Pope: Synagogue visit shows climate of respect, dialogue

VATICAN CITY — Pope Benedict looked ahead to his visit Sunday afternoon to the Jewish synagogue in Rome, saying at his noon blessing that despite Catholic-Jewish problems, the overall climate between the two religions was one of respect and dialogue. Here is a translation of his remarks in Italian:

This afternoon, almost 24 years after the historic visit made by the Venerable John Paul II, I will go to the great synagogue of Rome, called the Major Temple, to meet with the Jewish community of the city and mark another step on the path of harmony and friendship between Catholics and Jews.

In fact, despite the problems and difficulties, there is a climate of great respect and dialogue between believers of the two religions, which bears witness to how much relations have matured and to the common commitment to appreciate that which unites us: faith in the one God, above all, but also the safeguarding of life and the family, and the aspiration to social justice and peace.

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