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John Paul Williams

Dr. John Paul Williams (1900-1973) was chairman of the department of religion at Mount Holyoke College. In 1946, he served as president of the National Association of Biblical Instructors (now known as the American Academy of Religion). He wrote What Americans Believe and How They Worship (1952, revised 1962) containing the chapter "Judaism -- the Mother Institution." Together with Rabbi Mordecai Kaplan and Eugene Kohn he co-authored the anthology of civic prayers, Faith in America (1951).

Opening Prayer on the Significance of Washington’s Birthday, by Rabbi Mordecai Kaplan, J. Paul Williams, and Eugene Kohn (1951)

Contributed on: ט׳ באדר ה׳תשפ״א (2021-02-20) by Aharon N. Varady (transcription) | John Paul Williams | Eugene Kohn | Mordecai Kaplan |

This opening prayer for Washington’s Birthday, “The Significance of the Day,” as first published in The Faith of America: Readings, Songs, and Prayers for the Celebration of American Holidays (Jewish Reconstructionist Foundation 1951). . . .


Closing Prayer for Washington’s Birthday, by Rabbi Mordecai Kaplan, J. Paul Williams, and Eugene Kohn (1951)

Contributed on: ט׳ באדר ה׳תשפ״א (2021-02-20) by Aharon N. Varady (transcription) | John Paul Williams | Eugene Kohn | Mordecai Kaplan |

This closing prayer for Washington’s Birthday as first published in The Faith of America: Readings, Songs, and Prayers for the Celebration of American Holidays (Jewish Reconstructionist Foundation 1951). . . .


Opening Prayer on the Significance of Lincoln’s Birthday, by Rabbi Mordecai Kaplan, J. Paul Williams, and Eugene Kohn (1951)

Contributed on: כ״ח בשבט ה׳תשפ״א (2021-02-10) by Aharon N. Varady (transcription) | John Paul Williams | Eugene Kohn | Mordecai Kaplan |

This opening prayer-essay for Lincoln’s Birthday, “The Significance of the Day,” was first published in The Faith of America: Readings, Songs, and Prayers for the Celebration of American Holidays (Jewish Reconstructionist Foundation 1951) — as preface to a number of readings selected by Mordecai Kaplan, Eugene Kohn, and J. Paul Williams for the day. . . .


The Faith of America: Readings, Songs, and Prayers for the Celebration of American Holidays, compiled by Rabbi Mordecai Kaplan, J. Paul Williams, and Eugene Kohn (1951)

Contributed on: ז׳ בטבת ה׳תשפ״א (2020-12-22) by Eugene Kohn | John Paul Williams | Mordecai Kaplan | Jewish Reconstructionist Foundation |

A collection of civic prayers, poems, and readings arranged for thirteen civic holidays in the United States. . . .


Opening Prayer on the Significance of New Year’s Day, by Rabbi Mordecai Kaplan, J. Paul Williams, and Eugene Kohn (1951)

Contributed on: ז׳ בטבת ה׳תשפ״א (2020-12-22) by Aharon N. Varady (transcription) | Eugene Kohn | John Paul Williams | Mordecai Kaplan |

This opening prayer for New Year’s Day, “The Significance of the Day,” was first published in The Faith of America: Readings, Songs, and Prayers for the Celebration of American Holidays (Jewish Reconstructionist Foundation 1951), p. 3-4 — as preface to a number of readings selected by Mordecai Kaplan, Eugene Kohn, and J. Paul Williams for the day. . . .


Closing Prayer for New Year’s Day, adapted by Mordecai Kaplan & Eugene Kohn from a prayer by Members of the Faculty of the Colgate Divinity School (1947)

Contributed on: ז׳ בטבת ה׳תשפ״א (2020-12-22) by Aharon N. Varady (transcription) | Eugene Kohn | John Paul Williams | Mordecai Kaplan | Members of the Faculty of Colgate-Rochester Divinity School |

This “Closing Prayer” for New Year’s Day was adapted by Mordecai Kaplan and Eugene Kohn from a prayer first published by unnamed “Members of the Faculty” of the Colgate-Rochester Divinity School (The Colgate-Rochester Divinity School Bulletin, “Prayers for the New Year,” vol. 19 no. 2 (1947), pp. 65-71). Kaplan & Kohn’s adapted prayer essentially contains excerpts from the prayer of the Faculty (excluding any with explicit Christian content). The adapted prayer was published in The Faith of America: Readings, Songs, and Prayers for the Celebration of American Holidays (Jewish Reconstructionist Foundation 1951), p. 25-26. –Aharon Varady . . .


Opening Prayer on the Significance of Thanksgiving Day, by Rabbi Mordecai Kaplan, J. Paul Williams, and Eugene Kohn (1951)

Contributed on: ז׳ בטבת ה׳תשפ״א (2020-12-22) by Aharon N. Varady (transcription) | Eugene Kohn | John Paul Williams | Mordecai Kaplan |

This opening prayer for Thanksgiving Day, “The Significance of the Day,” was first published in The Faith of America: Readings, Songs, and Prayers for the Celebration of American Holidays (Jewish Reconstructionist Foundation 1951), p. 304 — as preface to a number of readings selected by Mordecai Kaplan, Eugene Kohn, and J. Paul Williams for the day. . . .


Closing Prayer for Labor Day, by Rabbi Mordecai Kaplan, J. Paul Williams, and Eugene Kohn (1951)

Contributed on: כ״ט בניסן ה׳תשפ״א (2021-04-11) by Aharon N. Varady (transcription) | Eugene Kohn | John Paul Williams | Mordecai Kaplan |

“Closing Prayer [for Labor Day]” was first published in The Faith of America: Readings, Songs, and Prayers for the Celebration of American Holidays (Jewish Reconstructionist Foundation 1951), p.165. . . .


Opening Prayer on the Significance of Labor Day, by Rabbi Mordecai Kaplan, J. Paul Williams, and Eugene Kohn (1951)

Contributed on: כ״ט בניסן ה׳תשפ״א (2021-04-11) by Aharon N. Varady (transcription) | Eugene Kohn | John Paul Williams | Mordecai Kaplan |

“Opening Prayer on the Significance of [Labor] Day” was first published in The Faith of America: Readings, Songs, and Prayers for the Celebration of American Holidays (Jewish Reconstructionist Foundation 1951), p.165. . . .


Closing Prayer for Thanksgiving Day, by Rabbi Mordecai Kaplan, J. Paul Williams, and Eugene Kohn (1951)

Contributed on: ז׳ בטבת ה׳תשפ״א (2020-12-22) by Aharon N. Varady (transcription) | Eugene Kohn | John Paul Williams | Mordecai Kaplan |

This closing prayer for Thanksgiving Day was first published in The Faith of America: Readings, Songs, and Prayers for the Celebration of American Holidays (Jewish Reconstructionist Foundation 1951), p. 327-328 — following at the end of a number of readings selected by Mordecai Kaplan, Eugene Kohn, and J. Paul Williams for the day. . . .


The Dignity of Labor, a prayer for Labor Day by Rabbi Mordecai Kaplan, J. Paul Williams, and Eugene Kohn (1951)

Contributed on: כ״ט בניסן ה׳תשפ״א (2021-04-11) by Aharon N. Varady (transcription) | Eugene Kohn | John Paul Williams | Mordecai Kaplan |

“Dignity of Labor” is a prayer for Labor Day first published in The Faith of America: Readings, Songs, and Prayers for the Celebration of American Holidays (Jewish Reconstructionist Foundation 1951), p.176-177. . . .


Opening Prayer on the Significance of Arbor Day, by Rabbi Mordecai Kaplan, J. Paul Williams, and Eugene Kohn (1951)

Contributed on: כ״ז בטבת ה׳תשפ״א (2021-01-11) by Aharon N. Varady (transcription) | John Paul Williams | Eugene Kohn | Mordecai Kaplan |

This opening prayer for Arbor Day, “The Significance of the Day,” was first published in The Faith of America: Readings, Songs, and Prayers for the Celebration of American Holidays (Jewish Reconstructionist Foundation 1951), p. 3-4 — as preface to a number of readings selected by Mordecai Kaplan, Eugene Kohn, and J. Paul Williams for the day. . . .


Closing Prayer for Arbor Day, by Rabbi Mordecai Kaplan, J. Paul Williams, and Eugene Kohn (1951)

Contributed on: כ״ז בטבת ה׳תשפ״א (2021-01-11) by Aharon N. Varady (transcription) | John Paul Williams | Eugene Kohn | Mordecai Kaplan |

This closing prayer for Arbor Day, “The Significance of the Day,” was first published in The Faith of America: Readings, Songs, and Prayers for the Celebration of American Holidays (Jewish Reconstructionist Foundation 1951), p. 86. . . .