Religion: Troubled Reconciliation

In the spirit of the Holy Year's theme of reconciliation, the Vatican last week made public a new set of guidelines to improve relations between Roman Catholics and Jews. Despite the document's amicable intentions, its initial reception was lukewarm. Jewish leaders criticized it for omissions or what they perceived as overtones of Catholic evangelism, and Vatican spokesmen found themselves on the defensive.

The guidelines, issued by a two-month-old Vatican Commission for Religious Relations with the Jews, were intended to implement a declaration by the Second Vatican Council in 1965 which, among other...

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