Media > Benedict XVI at Romes synagogue : Jewish and Catholic communities need to work together
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Title: Benedict XVI at Romes synagogue : Jewish and Catholic communities need to work together
Added: 3 years ago
Description: Benedict XVIs first visit to Romes synagogue was filled by a number of historic gestures. Before stepping foot inside, the pope made a stop before the monument that stands in memory of more than 1 thousand Jews, the Nazis held captive in Rome in 1943 and later deported to Auschwitz. Benedict XVI placed a crown of flowers in their memory. This was the second time a pope walked into a synagogue in the Eternal City. John Paul II was the first in 1986. Benedict XVI said hes following his predecessors footsteps to reinforce the Catholic Churchs relationship with the Jewish community. Riccardo Di Segni Chief Rabbi of Rome When John Paul II visited, he compared the relationship between the Jewish community and the Catholic community to that of brothers. But this visit was preceded by a lot of controversy. Days before, a senior member of the Italian Jewish community said he would not attend, protesting against the silence of Pius XII during the Holocaust. An issue that was addressed during the popes visit. Riccardo Pacifici President Jewish community of Rome A number of religious institutions in Italy and other parts of Europe opened their doors, putting their lives in danger to save the lives of million of Jews without asking for anything in return. Thats why we believe Pius XIIs silence against the Holocaust was something very hurtful. Benedict XVI responded with gestures and words. Some were moved when the German pope, stood up as a sign of respect before the Holocaust survivors The pope said the reminder of these events should strengthen the ties between Jews and Christians. He also detailed the success of Pius XIIs strategy which was to avoid making any public condemnations. Pius XII believed he could save more lives by staying silent than risk making the situation worse. Benedict XVI The Apostolic See itself provided assistance, often in a hidden and discreet way. Benedict XVI asked the Catholic and Jewish communities to get to know each other better, and respect each other, since they pray to the same God. Benedict XVI They pray to the same Lord, they have the same roots, and yet they often remain unknown to each other. The main point of the Pope's speech was a proposal for specific areas of collaboration. The Pope himself wants to seek ways of working together in defence of human ecology, life, family and the poor. Benedict XVI Bearing witness together to the supreme value of life against all selfishness, is an important contribution to a new world where justice and peace reign. The pope also greeted the old rabbi who welcomed Pope John Paul II more than 20 years ago. The rabbi is one of three people that John Paul II mentioned in his will. Rabbis from all over the world are calling the popes meeting with the Jewish community a historic event. Rabbi David Rosen American Jewish Committee I think it was a wonderful event, a very moving event and a very important event. The reaffirmation of the bounds, new bounds, rediscovering bounds. Between the Catholic church and the Jewish people. Rabbi Richard Marker International Jewish Committee for Interreligious Consultations These are important matters that in our moment, in our age is symbolic brought to a close. So with this visit, I think, it was an important statement to see how the people and the Church recognizes the symbolic importance, the importance of these things. And this is why I think is an important moment. Now, both the Jewish and Catholic communities hope the tone of the dialogue between the two reaches beyond the kind that takes place at official ceremonies.
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