertation at Jesuit-run St Louis University, completed in 1961, she conducted one of the pioneering and influential studies of how the religion textbooks used in Catholic schools described the role of the Jews in the Crucifixion. "I almost got ill studying these books," she says in the film. But, she said her dissertation was read by Cardinal Augustin Bea, one of the key figures at the Second Vatican Council, and he declared that such teachings in Catholic textbooks "must go."

Source: Signis

LONDON - 28 February 2005 - 200 words

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