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January 17, 2013 2:10 am

Vatican Reiterates Church Support for Jews After Traditionalists Call Them “Enemies of Church”

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The Vatican. Photo: wiki commons.

The chief official responsible for Vatican-Jewish relations said that the Catholic Church will not go back on its “Nostra Aetate” declaration, which says that Christians and Jews have a close bond.

Cardinal Kurt Koch made that statement prior to the upcoming Day of Jewish-Christian Dialogue in Italy on Jan. 17, and in response to concern that the traditionalist Society of St. Pius X (SSPX) does not accept the 1965 declaration. The society’s Bishop Bernard Fellay recently referred to Jews as “enemies of the church.”

According to the World Jewish Congress, Koch told the Italian religious news service SIR that the SSPX does not “accept ecumenical dialogue, relations with Jews or religious freedom.”

“But these are central to the Holy Father’s teaching and if a group does not accept the Council and does not accept a magisterium, they need to ask themselves how they see themselves as Catholic,” Koch said. “This is the fundamental problem.”

Jesuit Father Federico Lombardi, a Vatican spokesman, had already called Fellay’s comments “absolutely unacceptable.”

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