Vatican II—the Catholic Church’s commission that liberalized many Catholic practices—was a watershed for Jews, too. The most famous Jewish-related doctrine to come out of it, “Nostra Aetate,” bluntly denounced anti-Semitism, and perhaps most significantly, said that Jews today, and throughout history, should not be held responsible for Jesus’ death. Most often, Vatican II is celebrated by Jews as a great turning-point for Catholics, and something of a mea culpa for the Church’s problematic relationship with the Nazis. But
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