Catholic Church

Jews Split On Pius Sainthood Action

Surprise move by Benedict for wartime pope leading to fresh schism among interfaith experts.

12/23/2009
Staff Writer

A cloud of suspicion will hover above the Bishop of Rome when he crosses the Tiber River to visit Rome’s Great Synagogue next month.

Pope Benedict XVI’s planned visit on Jan. 17 to the synagogue — the second in history by the leader of the Roman Catholic Church — will take place in the shadow of renewed controversy over Pope Pius XII, the pontiff during World War II whose ambiguous record has soured Jewish-Catholic relations for four decades.

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Rewrite Not In The Works

05/14/1999
Staff Writer
Efforts to eliminate anti-Semitic language and themes from the world's most famous Passion Play in time for its millennium production are not going smoothly. So says an unhappy Rabbi Leon Klenicki, director of interfaith affairs for the Anti-Defamation League, who returned to New York last week from unsuccessful meetings in the German village of Oberammergau trying to persuade the producers to make changes in the production, which will run May 22-Sept. 29, 2000.

Feeling The Church's Pain

05/03/2002
Staff Writer
As the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops gets set to meet next month in Dallas to hammer out a policy on how to deal with priests who sexually abuse children, one Long Island rabbi is offering his help and empathy. "We in the Jewish community feel the pain of the Catholic Church," said Rabbi Jeffrey Salkin of The Community Synagogue in Port Washington, L.I., and a vice president of the Long Island Board of Rabbis.

Vigorous Defense In Lanner Case

06/28/2002
Staff Writer
Freehold, N.J.: Were the Venetian blinds open or closed? After nearly three weeks of court testimony, the question about the level of privacy in a yeshiva high school principal's office was at the crux of the defense's case in the trial here of Rabbi Baruch Lanner, the disgraced former national Orthodox youth group leader.

Targeting Jews No More

08/16/2002
Staff Writer
While Islamic anti-Judaism increases, a bit of positive interfaith news emerged this week from American Catholic leaders. U.S. Catholic bishops declared Monday that campaigns that target Jews for conversion to Christianity "are no longer theologically acceptable in the Catholic Church." This conclusion is contained in a 12-page joint Catholic-Jewish statement called "Reflections on Covenant and Mission" issued with the National Council of Synagogues, representing the Conservative and Reform Jewish streams.

Dealing With Dialogue Crisis

03/26/1999
Staff Writer
What will be the future of Catholic-Jewish dialogue if the international Jewish interfaith coalition known as IJCIC is officially disbanded? That's the question facing Jewish interfaith leaders this week, following the surprising announcement by the Vatican's top Jewish liaison, Edward Cardinal Cassidy, that he considered the International Jewish Committee for Interreligious Consultation "no longer in existence " as a dialogue partner for the Vatican.

Jesus' Death Now Debated By Jews

10/03/2003
Staff Writer
The controversy over Mel Gibson's upcoming film about the death of Jesus has spurred painful exchanges between Jews and Christians and progressive and traditional Catholics in recent days. To date, the debates have centered on the "proper" interpretation of the role of Jews in Jesus' Crucifixion, as presented in the four New Testament Gospels. But this week, Gibson's $25 million biblical epic, which the director insists is about love and forgiveness, has triggered a new squabble: among Jewish scholars.

Foxman: Gibson Spewing 'Anti-Semitism'

09/19/2003
Staff Writer
Mel Gibson's mouth has turned into a lethal weapon. So suggests Abraham Foxman, national director of the Anti-Defamation League, following a series of published and oral comments made by the award-winning Hollywood actor and director concerning his controversial upcoming movie about the death of Jesus of Nazareth. "Recent statements by Mel Gibson paint the portrait of an anti-Semite," Foxman told The Jewish Week Tuesday.

'Passion' Is Lacking For Scholars Report

06/20/2003
Staff Writer
Score one for Mel Gibson. The Catholic Church's official voice in America has washed its hands of a report by some of its own scholars that warns that Gibson's film about the death of Jesus invokes anti-Semitic images and flouts Catholic doctrine. The unexpected response by the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops comes after Gibson threatened to sue the group over an allegedly "stolen" script given to interfaith scholars, who concluded the movie will foment anti-Semitism.
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