Friday, August 17, 2007

Chief Rabbinate of "Israel" Requires Alteration of Traditional Holy Week Liturgy, Vatican Complies

Catholic-Jewish relations: Bumps in the road should not slow journey

By Cindy Wooden
Catholic News Service

... More than a month after Pope Benedict XVI published his document granting wider use of the 1962 Roman Missal, often referred to as the Tridentine rite, concern continued over the text of a Good Friday prayer in the missal. [Oded Ben-Hur, the Israeli ambassador to the Vatican] said the chief rabbis of Israel sent a letter of concern about the prayer to Pope Benedict in early July and were expecting a response.

The controversy demonstrated how even the most carefully studied papal document is open to interpretation and further fine-tuning.

According to most observers, the papal permission to use the old rite on Good Friday would be limited to parishes that always celebrate the liturgy only according to the 1962 Roman Missal, which is expected to be only a small portion of the Catholic faithful.

Even so, Cardinal Tarcisio Bertone, Vatican secretary of state, told reporters in late July that the problem of the Good Friday prayer would be studied at the Vatican and might be resolved by deciding that even those who use the 1962 missal would use the 1970 text of the prayer.

Ben-Hur said members of the Jewish community expect the Vatican to fulfill promises to correct the situation.

... The council's presentation of the official Catholic attitude toward the Jews and Judaism "is still a small plant that still needs time to grow," Ben-Hur said. "Our main mission is one of teaching to overcome the abyss of ignorance" of one another. (Cindy Wooden, Catholic News Service, Aug-17-2007)

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