An anti-Semitic and anti-Zionist Bible that the Catholic Church said should cease being published has again been made available to the public.
In response to this recent development, French Chief Rabbi Joseph Sitruk said he “deplored this evident theological drawback.”
“It’s a bad blow to the relations between Jews and Christians,” the rabbi added.
The book was originally published under the auspices of the Bishop of Versailles, Jean-Charles Thomas. But when the Vatican was made aware of the French translation, the papal office sent a letter to the bishop, saying the book was “in contradiction” with the teaching of the Vatican II Council on the Jews.
The bishop has since said that he was not aware of the offensive content, which apparently appears in the footnotes. He has apologized for what he termed “a mistake and an offense towards the Jewish people of today.”
The Bible contains some of the worst anti-Semitic stereotypes of pre-Vatican II Catholic literature. In the footnotes, Jews are called “God killers” involved in “fanatical,” “folkloric” and “businesslike” practices.
Despite the efforts of the Catholic Church to stop publication of the Bible, people can still purchase it.
The International League Against Racism and Anti-Semitism said it was planning to use those connection to the book’s publication, including French publisher Mediapaul.
In response, Sitruk said: “One shouldn’t engage in a theological or legal war. It would mean a failure for all. Now that the evil has been done, it is better to request statements and corrections. One also has to stress that the mentalities don’t evolve very fast and that Jews and Catholics have to go on with their efforts against anti-Semitism.”