Wonder No More
by Thomas A. Droleskey
The initial posting of
Words and Actions of Antichrist referred to a Jerusalem Post article, Vatican to stop missionizing Jews, quoting Rabbi Yona Metzger as saying that Joseph Ratzinger/Benedict XVI had agreed "that the Catholic Church will cease all missionizing activity among the Jews:
After meeting the grand mufti of Jerusalem, Muhammad Ahmad Hussein, and praying at the Western Wall on Tuesday, Pope Benedict XVI arrived for a historic meeting with the chief rabbis at Heichal Shlomo, next to the capital's Great Synagogue, and agreed that the Catholic Church will cease all missionary activity among Jews.
In his welcoming address, Chief Ashkenazi Rabbi Yona Metzger thanked the pope for his announcement, calling it an "historic agreement and, "for us, an immensely important message." ('Vatican to stop missionizing Jews').
As I learned just yesterday, Friday, May 29, 2009, after a reader informed me of the matter, the report from the Jerusalem Post is misleading in that there was no "agreement" made on May 12, 2009, to "cease all missionary activity among Jews," although anyone with a modicum of common sense could tell that Joseph Ratzinger/Benedict XVI was not in Israel to seek with urgency the unconditional conversion of the Jews and that he was willing to pray as a Jew at the Wailing Wall of the Temple that was destroyed as a result of God's wrath against the Jewish people for their rejection of the Messiah, Our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ, without ever mentioning the Holy Name of the Divine Redeemer in the "prayer" that he inserted into the Wailing Wall. Joseph Ratzinger has said that a Jewish reading of the Bible is a "possible one" and he treated Judaism as a valid religion when he said the following in his address to the Jewish leaders, Courtesy visit to the two Chief Rabbis of Jerusalem at Hechal Shlomo Center in Jerusalem, May 12, 2009, which is printed en toto in Words and Actions of Antichrist. That in and of itself is an act of apostasy, one of many that Ratzinger/Benedict committed on his trip to Jordan and Israel.
Here is the entirety of Rabbi Metzger's address to Ratzinger/Benedict on May 12, 2009:
Our distinguished guest of honor, head of the Church, head of the largest religion on earth, my honorable colleague the Head Rabbi Rishon LeZion, Rabbi Shlomo Moshe Moshe Amar Shlita, my friends representing the Chief Rabbinate of Israel, the honorable Rabbi She'ar Yashuv and Rabbi Glicksberg, the Minister of Science, mayor of the city of Jerusalem, representatives of world leadership, cardinals and other honored guests.
Your Excellency, welcome to our country, we extend greetings of peace to you here in the city of peace, Jerusalem. Our Holy Land, the land to which we prayed to return during two thousand years of exile. Our eyes shed so very many tears expressing our intense desire to embrace its stones. Praise the Lord, this meeting of ours is being held in the Land of Israel, in our city of Jerusalem, the eternal capital of the Jewish people.
Over its years of Diaspora, the Jewish people knew great suffering and torment. It’s true that due our sins we had been exiled far from our land, but all the prophets promised us the day would come when we would return to our land. Indeed, to our great joy, at this time we are celebrating 61 years since the founding of our state in the Holy Land, the land of the Bible, the land upon whose soil trod our forefathers: Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Joseph, David and Solomon.
One of the famous prophecies made by the Prophet Ezekiel is the dry bones vision, in which the Lord promises, “I open your graves and cause you to come up out of your graves as My people, and bring you home to the land of Israel. Then you shall know that I am the Lord…. I, the Lord, have spoken it and have performed it.”
We feel that this prophecy speaks to us. I come from a family that was almost entirely annihilated in the horrifying Holocaust. The remaining members of the family truly felt they were like dry bones at the end of the war. But thanks to this Divine Spirit, they had the privilege of returning to the Land of Israel and being counted among its founders and builders, and fulfilling the vision of the prophets. They went from bones to independence. As has been said, our history is rife with indescribable suffering, pogroms, banishments, torture and murder, against a religious ideological background and unfathomable hatred. Over what, and why? We shall never understand.
Honorable Head of the Catholic Church, I was thinking that if such an historic encounter, in which the head of the largest religion in the world meets with the head of the Jewish religion, had been held many years prior, how much innocent blood could have been spared, how much senseless hatred could have been prevented in the world? In the context of these feelings, please allow me to express my gratitude for your preventing the bishop who denies the Holocaust from returning to the Church. Had you not done so, it might have sent a message to the President of Iran, who is also a Holocaust denier, granting some kind of legitimization to his openly-declared wish to eradicate our country. I must commend your clear proclamation that anti-Semitism is not only a sin again Jews but also against the Lord.
I am sure that Your Excellency is in full agreement with your predecessor Pope John Paul II, who upon his visit nine years ago placed a very important note between the stones of the Western Wall, in which he asked forgiveness from the Jewish people for the suffering caused us throughout history, and expressed Christianity’s commitment to true brotherhood with us.
Today is a holy day for us, Lag B’Omer, the anniversary of the death of Rabbi Shimon Bar-Yochai, one of the most important rabbis who lived two thousand years ago. He was wise, righteous, holy as an angel of the Lord. He was persecuted by the Roman authorities of the time for daring to speak against their rule. Although his words were uttered in a closed room to only two rabbis, he was forced to escape with his son and hide in a cave in the Galilean mountains for 13 years. He experienced on his own flesh how fateful a person’s words can be. He was persecuted only for his words. Therefore, today the children of Israel observe a custom of playing with bows and arrows, to show the symbolism of the Prophet Jeremiah’s words “'Their tongue is a sharpened arrow.” The upper lip of our mouths is like a bow; the tongue is like an arrow. This teaches us that as long as you hold the arrow in your hand, you control it. As soon as you shoot it, you know not whom the arrow will hurt. The same holds true for a person’s tongue. After the words leave your mouth, you do not know where they may end up striking.
One of the wise men of Israel, Rabbi Samuel HaNagid, who lived in Spain, was a friend of the Muslim Sultan. Sometimes the two of them went walking on the street, and once a Moslem passed in front of them and began cursing the rabbi. The Sultan instructed the rabbi, “You must cut out his tongue.” Half a year later, again the two were walking in the street, and the same Moslem crossed their paths. This time the Moslem blessed the rabbi. The Sultan was surprised and asked the rabbi, “But I told you to cut out his tongue.” The rabbi replied, “I did cut it out.” “So how can he speak?” “Well, I cut out his cursing tongue and attached a blessing tongue in its place.”
We thank the Lord God of Israel that in our generation the language between our religions has become a blessing tongue. We must continue in this path and spread it also to the leaders of other religions, because our goals will not be achieved with terror, by killing innocents they will not be able to represent their God. The Lord is merciful. He commands us all to honor and love all people everywhere, even if they are not the same religion as us, because a person will live by his faith.
I wish to thank you, Your Excellency the Pope, for your historical agreement, as the Church under your leadership undertook, according to the documents we received from the agreements in the dialogue with the Vatican, that from now on the Church will cease all missionary activity and refrain from lobbying amongst our coreligionists to convert them. For us this is important and invaluable news. My thanks for your wish to help the captured soldier Gilad Shalit and for the support you have shown his family. I will greatly appreciate it if the Church will declare a set day each year on which the heads of the Church will not only speak out against anti-Semitism, but also speak positively in favor of our people. It does not suffice to chop off the cursing tongue but it should be replaced with a blessing tongue.
As is known, many parents during the Holocaust deposited their children in trust with various churches throughout Europe. To our sorrow, six million Jews did not return. Many of the children that survived thanks to the Church grew up without knowing their Jewish origins. We expect the Church to demonstrate transparency and reveal their roots so they may choose their national and religious paths for themselves. Lack of transparency in such a delicate matter is liable to perpetuate the suffering of many Jews and, Heaven forbid, achieve the Nazis’ goal of making my people, the Jewish people, disappear.
Your Excellency, you have just arrived at the Western Wall, the remnant of our Holy Temple, the place where Abraham sacrificed his son Isaac. Upon your visit to this place, the words of the Prophet Isaiah came true, “"My house will be called a house of prayer among all nations." Yes, a house of prayer, but unfortunately some have turned their house of prayer into a storehouse of weapons and terror. Our generation is different from the preceding one. The imperialistic aspirations to conquer countries and lands have ceased. Today Europe is like one united country; the entire world has gone global, connected and online. Only one thing still casts a dark cloud on us all – the use of religion as a means of killing innocent people.
As I have suggested in the past, together we must all establish an international body, a kind of United Nations for religions, that will stand alongside the UN for diplomats and statesmen, where representatives of all the religions in the world can sit next to each other around one table, even all those who come from states who have not yet established diplomatic relations, with the goal of trying resolve conflicts and differences of opinions stemming also from religious motives. All this out of faith that the one God created us all.
I wish to close with a heartfelt blessing that together we will be able to add love, honor and peace in our world, and be privileged to quickly see the fulfillment of the Prophet Micah’s words: “But in the end of days it shall come to pass, that the mountain of the Lord's house shall be established as the top of the mountains, and it shall be exalted above the hills; and peoples shall flow unto it. And many nations shall go and say: 'Come ye, and let us go up to the mountain of the Lord, and to the house of the God of Jacob; and He will teach us of His ways, and we will walk in His paths'; for out of Zion shall go forth the law, and the word of the Lord from Jerusalem… For let all the peoples walk each one in the name of its god, but we will walk in the name of the Lord our God for ever and ever.” Amen. (Chief Rabbis receive Pope Benedict XVI 12-May-2009)
Some have wondered from whence Rabbi Metzger could have come to his conclusion about an "agreement" on the part of the Catholic Church to "cease all missionizing efforts" with the Jews. Wonder no more.
Although it is indeed reprehensible that Metzger claimed to have a document from the "pope" that the Catholic Church was going to "cease all missionizing efforts with the Jews," Ratzinger/Benedict himself has created the impression that this is so as he has let stand--without a word of protest or contradiction--the following statements made by his own "papal" preacher, Father Raniero Cantalamessa, O.F.M., Cap., and Walter "Cardinal" Kasper and "Archbishop Gianfranco Ravasi, that certainly reflect the conciliar ethos that Judaism remains a valid religion, a valid means of salvation for its adherents, and that the Catholic Church must not engage in any efforts to convert the Jews:
If Jews one day come (as Paul hopes) to a more positive judgment of Jesus, this must occur through an inner process, as the end of a search of their own (something that in part is occurring). We Christians cannot be the ones who seek to convert them. We have lost the right to do so by the way in which this was done in the past. First the wounds must be healed through dialogue and reconciliation. (Zenit, September 30, 2005.)
The reformulated text no longer speaks about the conversion of the Jews as some Jewish critics wrongly affirm. The text is a prayer inspired by Saint Paul's letter to the Romans, chapter 11, which is the very text that speaks also of the unbroken covenant. It takes up Paul's eschatological hope that in the end of time all Israel will be saved. As a prayer the text lays all in the hands of God and not in ours. It says nothing about the how and when. Therefore there is nothing about missionary activities by which we may take Israel's salvation in our hands.
I cannot see why this prayer should present any reason to interrupt our dialogue. On the contrary, it is an opportunity and a challenge to continue the dialogue on what we have in common and what differentiates us in our Messianic hope.
I am happy that after some perplexities we now hear more and more voices from the Jewish world seeing things in a realistic way, and I do hope that this letter can be a contribution to overcome the misunderstandings and grievances. (Cardinal Kasper's Letter to Rabbi Rosen)
We repeat: this is the Christian vision, and it is the hope of the Church that prays. It is not a programmatic proposal of theoretical adherence, nor is it a missionary strategy of conversion. It is the attitude characteristic of the prayerful invocation according to which one hopes also for the persons considered near to oneself, those dear and important, a reality that one maintains is precious and salvific. An important exponent of French culture in the 20th century, Julien Green, wrote that "it is always beautiful and legitimate to wish for the other what is for you a good or a joy: if you think you are offering a true gift, do not hold back your hand." Of course, this must always take place in respect for freedom and for the different paths that the other adopts. But it is an expression of affection to wish for your brother what you consider a horizon of light and life. ("Archbishop" Gianfranco Ravasi, A Bishop and a Rabbi Defend the Prayer for the Salvation of the Jews.)
In an article published in Germany in late March and scheduled for publication in the Vatican newspaper before April 15, Cardinal Walter Kasper said that on the basis of a long history of compulsory catechesis and forced conversion, "many Jews consider a mission to the Jews as a threat to their existence."
"The Catholic Church has no organized or institutionalized mission to the Jews," said the cardinal, who is president of the Pontifical Commission for Religious Relations with the Jews.
That statement of fact, he said, is backed up with a theological position in the revised 1962 prayer's second line: "Almighty and everlasting God, you who want all men to be saved and to reach the awareness of the truth, graciously grant that, as the full number of the Gentiles comes into your church, all Israel may be saved."
The second line echoes the teaching of St. Paul in his Letter to the Romans that God's promise of salvation to his chosen people has not been revoked and that once all the nations are gathered under Christ, the Jewish people will be saved, Cardinal Kasper said.
"So one can say: God will bring about the salvation of Israel in the end, not on the basis of a mission to the Jews, but on the basis of the mission to the Gentiles, when the fullness of the Gentiles has entered" into Christ, the cardinal wrote.
At the same time, Cardinal Kasper said, Christians do believe in the promise of salvation in Jesus Christ and no one should be surprised that Christians pray for the salvation of all people and that "tactfully and respectfully" they give witness to their faith in Jesus. (CNS STORY: Vatican: Revised prayer does not reverse Vatican II teaching on Jews)
As reprehensible as Rabbi Metzger's claims that he had a "document" from Ratzinger/Benedict stating that what most people think is the Catholic Church would cease all "missionizing activities" with the Jews, there is a solid foundation for the contention that the counterfeit church of conciliarism has indeed abandoned the necessity of seeking the conversion of the Jews and that Judaism is a valid means of salvation. To contend that Judaism is a valid means of salvation and is worthy of respect are acts of apostasy in and of themselves.
If, as some, who have ignored Ratzinger's praising mosques and esteeming the "values" of false religions, have contended with a contented sigh of relief, Joseph Ratzinger/Benedict XVI would have committed an act of apostasy if he had made such an agreement, why, then, are not the statements of Raniero Cantalamessa, Walter Kasper, and Gianfranco Ravasi not demonstrative of apostasy?
Indeed, there are some in the "resist and recognize" movement who wrote openly about the responsibility that Karol Wojtyla/John Paul II bore for Walter "Cardinal" Kasper's "teachings" about the Jews and Judaism:
The postconciliar Vatican has not been altogether straightforward regarding the Jews' need for conversion. either. The fashionable doctrine these days--again, contrary to all prior papal teaching--is the claim that the Old Covenant that God established with the Jews, far from having been superseded by the New Covenant of Christ and the Church, is in fact still in effect. Thus we have John Paul II telling a Jewish audience: "The first dimension of this dialogue, that is, the meeting between the people of the Old Covenant, never revoked by God, and that of the New Covenant , is at the same time a dialogue within our Church, that is to say, between the first and second part of her Bible." "Jews and Christians," he went on to say, "as children of Abraham, are called to be a blessing to the world" by "committing themselves together for peace and justice among all men and peoples." Such statements seem impossible to reconcile with the Church's divine commandment to convert the Jews for the salvation of their souls. In fact, Cardinal Kasper, whom the Pope has also made the President of the Pontifical Council for Religious Relations with the Jews, has repudiated the conversion of Jews as explicitly as he has repudiated the return of the Protestant dissidents to the one true Church:
[T]he old theory of substitution is gone since the Second Vatican Council. for us Christians today the covenant with the Jewish people is a living heritage, a living reality.... Therefore, the Church believes that Judaism, i.e., the faithful response of the Jewish people to God's irrevocable covenant, is salvific for them, because God is faithful to his promises.... Thus mission, in this strict sense, cannot be used with regard to Jews, who believe in the true and one God. Therefore--and this is characteristic--there does not exist any Catholic missionary organization for Jews. There is dialogue with Jews; no mission in this proper sense of the word towards them. (Address at 17th meeting of the International Catholic-Jewish Liaison Committee, New York, May 1, 2001, quoted in out of print book, pp. 203-204.)
Once again, Kasper received no correction from the Pope or any Vatican dicastery [Thomas A. Droleskey interjection here: and neither has Kasper received any correction from Joseph Ratzinger/Benedict XVI for saying similar things repeatedly in the course of the past three and one-half years!]. On the contrary, he has received only a promotion to his current position of authority. What can one conclude but that the Vatican has de facto abandoned the conversion of the Jews, and the return of the Orthodox and Protestants to Catholic unity. [Thomas A. Droleskey interjection again: Rash judgment? Or was this conclusion in the out-of-print book an exercise in simple Catholic logic?} (out of print book, pp. 203-204.)
Joseph Ratzinger/Benedict XVI has let stand the remarks made by Raniero Cantalamessa and Walter Kasper and Gianfranco Ravasi, leading Jews such as Yona Metzger to believe that they have "papal" approbation." Without justifying Metzger's false claim to have a "document" from Ratzinger/Benedict, is it unwarranted for a Jew to think that un-contradicted, uncorrected remarks made by Vatican officials have the approval of Ratzinger/Benedict himself?
Some might contend that it is simply "papal" "weakness" that prevents Ratzinger/Benedict from contradicting his officials when they make comments such as those quoted above. Such a contention is delusional. as Ratzinger/Benedict himself has given the impression that Judaism a valid means of salvation and that "it is not necessary that" a Jew "recognize Christ the savior, and it is not given to us to explore how salvation, the gift of God, can come even for him." It is no wonder any Jews, including Rabbi Metzger, who pays attention to such statements could come to the conclusion that what they think is the Catholic Church has no "mission" to convert the Jews:
Cardinal Ratzinger himself began backpedaling almost immediately at the September 5  press conference itself. According to the Italian bishops' newspaper Avvenire, when asked whether DI [Dominus Iesus] taught that the Jews could not be saved without faith in Christ, Ratzinger offered the following non-answer: "Every Catholic theologian recognizes the salvific role of that people." Granted that "salvation is of the Jews," as our Lord taught us (John 4:22), but as He says immediately afterward: "But the hour is coming, and now is, when the true adorers shall adore the Father in spirit and in truth"--that is, the Messiah has arrived and shall be adored by those who worship truly. Having rejected the Messiah, however, what "salvific role" does modern Israel play today? When pressed on whether an individual Jew could be saved without recognizing Christ, the Cardinal replied that "it is not necessary that he recognize Christ the savior, and it is not given to us to explore how salvation, the gift of God, can come even for him." Ratzinger went on to say that "Christ is a reality that changes history, even for those who do not recognize him." Are we to take from this that Christ saves the Jews whether they recognize him or not, simply because His existence "changes history"?
However, it appears that at the same press conference Ratzinger gave a more nuanced answer, apparently in response to another questioner:
[We]e are in agreement that a Jew, and this is true for believers of other religions, does not need to know or acknowledge Christ as the Son of God in order to be saved, if there are insurmountable impediments, of which he is not blameworthy, to preclude it. However...Christian history affects us all, even those who are opposed or cannot encounter Christ. This is a reality that transforms history; it is something important for others, without violating their conscience.
Now, which is it--that a Jew need not recognize Christ in order to be saved, or that a Jew need not recognize Christ if there is an "insurmountable impediment"? Note also that Cardinal Ratzinger here repeats the suggestion that the mere presence of Christ in history "affects" Jews who reject him. What does this mean? One thing all these remarks mean is a diminution of the impact of DI's teaching that Christ is the sole mediator of the only way of salvation for all men--a teaching DI itself nuances nearly to the point of irrelevance.
Since the publication of DI was supposed to be the occasion for clarifying confusion about Christ and salvation, why not end a long period of postconciliar confusion by stating forthrightly what the Church always taught before the Council: "Yes, objectively speaking, a Jew must come to Christ and be baptized in order to be saved, just like everyone else in the human race; for Christ is God and He commissioned His Church to make disciples of all nations. This is what the Catholic Church has always taught and always will teach." Instead, Cardinal Ratzinger immediately focused on "insurmountable impediments." And what is an "insurmountable impediment" in the first place? Is this notion something even broader than the ever-expanding category of "invincible ignorance"? Cardinal Ratzinger gave no indications. However, if one of Rabbi Toaff's own predecessors as chief rabbi of Rome, Rabbi Israel Zolli, was able to follow God's grace into the Roman Catholic Church immediately after World War II, then why not Rabbi Toaff himself or any other Jew alive today--especially after thirty-five years of "Jewish-Christian" dialogue," which was supposed to engender greater understanding of the Church on the part of Jews?
Or is the mere fact of being a Jew, immersed in Jewish religion and culture, and facing ostracism if one converts, now to be considered an "insurmountable impediment" to conversion? If so, then no Jew from St. Paul to the present day has ever been subjectively obliged to join the Church; nor has anyone else in religious, emotional or cultural circumstances that would make conversion difficult. But this would mean that the only people obliged to become Catholics are those who would not find conversion unduly burdensome. Everyone else has an "insurmountable impediment." That is the very thesis being promoted by some of the more liberal exponents of "invincible ignorance," who speak of "unconscious psychological blocks" and other elaborate pseudo-scientific excuses for not becoming a Catholic that have proliferated since Vatican II. There is very little place for the power of God's grace in this kind of semi-Pelagian thinking. We are not here contending that Cardinal Ratzinger himself actually teaches anything like this, but in view of the veiled nature of his remarks it is difficult to know what he is teaching. A clarification of DI's "clarifications" is already urgently needed. (out of print book, , pp. 369-372.)
In its work, the Biblical Commission could not ignore the contemporary context, where the shock of the Shoah has put the whole question under a new light. Two main problems are posed: Can Christians, after all that has happened, still claim in good conscience to be the legitimate heirs of Israel's Bible? Have they the right to propose a Christian interpretation of this Bible, or should they not instead, respectfully and humbly, renounce any claim that, in the light of what has happened, must look like a usurpation? The second question follows from the first: In its presentation of the Jews and the Jewish people, has not the New Testament itself contributed to creating a hostility towards the Jewish people that provided a support for the ideology of those who wished to destroy Israel? The Commission set about addressing those two questions. It is clear that a Christian rejection of the Old Testament would not only put an end to Christianity itself as indicated above, but, in addition, would prevent the fostering of positive relations between Christians and Jews, precisely because they would lack common ground. In the light of what has happened, what ought to emerge now is a new respect for the Jewish interpretation of the Old Testament. On this subject, the Document says two things. First it declares that “the Jewish reading of the Bible is a possible one, in continuity with the Jewish Scriptures of the Second Temple period, a reading analogous to the Christian reading, which developed in parallel fashion” (no. 22). It adds that Christians can learn a great deal from a Jewish exegesis practised for more than 2000 years; in return, Christians may hope that Jews can profit from Christian exegetical research (ibid.). I think this analysis will prove useful for the pursuit of Judeo-Christian dialogue, as well as for the interior formation of Christian consciousness. (Joseph Ratzinger, Preface to The Jewish People and Their Scriptures in the Christian Bible.)
It is clear that this commitment to expressing a specific truth in a new way demands new thinking on this truth and a new and vital relationship with it; it is also clear that new words can only develop if they come from an informed understanding of the truth expressed, and on the other hand, that a reflection on faith also requires that this faith be lived. In this regard, the programme that Pope John XXIII proposed was extremely demanding, indeed, just as the synthesis of fidelity and dynamic is demanding.. . .
Thirdly, linked more generally to this was the problem of religious tolerance - a question that required a new definition of the relationship between the Christian faith and the world religions. In particular, before the recent crimes of the Nazi regime and, in general, with a retrospective look at a long and difficult history, it was necessary to evaluate and define in a new way the relationship between the Church and the faith of Israel. (Christmas greetings to the Members of the Roman Curia and Prelature, December 22, 2005)
Gee, who has created the impression that the counterfeit church of conciliarism has no mission from God to seek the conversion of the Jews? The conciliarists themselves, of course, chief among them being Joseph Ratzinger/Benedict XVI, who never spoke of any need for the Jews to convert during his pilgrimage to Israel, just as he did not speak of any need to convert the Mohammedans as he did speak of mosques" as "jewels" and as "sacred" places. Sacred to who? Sacred to the devil, that's who. The mere fact that he treated rabbis as having legitimacy in the eyes of God and met with them as "equals" without seeking their conversion testifies to the ethos of apostasy and betrayal that is right in front of our very eyes.
The Vatican website has the following statement from Rabbi David Rosen that speaks of the novel nature of Nostra Aetate, specifically noting that this document of the "Second" Vatican Council on the conciliar church's relations with non-Christian religions made no reference at all "any of the Church's teachings--patristic, conciliar, or pontifical." Rosen, who cited "Cardinal" Ratzinger's belief that the Jewish "wait" for the Messiah"is not in vain," lamented the fact that that there had be a de facto renunciation of proselytizing the Jews as a result of the words and actions of Karol Wojtyla/John Paul II without any de jure renunciation of such proselytizing:
The late Pope John Paul II described the Declaration “Nostra Aetate” that emanated from the Second Vatican Ecumenical Council as “an expression of Faith” and “an inspiration of the Holy Spirit, as a word of Divine Wisdom”.
Cardinal Walter Kasper, President of the Holy See’s Commission for Religious Relations with Jewry has described the impact of Nostra Aetate as “an astonishing transformation”. Indeed in relation to the Jewish People the implications were truly revolutionary in the most positive sense of the word. With the promulgation of this declaration, a people – formerly viewed at best as a fossil but more often as cursed and condemned to wander and suffer – was now officially portrayed as beloved by God and somehow very much still part of the Divine plan for humankind.
In his visit to the Rome synagogue in 1986, Pope John Paul II referred to the Jewish people as “the beloved elder brothers of the Church”. He developed this idea with his own notable formulation of the essential message of Nostra Aetate. One of the occasions on which I was privileged to meet with John Paul II was in Assisi in January 1993 on the occasion of the gathering he had convened for prayer for peace in the Balkans. In receiving me and my colleague, he declared “I have said, you (the Jewish People) are the beloved elder brother of the Church of the original Covenant never broken and never to be broken”.
This phrase does not just reflect a transformation in attitude and teaching towards the Jews; it has profound implications for the Church in terms of its own theology.
Indeed Pope Benedict XVI himself has said that the Church has not yet fully discovered all the profound implications of Nostra Aetate. Part of the reason for this lies in the very novelty of the Declaration. Cardinal Augustin Bea at the time of the declaration’s promulgation, emphasized its ground-breaking nature. Cardinal Johannes Willebrands, former President of the Holy See’s Commission for Religious Relations with Jewry, elaborated on this idea further affirming that never before had such “a systematic, positive, comprehensive, careful and daring presentation on Jews and Judaism been made in the Church by a Pope or a Council”.
Moreover Catholic theologians such as Michel Remaud have noted that “of all the documents promulgated by the Second Vatican Council, that on the Jews is the only one which contains no reference whatsoever to any of the Church’s teachings – patristic, conciliar or pontifical.”
There are, therefore, in paragraph 4 of Nostra Aetate and in the Holy See’s 1975 “Guidelines and Suggestions on the implementation of Nostra Aetate”, innovative elements and hence radical changes. As Prof. Father John Pawlikowski has put it, in returning to Romans 9-11 as its exclusive scriptural source, Nostra Aetate in fact said that “the Church is now taking up where Paul left off in his insistence that Jews remain part of the Covenant after the Resurrection despite the theological ambiguity involved.” This is not to ignore the fact that the text itself in its final version after much argument and many compromises, fell disappointingly short of the originally proposed text, which we now know was the hope and intention of Pope John XXIII.
As has also been pointed out frequently, the implications of Nostra Aetate can only be properly understood in the light of subsequent teaching of the Magisterium – in particular, the aforementioned ‘Guidelines’; the 1985 Notes on the correct way to present Jews and Judaism; the statements of Pope Paul VI and in particular the extensive body of Pope John Paul II’s declarations on this subject, as well as those of various Episcopal conferences. This dynamic had sought to preclude any negative interpretations which might otherwise have been possible in expounding the text of Nostra Aetate itself. Thus as Dr. Eugene Fisher has pointed out, in Pope John Paul II’s articulation concerning God’s Covenant with the Jewish People to which I referred above; and in calling for a joint mission of witness to the Name of One God “by Jews and Christians in and for the world”, he sought to resolve the question of abrogation/supercession in favor of ‘mutual esteem’ and cast into an entirely new framework the ancient question of proselytism/conversion. Indeed a number of Cardinals and Bishops Conferences have categorically rejected the need for “a mission to the Jews”. For example the U.S. Bishops Committee for Ecumenical and Interreligious affairs declared in its Reflections on Covenant and Mission (August 2002) that the distinctive Jewish witness must be sustained if Catholics and Jews are to truly be as Pope John Paul II envisioned, “a blessing to one another”.
In keeping with Pope John Paul II’s statements, Cardinal Walter Kasper, President of the Holy See’s Commission for Religious Relations with Jewry, stated in an address at Boston College, in November 2002, “This does not mean that Jews in order to be saved have to become Christians; if they follow their own conscience and believe in God’s promises as they understand them in their religious tradition, they are in line with God’s plan, which for us came to its historical completion in Jesus Christ”.
It seems to me that the 2001 document of the Pontifical Biblical Commission entitled, ‘The Jewish People and their Sacred Scriptures in the Christian Bible’, published under the then Cardinal Joseph Ratzinger’s imprimatur and with his introduction, is very much in keeping with this spirit, when it declares that “the Jewish messianic expectation is not in vain …. Like them we too live in expectation.”
However the position relinquishing the invitation for conversion to Christianity to Jews has come in for strong criticism and arguably there is no other issue that remains a bone of theological contention within the Church in relation the Jewish People as this matter.
This was already evidenced in the treatment of the working document of 1969 prepared by a special committee for the Holy See’s office for Catholic-Jewish relations entitled “Reflections and Suggestions for the Application of the Directives of Nostra Aetate”. This document declared that as far as Christian relations with Jews are concerned, “all intent of proselytizing and conversion is excluded”. Yet the Guidelines that were promulgated in 1975 by the newly established Vatican Commission for Religious Relations with Jewry on the basis of the working document, did not include this explicit directive, though the Commission’s President, Cardinal Willebrands, did echo this view on a number of occasions. Similarly, at the significant Jewish-Catholic International Liaison Committee meeting in Venice in 1978, Professor Tommaso Frederici presented his study outline on The Mission and Witness of the Church in which he called for a formal renunciation of evangelical outreach to Jews. While Jewish organizations translated the text from Italian and published in its original full form, in the Holy See’s official published version of Frederici’s lecture issued a few years later, this call had been substantially qualified. Evidently even though the Church has repudiated proselytizaton and no longer allocates material resources for the conversion of the Jews, the theological position of the Church still awaits full clarification from the Holy See.
Some Catholic scholars have suggested that the very reason that there has not been more theological reflection exploring the meaning and power of Nostra Aetate on the part of the Church, is precisely because the document obliges Christian theologians to rethink their Christology and ecclesiology in keeping with the idea of God’s abiding covenant with the Jews. Indeed there are some recent signs not only of a reluctance to do so, but even of attempts to minimize this very idea and the significance of Nostra Aetate itself. For example in May 2003 an interview with an Italian theologian (Illana Morelli) was published by the Zenit News Service expressing the position that as Nostra Aetate is a pastoral document it has no doctrinal authority and that to attribute such to it would be “greatly ingenuous” and a “historical error”.
This attitude echoes positions that I hear from some Christian theologians and clergy in the Holy Land and the Arab world, who claim that Nostra Aetate was nothing less than a contextual product of European Christian guilt over the Shoah and thus its reappraisal of Jews and Judaism are not really relevant for them.
Moreover Cardinal Avery Dulles, who criticized the aforementioned USCCB Reflections on Covenant and Mission, stated at the Nostra Aetate 40th anniversary conference in Washington last March that it is “an open question whether the Old Covenant remains in force today” and has opined that it is still a Catholic duty to invite Jews to receive the Christian faith (his text has recently been printed in the publication “First Things”)
As an outside observer, it would appear to me that these comments categorically contradict the late Pope John Paul II’s clearly articulated teachings on the subject, as well as those of the Holy See’s Commission for Religious Relations with Jewry and several statements of leading Bishops’ Conferences. I must confess to some disappointment that there no refutation, distancing, or at least clarification on this from the Church authorities in Rome.
It appears to me that there is a pressing need for a clear reaffirmation of the Magisterium in this regard. Without such, there will remain not only an unhealthy ambiguity in our relationship, but we will continue to have to deal with unfortunate and unnecessary tensions regarding motives, including the presence and role of specific personalities in the Church whose background is particularly pertinent to this relationship.
In many parts of the world the internalization at all levels within the Church of the essence of Nostra Aetate and its positive teaching regarding Jews and Judaism is a great success story. This of course is especially the case where Catholic communities live alongside vibrant Jewish communities and interact positively with them – the United States of America is the most striking example of this. However there are places in the world where my travels take me, where I find that even the content of Nostra Aetate itself is often unknown to Catholic leaders let alone the rank and file.
One of the most important relevant instructions to bishops regarding Christian-Jewish relations was issued last year by the Holy See’s Congregation for Bishops, in its Directory for the Pastoral Ministry of Bishops (Libreria Editrice Vaticana, 2004, p.31, no. 19): “The Second Vatican Council recalls the spiritual bond uniting the people of the New Testament with the descendants of Abraham. By virtue of this bond, the Jewish People have a special place in the Church’s regard for members of non-Christian religions: to them ‘belong the sonship, the glory, the covenants, the giving of the law, the worship, and the promises; to them belong the patriarchs, and of their race, according to the flesh, is the Christ’ (Rom 9:4-5). The Bishop should promote among Christians an attitude of respect towards these our ‘elder brothers’, so as to combat the risk of anti-Semitism, and he should be vigilant that sacred ministers receive an adequate formation regarding the Jewish religion and its relation to Christianity.”
I sincerely congratulate the Holy See’s Congregation for Bishops for this important directive and pray that it will be full implemented. Yet to the best of my knowledge Nostra Aetate and the subsequent relevant teachings of the Magisterium on Jews, Judaism and Israel are still not even a required component of the curriculum for the formation of priests throughout the Catholic world. Ensuring that the fruits of Nostra Aetate are more firmly embedded in the formal fabric of the Church seems to me to be a principle challenge ahead for the Church. (Conference by Rabbi David Rosen, International Director for Interreligious Affairs of the American Jewish .)
Who is David Rosen to lecture to the Catholic Church about how her theologians ought to study Christology?
Ah, you see, the mere fact that the authorities of the counterfeit church of conciliarism give audiences to men who deny the Sacred Divinity of our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ demonstrates its implicit denial of the Church's Divine Constitution as she, the Catholic Church, has nothing to "learn" about Faith and Morals from those who are outside of her maternal bosom, no less those who deny Our Lord's Sacred Divinity. Holy Mother Church does not need to "learn" about false religions. She does not need "lectures" from non-Catholics on points of theology. There is nothing extrinsic to her concerning Faithand Morals that she does not always possess of the very nature of her Divine Constitution. Thus it is that every single bit of the "inter-religious" dialogue of conciliarism is founded on an implicit denial of the Church's Divine Constitution as there is nothing outside of her concerning Faith and Morals that she does not already possess.
Alas, the fact that the likes of David Rosen have been given "influence" witih conciliar officials makes it possible for the likes of Yona Metzger to lecture the man he believes to be the Vicar of Christ on earth, who is treated as an "equal" to other "religious" "leaders."
Ratzinger/Benedict himself is responsible for enabling and empowering the ancient enemies of the Church.
It was Ratzinger/Benedict who yielded to pressure from Talmudic organizations to "revise" the Good Friday Prayer for the Jews in the Missal of Angelo Roncalli/John XXIII after the issuance of Summorum Pontificum, July 7, 2007.
It was, as noted above, Ratzinger/Benedict's officials (Walter Kasper and Gianfranco Ravasi) who went to great lengths to appease the anger of leading adherents after the text of the "revised Prayer for the Jews was released in February of 2008;.
It was Ratzinger/Benedict who met in October of 2008 with a group of Talmudic representatives who were "concerned" about the conciliar "canonization" process of Pope Pius XII, prompting me to write the following at the time:
Joseph Ratzinger/Benedict XVI may very well proceed with the conciliar "canonization" of Pope Pius XII, although it appears now that there will indeed be a six or seven year period of delay as documents in the Vatican archives are reviewed. The mere fact, however, that he would give any credence whatsoever to a group of men who deny the Sacred Divinity of Our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ and who make war continuously against His Holy Mother Church and the right ordering of nations speaks volumes about the apostate nature of conciliarism. It does not enter into this "pope's" Modernist mind to exhort representatives of the blasphemous Talmud to convert unconditionally to the true Faith as Saint Peter exhorted the Jews on Pentecost Sunday and as Pope Saint Pius X did in his meeting the founder of international Zionism, Theodore Herzl, on January 25, 1904.
The conciliar "popes" have made it appear as though the Catholic Church needs "input" from those who deny the Sacred Divinity of Our Blessed Lord and Saviour Jesus Christ about how to express her doctrines and how to offer her Divine Liturgy and how she goes about the matter of her internal governance. Could anyone imagine the outrage if a Catholic sought to tell a rabbi what he should believe about his false religion and how he should conduct his synagogue services and how to govern his congregation? We know that such a person would be deemed as an "anti-Semite." It is the conciliar "popes" who have given the ancient enemies of the Church "influence" within the halls of the counterfeit church of conciliar as they, the conciliar officials, have indeed changed the perennial doctrine and praxis of the Catholic Church dating back to Saint Peter's first Papal discourse on the first Pentecost Sunday.
By mixing truth with error, the counterfeit church of conciliarism confuses Catholics and non-Catholics alike. Indeed, the fact that Jews were absolutely clear concerning the Catholic Church's teaching about their dead, superseded religion prior to the "Second" Vatican Council and that they are unclear today is the result of the apostate spirit of contradiction that is included in the documents of the counterfeit church of conciliarism and by the words and actions of the conciliar "pontiffs" that sometimes go beyond conciliarism's "official" texts. None of this can come from the Catholic Church, as Pope Pius XI noted in Mortalium Animos, January 6, 1928:
For the teaching authority of the Church, which in the divine wisdom was constituted on earth in order that revealed doctrines might remain intact for ever, and that they might be brought with ease and security to the knowledge of men, and which is daily exercised through the Roman Pontiff and the Bishops who are in communion with him, has also the office of defining, when it sees fit, any truth with solemn rites and decrees, whenever this is necessary either to oppose the errors or the attacks of heretics, or more clearly and in greater detail to stamp the minds of the faithful with the articles of sacred doctrine which have been explained.
Are the documents of the "Second" Vatican Council "official"? Some defend these documents on the grounds of "ambiguity." However, the Catholic Church's Divine Constitution precludes the possibility of ambiguity in her official documents. The Catholic Church brings her teaching to men with "ease and security." Catholics are still arguing about Lumen Gentium forty-five years after it was passed by the bishops who attended the "Second" Vatican Council. Is it any wonder that the Jews are confused about what they think is the Catholic Church teaches about them, especially in light of the "novelty" of Nostra Aetate?
Joseph Ratzinger/Benedict XVI does not have make any "formal" agreement" to cease "missionizing the Jews" as the counterfeit church of conciliarism, contrary to the dogmatic teaching of the Catholic Church, has sought to express truths"in a new way" that "demands new thinking" and a new and vital relationship with it," an exercise in pure Modernism, including evaluating and defining "in a new way the relationship between the Church and the faith of Israel." "Israel" has no faith except that which is from the devil.
Saint John Chrysostom explained this very clearly:
Let that be your judgment about the synagogue, too. For they brought the books of Moses and the prophets along with them into the synagogue, not to honor them but to outrage them with dishonor. When they say that Moses and the prophets knew not Christ and said nothing about his coming, what greater outrage could they do to those holy men than to accuse them of failing to recognize their Master, than to say that those saintly prophets are partners of their impiety? And so it is that we must hate both them and their synagogue all the more because of their offensive treatment of those holy men." (Saint John Chrysostom, Fourth Century, A.D., Saint John Chrysostom: Eight Homilies Against the Jews.)
Many, I know, respect the Jews and think that their present way of life is a venerable one. This is why I hasten to uproot and tear out this deadly opinion. I said that the synagogue is no better than a theater and I bring forward a prophet as my witness. Surely the Jews are not more deserving of belief than their prophets. "You had a harlot's brow; you became shameless before all". Where a harlot has set herself up, that place is a brothel. But the synagogue is not only a brothel and a theater; it also is a den of robbers and a lodging for wild beasts. Jeremiah said: "Your house has become for me the den of a hyena". He does not simply say "of wild beast", but "of a filthy wild beast", and again: "I have abandoned my house, I have cast off my inheritance". But when God forsakes a people, what hope of salvation is left? When God forsakes a place, that place becomes the dwelling of demons.
(2) But at any rate the Jews say that they, too, adore God. God forbid that I say that. No Jew adores God! Who says so? The Son of God says so. For he said: "If you were to know my Father, you would also know me. But you neither know me nor do you know my Father". Could I produce a witness more trustworthy than the Son of God?
(3) If, then, the Jews fail to know the Father, if they crucified the Son, if they thrust off the help of the Spirit, who should not make bold to declare plainly that the synagogue is a dwelling of demons? God is not worshipped there. Heaven forbid! From now on it remains a place of idolatry. But still some people pay it honor as a holy place. (Saint John Chrysostom: Eight Homilies Against the Jews)
And, quite contrary to Ratzinger/Benedict's refusal to seek with urgency the conversion of non-Catholics to the true Church, Pope Saint Pius X did precisely this when speaking most directly to Theodore Herzl, the founder of International Zionism:
HERZL: Yesterday I was with the Pope [Pius X]. . . . I arrived ten minutes ahead of time, and without having to wait I was conducted through a number of small reception rooms to the Pope. He received me standing and held out his hand, which I did not kiss. Lippay had told me I had to do it, but I didn’t. I believe this spoiled my chances with him, for everyone who visits him kneels and at least kisses his hand. This hand kiss had worried me a great deal and I was glad when it was out of the way.
He seated himself in an armchair, a throne for minor affairs, and invited me to sit by his side. He smiled in kindly anticipation. I began:
HERZL: I thank Your Holiness for the favor of granting me this audience. [I begged him to excuse my miserable Italian, but he said:
POPE: No, Signor Commander, you speak very well.
HERZL: [He is an honest, rough-hewn village priest, to whom Christianity has remained a living thing even in the Vatican. I briefly laid my request before him. But annoyed perhaps by my refusal to kiss his hand, he answered in a stern categorical manner.
POPE: We are unable to favor this movement [of Zionism]. We cannot prevent the Jews from going to Jerusalem—but we could never sanction it. The ground of Jerusalem, if it were not always sacred, has been sanctified by the life of Jesus Christ. As the head of the Church I cannot answer you otherwise. The Jews have not recognized our Lord, therefore we cannot recognize the Jewish people.
HERZL: [The conflict between Rome and Jerusalem, represented by the one and the other of us, was once again under way. At the outset I tried to be conciliatory. I said my little piece. . . . It didn’t greatly impress him. Jerusalem was not to be placed in Jewish hands.] And its present status, Holy Father?
POPE: I know, it is disagreeable to see the Turks in possession of our Holy Places. We simply have to put up with it. But to sanction the Jewish wish to occupy these sites, that we cannot do.
HERZL: [I said that we based our movement solely on the sufferings of the Jews, and wished to put aside all religious issues].
POPE: Yes, but we, but I as the head of the Catholic Church, cannot do this. One of two things will likely happen. Either the Jews will retain their ancient faith and continue to await the Messiah whom we believe has already appeared—in which case they are denying the divinity of Jesus and we cannot assist them. Or else they will go there with no religion whatever, and then we can have nothing at all to do with them. The Jewish faith was the foundation of our own, but it has been superceded by the teachings of Christ, and we cannot admit that it still enjoys any validity. The Jews who should have been the first to acknowledge Jesus Christ have not done so to this day.
HERZL: [It was on the tip of my tongue to remark, “It happens in every family: no one believes in his own relative.” But, instead, I said:] Terror and persecution were not precisely the best means for converting the Jews. [His reply had an element of grandeur in its simplicity:]
POPE: Our Lord came without power. He came in peace. He persecuted no one. He was abandoned even by his apostles. It was only later that he attained stature. It took three centuries for the Church to evolve. The Jews therefore had plenty of time in which to accept his divinity without duress or pressure. But they chose not to do so, and they have not done it yet.
HERZL: But, Holy Father, the Jews are in a terrible plight. I do not know if Your Holiness is aware of the full extent of their tragedy. We need a land for these harried people.
POPE: Must it be Jerusalem?
HERZL: We are not asking for Jerusalem, but for Palestine—for only the secular land.
POPE: We cannot be in favor of it.
[Editor Lowenthal interjects here] Here unrelenting replacement theology is plainly upheld as the norm of the Roman Catholic Church. Further, this confession, along with the whole tone of the Pope in his meeting with Herzl, indicates the perpetuation of a doctrinal emphasis that has resulted in centuries of degrading behavior toward the Jews. However, this response has the “grandeur” of total avoidance of that which Herzl had intimated, namely that the abusive reputation of Roman Catholicism toward the Jews was unlikely to foster conversion. Further, if, “It took three centuries for the Church to evolve,” it was that very same period of time that it took for the Church to consolidate and launch its thrust of anti-Semitism through the following centuries.
HERZL: Does Your Holiness know the situation of the Jews?
POPE: Yes, from my days in Mantua, where there are Jews. I have always been in friendly relations with Jews. Only the other evening two Jews were here to see me. There are other bonds than those of religion: social intercourse, for example, and philanthropy. Such bonds we do not refuse to maintain with the Jews. Indeed we also pray for them, that their spirit see the light. This very day the Church is celebrating the feast of an unbeliever who became converted in a miraculous manner—on the road to Damascus. And so if you come to Palestine and settle your people there, we will be ready with churches and priests to baptize all of you.
HERZL: [At this point Conte Lippay had himself announced. The Pope bade him be admitted. The Conte kneeled, kissed his hand, and joined in the conversation by telling of our “miraculous” meeting in the Bauer beerhall at Venice. The miracle was that he had originally intended to stay overnight in Padua, and instead, it turned out that he was given to hear me express the wish to kiss the Holy Father’s foot. At this the Pope made no movement, for I hadn’t even kissed his hand. Lippay proceeded to tell how I had expiated on the noble qualities of Jesus Christ. The Pope listened, and now and then took a pinch of snuff and sneezed into a big red cotton handkerchief. It is these peasant touches which I like about him best and which most of all compel my respect. Lippay, it would appear, wanted to account for his introducing me, and perhaps ward off a word of reproach. But the Pope said:
POPE: On the contrary, I am glad you brought me the Signor Commendatore.
HERZL: [As to the real business, he repeated what he had told me, until he dismissed us:]
POPE: Not possible!
HERZL: [Lippay stayed on his knees for an unconscionable time and never seemed to tire of kissing his hand. It was apparent that this was what the Pope liked. But on taking leave, I contented myself with shaking his hand warmly and bowing deeply. The audience lasted about twenty-five minutes. While spending the last hour in the Raphael gallery, I saw a picture of an Emperor kneeling before a seated Pope and receiving the crown from his hands. That’s how Rome wants it.] (Marvin Lowenthal, Diaries of Theodore Herzl, pp. 427- 430.)
The conciliar "popes" do not speak in these terms. Conciliar "popes" do not reference these words from the Papal Bull Cantate Domino, issued by Pope Eugene IV, February 4, 1442, during the Council of Florence:
It [the Holy Roman Church] firmly believes, professes, and proclaims that those not living within the Catholic Church, not only pagans, but also Jews and heretics and schismatics cannot become participants in eternal life, but will depart "into everlasting fire which was prepared for the devil and his angels" [Matt. 25:41], unless before the end of life the same have been added to the flock; and that the unity of the ecclesiastical body is so strong that only to those remaining in it are the sacraments of the Church of benefit for salvation, and do fastings, almsgiving, and other functions of piety and exercises of Christian service produce eternal reward, and that no one, whatever almsgiving he has practiced, even if he has shed blood for the name of Christ, can be saved, unless he has remained in the bosom and unity of the Catholic Church.
The conciliar "popes" constantly defy the Catholic Church's perennial and immutable prohibition on praying with or participating in the services of non-Catholics:
The spirit of Christ, which dictated the Holy Scriptures, and the spirit which animates and guides the Church of Christ, and teaches her all truth, is the same; and therefore in all ages her conduct on this point has been uniformly the same as what the Holy Scripture teaches. She has constantly forbidden her children to hold any communication, in religious matters, with those who are separated from her communion; and this she has sometimes done under the most severe penalties. In the apostolical canons, which are of very ancient standing, and for the most part handed down from the apostolical age, it is thus decreed: "If any bishop, or priest, or deacon, shall join in prayers with heretics, let him be suspended from Communion". (Can. 44)
Also, "If any clergyman or laic shall go into the synagogue of the Jews, or the meetings of heretics, to join in prayer with them, let him be deposed, and deprived of communion". (Can. 63) (Bishop George Hay, (The Laws of God Forbidding All Communication in Religion With Those of a False Religion.)
The lords of the counterfeit church of conciliarism have agreed (yes, I know, in one of those "unofficial" documents; yes, I know) in writing to refrain from "proselytizing" members of the schismatic and heretical Orthodox churches:
Pastoral activity in the Catholic Church, Latin as well as Eastern, no longer aims at having the faithful of one Church pass over to the other; that is to say, it no longer aims at proselytizing among the Orthodox. It aims at answering the spiritual needs of its own faithful and it has no desire for expansion at the expense of the Orthodox Church. Within these perspectives, so that there will no longer be room for mistrust and suspicion, it is necessary that there be reciprocal exchanges of information about various pastoral projects and that thus cooperation between bishops and all those with responsibilities in our Churches can be set in motion and develop. (Balamand Statement.)
Joseph Ratzinger/Benedict XVI has rejected the necessity of the "ecumenism of the return" of Protestants and Orthodox to the Catholic Church:
We all know there are numerous models of unity and you know that the Catholic Church also has as her goal the full visible unity of the disciples of Christ, as defined by the Second Vatican Ecumenical Council in its various Documents (cf. Lumen Gentium, nn. 8, 13; Unitatis Redintegratio, nn. 2, 4, etc.). This unity, we are convinced, indeed subsists in the Catholic Church, without the possibility of ever being lost (cf. Unitatis Redintegratio, n. 4); the Church in fact has not totally disappeared from the world.
"On the other hand, this unity does not mean what could be called ecumenism of the return: that is, to deny and to reject one's own faith history. Absolutely not!
"It does not mean uniformity in all expressions of theology and spirituality, in liturgical forms and in discipline. Unity in multiplicity, and multiplicity in unity: in my Homily for the Solemnity of Sts Peter and Paul on 29 June last, I insisted that full unity and true catholicity in the original sense of the word go together. As a necessary condition for the achievement of this coexistence, the commitment to unity must be constantly purified and renewed; it must constantly grow and mature." (Ecumenical meeting at the Archbishopric of Cologne English)
There is, however, no need for him to put anything in writing as "pope" with respect to the Jews as his words and actions--and those of his officials--speak plainly for themselves. And these words and actions of those of apostasy. (See
The ‘Poor Pope Benedict’ Syndrome and Benedict defying God's wrath at the Wailing Wall).
Benedict defying God's wrath at the Wailing Wall contains the following explanation as to why the Temple in Jerusalem was destroyed in the year 70 A.D. by the Romans:
As one recalls, the Temple was destroyed as part of the punishment for the crime of Deicide perpetrated by the the Jews - the high priests, scribes and Pharisees together with the people, who asked that the Blood of Jesus Christ, Son of God, fall over them and their offspring - as reported in the Gospels.
After the destruction of the Temple by Titus in the year 70 A.D., one attempt was made by Emperor Julian the Apostate to rebuild that edifice. He meant to destroy the belief that the chastisement was due to the Death of Our Lord. His initiative was prevented by earthquakes and balls of fire falling from the sky that destroyed what had been made and frightened the workers. Julian died in June of 363 during that attempt to rebuild the Temple. Confessing his failure in his struggle against Jesus Christ, he cried out while dying: "Thou hast won, O Galilean!"
After that, no one ever tried to rebuild that cursed edifice.
Benedict XVI, like John Paul II before him, defied the wrath of God when he went to "pray" in that place - purposely ignoring the punishment of God it represents.
In the prayer he wrote, the Pope depicts himself neither as a representative of Jesus Christ, whose Name he did not mention, nor as the Sovereign Pontiff of the Catholic Church, but rather as a self-appointed ambassador of "all who call upon God's name." Ignoring the Passion of Our Lord which He suffered in that very City of Jerusalem, Benedict XVI addressed the "God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob," supposedly the same God of Catholics, Jews and Muslims. (Benedict defying God's wrath at the Wailing Wall.)
This is simply a statement of Catholic truth, a statement rejected in one of the "unofficial" documents of the counterfeit church of conciliarism that nevertheless reflect the lifelong views of Joseph Ratzinger/Benedict XVI:
With regard to the trial and death of Jesus, the Council recalled that "what happened in his passion cannot be blamed upon all the Jews then living, without distinction, nor upon the Jews of today" (Nostra Aetate, 4).
- The history of Judaism did not end with the destruction of Jerusalem, but rather went on to develop a religious tradition. And, although we believe that the importance and meaning of that tradition were deeply affected by the coming of Christ, it is still nonetheless rich in religious values. (
“Guidelines and Suggestions for Implementing the Conciliar Declaration Nostra Aetate (n. 4)”  )
The Catholic Church is clear and she is unequivocal: she prays for and seeks with urgency the conversion of all non-Catholics to her maternal bosom, and anyone who says that the conciliar "popes" believe this is more intellectually dishonest than was Yona Metzger when he contended that Ratzinger/Benedict himself had "agreed" to cease all missionizing efforts with the Jews that he, Ratzinger/Benedict, does not believe is necessary and which he proves as unnecessary by his own words and actions.
Furthermore, it must be noted that by refusing to seek the conversion of the Mohammedans and the Jews, each of whose soul is captive to the devil by means of Mortal Sin, Ratzinger/Benedict shows himself to be, objectively speaking, their worst enemy as he is content to let his apostate words and actions reaffirm them in their false religions unto death.
While defenders of all things conciliar might point out that there was the Catholic Church did have an "organized" missionary effort directed at the Mohammedans and the Jews prior to the "Second" Vatican Council, other than efforts, approved by Pope Pius IX, of Father Alphonse Ratisbonne, a Jewish convert to the Faith by means of the miraculous apparition of Our Lady to him in the image as she appears on the Miraculous Medal on January 20, 1842. her true popes did not reaffirm them in their false religions and they did not make it appear as though these religions were valid means of salvation. Mohammedans and Jews prior to the "Second" Vatican Council were most clear that about what the Catholic Church taught concerning them: that, as Saint Vincent Ferrer, O.P., preached to Mohammedans and Jews at the end of the Fourteenth and the beginning of the Fifteenth Centuries in southern France and the Iberian peninsula, it was "convert or die!," meaning that those who die outside of the Catholic Church risked the fires of Hell for all eternity. That there is no clarity about this teaching today is the direct result of the apostate words and actions of the conciliar "popes."
Wonder no longer about this undeniable fact at all.
As we prepare to celebrate Pentecost Sunday tomorrow, May 31, 2009, let us ask Our Lady, she who is the Queen of the Apostles, the men who began the missionary work of the Church on the first Pentecost Sunday by seeking the conversion of the Jews, a missionary work that can never be "lost" or that has any kind of "expiration" date, for the graces to remain steadfast in our defense of the honor and glory and majesty of God when he is so blasphemed and offended by the words and deeds of men who bend over backwards to please non-Catholics as they fear not to offend Him by esteeming the symbols and the places of false religions and as they dare to assert that the "beliefs" of these false religions can contribute to the "better world."
We must make much reparation for our own sins as we seek each week to be cleansed in the Sacred Tribunal of Penance at the hands of true bishops and true priests who make no concessions to conciliarism at all and as we give all of our efforts to the Most Sacred Heart of Jesus through the Sorrowful and Immaculate Heart of Mary.
Isn't it time to pray a Rosary now?
Our Lady, Queen of the Apostles, pray for us.
Immaculate Heart of Mary, triumph soon!
Vivat Christus Rex! Viva Cristo Rey!
Saint Joseph, pray for us.
Saints Peter and Paul, pray for us.
Saint John the Baptist, pray for us.
Saint John the Evangelist, pray for us.
Saint Michael the Archangel, pray for us.
Saint Gabriel the Archangel, pray for us.
Saint Raphael the Archangel, pray for us.
Saints Joachim and Anne, pray for us.
Saint Joan of Arc, pray for us.
Pope Saint Felix II, pray for us.
Jacinta and Francisco Marto and Lucia dos Santos, pray for us.
See also: A Litany of Saints