Rome Rabbi Admonishes Pope Francis

A French reader emailed the article below, which is more outspoken and detailed than any I’ve read in the press in the UK – both secular and “Catholic”.  Comments invited…

The afternoon of January 17, 2016 Pope Francis, after his prayer time with migrants at the time of the Angelus and the passage of the Holy Door of St. Peter’s Basilica with its 5000 non-EU guests, so sesame New World, will travel as scheduled to the synagogue.

Awaited with joy, this visit is a decline of more than the spiritual primacy of the Catholic Church to the world and men. Prepared by the Jewish community of Rome and the Papal services, it will mark a turning point in relations between Jews and Catholics, turning to the advantage of the Hebrew religion. The recent remarks made ​​by the Chief Rabbi of Rome, Riccardo Di Segni, a preview of this meeting, are there to testify.

In an interview with the Israeli newspaper Haaretz, Rabbi sent a clear and precise message to Pope Francis: Christians should not try to convert Jews. It is the Pope, he said, to send this message to the faithful Catholics around the world. Would be put into practice the new doctrine contained in the conciliar document Nostra Aetate doctrine that has been reinforced by the recent theological documents out of the Vatican cellars for 50 years of the decree of Vatican II and which states that the Catholic Church should no longer have missionary activity among Jews.

 Pope Francis listens as Rabbi Riccardo Di Segni, the chief rabbi of Rome, outlines his demands during the pope’s visit to the main synagogue in Rome January, 17

Pope Francis & Rabbi Riccardo Di Segni, the chief rabbi of Rome,  during the Pope’s visit to the main synagogue in Rome January, 17

“If the Church says that the Jewish people must be appreciated and respected but written only in a theological paper, few people understand the message. “Said the rabbi. “But if the pope visits a fundamental historical place like the Great Synagogue of Rome, then the message of friendship and respect is clearly understood and expressed. “

“The Vatican supports, says rightly Di Segni Rabbi, the Jews are still the chosen people, even if we do not believe in Jesus and that we continue to have a role in what they call salvation, even as non -croyant in Jesus. From a practical point of view this means that not need to be converted Jews. Judaism is considered a religion that is part of their religious system and deserves to be respected. “

From a practical standpoint, the chief rabbi would ask simply to Pope Catholic, so this new theological vision of the Jews, who is not Catholic, is understood around the world that the Good Friday prayer for the conversion Jews still in force in the form of the “extraordinary rite”, although already reworked to be more acceptable to the Jews by Benedict himself, is now removed. Not less ! Delicate but crucial issue for the Jewish people who believe that anti-Semitism still persist hints within the Catholic Church despite his fraternal statements, more than fraternal, submission, “elder brothers in faith”. The repentance and abdication of the conciliar popes will never be enough: it always takes more, until no remnant of Catholic doctrine survivor of the extermination camp what the conciliar Church. Give them a hand, it’s not the arm, but they will take whole body!

Di Segni is firmly Riccardo decided to talk with the Pope during the visit of the afternoon. He already has some ideas and advice for the Vicar of Christ, he gives the scoop Haaretz: “What is happening thus demonstrates that the documents, the latest published last year, have not yet been received uniformly. Perhaps it would be better disclose, to make them happen also in the peripheries. “In a word, it is the traditionalists attached to the Tridentine Mass, poor commuters on the sidelines of conciliar Catholicism, which are to be rehabilitated!” All we hope that these prayers are only a folkloric survival.   “(Sic)

To help get the message, or rather the admonition, the visit of Francis will be with members of the Jewish community and a dozen survivors of the concentration camps, children from schools, shopkeepers, that is to say Jewish merchants. Few policies and church members.

Some other so-called contentious issues, while already one can doubt that in time it is the Church that will reverse, are in the background and will not be discussed even if they weigh the “good” relations between Jews and Catholics: the question of the beatification of Pius XII, accused by the Jewish community of not having quite strongly condemned Nazism and the recent issue of the diplomatic agreement between the Holy See and Palestinian state. A letter written by 71 rabbis around the world has also been sent to Pope Francis that he reviews this diplomatic position.

If for the rabbi De Segni this pope “is very interesting”, well that “we can talk with him”, efforts are however requested it in all areas to demonstrate its good faith towards them: we must, for example explains the rabbi, the use of offensive terms such reconsideration Pharisees because they maintain prejudice towards the chosen people.

As we can see is the disappearance of whole sectors of the Catholic doctrine, prayers, writings, lyrics, it is a rewriting theological, linguistic, liturgical and history of the Catholic religion, the Jews imposed in this dialogue one way for 50 years. It is the creation of a new religion that will name a Catholic they are striving with the complicity of ecclesiastical rights forgetful of Christ, new religion that would be perhaps this Noahide religion theorized by Talmudic rabbis of the nineteenth century. In a nutshell, that is the disappearance of traditional Catholicism firmly they work conscientiously and since Vatican II, obviously.

At the disappearance of this Catholicism which saw the conversion of Jews celebrated with a nice example was the chief rabbi Eugenio Zolli who chooses the name of Eugenio, at his baptism, in honor of Pope Pius XII and its protective action in favor of the Roman and Italian Jewish community during the Second World War and the occupation of Rome by German troops. But there also is another story that our conciliar popes want to put in the closet.

In any case, with such beginnings, the visit this afternoon the 17 January 2016 certainly will sign another abandonment, another repentance, another abdication for the humiliation again and again of the Catholic Church and through it Christian civilization, already fairly attacked by migratory invasion which is now also the feast day the Vatican!   Source  

 

78 responses

  1. This is such a poor translation that it is difficult to get at the true meaning. But it seems to suggest that no good can come to the Catholic Church from the Papal visit to the Synagogue, but only humiliation.

  2. What I think is very strange is that all the papers I’ve read reporting this and online, too, just talk about the Pope and Rabbi speaking about peace, nothing about the Good Friday prayer etc.

    • I agree with you wholeheartedly. All the reports in today’s Catholic papers that I’ve read are reporting only that the Pope spoke about peace and the horrors of the Holocaust etc. There’s nothing about the rabbi ticking off the Pope for not instructing us all not to convert Jews.

      We already know not to convert anybody anyway, so where is this rabbi living, on what planet? Pope Francis has said over and over that nobody needs to convert, not even atheists!

    • The difference is, apart from these recent popes, the Pope didn’t used to go into their synagogues asking for them to dictate to the Church. That’s the whole point of the article, to show this new development in “Jewish-Christian relations” – LOL!

  3. 20th January 2016 at 10 h 33 min
    Shall we mention “Nostra Ætate” and the disastrous Second Vatican Council?
    Without good priests to reason us, and who remained faithful to the Church at all costs despite their hierarchy in state of apostasy and therefore totally deprived of credibility, I would have been mislaid and I would certainly have lost the Faith, because there was enough to give up everything, confronted with the delirious of these scoundrels who operated the most gigantic “spiritual embezzlement” in all the history of humanity, infamous doctrines which had already remarkably fought many saints predecessors of John XXIII…
    Now, when I think of the bishops brought together in this disastrous Vatican II Council, it comes to my mind these words of Isaiah repeated by Saint John 12,40: “He hath blinded their eyes, and hardened their heart; that they should not see with their eyes, nor understand with their heart, and be converted, and I should heal them!” What an appalling responsibility!
    Of all what these good priests brought to me, I remain eternally grateful to them.

  4. Talk about giving an inch and stealing a mile. This man seems to want 1,000 miles.

    Come back Yasser, all is forgiven. There`s someone we would like you to talk to. He seems to be the type of forgiving person you always wanted to meet.

    There weren`t many complaints during the last war when Jews were being “converted” to Catholicism in Rome to save them from the Nazis.

    I really don`t think the Rabbi needs to lose any sleep about Jews being converted by a Catholic Church which is itself in serious need of conversion.

  5. I’m having difficulty understanding this translation. The last 3 paragraphs are apparently the work of a different writer, or perhaps the same writer who, having finished quoting the assertive rabbi, now gives his take on the whole matter – a take which strongly echoes the traditionalist position!

  6. At any rate, if Francis eliminates the Conversion Prayer, wouldn’t that be a formal, Magisterial (as opposed to the non-binding papers issued by bureaucrats) abdication of the mission of the Church?

  7. RCA Victor

    As long as the infallible dogma extra ecclesiam nulla salus is not revoked (which is impossible) there can be no formal, Magisterial abdication of the Church’s mission. If Pope Francis did eliminate the Conversion prayer for the Jews, a prayer which is included in the ‘great intercessions’ of the Holy Week liturgy, then it would constitute two very grave personal sins on the Pontiff’s part alone, sins against both faith and charity.

    However, I am far from convinced by the report introducing this thread that the exchange recounted actually took place between Pope Francis and Rabbi de Segni. In so grave a matter there would have to be corroboration, which I have been unable to source anywhere.

    Still, Popes visiting Synagogues and Mosques, alluding in their addresses to the adherents of these religions to a unity in believe in “the one true God” with the caveat that “we are all children of Abraham” is certainly dangerously close to a denial of Our Lord Jesus Christ as the Son of God and the only Redeemer of the world, apart from whom there can be no salvation. Fortunately, in this regard, the words and actions of said Popes, while scandalous to the Catholic faithful, are not, and can never be, Magisterially binding on the Church.

    • Athanasius,

      It’s not an “exchange” – the rabbi issued his demands during a newspaper interview (Israeli newspaper Haaretz) ahead of the Pope’s visit to the synagogue, as our French blogger, Lionel, has pointed out above.

      It’s worth noting, too, that, yet again we see the Vatican preparing to celebrate the Reformation. The virtues of (the now saintly) Martin Luther are being extolled, not for the first time, in preparation for the 500th anniversary of the schism. This is from Rorate Caeli, but if you Google, you will find it on the Vatican website.

      So, it’s really nothing new, this putting down of Catholicism in the interests of ecumenical and inter-faith “progress”. I just thought it worth marking this latest visit of a Pope to the Rome synagogue, with attention paid, not to the persistent reminders of the Holocaust and the need for “peace” but taking a look at the other side, and the anything but conciliatory remarks made by the Host, even ahead of this scandalous event. Shameless!

      • Editor,

        I read Lionel’s comment about the Israeli newspaper but thought that was just a report of an exchange, or rather a set of demands, made directly to the Pope in the Rome Synagogue. Oops!

        Well, if the Pope is going to betray truth by pretending that the Jews, not to mention the Muslims, believe in the same God as Catholics, then why not canonise Martin Luther? After all, it’s not about the salvation of souls any more it’s about earthly peace, human dignity and social justice.

        • You’re not the only one, Athanasius. The translation is merely the standard computer translation so is not very easy to read. At least we get the drift and it serves to underline the fact that the only rebels and idolaters in the race, are the so-called “traditionalist” Catholics – you remember, the only kind there used to be, in the bad old days!

        • Athanasius, not too sure that we can say that the Jews do not believe in the same God as we do. In rejecting Jesus Christ then of course they do not accept the Trinity and therefore the true nature of God. They do not have the fullness of truth but surely it is the same God?the God of the psalms and the Old Testament is the same one true God that we worship.

          • Christiana2

            Acknowledging God the Father while rejecting God the Son is not belief in the true God who revealed Himself and His divine essence throughout the Old Testament. Remember what St. Paul said, that no one can say the Lord Jesus Christ unless he has the spirit of God in him.

            Here are just two Gospel quotes from Our Lord demonstrating that belief in the true God obliges belief in the Son as well as the Father and the Holy Ghost.

            “Every one therefore that shall confess me before men, I will also confess him before my Father who is in heaven. But he that shall deny me before men, I will also deny him before my Father who is in heaven.”

            “He that heareth you, heareth me; and he that despiseth you, despiseth me; and he that despiseth me, despiseth him that sent me.”

            • Athanasius,

              Would you then say that they no longer worship the God of their forefathers and the Old Testament? Do they then pray to a non existent God? Could it not be that they still believe in the one true God but in an incomplete way? For whatever reason, ignorance, obduracy they reject Our Lord but they worship the Father albeit incompletely. Otherwise they are no better than pagans.

              • Christiana,

                Athanasius has already quoted key biblical texts to you. Let me add one more. Christ said “nobody comes to the Father except through Me” – very clear. He was, remember, speaking to Jews at the time.

                So, would you explain how it can be that anyone can worship the Father, without Christ? If it is God the Father’s will that nobody come to Him except through Christ, how can anybody think they are going to the Father, worshipping Him and pleasing Him, without Christ?

                • Editor,
                  I tried to submit a post but it has not appeared so I’ll try again and hope it does not suddenly turn up! I am no theologian or scriptural expert so am probably well out of my depth on this blog! Neither am I a troll, just someone trying to find a way through the confusion in the Church at the moment. With regard to your question: how can anyone worship the Father without Christ? I do not know the answer but I don’t feel that the present day Jews are no better than pagans. Is it not possible that at least some of them worship in good faith according to what they have been taught, and we must just leave that to the mercy of God?

                  • Christiana

                    God reads the hearts of all men, wherein He has written His divine law. The Catholic Church has a complimentary doctrine to her infallible dogma “outside the Church no salvation”. That doctrine is the doctrine of “invincible ignorance,” which essentially leaves to God’s mercy the salvation of all souls who had no possible way in this life of coming to a knowledge of the truths of the Catholic religion. In other words, those who, in good faith, keep the Commandments of God in their lives and seek always to do His will by the lights they have, will be shown the mercy of God and attain to salvation.

                    But note, the Church declares in this regard that even while unknown to themselves these souls do in fact belong to the Church, not as physical members but certainly in spirit. For if they had known the truth about the Catholic Church they would certainly have entered. Note also that they are saved by the infinite merits of Our lord Jesus Christ, even though unaware of the fact in this life.

                    I should add, though, that few in terms of human numbers can lay claim to invincible ignorance, especially in this technological age where access to information is only a click on the keyboard away. Those who seek the truth and pray for a knowledge of it will find it.

                • Editor

                  I have no doubt that Athanasius and yourself are correct in what you say. Who am I to doubt, as someone might have said, but I am a bit like Christiana regarding the worshipping of the same God.

                  Surely God the Father is one and the same person that both Jews and Catholics adore. I don`t know too much about the merits of the Jewish devotion but I always assumed it to be the same God.

                  And by the way, if Christiana finds it difficult to understand then don`t expect me to. I know my place in the pecking order.

                  • Frankier

                    I have responded to Christiana’s question below, which you can take as a response to your post also. Sorry, I should have used both names in my response.

                  • Frankier,

                    Your post got me to thinking (did you smell the smoke?), so I Googled “references to the Holy Trinity in the Old Testament,” and found that (a) the Jews did indeed worship a Triune God, and (b) the OT is full of references to this. Here are a couple of sites (though I believe both are Protestant) addressing this: http://www.godandscience.org/apologetics/triunity.html

                    And: http://answering-islam.org/authors/rogers/ot_trinity.html

                    So I wonder if it is correct to say (I”m probably completely wrong about this) that the Jews do believe in the Triune God, while they reject the manifestation of the Second Person in Our Lord…

                    • RCA Victor

                      The fact that the Triune God is referenced in several places in the Old Testament, does not necessarily mean that the Jews themselves either understood or believed in a Triune God. They certainly did not understand the prophecies concerning Our Lord’s birth, mission and death.

                      We should consider, for example, that heaven for God’s faithful is also referenced many times in the OT, yet the Saducees did not believe in the afterlife.

                      At any rate, I found this declaration in the Jewish Encyclopedia: “the Jews have always regarded the doctrine of the Trinity as one irreconcilable with the spirit of the Jewish religion and with monotheism.”

                  • Frankier,

                    “I know my place in the pecking order.”

                    Now, don’t you go getting all humble on us now. Next thing we know you’ll be selling your house and buying a tent in which to live and move and blog. C’mon, the humility/simplicity thing has been done to death. Come back to us, we need you!

                    Seriously, I’ve never had any difficulty with this issue. God gradually revealed Himself to His people, and with the coming of Christ, the promised Messiah, and the sending of the Holy Spirit to be with the infant Church until the end of time, we saw the fulfilment of the Old Testament prophecies and promises. God is one, but – Father, Son and Holy Spirit,

                    The Jews, however, refuse to accept what God was revealing to them. Evidence for the Trinity is present in the OT Scriptures, although it became much clearer with the coming of Christ and the NT. Yet even some “Christians” – e.g. the Unitarians reject the divinity of Christ, seeing Him only as human. Nevertheless, they, too, claim to believe in “one God”.

                    The fact is, the Church teaches that we cannot divide God. We either accept Him in the dogma of the Trinity: God, Father, Son and Holy Spirit, or we create a god to suit our own preferences.

                    Really, Frankier The Humble And Ever So Simple 😉 it’s only common sense. Nobody, really, should need a theology degree to know that if God has revealed Himself as One in Three Distinct Persons, then we cannot choose one of the Three Distinct Persons to worship and discount the other two.

                    I thought I’d let Blessed John Henry Newman have the last word here:

                    “Lastly, it is added, “He therefore that will be saved, must thus think of the Trinity:” on which I make two remarks, and so conclude. First, what is very obvious, that such a declaration supposes that a person has the opportunity of believing. We are not speaking of heathens, but of Christians; of those who are taught the truth, who have the offer of it, and who reject it. Accordingly, we do not contemplate in this Creed cases of imperfect or erroneous teaching;—or of what may be called misinformation of the reason; or any case of invincible ignorance; but of a man’s wilful rejection of what has been fairly set before him. Secondly, when the Creed says that we “must think thus of the Trinity,” it would seem to imply, that it had been drawing out a certain clear, substantive, consistent, and distinctive view of the doctrine, which is the Catholic view; and that, in opposition to other views of it, whether Sabellian, or Arian, or Tritheistic, or others that might be mentioned; all of which, without denying in words the Holy Three, do deny Him in fact and in the event, and involve their wilful maintainers in the anathema which is here proclaimed, not in harshness, but as a faithful warning, and a solemn protest.

                    May we never speak on subjects like this without awe; may we never dispute without charity; may we never inquire without a careful endeavour, with God’s aid, to sanctify our knowledge, and to impress it on our hearts, as well as to store it in our understandings!”

                    You can read his entire sermon on the Trinity here

                    • Editor

                      My confessing to “humility” is because I can`t match people like yourself and Athanasius, and even Christiana, in debate, so I try not to get into situations that would leave me vulnerable to the egg on the face. That`s why I have to try a wee bit of satire at times which, unfortunately, can be misconstrued.

                      I am always willing to learn though, despite the fact that I am now no longer a scone of yesterday`s baking, and I was only trying to point out that while the Jews may only have accepted Christ as a prophet, I always assumed that they worshipped the same Almighty God as ourselves, i.e. God the Father but not the whole Trinity.

                      I took it that Athanasius` answer to Christiana was that the Jews worshipped a different God.

              • Christiana

                “Would you then say that they no longer worship the God of their forefathers and the Old Testament?”

                Well, let Our Lord again answer your question:

                “Abraham your father rejoiced that he might see my day: he saw it, and was glad. The Jews therefore said to him: Thou art not yet fifty years old, and hast thou seen Abraham? Jesus said to them: Amen, amen I say to you, before Abraham was made, I am. They took up stones therefore to cast at him. But Jesus hid himself, and went out of the temple.” (John 8).

                Bear in mind that when Our Lord said “I am,” He was reminding them of the words used by God on Mount Sinai when Moses asked for His name. God replied to Moses: “I am”. In other words, I am from all eternity without beginning or end. So when Our Lord used the same resposne to the Jews, they knew that He was saying that He is the same God whospoke to Moses on Mount Sinai.

                • Editor and Athanasius,

                  The quotes you offer are of course indisputable. It is just that it does not seem right to call the Jews pagans. I am no theologian or expert on Scripture, maybe simply out of my depth here. Our Lord was speaking about and to, the Jews of His time. Who do you think modern Jews pray to? I am not trolling or trying to be argumentative just trying to reconcile heart and mind I suppose.

                  • Cristiana

                    Not believing in the true God that we Catholics believe in does not automatically mean that the Jews are pagans, which they clearly are not.

                    Pagans worship false idols, Jews and Muslims do not. However, neither do they worship the true God who has revealed Himself through His Son Jesus Christ, the Redeemer of the world. In other words, their belief in God is a rationalist belief, not a faith-based belief which takes God at His word.

                    • Athanasius

                      Was it not the true God who gave Moses the Ten Commandments and obviously the one they still worship?

                      I was under the impression that the God I worship was the same God, otherwise why follow the Commandments?

                    • Frankier

                      Yes, it was the true God who gave Moses the Ten Commandments. But Moses believed in the coming Messiah and would most assuredly have recognised and adored Our Lord.

                      So my question to you is: Are those Jews who reject Our Lord the spiritual children of Moses?

                    • Frankier

                      Actually, this debate about whether or not the Jews believe in the same God as Catholics is really academic. I am quite prepared to say that they do at least believe in the same God of the Old Testament, but not in the triune God of the New Testament due to their rejection of Christ Our Lord. Whether this is to be classed as general belief in the same God as Catholics, only with a rejection of His essence and nature as divinely revealed is not the point.

                      The point is that jews who reject Jesus Christ are no different from Muslims who reject Him, or Buddhists, or Hindus. The divine truth revealed is that no one can be saved apart from Jesus Christ the Redeemer, and on that score the Pope has no business visiting Synagogues giving the impression that the Jews have some kind of special dispensation from believing in Our Lord by reason of God’s Covenant with them under the old law.

                      Christ Our Lord was the fulfilment of all the prophecies of the Old Testament, the promised Messiah who would save His people from their sins. So fidelity to the Covenant between God and His chosen people obliged the Jews to accept Our Lord when He manifested Himself to them. They failed in this fidelity and so God turned to the Gentiles, who did accept the Messiah.

                      That’s why Our Lord wept over Jerusalem, saying: “If thou also hadst known, and that in this thy day, the things that are to thy peace; but now they are hidden from thy eyes.”

                      It is why He declared in the Temple that they would not see Him henceforth until they learned to say “blessed is He who comes in the nameof the Lord”.

                      St. Paul spoke of it as a “blindness in part” that had come upon Israel until the time of the gentiles is fulfilled, meaning that the infidelity of the Jews is the reason for the hope of the gentiles, to who God turned to save. The same saint, like all the Scriptures, speak of the Jews one day accepting Jesus as their Saviour, but when and how that will come about no one knows.

                      Until that great day, however, there is no possibility of salvation for Jews or anyone else who rejects the Son of God, Jesus Christ, who alone is the Redeemer and Saviour of men. It is the greatest sin against divine truth and charity to declare otherwise, and that’s why no Pope excepting the post-conciliar Modernists, ever did such an unthinkable thing in 2000 years of the Church’s sacred history.

          • Christiana2

            The Jewish people have not rejected Jesus. They do not know him.

            We have some Holy Scripture in common remember, as God revealed himself to them first.

            Further Acts 17: 16 – 34 comes to mind. In a sense, They continue to serve God without fully knowing him. That is a completely different matter to rejecting him.

            Likewise, The Pope recognises difficulties, and possibilities in the dialogue with The Lutherans, As he said on Monday 18th January:

            “Your ecumenical pilgrimage is an eloquent sign of the fact that, as Lutherans, Orthodox and Catholics, you have recognized what unites you and together you wish to bear witness to Jesus Christ, who is the foundation of unity,” Pope Francis said.
            “In our dialogue, differences still remain in doctrine and in practice,” he continued.
            This must not discourage us, but instead spur us along our journey towards ever greater unity, not least by working to overcome old ideas and suspicions,” said the Holy Father. “In a world frequently torn by conflict and marked by secularism and indifference, we are called to join in professing our faith in Jesus Christ, and thus to become ever more credible witnesses of unity and promoters of peace and reconciliation.”

            • WACJ

              The Jewish people do not know Jesus? The Chief Rabbi of Rome knows enough to instruct the Pope to tell Catholics they don’t want to convert. Our Lord came to convert the Jews. They rejected Him then, as a people, and they reject Him now, as a people.

              As for the Lutheran debacle. Rorate Caeli spells it out here

              Take special note of the prayers of thanksgiving for the wonderful Reformation – I can’t recall any other schism in history being celebrated by a Pope who actually helped compose the prayers thanking God for the “gifts and insights” blah blah of this marvellous break with Christ’s Church.

              Truly, you couldn’t make it up.

              Can’t wait to hear your defence.

              • A defence? No one who has truly encountered Jesús Christ could resist him. Therefore, logic alone, says The Chief Rabbi and other observant Jews have not met jesus.

                • WACJ,

                  You’re playing games here. We’re not talking about “knowing Jesus” in the spiritual sense (often used by those who speak about a mere emotional “knowledge”, incidentally) but about those who know about Jesus and His claims. Jews know that Jesus claimed to be their long awaited Messiah – they just refused to accept that truth.

                  • Editor

                    I am not playing at games.

                    I am assuming that as people of faith we make a distinction between knowing something at an intellectual level, and the assent of faith.

                    The men who were to become Apostles journeyed with Jesus for three years, and, yet failed to understand Jesus or his mission. St Peter made a profound profession of faith in him, and disowned him in his darkest hour.

                    Jesus criticised those who want more miracles, and yet did no see what the miracles were pointing to.

                    You and I probably know lots about Buddha, The Hindu Faith, and even Mohammed but that is not the same thing as believing in them, or their message.

                    No doubt you have relatives, possibly in-laws, of siblings?, and yet many of them are not Catholic even though they live with Catholics. That is common to many.

                    • WACJ

                      “You and I probably know lots about Buddha, The Hindu Faith, and even Mohammed but that is not the same thing as believing in them, or their message.”

                      And the reason we don’t believe in the Buddha, Hinduism or Muhammed, is because, while we know ABOUT them, we don’t believe in them. We CHOOSE not to believe in them.

                      That’s what the Rabbi in Rome is doing. Not only is he choosing NOT to believe in Christ, but he’s instructing Catholics not to try to teach him about Christ.

                      With respect, the Jews must have noticed by now that their long awaited Messiah hasn’t turned up – their land is desolate (sure was when I visited it in the 80s and it hasn’t improved since then, if my TV news channel is anything to go by) so it seems illogical to me that they continue to shun the one singularly important historical figure in history who laid claim to being that long-awaited Messiah.

                      Back full square to your claim that if they only “knew” Jesus (in the spiritual sense) they would believe. But, unlike the Buddha, Hindu gods and Muhammed,Christ’s divinity places Him on a different level from all other so-called religious leaders; there is a duty to make the leap of Faith, embrace the truth because it comes from God, and then, seek understanding. It’s not a question of waiting until we are academically satisfied that Christ is God and all that flows from that; there’s no exercise of Faith there. We embrace Christ’s revelation, God the Father’s revelation in Christ, and our faith and understanding will grow thereafter.

                      There’s certainly a heck of a lot more reason for the Jewish Rabbi to withdraw his prohibition on learning about Christ (and embracing the Faith of Christ) than for any of us to take seriously the religions you list.

                      PS – your comment, yet again, went into moderation. This is a mystery because there are, believe it or not, NO names in the moderation box at this time. I have checked the other folders and nothing that I can see explains why this is happening. I can only apologise and promise that I will release any comments as soon as I see them.

                    • Editor

                      We await many things that have not yet happened including The Second Coming that was expected at the time of The Apostles.

                      Unless I have got it wrong Jesus, The Messiah, does not tick any of the boxes that Orthodox Jews expect to be ticked.

                      Further, Saul, a truly observant Jew wholly committed to his faith, and open to God, unlike the other Apostles, had The Road to Damascus experience.

                      The prayer for Jews on Good Friday says “Let us also pray for the Jews: That our God and Lord may illuminate their hearts, that they acknowledge Jesus Christ is the Savior of all men. (Let us pray. Kneel. Rise.) Almighty and eternal God, who want that all men be saved and come to the recognition of the truth, propitiously grant that even as the fullness of the peoples enters Thy Church, all Israel be saved. Through Christ Our Lord. Amen”.

                      In other words The Church, not me, believes as yet their hearts have not been illuminated by faith in Christ, and prays that it will be so.

                    • WACJ,

                      Well, this whole discussion began because the Rabbi in Rome is demanding that all attempts at converting Jews be stopped, and it’s not good enough for him that the Pope has said this is to be the case in a document. And secondly, that he wishes the prayer which you quote, the Good Friday prayer for the conversion of Jews, to be withdrawn – not good enough that it has been amended, but it must not be said at all.

                      Thus, clearly, they do not wish to have” their hearts illuminated by faith in Christ.” They reject that.

                      That’s the whole point. Your claim that somehow their not “knowing” Christ (in a spiritual sense) means they are not culpable, but the fact that they explicitly rule out ever knowing Christ, changes that theory. We know that the Church wishes it to be so, but the Jews have said, clearly, “no thanks”. God accepts our free will choices. He doesn’t force Himself on anyone. He didn’t force Himself on the Jews of the first century and He wont force Himself on the Jews of the 21st century. The Jews of the first century rejected Christ as their Messiah and the Jews of the 21st century are clearly doing the same. Facts are facts.

                    • You may recall I referred to St Paul and Damascus. It is sheer nonsense to expects Jews collectively to accept Jesus, in faith. But individuals do.

                      Likewise, The Church still recognises them as The Chosen People etc. Or as, I think, Pope Benedict, put it an “elder brother”.

                      As Jesus doesn’t fulfil their expectations of a Messiah, and as many of his followers have actively persecuted them it is not difficult to see the difficult.

                      You many be aware today is Holocaust Memorial Day. Try to see God, and the world, as a Jew might, and, in fact, as The Church does.

                    • Who Alone Can Judge,

                      “Try to see God, and the world, as a Jew might”

                      When will they try to see the world as we do, why do they tell us to lack integrity and do the opposite of what Jesus instructed us to do, go out and convert the whole world, including Jews?

                      All this Jewish-Catholic dialogue is one way.

                    • WACJ

                      Please do not feed us the old myth that the Catholic Church persecuted the Jews or conspired in their persecution, it is patent nonsense. You believe that rubbish if you must, but don’t try to pass the myth on to us.

                      And if you want to know who, historically, has persecuted who, then read the trials of St. Paul in Acts. You may also wish to catch up on the calumnies levelled by certain international Jewish organisations against the saintly Pius XII, who exhausted all means, including his personal family fortune, trying to save as many from the Nazis as he could.

                    • Nowhere, have I said The Catholic Church persecuted Jews.

                      However, I can’t think of one thing done by Jews that could explain, or justify, The Holocaust, and that was the action of The Gentile, largely Christian, world or a world that failed to do enough at the time. That is not to say that various Catholics are not recognised as Righteous Gentiles.

                      Not once have I mentioned any Pope, for good or ill, in this context.

                      Further in terms of conversions no other faith is singled out for Prayer as are Jews on Good Friday. I think there is something that goes what we pray is what we believe.

                    • WACJ,

                      The Jews are singled out for particular prayer because they were the Chosen People, singled out by God Himself, to play a central role in His salvation plan. It was an honour.

                      It’s rather odd, in my view, to regard praying for the conversion to Christ of any individual or group, as some kind of insult. Surely, the fact that we seek to share the great gift of our Catholic Faith with the Jews, despite the fact that they rejected Him in the first century and that they continue to publicly reject Him, shows our eagerness to share what is, after all, a marvellous privilege? You know, if someone of a different denomination or non-Christian religion told me that they were praying for MY conversion, I would certainly smile and think “no way!” but I would never regard it as an insult and would recognise their kindness and regard for my soul, albeit misplaced, so, at the risk of being accused of being anti-Semitic, I have to admit that I have a lot of difficulty with the arrogant attitude displayed by the Rome Rabbi.

                      Finally, I have to say that your latest post reminds me of the powers-that-be in Catholic education – in particular the then new Director (names escapes me at the moment), writing his first column in the Scottish Catholic Observer and insisting that under his leadership they would not be “imposing any particular Tradition” on any children in Catholic schools. Such is the nature of the current, unique crisis in the Church, that the Faith of our Fathers, handed down to us from the Apostles, is now regarded as something undesirable, something that we no longer “impose”. When was the last time you spoke about “imposing” a birthday or Christmas gift on your family or friends?

                    • Editor

                      In Orthodox Judaism you need to be born of a Jewish Mother. They do not proselytise. That might be why The Rabbi is particularly sensitive on the subject.

                      I have said that to pray for something The Church must, in some way, also be working to bring it about. What we pray is what we believe!

                      I have had the privilege of being a Governor in more than one school, over some decades, and I don’t know of any where the expectation is that, and this is put on Application Forms, that all parents seeking admission for their children will support the ethos of The School. That ethos would include the living out, and teaching, of The Faith, and Catholic Worship. That is why we have Catholic Schools.

                    • WACJ,

                      People have even put on Application Forms that they are Catholics/baptised when they’re either NOT or have signed up somewhere for the purpose of getting into the school. Happens in C of E schools as well.

                      Anyway, about that famous “ethos” – I’ve now posted a new thread on the subject of Catholic schools – check it out here.

                      But let me say this: I’ve been Head of RE in three Catholic establishments across England and, believe me, the Governors get to know exactly what the Head wants them to know and not a lot more. Enquire about the living arrangements of the staff, ask if any are cohabiting or in a “civil partnership” and see how, very suddenly, the Governors’ meeting becomes very much more lively. Just make sure you’re sitting near the door. Now, we can continue this discussion on the Catholic schools thread, if you don’t mind, as it’s really off topic here.

            • WACJ

              “The Jewish people have not rejected Jesus. They do not know him…”

              What planet are you living on?

              “Your ecumenical pilgrimage is an eloquent sign of the fact that, as Lutherans, Orthodox and Catholics, you have recognized what unites you and together you wish to bear witness to Jesus Christ, who is the foundation of unity,” Pope Francis said.

              “When there is question of fostering unity among Christians, it is easy for many to be misled by the apparent excellence of the object to be achieved. Is it not right, they ask, is it not the obvious duty of all who invoke the name of Christ to refrain from mutual reproaches and at last to be united in charity? Dare anyone say that he loves Christ and yet not strive with all his might to accomplish the desire of Him who asked His Father that His disciples might be “one”? (John 17:21)… If only all Christians were “one,” it is contended, then they might do so much more to drive out the plague of irreligion which, with its insidious and far-reaching advance, is threatening to sap the strength of the Gospel. In reality, however, these fair and alluring words cloak a most grave error, subversive of the foundations of the Catholic religion…” (Mortalium Animos, Pope Pius XI).

              “…With the admonition of the Apostle that there is “one Lord, one faith, one baptism” (Eph. 4:5), may those fear who contrive the notion that the safe harbor of salvation is open to persons of any religion whatever. They should consider the testimony of Christ Himself who said “He that is not with me, is against me” (Luke 11:23), and that they disperse unhappily who do not gather with Him. Therefore “without a doubt, they will perish forever, unless they hold the Catholic faith whole and entire…” (Gregory XVI, Mirari Vos).

  8. My posts are not appearing?

    Editor: I don’t know why that is – you are not in moderation (yet!)
    One post has your username as Who Aline (not Alone) so that will go through as a first time blogger. Will release your posts now, although dispense with one duplicate. Sorry about that.

  9. Maybe the Jews would have accepted Jesus as The Messiah if he had been born on the other side of the world.

    After all, when your local carpenter`s apprentice suddenly proclaims to be the Son of God you would start being a wee bit suspicious of him.

  10. Athanasius,

    For some reason there is no “Reply” link next to your reply to my post about the Jews and the Trinity, so I’ll reply here. After I posted that, I looked up the subject in Spirago & Clarke and found this (end of #5, pg. 131): “But before the Incarnation the mystery of the Blessed Trinity was veiled in a cloud which was only dispelled under the New Law. ‘The Church,’ says St. Hilary, ‘knows this mystery. The Synagogue believed it not. Philosophy understood it not.'”

    I guess I’m not surprised that the Jews didn’t understand their own Scriptures – esp. since we now have a Pope who appears not to understand them either!

    • RCA Victor,

      It’s not “for some reason” that there is sometimes no Reply button. As I keep explaining to folks, she said through gritted teeth, once a certain number of replies appear under a particular comment, the reply buttons disappear. I think it’s 10 or maybe 15, something like that. But all you have to do is to scroll up to the first available reply button, click on that, type your response, and your reply will appear under the post to which you are replying. Most of the time. The rest of the time, not my fault – blame WordPress 😀

  11. While we are thinking about and discussing the Jewish people, if you did not see it there was the most beautiful programme to mark Holocaust Memorial Day on TV this evening. The young man singing the prayer for the dead was exceptional. Well worth seeing.

    • Christiana,

      I sometimes wonder why the Holocaust is the only atrocity ever marked. There’s services and documentaries all the time about it, yet there are loads of other terrible atrocities which are hardly even mentioned. Someone made that point in a TV programme about it the other day but it was only made in passing and not picked up by anyone to discuss.

      • Margaret Mary,

        I think that part of the reason that we hear a lot about the holocaust, especially at the Memorial Day time is that the Jews who survived and their descendants are determined that it never be forgotten. There are a lot of Jewish people who are prominent in the world of music, art and theatre so I suppose that is why they have the means to keep that terrible time in the public consciousness.
        Other genocides, Rwanda, Darfur, Cambodia etc were actually mentioned in the rabbi’s address last night.

        • Christiana2

          I’ll bet the Rabbi didn’t mention abortion, the Holocaust to rival all others together!

      • MM

        Like the millions of abortions carried out in the UK alone over the past fifty years?

        If you called that a holocaust you would be wheeled to the nearest detention centre in handcuffs.

  12. If the Jews in the time of Christ failed to recognise Him for the Messiah, because they expected an earthly king, surely today’s Jews have no excuse, having had 2,000 years to study their OT and see that He fulfilled all the Messianic prophecies.

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