Canon Herman Peter Schneider (1928-1982) was born of Jewish parents in Czechoslovakia. He came to England at the age of 10 as a refugee from Nazi persecution. He was subsequently brought up as a Christian and ordained in the Church of England in 1954. Following a London curacy, he became chaplain at Fitzwilliam College, Cambridge. In 1960, he went to Israel as chaplain to St Luke’s, Haifa. In 1964, he became Adviser to the Anglican Archbishop in Jerusalem in Jewish-Christian Relations, pioneering dialogue and mutual understanding between Jews and Christians beyond the bounds of his own denomination, In 1973, he returned to England and continued this work through the Church of England and numerous ecumenical organisations while serving in parishes in Suffolk and Sussex.
I have been researching the life of Peter Schneider, who was a friend of the Hebrew Christian Alliance of Great Britain but focused his activity of Jewish-Christian relations and the place of dialogue. He was a much loved founder of the Rainbow Groups in Jerusalem and London, and an influential member of the Council of Christians and Jews.
Reflection: At his funeral the Archbishop of York preached in Westminster Abbey on the text of Isaiah 53:11 “He shall see the fruit of the travail of his soul and be satisfied”. Thank you Lord, for your servant Peter Schneider, and the travail of his soul to bring Jews and Christians together in healing, forgiveness, reconciliation and mutual support. May we as Jewish disciples of Yeshua continue to be ambassadors of your reconciling love, that restores us to yourself and to one another. In your Suffering Servant Yeshua’s name we pray. Amen.
Below are some articles about him:
Rainbow Group material for 1978-80. –
Many other names should be recorded here: Rev. Peter Schneider, Canon of the Anglican Church who worked for mutual understanding and reconciliation between Jews and Christians both in Israel and Britain. He founded the Jerusalem and London Rainbow Groups as well as the Ecumenical Theological Research Fraternity in Israel. He was secretary to the advisers of the Archbishops of Canterbury and York on interfaith matters. https://www.notredamedesion.org/archived/www.notredamedesion.org/en/dialogue_docs17d7.html?a=3b&id=574
A Unique Childhood Memoir of Life in Wartime Britain in the Shadow of the HolocaustBy Vera Gissing
The emergence of the Kindertransport in Prague: the Barbican Mission to the Jews, a unique endeavour
CHILDREN’S EXODUS: A HISTORY OF THE KINDERTRANSPORT – Vera K. Fast, I. B. Tauris, London, 2011.
He shall see the fruit of the travail of his soul and be satisfied. Issiah 53, 11 Memorial service for Canon Peter Schneider Westminster Abbey, London 25/01/1983
Sweeter than honey : Christian presence amid Judaism / Peter Schneider; introduction by M.A.C. Warren.
Schneider, Peter, 1928-1982.London : SCP Press; 1966
Rainbow group – London and Jerusalem
Jerusalem Perspectives edited with Geoffrey Wigoder