A Spanish-speaking Catholic asks about Edith Stein
(Red = 2005 update)
Last photo added 20 December 2010
NOTE: This was written before the canonization of 275 Spanish priests and nuns murdered by the Communists during the Spanish Civil War. If anyone is offended by what follows, I apologize. Otherwise it stands as written. -C.P.
QUESTION: It was said that sister Edith Stein, recently canonized by John Paul II, was gassed in Auschwitz in August 9th, 1942. I checked the Encyclopaedia Britannica, and it is true. Now, according to you, how did she die, and when supposedly did start the gassings?
For your investigative spirit, cheers!
[first and last names deleted; written by a native Spanish speaker from the USA ]
Thank you for your inquiry.
The source for the statement made in the Encyclopaedia Britannica is the Encyclopaedia Judaica. For further information, please see http://www.ihr.org/jhr/v10/v10p195_Nordling.html There is an Internet file on Edith Stein written by Robert Faurisson at http://www.vho.org/aaargh/engl/FaurisArch/RF981104.html
[see my translation below *; somebody else did another one since then].
Since the Pope was declared infallible by the Vatican Council in 1870, the Manchurian Candidate now occupying that Holy Office should have no trouble in conjuring up the following:
a) an autopsy report proving that Edith Stein died as the result of inhalation of cyanide gas;
b) an engineering report proving that the structures alleged to have functioned as "homicidal gas chambers" could in fact have functioned as such;
c) a chemical study proving that the evaporation rate and properties of Zyklon were such as to permit the gassing procedures described by so-called "eyewitnesses";
d) an engineering report proving the possibility of the alleged cremation procedures;
e) a diagram of the alleged "gas chamber" at Auschwitz II showing the exact location of the "Zyklon introduction holes" in the roof which apparently never existed;
f) a series of other engineering and chemical reports sufficiently refuting the questions raised by Faurisson, Butz, Leuchter, Rudolf, Ball, Berg, Mattogno, Graf, Irving, Weber, Crowell, Walendy, and many other people far more knowledgeable and better qualified than myself.
The fact that Edith Stein "died" is no proof that she was "gassed". The gassings did not "begin" at any time, because there were no gassings.
Question: If we are serious about it, why not canonize some of the following?
a) the tens of millions of Christians murdered under circumstances of great cruelty by all Communist regimes from 1917 until the very recent past, from Russia all the way to Viet Nam;
b) the hundreds of thousands of Christian children burnt to death with phosphorous and jellied gasoline by our democratic "Christian" bomber pilots, many of them on Shrove Tuesday-Ash Wednesday 1945 at Dresden, when it was deliberately calculated that the maximum number of women and children would be out on the streets in their Carnival costumes, trying to forget the war, in an undefended city of no military value, but containing hundreds of art museums, palaces, and churches, and Christians, all of which were burnt to a crisp;
c) the tens of thousands of Japanese Catholics incinerated in the atomic bombing of Nagasaki, the centre of Japanese Catholicism, with numerous Catholic churches and educational and charitable institutions; many Catholics feel that this was the principal, if not the only, reason for the second atomic bombing;
Urakami Tenshudo Catholic Church, Nagasaki, Destroyed by Atomic Bomb. Photographed in January 1946
d) the 35-50 million innocent children murdered by abortionists in the United States and Europe since 1973, a "slaughter of the innocents" if there ever was one, the body parts now being sold for AIDS research to aid and abet in the pleasures of deviants;
e) the thousands of nurses and nuns raped and/or murdered in the Congo and other African countries, some as recently as the 1990s;
f ) the 12,000 "Cristeros" (fundamentalist Catholic peasants) murdered during the Catholic insurrection of 8 Mexican states against the atheist-Free Mason government of Mexico in 1928; their leader was treacherously assassinated, the Cristeros negotiated a cease-fire, surrendered their weapons, and were hanged at leisure by the government; at that time, just as during the famous 1912-22 Revolution, one could travel for hundreds of miles by rail in Mexico and see "Cristero" bodies hanging from every telegraph pole;
g) José Antonio Primo de Rivera, a devout Catholic shot with his brother by a Communist firing squad in Alicante, Spain, on November 20, 1936 for "treason" against a Communist government;
Painting: "La Muerte de José Antonio", artist unknown, Spanish Civil War. And they tell us "Guernica" is good art?
Cara al Sol
h) the 8,000 priests and nuns murdered with sadistic cruelty during the Spanish Civil War (985 priests and nuns in the diocese of Barcelona alone, according to a memorial plaque in Barcelona Cathedral); the Librería Europa, Calle Séneca 12, Barcelona E-08080 SPAIN, sells many books in Spanish documenting these atrocities, including photographs of burnt, looted, and desecrated churches;
i) Francisco Franco, also a devout Catholic, for rebuilding hundreds of Catholic churches, convents, orphanages, monasteries, hospitals and schools burnt by Communists and anarchists, as a result of which the orphans and indigent were simply thrown out on the street, in what Hugh Thomas described as "the worst outbreak of anti-religious violence in the history of the world";
j) the hundreds of thousands of Catholic peasants slaughtered during the civil wars in the Vendée following the French Revolution; etc. etc. etc.;
Tens of millions of people have died for their faith in the twentieth century alone -- most of them killed by Communists or Free-Masons (for example, in Mexico or Spain). Why canonize a converted Jewess who is not even known to have died by violence? Stein was deported to Auschwitz; there is no proof that she died there. NOTHING is known of the manner of her death -- or even the date or place. Many people deported to Auschwitz were deported elsewhere, later, including Ann Frank, who died at Belsen -- of typhus. The most astonishing thing is that as late as 1947, many former camp inmates believed that Stein was still alive (source: biography of Edith Stein, Comme l'or purifié par le feu: Edith Stein, 1891-1942, éditions Plon, 1984, p. 218, cited by Vincent Reynouard, see translation below ** ).
Edith Stein is like Ann Frank: a Jew who died of natural causes, as far as anyone can determine, but who must be transformed into a Jewish "martyr" in what Father Pinay called THE PLOT AGAINST THE CHURCH -- a plot, be it noted, which is now two thousand years old, and is moving into its final stages, complete with Jewish archbishops, Jewish saints, and an anti-Christ Pope (for a serious, and surprisingly intelligent, discussion of this point of view, see
http://www.trosch.org/ or write LIFE ENTERPRISES UNLIMITED, Father David C. Trosch, PO 850307 MOBILE ALA. USA 36685 .
A much better, although similar, site, with links to many good free videos on the second page -- although you have to scroll down a bit to find anything interesting -- is http://www.mostholyfamilymonastery.com.
I sent 4 children to Catholic schools, and all the priests were ever interested in was the promotion of miscegenation. Provided you flood Europe with Africans or brain-damaged Asians in wheelchairs, you can have as many abortions as you like, and do anything you want sexually. Can anyone imagine an army of Christians defeating overwhelmingly superior forces of Turks, Huns, or Mongols -- today -- as they did at Tours, Poitiers, Vienna, or Lepanto? Of course not. We'd be so busy "sensitizing" ourselves to their hot-dog religions that they'd cut our throats without the loss of a single man. The only way they could be defeated or resisted today would be to accuse them of "anti-Semitism" (or threatening Israel in some other manner), proof that the Jews have taken over the Christian churches from top to bottom (see also THE JEWS AND THE VATICAN by Count Leon de Poncin and many similar books).
Perhaps the infallible Manchurian Candidate will answer a few questions as to what he did during the war (i.e., was he, or was he not, a member of a Communist-controlled partisan organization)? I do not assert this as fact; it is a persistent rumour.
Apart from the above, I take no interest in the case of Edith Stein. You tell me how she died, and we'll both know. She was not gassed. Vincent Reynouard of B.P. 256, B-1050 BRUSSELS-5, BELGIUM, recently did some research on the subject, and his conclusion was that the story is a complete fraud. The research is in French (see translation below **).
Carlos W. Porter
July 10, 2000
For the text by Robert Faurisson, see http://www.vho.org/aaargh/engl/FaurisArch/RF981104.html
(I have erased my translation, since there is no need for two of them. - C.P.)
** ON EDITH STEIN
By Vincent Reynouard
(from ANEC INFORMATIONS, c/o B.P. 256, B-1050 BRUSSELS-5, BELGIUM , 29 October 1998, pp.3-5)
(translated by Carlos W. Porter; the quotations from the Nuremberg Trial transcript are retranslations which do not accord with the official translation or pagination in the English-language IMT volumes)
The canonization of the Carmelite Edit Stein by Pope John-Paul II has resulted in abundant mail. Our readers are wondering about the reasons why the nun was deported and the exact circumstances of her death. To answer these questions, ANEC is publishing the following.
E. Stein was born in 1891 at Breslau in a Jewish family. Although educated in the Jewish religion, she became an atheist and remained so until the age of 21. In 1921 she was converted, particularly, as the result of reading a book describing the life of Saint Teresa. Her baptism took place on 1 January 1922. From 1923 to 1931, she lived in the monastery of Saint Madelaine of the teaching Dominicans. There she taught upper levels of German.
Converted to liberal ideals at a very early age, she had, in her youth, defended women's rights and supported the right to strike. After 1918, she became committed to the democratic party, speaking at a meeting on the occasion and defending the Weimar republic.
Opposed to National Socialism, "she encouraged her students to form a group opposed to the Nazi student group - ANST - and took part in meetings with representatives of both sides taking part." [See: Comme l'or purifie par le feu. Edith Stein, 1891-1942, editions Plon, 1984, first editions au Seuil, 1954, p. 126. All the information published in this article was taken from this work.] After Hitler's accession to power, the authorities pressured the Catholic institute which employed Edith Stein to make her stop teaching. E. Stein therefore received a notice to give up teaching (at least for a time) and dedicated herself exclusively to her research work ["The president] added that he believed it preferable that I give up teaching my summer courses to dedicate myself exclusively to my research work", [excerpt from notes left by E. Stein, Comme l'or… p. 133].
In October 1933, she chose to take a vow which had been dear to her for ten years: to enter the Carmelite order. She received the habit on 15 April 1934 and pronounced her perpetual vows six days later. Although withdrawn from the world, she pursued, within the Carmelites, her action in opposition to National Socialism. On 10 April 1938, for example, she read a prebscite organized by the central authorities. The Carmelites having decided, by a majority, to abstain, E. Stein (having become Sister Benedicte), "usually so sweet and submissive, vehemently objected to such an idea" (op cit p. 185).
"She adjured her sisters to vote against Hitler, whatever the consequences of such an attitude for the Community and to each one of them. She represented to them that Hitler was the enemy of God and would drag Germany with him into an abyss of evil. She spoke with ardour, almost violence, forgetting all reserve" [ibid].
During a preceding plebiscite, as E. Stein had not gone to vote, two men had come to Carmel and had offered to drive her to the city so that she might fulfil her civic duty. She had ostensibly answered: "if these men attach such value to my 'no', I cannot refuse it to them" [ibid, p. 184].
After the Christmas festivities of 1938, E. Stein fled Germany and moved to the Carmelites of Echt, in the Netherlands. Two years later, nevertheless, this country was also occupied by the Reich. In 1942, the nun resolved to request a visa for Switzerland. It is probable that this request aroused the attention of the police; in the following weeks, E. Stein was interrogated twice by the Gestapo: at Maastricht and at Amsterdam.
Then suddenly, on 2 August 1942, while the negotiations continued with the authorities to obtain a visa, she was arrested and taken away by the Gestapo along with 300 non-Aryan priests and nuns [ibid, pp. 206-207].
According to some sources, these arrests constituted a reprisal measure in response to a pastoral letter denouncing the persecution of the Jews, a letter which had been read in its entirety in the majority of Catholic parishes of the Netherlands (while the occupying authority had demanded the excision of one passage) [See: Comme l'or… pp. 204 et seq. "The same day [as the arrest of E. Stein], in the evening, the adjutant commissioner Schmidt announced in an official speech, that this was a reprisal measure in response to the protest on the part of the Dutch bishops".]
At Nuremberg, however, the former commissioner of the Reich for the Netherlands, Arthur Seyss-Inquart, provided another version. He declared that starting in 1942, Heydrich, who had been invested by Hitler with unlimited powers, had ordered the evacuation of the Dutch Jews [See IMT, pp. 690-91, retranslated from French volumes: "This must have happened in 1942, I believe, when Heydrich formulated new requirements relating to the evacuation of the Jews (…) Heydrich showed me a Hitler order, according to the terms of which he was invested with unlimited powers for the execution of all measures in the occupied territories. I asked through Bormann what that meant, and this order was then confirmed to me. The evacuation of the Jews began on this basis".]
Heydrich was certainly acting in the framework of a "final territorial solution" of "the Jewish question decided in 1941; another reason also advanced for this evacuation was that, sooner or later, Holland would become a theatre of operations and that one could not then permit a hostile population [ibid, p. 690, French text, retranslation). Although opposed to such a measure, Seyss-Inquart had to obey.
As a result, the arrest and deportation of E. Stein seems rather to form part of a general plan of evacuation than part of a measure of reprisal as the result of a pastoral letter. But it is possible that these two causes co-existed, since they are in no way mutually exclusive.
E. Stein was first of all taken to the Westerborg camp (in northern Holland), which had been set up to gather the Jews scheduled for deportation. At Nuremberg, A. Seyss-Inquart declared without contradiction:
"In the same camp, there was a service of order made up of Jews. The camp was separated from the outside world by the Dutch police; there was simply a Police security command to supervise the interior of the camp. In the totality of the files, I did not note any report on abuses committed in the camp itself. Each Sunday, priests came to the camp; in any case, one priest for the Jews of catholic religion, and another for Jews called Christians, and they didn't make any report either" (IMT XV 682, retranslation).
E. Stein was finally deported (at the same time as her sister) to Auschwitz in the night of 6-7 August 1942. Is there any proof that she was murdered upon her arrival at the camp? No. On 16 February 1950, the Official Journal of Holland published lists of persons having died during deportation. Under nos. 44,074 and 44,075, it reads:
Born 12 October 1891, at Breslau
Deported from Echt + (died) 9 August 1943.
Born 13 December 1883, Lublinitz
Deported from Echt + (died) 9 August 1942.
In response to inquiry, the Dutch Red Cross answered that the date of 1943 was erroneous, that it was a misprint, and that "both sisters actually must have died in the gas chamber at Auschwitz, on 9 August 1942" (see Comme l'or… p. 218). Note the conditional turn of phrase. In reality, the date of 9 August 1942 corresponded to the arrival of the Stein sisters at Auschwitz; in fact, the date of their deaths is an unfounded extrapolation. As to the claim that they died in the "gas chamber" (singular) "at Auschwitz" is a serious untruth, since, in view of the studies of Robert Faurisson, later taken up by Fred Leuchter and Germar Rudolf, we know that there was never a homicidal gas chamber at Auschwitz.
Let us moreover stress that, until 1947, some people believed it possible that E. Stein might return; they based their hopes on "information from former inmates or deported persons" (ibid, p. 218). The fact that she did not return does not detract from the truthfulness of these persons, since she arrived at Auschwitz in the midst of a typhus epidemic (which was already four months old) [On the typhus epidemic at Auschwitz in August 1942, see Robert Faurisson, Memoire en Defense, La Vieille Taupe, 1980, p. 15].
It is also possible that the nun [Stein] only transited Auschwitz to be then sent to another camp. Such transfers were not unusual: we know, for example, that, on 19 August 1944, one thousand Hungarian Jewish women left Auschwitz for Allendorf-lez-Kirchhain, a commando of women administratively dependent upon the Buchenwald camp [See the Catalogue alphabetique des camps de concentration et de travaux forces [published by the Belgian Ministry of Public Health in 1951, p. 5.]
Now, according to the official history, these women should have been gassed immediately upon their arrival at Auschwitz. On 9 August 1942, one thousand Jews from Auschwitz III arrived at Gross-Rosen (ibid, p. 152). Upon the liberation of the camps, deported Jews, such as E. Stein, deported from Westerborg, were found not only at Auschwitz (ibid, p. 142), but also elsewhere (for example, a commando administratively dependent upon the Gross-Rosen camp, ibid, p. 177).
Consequently, there is no proof that E. Stein died at Auschwitz, whether murdered or not.
Jewish by birth, converted to Catholicism, and having become a Carmelite, opposed to National Socialism, E. Stein finally died following deportation. Her canonization by John-Paul II in 1998 was the occasion of numerous lies. The most serious of them consisted of claiming that the nun had been gassed upon her arrival at Auschwitz, in the context of the genocide of the Jews planned by the "nazis". Now, even if one has no knowledge of the work of the revisionists, honesty demands a statement that we know nothing of the place, the causes, or circumstances of her death.
But it is true that for the peddlers of the Shoah, these "details" are of little importance. E. Stein died following deportation, they say; therefore, she was murdered. Such a state of affairs is not surprising; the official history of the concentration camp system is only an accumulation of untruths and hazardous hypotheses skilfully, or haphazardly, patched together.
It is nevertheless unfortunate that someone who claims to be the Pope has made himself the accomplice of the ambient lie, above all when the lie is utilized by some people to destroy the Catholic Church.
ANEC Informations 29 October 1998
FOLLOW UP: To my amazement, this person replied immediately, in Spanish, as follows:
Gracias por tu ámplia e informativa respuesta; me ha abierto más aún los ojos sobre lo que se está cocinando. Ya me daba mala espina lo de Edith y lo de Maximilian Kolbe, que también fue canonizado; por alguna razón fue detenido por la policía secreta, ¿no crees? Bueno, yo soy católico, pero fui comunista y ateo muchos años. Tuve una fuerte experiencia espiritual cuando las apariciones de la "Gospa" en Medjugorje y me convertí al catolicismo. Quizá aquello de lo que hablamos sea para apagar los ánimos por la supuesta complicidad de Su Santidad Pio XII en las deportaciones. La historia de "Hitler's Pope" es una de los medios para desacreditar y cobrar ma$$ [sic] indeminizaciones. Un amigo mío se salvó de morir fusilado en España; cuando formaron para fusilar a todos los seminaristas donde él estudiaba, él gritó:"¿A mí porqué, si yo soy mexicano?" Eso lo salvó. Cárdenas era el presidente de Mexico y apoyaba al caos marxista. Cuando era niño y me gustaba ver películas de guerra, me preguntaba: ¿porqué los alemanes siempre pierden, si son tan listos? Nos enseñaron en la escuela que se producía jabón de grasa humana y curtían la piel para "souvenirs". Después se descubrió que todo era falso. En fin, hay mucho que descubrir. Pero lo importante es QVO VADIS? ...(¿a donde vamos?) Realmente, ¿hay privacía en Internet? Gracias por tus valiosas referencias, conseguiré esas obras. Paz y bien.
[Translation: Thank you for your far-ranging and informative answer; it opened my eyes even further on what's going on. I had a bad feeling about the Edith story and that of Maximilian Kolbe, who was also canonized; he had to be arrested by the secret police for something, don't you think? Well, I'm Catholic, but I was a Communist and atheist for many years. I had a strong spiritual experience at the time of the apparitions of the "Gospa" in Medjugorje and converted to Catholicism. Perhaps what we were discussing is to calm people down about the supposed complicity of His Holiness Pious XII in the deportations. "Hitler's Pope" is one of the ways to discredit him and collect more money in reparations. A friend of mine was almost shot in Spain; when they were forming the firing squad to shoot all the students in the seminary where he was studying, he shouted, "Why shoot me, when I'm a Mexican?" This saved him. Cárdenas was president of Mexico and supported the Marxist chaos. When I was a child I liked to see war films and I wondered why the Germans always lose, if they are so smart? They taught us in school that they made soap of human fat and cured skin for "souvenirs". It was afterwards discovered that this was all untrue. After all, there are many things to discover. But the important thing is QVO VADIS?… (where are we going?) Really, is there any privacy on the Internet? Thank you for your valuable references, I will obtain these publications. Peace be with you.]
BLACK BOOK OF COMMUNISM by Stephane Courtois);
THE GREAT TERROR, HARVEST OF SORROW, and THE GREAT TERROR: A REAPPRAISAL by Robert Conquest;
DISSECTING THE HOLOCAUST edited by Ernst Gauss)
STALIN'S WAR OF EXTERMINATION
by Joachim Hoffmann);
THE DESTRUCTION OF DRESDEN by David Irving;
LOS CRÍMENES DE LOS BUENOS by Joaquín Bochaca;
WORLD CONQUERORS and JUDAISM AND THE
VATICAN by Louis Marschalko
WHITE MAN THINK AGAIN by Jacobs (formerly available from THE TRUTH AT LAST, PO BOX 1211, Marietta GA 30061 USA);
CALL AFRICA 999 by John Peer Nugent;
NO GOD NEXT DOOR: RED RULE IN MEXICO AND OUR RESPONSIBILITY by Michael Kenney;
THE SPANISH CIVIL WAR by Hugh Thomas.
FRANCO by Brian Crozier;
Miscellaneous books by Stanley Payne and Brian Crozier;
NUEVA CRISTIANDAD Cerrito 1070, Sexto Piso, Oficina 104, 1010 Capital Federal, Argentina, publishes very good traditionalist Catholic literature in Spanish.
traducción de E. Stein. Estoy anonadado; es una pieza más
del rompecabezas de desinformación que padecemos; pero el artículo
está muy detallado, con citas y todo. Me parece muy extraño
que Churchill, DeGaulle y Eisenhower no mencionaron la exterminación
en sus escritos. Todo encaja para hacer la mentira más monstruosa.
I received the translation about E. Stein. I am overwhelmed; it is one more piece in the puzzle of disinformation from which we suffer; the article is very detailed, with quotations and everything. It seems very strange to me that Churchill, DeGaulle, and Eisenhower did not mention the extermination in their writings. Everything fits together to make the lie more monstrous. Thanks, friend.
UPDATE APRIL 25, 2005
POLISH POPE = PRO-JEWISH POPE = "GREAT POPE", "GREAT SPIRITUAL LEADER", etc. etc. etc.
No doubt a German Pope will be even worse, given the psychotic state of modern Germans. On the Jewish infiltration of the Church and censorship of all Church literature, see THE JEWISH PARADOX by Nahum Goldman. Note that there is no mention of Communism, although the Poles lost almost two million people killed by Stalin or deported to Siberia during WWII. Nor is there any mention of the Soviet invasion of Poland, Katyn, or the 100 million other Christians murdered by Communists (not to mention Taoists, Buddhists, Moslems, etc. etc.) over an 80-year period. There is no mention of the Polish-Czech expulsion of 13 million Germans in 1945-46, in the dead of winter, with 1.5 million deaths and the confiscation of all their property. There is no mention of the mass bombings or mass rapes. Only Jews are important. Only Jews have rights, only Jews have feelings. That the Hoaxoco$t is lies, all lies, bothered this "spiritual leader" not one bit. Nor did he seem to care much about Zionism, the Jewish role in Communism, or the pervert scandals and money laundering in his own Church!
What would people do if they didn't have "Nazis" to criticize?
This is Phariseeism, as I have pointed out elsewhere. - C.P.
Photo added 20 December 2010
Pope's death brings unprecedented outpouring of Jewish thanks, praise
By Jerry Filteau
WASHINGTON (CNS) -- The April 2 death of Pope John Paul II brought an absolutely unprecedented outpouring of condolences, thanks, praise and blessing from religious leaders of the Jewish community.
Their comments indicated how deeply Catholic-Jewish relations have been affected worldwide by the Catholic Church's first Polish pope -- who as a youth personally experienced the tragedy of the Nazi Holocaust of the Jewish people in World War II and as pope transformed that experience into an intense Catholic theological reflection on God's eternal covenant with Jews and the sinfulness of Christian anti-Semitism.
"Nobody has done as much to transform Catholic-Jewish relations as John Paul II. He will be forever remembered as a great hero of Catholic-Jewish reconciliation," said Rabbi David Rosen, Jerusalem-based international director of interreligious relations for the American Jewish Committee.
"The Jewish community has lost a treasured friend," said Rabbi Eric Yoffie, president of the Union for Reform Judaism.
"No other pope in history has devoted so much time and attention to Jews, whom he described as 'our elder brother,'" said Rabbi Gilbert S. Rosenthal, director of the National Council of Synagogues, which represents North American Conservative and Reform synagogal and rabbinical organizations.
"Pope John Paul II revolutionized Catholic-Jewish relations," said Abraham H. Foxman, national director of the Anti-Defamation League.
"He was the pivotal figure in the significant improvement of Catholic-Jewish relations in our time and he played an unprecedented, historic role in promoting dialogue and reconciliation between religions and peoples," said the National Polish American-Jewish American Council.
"He was a pope for the ages," said the Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations of America.
"The historic and landmark contributions that he made to Catholic-Jewish relations were pioneering and invaluable," the union said.
"We will lovingly remember his historic visits to the Great Synagogue in Rome, a concentration camp in Auschwitz (Poland) and the Western Wall in Jerusalem, as he stood with us in spiritual solidarity," said the New York Board of Rabbis. "Declaring anti-Semitism a sin against God and humanity, the pope repeatedly reminded the world that we could never again remain silent while people perish because of their race or religion."
"Shalom, shalom, shalom," the board said to the late pope, repeating his final words to a delegation of 130 Jews including New York rabbis that he met at the Vatican less than three months before his death.
At that meeting, "in an extremely moving moment, three rabbis of different denominations blessed this sacred soul," the board said. "This was a most fitting gesture for an extraordinary individual who blessed us with his voice and his vision."
Rabbi Eugene Korn, director of the American Jewish Congress' Department of Jewish Affairs and a professor of Christian-Jewish studies at Seton Hall University, a Catholic institution in New Jersey, said: "John Paul II was the first bishop (of Rome) to visit a synagogue in almost 2,000 years. He repeatedly stated that anti-Semitism is a sin against God and that there is no room in Christianity for anti-Semitic interpretations of Christian texts. Under this pope the church asked for repentance for her role in the Shoah (Holocaust) and recognized Israel as the homeland of the Jewish people."
Rabbi Rosenthal also cited the issuance of new church directives on Catholic teaching and preaching about Jews and Judaism under Pope John Paul II and the pope's prayer at the Western Wall for God's forgiveness for Christian sins against Jews.
While noting many of the same actions, Foxman commented that "most importantly, the pope rejected the destructive concept of supersessionism," which is the view that the new covenant of Christianity superseded or replaced God's covenant with Abraham and his descendants, and he "has recognized the special relationship between Christianity and the Jewish people."
Rabbi Yoffie cited the papal acts mentioned by others and also the pope's insistence "on the eternal validity of God's covenant with the Jews."
"The extent of the change that John Paul II wrought is expressed in the power and intensity of the language he used, calling on members of the church to do 'teshuvah' -- repentance -- for sins committed against the Jewish people and urging them to remember the unique relationship that exists between the church and the Jewish religion," he said.
He recalled that Pope John Paul urged Catholics and Jews to be a blessing to one another and said, "In the Jewish tradition we say of those who have left us: 'May his memory be a blessing.' We say this today of John Paul II."
"Is there anything more Christian than a fly? Flies are constant, persistent, buzzing. Flies love wounds, pus, and garbage, like true Christians. Some will say that bishops and Popes prefer money, opulence, magnificence; but this only proves that flies are much more Christian than bishops and Popes."
- Pío Baroja, La Ruta del Aventurero, 1916
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