See photos from Papal mass.
On May 8,1996, Rochester became the first city in the United States to formally recognize the importance of the historic Nostra Aetate, the 1965 Vatican II Declaration on the Relationship of the Church to Non-Christian religions. Nostra Aetate holds great significance for the Jewish community as it decries anti-Semitism and the expression of hatred or persecution toward Jews at any time.
On that date in May, we spearheaded The Rochester Agreement between the Jewish Community Federation, the Rochester Board of Rabbis, and the Roman Catholic Diocese of Rochester. The Agreement crowned many years of dialogue, recognition and reckoning between our communities. It was a commitment to continue the relationship and to strengthen future interfaith dialogue.
To celebrate both of these historic events, 20 leaders of the Rochester Jewish and Catholic communities participated in a groundbreaking journey to Rome and the Vatican with Bishop Matthew Clark and Rabbi Alan Katz, architects of The Rochester Agreement, November 7-13.
The group had the historic opportunity to attend mass with, and even meet, the Pope. They also met with Israeli Ambassador to the Vatican Oded Ben Hur and Cardinal Walter Kasper, President of the Pontifical Council promoting interfaith unity. They visited historic sites for both Catholics and Jews. The group bonded almost immediately and had an extraordinary time together on this ground-breaking trip.
Learn more about Federation Community Relations or contact Isobel Goldman, firstname.lastname@example.org for information.