Bishops highlight Nostra Aetate as turning point
The Australian Bishops have described the Vatican Nostra Aetate document on interreligious relations as a "turning-point in the long and tortured history of the relationship between Christians and Jews".
In a statement released at the end of their Plenary Meeting in Sydney last week, the Bishops said that Nostra Aetate was an "epoch-making document". They said that they could not let this year's 40th anniversary of the document pass without expressing "our gratitude for all that it has made possible and our hopes for the future to which it points".
"Since 1965, Nostra Aetate has had a great impact on that relationship, and that is cause for thanksgiving after so much sorrow and suffering," they said.
Referring to the Australian context, the Bishops said that the publication of the document led to the increasing involvement of the Catholic Church in dialogue and collaboration with the Jewish community/
"In this anniversary year we commit ourselves to developing still further the friendship that has been struck and the mutual respect which this implies."
The said that it has has also been a spur to dialogue with other communities representing the great world religions in Australia.
"In particular, our contact with the Islamic community has increased as new conversations and exchanges have begun to take place. This is for us a source of real rejoicing, all the more so because peace in this country and in the world depends in part upon peace between Judaism, Christianity and Islam.
"But we look beyond the three monotheistic religions to the other religions of the world with whom we have increasing contact, such as Buddhism and Hinduism, as we seek to shape words and deeds of peace for the sake of the human family."
A statement from the Catholic Bishops of Australia to mark the 40th anniversary of Nostra Aetate (Australian Catholic Bishops Conference 25/11/05)
LINKS (not necessarily endorsed by Church Resources)
Declaration "Nostra Aetate"
John McDade SJ: Nostra Aetate & Interfaith Dialogue (The Pastoral Review November 2005)
Catholics warn Anglicans of 'irreparable damage' if allow women bishops (Catholic News Agency 25/11/05)
Vatican delegation to visit Ecumenical Patriarchate (Catholic World News 23/11/05)
World Council of Churches, Catholic Church celebrate 40 years of ecumenism (Catholic News Agency 23/11/05)
Dialogue Can't Allow Relativism, Says Cardinal Kasper (Zenit 22/11/05)
Dalai Lama urges US, Britain to take 'firm stand' with China (Agence France-Presse/Yahoo 18/11/05)
The Dalai Lama has urged Christians not to convert to Buddhism (Ekklesia 20/11/05)
Priest stresses importance of ecumenism at "grass root level" (Aid to the Church in Need 21/11/05)
29 Nov 2005