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Pope Francis Condemns Anti-Semitism

AP
• October 11, 2013 3:22 pm

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Pope Francis said the world must "remain vigilant" against anti-Semitism and intolerance during a speech in Rome on Friday.

The pope met with prominent Jewish leaders to commemorate the Jewish people who were deported from Italy 70 years before, according to the JTA.

Francis said the commemoration of the Holocaust victims "will also be an occasion to recall the importance of remaining vigilant in order that we do not regress, under any pretext, to any forms of intolerance and anti-Semitism, in Rome and in the rest of the world."

"It is a contradiction for a Christian to be anti-Semitic," he said. "His roots are in part Jewish. A Christian cannot be anti-Semitic! May anti-Semitism be banished from the heart and the life of every man and woman!"

Francis also paid tribute to the Christians who helped hide Jews before and during WWII.

"We know that many religious institutions, monasteries and indeed the Papal Basilicas, in accordance with the wishes of the Pope, opened their doors to provide a fraternal welcome, and that Christians offered the assistance, great or small, that they were able to give," he said.

The pope's remarks come two days after a visit from Yuli Edelstein, the speaker of the Knesset, Israel's legislative body. "There is still anti-Semitism in the world," Edelstein said to the Pope. "I ask you to use your influence to combat it."

The Pope said to Edelstein that he would visit Israel in the near future, according to the Times of Israel. Francis would be the fourth pope to visit the State of Israel since Paul VI.

Published under: Anti-Semitism