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A Token of Reconciliation between the Catholic Church and the Jewish People   |   Featured Artifacts

The “Note” that the Pope placed between the stones of the Western Wall during his visit to Israel in the year 2000 The “Note” that the Pope placed between the stones of the Western Wall during his visit to Israel in the year 2000
Pope John Paul II placing the “Note” with his message between the stones of the Western Wall, March 26th, 2000 Pope John Paul II placing the “Note” with his message between the stones of the Western Wall, March 26th, 2000
The ceremony held in the Hall of Remembrance at Yad Vashem during the Pope’s visit. To the right of Pope John Paul II is Mr. Avner Shalev, Chairman of the Yad Vashem Directorate and to his left is Ehud Barak, then Prime Minister of Israel, and Shevach Weiss, then Chairman of the Yad Vashem Council The ceremony held in the Hall of Remembrance at Yad Vashem during the Pope’s visit. To the right of Pope John Paul II is Mr. Avner Shalev, Chairman of the Yad Vashem Directorate and to his left is Ehud Barak, then Prime Minister of Israel, and Shevach Weiss, then Chairman of the Yad Vashem Council

In March 2000 Pope John Paul II visited Israel. During the visit a historic ceremony was held in the Hall of Remembrance in Yad Vashem expressing the wish for reconciliation between the Catholic Church and the Jewish people.

During his visit the Pope visited the Western Wall and placed his message between the stones. The “Note” was subsequently placed for safekeeping in Yad Vashem’s Artifacts Collection in accordance with the wishes of the Pope. In keeping with the sentiments expressed at the ceremony in Yad Vashem, the Note appeals to God with a prayer for forgiveness and a wish for reconciliation:

“GOD OF OUR FATHERS,
YOU CHOSE ABRAHAM AND HIS DESCENDANTS
TO BRING YOUR NAME TO THE NATIONS
WE ARE DEEPLY SADDENED
BY THE BEHAVIOUR OF THOSE
WHO IN THE COURSE OF HISTORY
HAVE CAUSED THESE CHILDREN OF YOURS
TO SUFFER,
AND ASKING YOUR FORGIVENESS
WE WISH TO COMMIT OURSELVES
TO GENUINE BROTHERHOOD
WITH THE PEOPLE OF THE COVENANT”

Yad Vashem Artifacts Collection