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November 4, 2014 3:17 pm

Pope Francis Praises Bar-Ilan University for Commitment to Interfaith Relations

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Pope Francis. Photo: Casa Rosada via Wikimedia Commons.

JNS.org – Pope Francis praised Israel’s Bar-Ilan University for its commitment to fostering interfaith dialogue in a meeting with the university’s president.

Bar-Ilan President Rabbi Prof. Daniel Hershkowitz visited the Vatican last week with a delegation of South American and Spanish businesspeople. Hershkowitz said that “as a microcosm of Israeli society, Bar-Ilan’s doors are open to students of all races and religions,” Yedioth Ahronoth reported.

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“Through a variety of ongoing dialogue programs aimed at fostering understanding and acceptance, Bar-Ilan University has been working to bridge gaps between various sectors of Israeli society for many years. It is, therefore, a deep privilege to be meeting with and honoring the pope, who has taken it upon himself to undertake this tremendous task on a worldwide scale,” he said.

Pope Francis replied that “we are the sons of Abraham and we have the privilege and the responsibility to guide humankind on the path to peace.”

During the meeting, Bar-Ilan also gave the pope its highest honor—the Award of Distinction—for his commitment to interfaith dialogue, peace between nations and peoples, and human rights.

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