“First the Jews suffered savage attacks, & the world remained in silence. Now it is the Christians who are being annihilated, & once more the world says little.” Pope Francis reportedly told World Jewish Congress head.
Pope Francis has warned that Christians in Iraq and Syria face persecution just as Jews have in the past, a prominent American Jewish leader said Thursday.
“You have suffered, now it’s our turn,” World Jewish Congress president Ronald Lauder said the pope told him in a private audience.
Francis also repeated his recent warning that the global rash of religious extremism may have sparked “a third world war”, said Lauder, who met with the Roman Catholic leader late Wednesday at the Vatican. Continue Reading »
Vatican plays down any expectations or that the meeting will lead to any immediate breakthrough in the ailing peace process.
The prayer meeting is being billed as a ‘pause from politics.’
Israeli and Palestinian presidents were to meet in an unprecedented prayer meeting with Pope Francis on Sunday, a gesture he hopes will “re-create a desire, a possibility” of relaunching the Middle East’s stalled peace process.
Peres and the Pope – CTV screenshot
The Vatican has played down any expectations that the Sunday evening meeting between Shimon Peres and Mahmoud Abbas – billed as a “pause from politics” – will lead to any immediate breakthroughs in the region’s tortuous problems and says it is not meddling in regional issues. Continue Reading »
Despite termination of peace-talks, Israel’s President will lead an interfaith delegation to Rome, where he will call upon leaders of all religions to work together towards inter-religious dialogue.
Despite Israel’s objections to the Palestinian unity government, Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu and members of the government, realizing the historic importance of the occasion, gave President Shimon Peres the green light to accept the invitation of Pope Francis and travel to the Vatican on Sunday for an interfaith prayer for peace in the Middle East.
Pope Francis meets President Shimon Peres – Photo: קובי גדעון/לע”מ
Although arrangements were made in advance, it was not certain until Thursday afternoon that Peres would receive the necessary approval. Continue Reading »
The Vatican’s Secretary of State says Pope Francis plans to talk about the ‘Palestinian right to a sovereign, independent homeland’ during his visit to Israel.
By Ari Yashar
The Vatican’s Secretary of State made a dramatic revelation ahead of Pope Francis’s visit to Israel next Sunday and Monday, declaring that the pope will talk about the “Palestinian people’s right to have a homeland, sovereign and independent.”
Vatican Sec’y of State Pietro Parolin – Reuters
Cardinal Pietro Parolin holds a role in the Vatican City State, located in the Italian capital of Rome, equivalent to that of a prime minister. Continue Reading »
Israeli Arab lawmaker appeals to Vatican in a letter, asking help in stopping Arabic-speaking Christians from integrating too much with Israel.
By Israel Today Staff
Israeli Arab Member of Knesset Basel Ghattas has issued an appeal to Pope Francis to personally intervene against the enlistment of Arabic-speaking Christians in the Israeli army.
Israeli Arab Member of Knesset Basel Ghattas – Photo source: Israel Today
Haaretz reports that Ghattas’ letter was delivered to the Vatican’s representative in Jerusalem, Archbishop Giuseppe Lazzarotto, in hopes that Pope Francis would address the issue when he visits the Holy Land in May.
Like most other minorities, local Arabic-speaking Christians are not required to serve in the Israeli army, but a growing number are choosing to do so, many at the encouragement of the Nazareth-based Israeli Christian Recruitment Forum. Continue Reading »
In advance of the Pope’s May visit to Jerusalem, the Vatican is in negotiations for the Church’s control of Mount Zion.
Israel could be entering the final stages of negotiations to turn over control of Mount Zion to the Vatican, if recent reports by Israel National News are to be believed.
St Peter’s Square, Vatican City – Photo courtesy: Wikimedia Commons
According to the online news source, a secretive meeting took place this week between the Jerusalem Municipality, Prime Minister’s Office, Ministry of Tourism and senior Catholic officials.
During the meeting, the Catholic delegation reportedly pressed Israel to follow through on a years-old proposal to give the Church control over the compound that houses the traditional “Hall of the Last Supper.” Continue Reading »
Pontiff’s May Visit will include Jerusalem, Bethlehem & Amman.
Pope Francis announced on Sunday that he will visit Israel, the Palestinian Authority and Jordan in May, his first trip to the region as pontiff.
A handout picture released by the Osservatore Romano shows Pope Francis (L) holding a mass to celebrate the sainthood of Pierre Favre at the Chiesa Del Gesu’ in Rome on January 3, 2014. – Photo: AFP
The May 24-26 trip to Jerusalem, Bethlehem and Amman will mark the 50th anniversary of a landmark trip there by Pope Paul VI in 1964, the first by a pope in modern times. Continue Reading »
Catholic pontiff’s truncated trip disappoints Israeli Christians expecting papal-led Mass in Jerusalem.
Officials in Jerusalem ask Vatican to reconsider decision to hold single service only in Bethlehem.
By Itamar Eichner
Pope Francis will arrive in the Jewish State for a whirlwind visit to Israel and the Palestinian territories on March 25, 2014. The trip will last less than 48 hours, as the Roman pontiff will arrive in the morning hours on Sunday and leave the following night.
Pope Francis at Mass – Photo: EPA
The forward delegation sent on behalf of the Vatican finished its initial visit to Israel on Tuesday, and preparations are underway for the Bishop of Rome’s trip. Continue Reading »
During an official visit to Italy next week, Israel’s Prime Minister Netanyahu is expected to meet with Pope Francis.
Pope Francis will visit Israel on May 25-26, Italian news agency ANSA reported on Thursday. The report cited CNN’s Jake Tapper, who posted the news on Twitter.
Pope Francis I – Photo: AFP
ANSA said the Vatican would not confirm the dates.
The report comes after the release this week of “Evangelii Gaudium” (The Joy of the Gospel), a 224-page document outlining the pope’ vision of the church and its mission.
“Dialogue and friendship with the children of Israel are part of the life of Jesus’ disciples,” Francis wrote in the document. Continue Reading »
Pope Francis, Merkel, Obama & thousands of ordinary Germans among those commemorating the 75th anniversary of the 1938 pogrom.
Pope Francis commemorated Kristallnacht at a mass in front of thousands of people in St. Peter’s Square on Sunday, describing the Jewish people as the “big brothers” of his Roman Catholic flock.
Pope Francis delivers his blessing during the Angelus noon prayer he celebrated from the window of his studio overlooking St. Peter’s Square, at the Vatican, Sunday, Nov. 10, 2013 – Photo AP
Riots organized by German authorities on November 9-10, 1938 killed 91 Jews and destroyed 267 synagogues. Continue Reading »
Benjamin Netanyahu to meet Pope Francis at the Vatican to discuss Iran and then meet with US Secretary of State Kerry to discuss the peace talks.
By The Associated Press
Israel‘s prime minister plans to meet with the pope on a trip to Italy next week.
President of Israel Shimon Peres, Papa Francisco I, April 30, 2013 – Photo courtesy: GPO
Benjamin Netanyahu is scheduled to meet Pope Francis at the Vatican next Wednesday. Israeli President Shimon Peres, who serves in a largely ceremonial position, met the head of the Catholic church in April.
Earlier this week, Israel’s Channel 2 reported that Pope Francis will visit Israel in Marc
A statement Wednesday from the prime minister’s office announcing the scheduled meeting said Netanyahu also will meet US Secretary of State John Kerry on the same trip. Continue Reading »