ITALIAN BISHOPS: MEETING BETWEEN CARD. BAGNASCO AND RABBIS LARAS AND DI SEGNI
Servizio Informazione Religiosa
Tuesday 22 September 2009
Today Card. Angelo Bagnasco, President of the Italian Bishops’ Conference, had a meeting with Giuseppe Laras, President of the Rabbinical Council of Italy, and Riccardo Di Segni, Chief Rabbi of the Jewish Community in Rome. As written in the statement released by the Italian Bishops’ Conference, “the Cardinal wanted to express his cordial wishes for the beginning of the Jewish year and asked the Rabbis to pass them on to all Italian Jews”. During the meeting the cardinal and the two rabbis had the opportunity to discuss some “open issues” with the Jewish Community in relation to the publishing of “Oremus et pro Iudaeis”. To this regard, the statement points out that “there is absolutely no change in the attitude the Catholic Church has had towards the Jews since the Second Vatican Council”. Accordingly, the Italian Bishops’ Conference reaffirms that “it is not its intention to actively pursue the conversion of Jews”. At today’s meeting, the cardinal also expressed his “concern about those episodes of anti-Semitism and anti-Judaism that are occurring from time to time, reaffirming the need to retain strong vigilance and expressing the hope that relations between the two parties may become stronger”.
Based on the clarifications that came about during the meetings, it was decided by joint agreement to continue the shared celebration of Jewish-Christian Days of reflection of January 17th which, this year, saw the participation of the Jewish community.
Therefore, the reflection on the Ten Words will continue, as Benedict XVI urged in the Synagogue at Cologne. Next year, therefore, they will take up again the fourth commandment, according to Jewish numeration; Remember that the day of the Sabbath is to be sanctified.