Mr. Michael Brown is carrying this story at his website: www.spiritdaily.com :
By Associated PressJuly 5, 2005, 6:13 PM EDT
VATICAN CITY -- German-born Pope Benedict XVI will say prayers in Hebrew when he visits the synagogue in Cologne, Germany, that was destroyed by the Nazis, a cardinal organizing the trip said Tuesday. Jewish representatives invited the pope to visit while he is in Germany in August for the Roman Catholic Church's World Youth Day and Benedict replied, '"I will come,"' said Cologne Cardinal Joachim Meisner.
The visit will include a prayer service in which the psalms will be "prayed," the cardinal said. "We have learned them in Hebrew." Since his April 19 election as pope, the German-born Benedict has reached out to Jews while denouncing crimes by the Nazis. He served in the Hitler Youth organization as a teen and later deserted from the German army in the waning days of World War II. "We (the Germans) carry our wounds up to this day, and sometimes they are still bleeding wounds," Meisner said of World War II and the Holocaust. In that context, and that of the first German pope in 500 years, the cardinal said the visit becomes an "unequivocal symbol to our elder brothers and sisters" that the Holocaust "must never happen again." Jewish leaders have praised Benedict for his efforts to improve relations between Catholic and Jews during the many years Benedict worked in the Vatican before becoming pope. Benedict will visit Cologne from Aug. 18-21, a trip originally planned by the late John Paul II.
Copyright © 2005, The Associated Press
The Church continues to reach out to the Jewish People. Even while some who profess to be Catholic promote anti-Semitism. Our Lord told us that we would know a tree by its fruit. Amen.