Jewish leader, senior Vatican officials discuss joint talks with Muslims

A representative of the World Jewish Congress (WJC) met with four senior Vatican officials yesterday to discuss ways to strengthen dialogue between the two religions and the possibility of entering into a joint dialogue with senior Muslim clergy.

"It is important to enter into discussions with the third 'Son of Abraham',” said Israel Singer, chairman of the WJC’s policy council. The WJC serves as the diplomatic arm of the Jewish people to world governments and international organizations.

“No one in the meetings has underestimated the difficulties in bringing about a meaningful dialogue [with Islam], but we all agreed that the principle of mutual respect can override differences that exist between the religions," he said in a press release.

Singer met with Archbishop Leonardo Sandri, substitute for general affairs at the Secretariat of State of the Holy See; Archbishop Giovanni Lajolo, secretary for Relations with States; Cardinal Walter Kasper, president of the Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity; and Archbishop Michael Fitzgerald, president of the Pontifical Council for Inter-Religious Dialogue.

Singer also stressed the need for the results of Catholic- Jewish dialogue to "trickle down" the hierarchies to every follower of both faiths.

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