European Religious Leaders Meeting in Paris
A two-day meeting was held in Paris on 28-29 January, 2002, to review the progress in Catholic-Jewish relations since the Second Vatican Council. Organized by the European Jewish Council, the meeting included Roman Catholic and Jewish representatives from various nations of Europe. Some 900 persons attended the opening public meeting in the Paris Town Hall, at which Cardinal Walter Kasper, president of the Vatican's Commission for Religious Relations with the Jews, read a greeting from Pope John Paul II that stated: 'Jews and Christians maintain special relations. The message that comes to us from the God of the Covenant with Moses, the patriarchs and prophets, belongs to our common patrimony and calls us to collaborate together.' Henri Hajdenberg, former president of the European Jewish Council, expressed special appreciation for the work of John Paul II in healing Catholic-Jewish relations, stating that he 'has understood the dimensions of the two most important events of the 20th century for the Jewish people: the Holocaust and the rebirth of the state of Israel.' The meeting was the first of its kind at the pan-European level.