Sunday, June 7, 2015

Vatican: Pope backs sainthood candidacy of anti-Semitic priest

For centuries the Roman Catholic Church persecuted Jews and accused them of being, among other sins, perfidious.  The contempt the Church felt for Jews was taught in Europe and exported to all parts of the world.

The Times of Israel reports:

French Roman Catholic priest
Léon Dehon
Pope Francis raised eyebrows on Friday by supporting the candidacy for sainthood of a French priest whose dossier was put on hold in 2005 because of his alleged anti-Semitic views.

Léon Dehon (1843-1925), founder of the Priests of the Sacred Heart order, had been declared venerable in 1997 by pope John Paul II but his beatification — the next step on the path to sainthood — ran into difficulties. It had been initially scheduled for April 2005 but was delayed by John Paul II’s death.

Attempts to revive his case stalled under Francis’s predecessor Benedict XVI, who set up a commission to investigate the allegations of anti-Semitism. But Francis told a Priests of the Sacred Heart delegation on Friday that he wanted the beatification process to “end well” and insisted Dehon’s attitude be placed in a historical context, according to religious news agency I.Media.

 “It’s a hermeneutic problem… We must study a historic situation with the hermeneutic of the time rather than of today,” he said.

In his 1898 “Social Catechism”, Dehon wrote that Jews “have maintained their hatred of Christ and… willingly favor all the enemies of the Church.” According to French newspaper reports from 2005, he described the Talmud as the “manual of the bandit, corruptor, social destroyer” and anti-Semitism as a “sign of hope”.

The Washington Post (2005): "According to extracts published in the French Catholic newspaper La Croix, Dehon wrote that Jews were "thirsty for Gold" and that "lust for money is a racial instinct in them"; he called the Talmud "a manual for the bandit, the corrupter, the social destroyer"; and he recommended several measures later adopted by the Nazis, including that Jews wear special markings, live in ghettos and be excluded from land ownership, judgeships and teaching positions"

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