Pope Francis Praises Jewish Ties in New Missive

224-Page VIsion Statement Regrets Past Anti-Semitism


By JTA

Published November 28, 2013.
  • Print
  • Share Share

Pope Francis’s renewed commitment to fostering relations between Catholics and Jews and condemning anti-Semitism has drawn praise.

In “Evangelii Gaudium” (The Joy of the Gospel), a 224-page document outlining his vision of the church and its mission that was released this week, Francis praised the current state of Jewish-Catholic relations and expressed regret for past – and continuing – anti-Jewish actions.

“Dialogue and friendship with the children of Israel are part of the life of Jesus’ disciples,” Francis wrote in the document. “The friendship which has grown between us makes us bitterly and sincerely regret the terrible persecutions which they have endured, and continue to endure, especially those that have involved Christians.” The Catholic Church, Francis wrote, holds “the Jewish people in special regard because their covenant with God has never been revoked.”

Rabbi David Rosen, the International Director of Interreligious Affairs for the American Jewish Committee, praised the pope’s “emphasis on the importance of interreligious dialogue to promote peace in the world and as a means to ‘learn to accept others and their differen(ces),’” as “powerful encouragement for greater respect and harmony in our world.”

The pope’s “emphasis on the ongoing Divine Presence in the life of the Jewish people and on the importance of the ‘values of Judaism’ for Christians, is particularly significant in further advancing the historic transformation in the Catholic Church’s approach towards the Jewish people,” Rosen said in a statement.

Francis is expected to meet with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu next week, during an official visit by Netanyahu to Italy. During the visit, Netanyahu is expected to take part in a Hanukkah menorah lighting on Sunday in Rome’s main synagogue, along with Italy’s prime minister, Jewish community leaders and other officials, according to the Rome Jewish community website.


The Jewish Daily Forward welcomes reader comments in order to promote thoughtful discussion on issues of importance to the Jewish community. In the interest of maintaining a civil forum, The Jewish Daily Forwardrequires that all commenters be appropriately respectful toward our writers, other commenters and the subjects of the articles. Vigorous debate and reasoned critique are welcome; name-calling and personal invective are not. While we generally do not seek to edit or actively moderate comments, our spam filter prevents most links and certain key words from being posted and The Jewish Daily Forward reserves the right to remove comments for any reason.





Find us on Facebook!
  • Kosovo's centuries-old Jewish community is down to a few dozen. In a nation where the population is 90% Muslim, they are proud their past — and wonder why Israel won't recognize their state. http://jd.fo/h4wK0
  • Israelis are taking up the #IceBucketChallenge — with hummus.
  • In WWI, Jews fought for Britain. So why were they treated as outsiders?
  • According to a new poll, 75% of Israeli Jews oppose intermarriage.
  • Will Lubavitcher Rabbi Moshe Wiener be the next Met Council CEO?
  • Angelina Jolie changed everything — but not just for the better:
  • Prime Suspect? Prime Minister.
  • Move over Dr. Ruth — there’s a (not-so) new sassy Jewish sex-therapist in town. Her name is Shirley Zussman — and just turned 100 years old.
  • From kosher wine to Ecstasy, presenting some of our best bootlegs:
  • Sara Kramer is not the first New Yorker to feel the alluring pull of the West Coast — but she might be the first heading there with Turkish Urfa pepper and za’atar in her suitcase.
  • About 1 in 40 American Jews will get pancreatic cancer (Ruth Bader Ginsberg is one of the few survivors).
  • At which grade level should classroom discussions include topics like the death of civilians kidnapping of young Israelis and sirens warning of incoming rockets?
  • Wanted: Met Council CEO.
  • “Look, on the one hand, I understand him,” says Rivka Ben-Pazi, a niece of Elchanan Hameiri, the boy that Henk Zanoli saved. “He had a family tragedy.” But on the other hand, she said, “I think he was wrong.” What do you think?
  • How about a side of Hitler with your spaghetti?
  • from-cache

Would you like to receive updates about new stories?




















We will not share your e-mail address or other personal information.

Already subscribed? Manage your subscription.