Jewish community marks 40th anniversary of Vatican document, Nostra Aetate


To celebrate the 40th anniversary of the Vatican's Nostra Aetate, the Anti-Defamation League (ADL) has announced the creation of a new online guide that explains the historic changes in Church theology and provides educational resources.

The Second Vatican Council adopted the landmark document, on Oct. 28, 1965, which launched a new positive relationship between the Church and the Jewish people. It repudiates the “deicide” charge, absolving all Jews, past and present, of killing Jesus. It clearly deplores anti-Semitism, dismisses Church interest in converting Jews, and reaffirms the eternal covenant between God and the Jewish people.

The online guide, Nostra Aetate: Transforming Catholic-Jewish Relations is available at It includes essays by some of the world's leading Jewish-Catholic interfaith experts who analyze the history and significance of Nostra Aetate, as well as a practical "how-to" guide on teaching the lessons of Nostra Aetate to new generations of Catholics and Jews.

On the country’s West Coast this evening, Fr. Robert McNamara along with 100 or so parishioners from St. Bernadine of Siena Catholic Church will join the Jewish community at Temple Aliyah in Woodland Hills, Ca., for a celebration marking the 40th anniversary of the Vatican document. He will also deliver the Shabbat sermon, reported the Jewish Journal of Greater Los Angeles.

In Los Angeles, home to the largest U.S. archdiocese, with almost 5 million Catholics and to the second-largest U.S. Jewish population of about 550,000, the 40th anniversary was publicly celebrated Sept. 22. About 350 attended the event at the Cathedral of Our Lady of the Angels jointly organized by the Archdiocese of Los Angeles, the American Jewish Committee and the Board of Rabbis of Southern California.

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