JEWS-CATHOLICS: CARD. KOCH (HOLY SEE), COUNCIL “BINDING FOR ALL” (2)
Answering a question about Holocaust-denying Lefebvre bishop Richard Williamson, Card. Koch recalled that “the Holy Father has already clarified his position”. “Denying the Holocaust – he pointed out – is unacceptable both in the Catholic Church and in a fair and honest historical analysis”. As for “Nostra Aetate”, the cardinal said, “it is important and beautiful, but it remains a paper document. It is more important, as the Pope says, to pray for mutual forgiveness and reconciliation, and even better to do so in Jerusalem”. Hence he referred to his upcoming trip to Israel “to deepen relations with chief rabbis in Jerusalem as well as with the leaders of other Christian Churches”, and most important, to “strengthen the friendship between the Catholic Church and the people of Israel”. “Mutual understanding is essential” to establishing an authentic dialogue. “In this regard, education should not be based on information but rather on encounter and mutual exchange”. “The highest goal of dialogue” between Catholics and Jews, he added, “is reconciliation in the unity of our common roots”. “We need to find out how to educate our students in this”, Rabbi Jack Bemporad, director of the John Paul II Center for Interreligious Studies which sponsored the event, concluded.