NEW YORK (Oct. 4)
Pope Paul VI, addressing representatives of all major faiths at the Holy Family Church here today, voiced a warm plea for the participation of all peoples of all religions in the world’s quest for peace. Nearly 50 representatives of organizations in the United States including leaders of all three major Jewish denominations–Orthodox, Conservative and Reform–attended the session.
Philip M. Klutznick, former United States Ambassador to the United Nations Economic and Social Council, responded to the Pope on behalf of the American Jewish community.
After voicing a general plea for peace, the pontiff told the gathering: “This message we intend not only for the Catholic organizations represented at the United Nations, but we likewise extend it to all of you here present, representing various Protestant and Jewish organizations accredited with the various organizations of the United Nations. The work of peace is not restricted to one religious belief, it is the work and duty of every human person regardless of his religious conviction. Men are brothers, God is their father, and their father wills that they live in peace with one another as brothers should.
“For our part, we thank you for the cordial friendship which you have accorded our observers and we promise our collaboration insofar as we can join in your studies, your programs and your activities and to this we Join our prayers for the success of your efforts and for God’s choicest blessings on your noble endeavors.”
KLUTZNICK RESPONDS ON BEHALF OF JEWISH ORGANIZATIONS
In responding on behalf of the American Jewish community, Mr. Klutznick told the Pope: “On this historic occasion of your visit to the United Nations in quest for world peace, we greet you on behalf of the Jewish organizations and agencies related to the work of the United Nations and of the Jewish Center for the United Nations.
“During this hour of trial for humanity as mankind faces continuing crises, your meeting with representatives of the faith communities gives new promise for the future. Our world yearns for a great moral revival to forestall the evil and to strive toward the realization of the Prophet’s vision which Your Excellency expressed so eloquently this afternoon: ‘Nation shall not lift up sword against nation, neither shall they learn war anymore.’
“As a people whose ideal is shalom, peace, we pledge our untiring efforts to help promote peace in every dimension–political, social and economic. Your presence here is one more meaningful manifestation of the moral and spiritual basis indispensable to a lasting peace with truth and Justice–which material and finite resources alone cannot achieve.”
Virtually every one of the 47 Jewish leaders announced yesterday by the Papal Visit News Center to have been invited to the interfaith meeting with Pope Paul was present at the session in the modernistic Roman Catholic church half a block from the United Nations complex.
One of the few changes in the list was the presence of Rabbi Emanuel Rackman, assistant to the president of Yeshiva University instead of Dr. Samuel Belkin, president of the institution. Moses I. Feuerstein, president of the Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations of America, represented his organization; George Maislen, president of the United Synagogue of America, was the chief representative of the Conservative movement; and Rabbi Maurice Eisendrath and Dr. Nelson Glueck were the principal representatives of the Reform movement. The American Jewish Committee delegation, led by president Morris B. Abram, included all former presidents and Dr. John Slawson, executive vice-president. Among the absentees were Dr. Louis Finkelstein, Chancellor of the Jewish Theological Seminary and Dr. Isaac Lewin of the Agudath Israel.
Some of the Jews present including a number of rabbis and Orthcdox representatives, met at a point to sit not in the chapel but in the adjoining Pacem in Terris library.