Let’s pledge to ban anti-Semitism from society says Pope

All Christians must work to combat anti-Semitism until it is banned from society.

We share common religious roots with Jews, Pope Francis says.

Francis’s comments about anti-Semitism were made to the World Congress of Mountain Jews earlier this week. These Jews, who come from modern-day Iran, were targeted for extermination by German troops in World War 2.

His comments were particularly relevant given that it is just over a week since an anti-Semitic shooting at a Pittsburgh synagogue saw 11 dead and 6 others wounded.

All Christians should take care not to forget the Holocaust, Francis said.

Keeping memories of the Holocaust alive is a sign of Christian solidarity with Jews and also ensures future generations can learn from the mistakes of the past.

“The Holocaust must be commemorated so that there will be a living memory of the past. With a living memory there will be no future, for if the darkest pages of history do not teach us to avoid the same errors, human dignity will remain a dead letter.”

This week’s World Congress marked the first time Mountain Jews have travelled to meet the pope.

Pope Francis met other members of their community in Azerbaijan in 2016.

Francis also acknowledged this week is the 80th anniversary of Kristallnacht (The Night of Broken Glass).

On 9 November 1938, Nazis killed over 100 Jews, destroying their stores and synagogues. Over 30,000 Jewish men were sent to concentration camps.

“The attempt to replace the God of goodness with the idolatry of power and the ideology of hatred ended in the folly of exterminating creatures,” Francis said.

“Sadly, anti-Semitic attitudes are also present in our own times,” he said.

“We need more inter-faith dialogue for the sake of humanity.

“As I have often repeated, a Christian cannot be an anti-Semite; we share the same roots. It would be a contradiction of faith and life.”


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