Benedict XVI Sends Message to Chief Rabbi of Rome

VATICAN CITY, APRIL 22, 2005 ( One of Benedict XVI’s first messages was to Riccardo di Segni, chief rabbi of Rome, in which the new Pope commits himself to reinforce the dialogue with the Jewish people.

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The telegram, sent Wednesday, was in response to the rabbi’s note of congratulations in which he expressed the hope that Benedict XVI’s pontificate will serve to continue “a fruitful dialogue in respect of diversity.”

After receiving the Holy Father’s message, di Segni said: “I am pleased and grateful for this timely, important and significant message.”

The Pope’s message follows:

“May the Lord have mercy and bless us; may his light shine upon us. On April 19, 2005, the cardinals of the Holy Roman Church elected me Bishop of Rome and Pastor of the universal Catholic Church. In announcing my election and the solemn inauguration of my pontificate, on Sunday, April 24, at 10 o’clock, I trust in the help of the Almighty to continue with the dialogue and to reinforce collaboration with the sons and daughters of the Jewish people. Vatican, April 20, 2005, Benedictus XVI.”

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