Pope Francis has urged Christians and Jews to take a united stand against anti-Semitism in Europe at a meeting with the delegations of the Ecumenical Council of Hungarian Churches (MEÖT) and Hungarian Jewish organizations.
According to MTI, during his speech at the closing mass of the 52nd International Eucharistic Congress, the pontiff compared the relationship between Christians and Jews to the Chain Bridge linking the Buda and Pest sides of Budapest. He said Jews and Christians no longer wanted to see each other as strangers but as friends. The two communities must fight anti-Semitism together to prevent the “waves of hate” from damaging their relationship, he said.
“Only if we become roots of peace and shoots of unity, will we prove credible in the eyes of the world, which look to us with a yearning that can bring hope to blossom,” the pope added. “Whenever we were tempted to absorb the other, we were tearing down instead of building up,” he said. Francis noted that Sunday’s meeting was taking place between Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish new year, and Yom Kippur, the Jewish day of atonement. He said people and communities should build bridges while respecting everyone’s religious freedom instead of living in isolation.