October 12, 2023

Verbatim: A very brief recent history of Catholics and Jews


A very brief recent history of Catholics and Jews…

Declaration of Jewish-Catholic dialogue for Canada

To mark the 50th anniversary of the publication by the Second Vatican Council of the Declaration Nostra Aetate and specifically its fourth section, which profoundly changed Catholic-Jewish relations by declaring that the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, the living God whose great Name Israel is commanded to sanctify and whom Catholics believe to be triune, abides and has never ceased to abide in continuing, covenantal relationship with Abraham’s stock;

In gratitude for the extraordinary blessings Catholics, Jews and people of all backgrounds enjoy as people living in Canada: a remarkable and vibrant democracy that provides countless opportunities for civic engagement in an environment of social harmony and cohesion as well as of profound respect;

In recognition of the indispensable value our respective faith communities have to offer the public square in addressing the myriad challenges facing Canadians;

The Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops (CCCB) and the Canadian Rabbinic Caucus (CRC) hereby commit to engage in a shared and sincere dialogue and intend as such to work together in order to:

  • Strengthen mutual understanding and ties between our communities by undertaking sustained cross-community dialogue, and encourage similar local initiatives across Canada so as to raise greater awareness of the improved and fruitful relationship between the Catholic Church and the Jewish people;
  • Oppose anti-Semitism and all forms of hatred, which are inherently inimical to the tenets of our respective faiths and the well-being of Canadian society as a whole;
  • Advance public policy issues of common cause, particularly those reflecting our shared values and commitment to equality, tolerance, social justice, compassion, religious freedom and the inalienable dignity and worth of every human life; and
  • Encourage civic engagement among Jewish and Catholic people in Canada, including grassroots cooperation and joint advocacy initiatives that provide our respective communities with greater opportunities to work together to contribute to the public policy discussion.

The Jewish and Catholic communities of Canada thank the Almighty for the gift of this new dialogue and pray for its continued fruitfulness.

November 2015

Canadian bishops urge government intervention on Israeli wall

OTTAWA - The Canadian government should urge Israel to stop construction of a section of its security wall that threatens the livelihood of 58 Christian families and a Catholic religious order, said the Canadian Conference of Catholic Bishops (CCCB) in a letter to Canada’s foreign affairs minister.

Gatineau Archbishop Paul-André Durocher, CCCB president, wrote to John Baird on Jan. 28 to express concern about a proposed section of Israel’s security wall that will bisect the Cremisan Valley south of Jerusalem. The wall will separate families from their farmland, prevent 400 poor students from attending a school run by Salesian sisters, place the Salesian convent “in a military zone” and separate the convent from a nearby monastery.

“We ask your government to raise our objections about the extension of the security wall in the Cremisan Valley, with the hope that a change to the present Israeli plan could become one step forward toward making it possible for Palestinians and Israelis to live in peace and justice,” Durocher wrote.

“Consistent with the Holy See’s position, Canada’s Catholic Bishops are aware of Israel’s need for security, and we fully support that right. Nevertheless, we believe the wall as planned will only deepen the wounds between Palestinians and Israelis.” ...

Israel’s security wall, begun during the 2002 Intifada uprising, is a concrete barrier ... stretching for more than 425 kilometres.

Canadian Catholic News

February, 2014

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