Pope Francis has encouraged Catholics and Jews to continue working together, especially in efforts to combat Anti-Semitism and persecution of Christians around the world.
The Holy Father did so in his greeting delivered to the participants in the 24th Convention of the “International Catholic Jewish Liaison Committee” (ILC).
“Our strength is the strength of the encounter, leading to certain quarters today, which leads to conflict only,” he stressed in the message, underscoring: “One never errs in seeking dialogue. ”
The Roman Pontiff offered encouragement for a “better understanding” of one another and “to work together in a climate friendly environment.”
Applauding their efforts to promote Jewish-Catholic dialogue, the Holy Father prayed their gathering be “an encounter in peace and for peace.”
“May the blessing of the Most High with you, grant the tenacity of gentleness and the courage of patience. Shalom!” he said.
Here is the Vatican-provided English text of the Pope’s message:
I offer you warm welcome and I thank you for everything you do. Your gathering is something like a general assembly of all those professionally engaged in Jewish-Catholic dialogue. I am grateful to the International Jewish Committee for Interreligious Consultations (IJCIC), to the Commission for Religious Relations with the Jews, to make a possible meeting.
From the promulgation of Nostra Aetate until now, Jewish-Catholic dialogue has borne good fruit. We share a rich spiritual patrimony that can and must be more esteemed and appreciated as we grow in mutual understanding, fraternity and shared commitment on behalf of others. In this regard, your Meeting aims to help develop points of convergence and to promote a greater degree of cooperation. It is fitting, too, that you are dealing with the problem of anti-Semitism, and about the persecution of Christians in various parts of the world. To say nothing of the state of Jewish-Catholic dialogue in Italy and in Israel, and its broader prospects.
I offer you encouragement, for a better understanding of one another and to work together in a climate friendly environment. Our strength is the strength of the encounter, leading to certain quarters today, which leads to conflict only. One never errs in seeking dialogue. Scripture points out that “deceit is in the mind of those who plan evil, but those who counsel peace have joy” ( Prov 12:20). I pray that your gathering may be an encounter in peace and for peace. May the blessing of the Most High with you, grant the tenacity of gentleness and the courage of patience. Shalom![Original text: English]