"His words could not have been more clear." For the Custodian of the Holy Land, Father Pierbattista Pizzaballa, the speech addressed by the Holy Father to the delegation members of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations "is the proof that the controversy of the last few weeks was completely groundless. By his speech, the Pope wanted to put a definitive end to this event in a clear and unequivocal way," the custodian told the SIR. "Benedict XVI had reaffirmed the position the Church has always had on the matter." As for the visit to the Holy Land, "we know the Pontiff is planning it. It will be a very important visit and it is going to receive a proper reception. An important visit also to reaffirm the relations with Israel and with the Palestinian world and, above all, to encourage the local Christian community." From this point of view, the visit could be a further incentive "for the conclusion of the agreement on fiscal matters and on the properties belonging to the Church between the Holy See and Israel. There has been a considerable acceleration in negotiations over the last few months and I believe we must be close to an end, at least I hope."” “

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