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Pope Benedict Expected to Visit Israel

Despite an ongoing controversy between Israel and the Vatican pertaining to the role of Pope Pious XII during WWII, it appears the current pope; Benedict XVI is expected to make a visit.

Senior officials in the Vatican indicated a number of months ago that such a visit would be contingent on Israel dropping objections to immortalizing Pious, who is viewed by Yad Vashem as having been indifferent and remained silent to the German atrocities. In John Cornwell’s book, Hitler’s Pope, the pope is criticized for not speaking out or doing enough.

In a more recent event, On October 9, 2008, the 50th anniversary of Pius XII’s death, Benedict XVI celebrated Pontifical Mass in his memory. Shortly prior to, and after the mass, dialectics continued between the Jewish hierarchy and the Vatican as Haifa Chief Rabbi Shear Yashuv Cohen Shlita addressed the Synod of Bishops and expressed his disappointment and criticism towards Pius XII’s “silence” during the war.

On the other side, the Catholic Church wishes to canonize the pope, but Yad Vashem strongly objects to such a move based on evidence pointing to different realities than the Church would have the world believe.

The president invited the pope last year and it appears the Vatican has decided to respond positively to the invitation at this time.

(Yechiel Spira – YWN Israel)

3 Responses

  1. “If you were weak in another’s day of affliction, your strength will become limited. If you desist from rescuing those being put to death, and those on the way to be murdered, and yet you say, ‘Surely we did not know this’; the One Who resides in hearts, he understands, and the Protector of your soul, He knows, and He recompenses a man according to his deeds.”
    (Proverbs 24:10-12)

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