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Jewish groups decry new Catholic text

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A coalition of Jewish groups expressed disappointment at the new text of the Catholic Church’s Prayer for the Jews.

The prayer removes language considered offensive to Jews, including a reference to Jews’ “blindness” and a call that God “may lift the veil from their hearts,” but still prays for the salvation of the Jews exclusively through conversion to Christianity.

Pope Benedict XVI on Tuesday unveiled the replacement for the Good Friday prayer in Latin, which is not used by most of the world’s 1.1 billion Catholics.

“We had hoped that the prayer in the Latin rite would be the same as that of the universal Catholic liturgy in use since 1970,” said Rabbi David Rosen, the chairman of the International Jewish Committee on Interreligious Consultations. “This new version for the Latin rite appears to be a regression from the path advanced by the declaration of the second Vatican Council. We urge the Catholic Church to deepen its exploration of the full implications of Nostra Aetate’s affirmation of the eternal validity of God’s Divine Covenant with the Jewish People.”

IJCIC, a coalition of Jewish organizations representing world Jewry to other world religious bodies, is the formal Jewish partner of the Vatican.

 

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