The Vatican Seeks to Reclaim its Own –
“The Vatican Wants Jerusalem”
As Study in the Israeli-Vatican Diplomatic Relations that will Lead to the Prophetic Fulfillment of
“On that day, all Nations will seek to Surround Jerusalem”
By Robert D. Mock MD
Zechariah 14:2-4 – “And I will gather all the nations to battle against Jerusalem: the city shall be taken, the houses rifled, and the women ravished. Half of the city shall go into captivity, but the remnant of the saints shall not be cut of from the city.
Then the Lord will go forth and fight against those nations, as He fights in the day of battle. And in that day His feet will stand on the Mount of Olives, which faces Jerusalem on the east. And the Mount of Olives shall be split in two, from east to west, making a very large valley; half of the mountain shall move toward the north and half of it toward the south.
Topics for Part Three
The Battle of Control between the Jewish Christian Catholics
and the Arab Christian Catholics
Was this assignment of a Catholic Latin Patriarch alongside a Jewish Benedictine Catholic Bishop in the presence of a dogmatic Jewish Franciscan Father who is an international scholar of Catholic canon law a purposeful blend to cover the entire religio-political sphere in Jerusalem? Is it their aim to cause dissent with the final goal to bring ecumenical reconciliation so that the Vatican will soon be recognized as the international arbiter of religious peace in the Holy Land? The trends over the past decade appear to be the case.
Yet the battle for the control between the Jewish and the Arab Christian Catholics was highlighted in an important article by the Drew Christiansen, S.J. the Jesuit Editor in Chief of the Jesuit weekly magazine called “America” and a counselor for international affairs to the United States Conference of Catholic Bishops, “with special responsibility for the Middle East.” Published on May 10, 2005, the article titled, “A Campaign to Divide the Church in the Holy Land” outlines in detail the power players in the establishment of an ecclesiastical jurisdiction for Catholics of Jewish descent. As Christiansen writes about these power players:
Jesuit Drew Christiansen S.J. – “These would be, in the first
place, Abbot Gourion and the leaders of the
Îuvre Saint-Jacques “in alliance with sympathetic elements in the French
Church” (read: the cardinal of Paris, the Jewish convert Jean-Marie
Lustiger); in the second place, in the Vatican, Dominican
Father Georges Cottier, official theologian of the pontifical household,
and Ignace Moussa Cardinal Daoud, prefect
for the Congregation for the Eastern Churches; then the apostolic
nuncio to Israel, Archbishop Pietro Sambi;
and, naturally, the government of Ariel Sharon,
which is interested in harming the Palestinian Christians and Patriarch
To this list of kingpins Christiansen adds the spokesman for the Franciscans of the Holy Land, David-Maria Jaeger, another converted Jew, a canonist, and one of the negotiators of the 1994 agreement between Israel and the Holy Land. But in his case, Christiansen acknowledges attenuating circumstances. Jaeger had always supported an ecclesiastical jurisdiction, not for Jewish converts, but rather for the non-Arab Christians who have emigrated to Israel from Russia, Poland, the Philippines, etc. – somewhere in the tens of thousands, all told.
Gourion and his friends – Christiansen writes – “hijacked” Jaeger´s idea
and turned it to the advantage of the Hebrew Catholics, “who number fewer than
250 and are not even united by the Hebrew language,” concentrated in the cities
of Jerusalem, Jaffa, Haifa, and Ber Sheva. The problem with all of this
would seem to be that of wanting to divide the Church in Palestine into two
parts, denying its Arab character and delegitimizing Patriarch Sabbah,
who has always been against the idea of naming a bishop ´ad Judaeos.´
the conflicts of the Middle East, the first implication is what Jesuit
Father Francesco Rossi de Gasperis of the Pontifical Biblical Institute of
Jerusalem called a “theological negation of the people of Israel, a kind of cultural and spiritual Shoah, not dissimilar to what was seen in the churches of Europe during the age of ‘Christendom’.” By creating a Catholic Church within Israel and “for Israel” comes from its deep seated denial for even the very existence of the state
of Israel. Over the course of Christian history, the original “Church” was
actually a Hebrew community composed of Jews that were faithful to the Torah,
believers in the Jewish rabbi, Yahshua haMaschiach (Jesus the Messiah). Is the
guiding hand of the God of Israel even calling the core of the Catholic
faithful back to a “historical turning point,” nominating a Catholic
bishop ´ad Judaeos´? Is the soul of the Catholics also at stake
in that the overarching bid to gain control over the holy sites of Jerusalem
will in turn radically change the nature of Christian Catholicism today?
While this shift may isolate the Jewish secular Zionists, it also isolates a Latin patriarchate that is intentionally of an “overwhelming Palestinian character.” This political and religious battle for the hearts of souls of both the Arabs and the Jews, the Vatican is playing very carefully. It is a battle that does have its costs.
Over the years the Latin patriarchate has overtly declared its diminishing interest in any dialogue with the Jewish people. In the city of Jerusalem, there is no Catholic library at all. In 2001, the Pontifical Institute “Ratisbonne” in Jerusalem was shut down and placed for sale. The contenders to buy were the Opus Dei (of Dan Brown’s “De Vinci Code” fame), the Salesians and the Neocatechumenal Way. Abbot Gourion came under the wrath of the patriarchate for receiving an honorary award in one of the halls of the Knesset, the Israeli parliament while the Melkite pastor of Nazareth, Émile Shoufani, who though an Arab is not anti-Semitic nor anti-Israeli when he was attacked mercilessly for taking an ecumenical pilgrimage of Jews and Palestinians together to Auschwitz.
While the prophetic
vision of bringing all men to Jerusalem as the “house of the Lord of hosts”
is seriously considered in the revival of Hebrew Christianity, the Jewish
rabbinate see a threat to the survival of Judaism with the rise of Jewish
believers who believe in Jesus as the Jewish and Christian messiah. The pathway
to the expectations of the coming of the coming Messiah may bring some
unexpected surprises to both Christians and Jews.
This rift or fissure in the Catholic community is serious and thought provoking especially within the orthodox circles of the Roman Church. The Christian Church is already fractured by many different denominations. Now within the Catholic community the dialogue centers around whether the Hebrew-speaking Catholic ecclesiastical church should remain separate or in close affiliation with the Arab Latin patriarchate. Though the Jewish Catholic members number about 250 members, it is a vibrant community with its leader, French Benedictine abbot, Fr. Jean-Baptiste Gourion of the Monastery of the Resurrection in Abu Ghosh. What is fascinating is that in Israel, two of the three main Catholic representatives in Israel are of Jewish descent. This tension between the Jewish and the Arab interests keeps the Roman Catholic Church embroiled in the broader issues between the Israeli-Palestinian and the Jewish-Christian.
In the National Catholic Reporter on May 23, 2003 under the article titled, “Proposal for dual Catholic jurisdictions in Jerusalem has critics, supporters”; this tension between the Hebrew and the Arab Christian communities both have Catholic proponents in the Catholic leadership with these different religious views. The ministry of Bishop Gurion interestingly is centered on the pastoral life of “St. James” called James the Just the brother of Jesus who was the first leaders of the Hebrew Nazarene Ecclesia after the death of Yahshua ben Yosef (Jesus son of Joseph).
Competing for the opposing view from the perspective of a Jewish Catholic is Franciscan Father David Jaeger, who as the Catholic custodian of the holy sites in Israel states:
Franciscan Father David Jaeger – “The church in Israel is in the absurd position of being absent from the society…It’s as if the only bishops in Spain were Basque, or the only bishops in the United States spoke Navajo Indian. There are important debates going on in Israel right now over labor, over the economy, over family law, and the church is not part of those debates bemuse it has no voice.”
Both Gourion and Jaeger are converts from Judaism to Christianity. The two men both have different visions for a Hebrew-speaking Christian Church and the debate and rivalry complicate their mission. Gourion wants the Jewish Christian Church to build a Christian community reflecting the real nature of the early Hebrew Nazarene Ecclesia called the Jerusalem Church in the Acts of the Apostles. This Catholic community should be fully Jewish and fully immersed in Jewish cultural lifestyle. As he appeals to a delegation of presidents of episcopal conferences in Jerusalem:
Benedictine Abbot Jean-Baptiste Gourion – “Christianity arises from the Jewish people and should continue to be grafted on the true olive tree.”
This is about as radical as a Christian concept can be: that Catholic Christianity should be grafted back into the Jewish Olive Tree. If this is accepted, then a Palestinian Arab at this political junction in world politics would not be capable of performing such a religious leadership role. For many, this would discredit the Palestinian cause for as one anonymous Catholic leader said, “The Israelis want a national church that will swear allegiance to the State of Israel.” Speaking for the opposing side, Franciscan Father
Jesuit Father Drew Christiansen steps into this dialogue and highlights the State of Israel as the wedge driving the split as he suggests that the “Israeli government is backing the plan to split off Hebrew-speaking Christians as a way of weakening Sabbah and ‘discrediting the Palestinian cause.’” He appeals to the fact that while the Franciscans are responsible to govern the holy sites, the Jerusalem patriarchate represents best the “local church” as he sees it.
When the dialogue moves to the core of its existence, Father Jaeger probably speaks the closest to the heart of the mission of the Holy See. In a way, the goal of the Vatican is to reach into the heart and soul of the Jewish people. Orthodox or not, they want to conquer the “spirit” of the remnant of the saints. How many Hebrew-speaking Jews do this internal Catholic dispute over? A few hundred? Not so, says, Father Jaeger:
Franciscan Father David Jaeger – “Jaeger told NCR the potential membership is in the tens, if not hundreds, of thousands. At its core would be a few hundred Jewish converts. Then come Christian (Jewish) immigrants from the former Soviet Union, estimated by Jaeger to number in the tens of thousands. While most are Orthodox, there are a few Catholics. There are also recent Catholic migrants living in Israel for economic reasons, such as Filipinos and Poles. Jaeger says there are tens of thousands of these people, many undocumented, whose children will grow up in Israel speaking Hebrew as their principal language.”
If the political churning that is swirling around Israel and Jerusalem is not already in an epic proportion of a Biblical scale, it took Moshe Sasson, Israel’s ambassador to Italy from 1973-77 to present the Vatican-Mussolini Pact as the most viable working model for the status of Jerusalem and the final relationship between Israel and the Vatican. On January 13, 2006 in Adnkronosinternation in an article titled, “Israel: Vatican-Mussolini Pact touted as Model for Jerusalem,” that stated:
Vatican-Mussolini Pact – “A 1929 accord between the Vatican and
Fascist Italy granting ‘special status’ to several Rome churches could provide
a model to resolve the dispute over Israel’s control of Jerusalem, a former
Israeli ambassador has suggested. Moshe Sasson, Israel’s ambassador to Italy from 1973-77, described the Lateran Treaty signed by Benito Mussolini and the Vatican as “a historical precedent that is wonderfully suited to the issue of Jerusalem.”…
Sasson argues that by seeking an arrangement similar to the Lateran Treaty, Israel would prevent the partitioning of Jerusalem while satisfying the followers
of the world’s main three monotheistic religions – Christianity, Islam and
Judaism – who all consider the city holy.
The Lateran Treaty ended a dispute which began in 1871 when the then newly- constituted Kingdom of Italy took over Rome after centuries of Papal rule. In 1929 Italy granted a “special status under international guarantee” for five basilicas that belong to the Vatican, but which are situated outside the territory that demarcates the tiny state. Sasson says Israel could declare unilaterally, by virtue of its sovereignty, that it is granting a special status to the al-Aqsa Mosque and the Dome of the Rock Sanctuary on the Temple Mount, as well as to other places that are sacred to Judaism as well as those Christians cherish as holy. Israel could grant “free passage to the holy places regardless of religion, gender or race,” to anyone wanting to visit Temple Mount for example. Sasson argues that such a move would be welcomed by the international community ensuring that “Jerusalem would remain whole and not divided; each of the three monotheistic religions would be sovereign over the buildings that are sacred to it, would administer them and would be responsible for what happens inside them,” he said. Sasson admits that such a move would not necessarily win the approval of Arab governments who he says want to maintain the “supposedly ‘religious aspect’ of the Arab-Israeli conflict.”
It all officially began in 1992, on July 15 when the Nation of Israel and the Vatican agreed to begin the negotiation to formulate an agenda and eventually a framework for the beginning of normalizing relations between the two religio-political entities. By July 29th, the Vatican established a “Bilateral Permanent Working Commission.” The negotiations continued for over a year when the “Fundamental Agreement between the Holy See and the State of Israel” was signed on December 30, 1993. This was to be the prelude to the eventual full diplomatic relations between Israel and the Catholic Church.
1. The Holy See and the State of Israel are committed to appropriate cooperation in combating all forms of anti-Semitism and all kinds of racism and of religious intolerance, and in promoting mutual understanding among nations, tolerance among communities and respect for human life and dignity.
2. The Holy See and the State of Israel recognize that both are free in the exercise of their respective rights and powers, and commit themselves to respect this principle in their mutual relations and in their cooperation for the good of the people.
3. The State of Israel recognizes the right of the Catholic Church to carry out its religious, moral, educational and charitable functions, and to have its own institutions...
4. Concerning Catholic legal personality at canon law the Holy See and the State of Israel will negotiate on giving it full effect in Israeli law…
5. The State of Israel affirms its continuing commitment to maintain and respect the ‘Status quo’ in the Christian Holy Places…
In July 1994, international Jewish-Christian relations climaxed a major landmark when full diplomatic relations were established between the Holy See and Israel. Ambassadors and diplomatic staff were exchanged, though diplomatic relations was limited to state-to-state affairs.
On December 30, 1993, the Pope John Paul II and diplomats from Israel signed the “Fundamental Agreement between the Holy See and the State of Israel.” On the surface, this agreement appeared to be a historic and noble agreement. Here was the Mother Church of Christianity after 2000 years of strained and difficult relationships, now agreeing to work in unison with Israel, not to persecute her or to supplant her as a spiritual voice on earth but for what appeared to be for the betterment of mankind. Hailed as a historic document promoting peace in the world of religion, it came on the heels of a similar international document hailed as an historic document in promoting peace in the world of international politics, the Oslo Accord.
Concerning the “Fundamental Agreement,” David H. Strassler, ADL National Chairman, and Abraham H. Foxman, ADL National Director, both stated in the article dated September 6, 1996, titled “Historical Diplomatic Agreement between Israel and the Vatican Documented for first time in ADL publication.”
Vatican and Israel Establish the Vatican’s Legal Status in Israel - 1997
The pathway of ecumenical and geo-political rapprochement took another giant step on November 10, 1997 when in the CNN article titled, “Israel, Vatican sign historic agreement”, it states that the “Pact defines church’s legal status in Israel.” As stated:
CNN News – “For the first time, there is no question about the legal status of Roman Catholic institutions in Israel. Vatican and Israeli officials signed an agreement on Monday that places the institutions under the jurisdiction of Israeli law. “We have waited for this moment – a message of belief, cooperation and understanding between religions,” said Israeli Foreign Minister David Levy, who signed the accord. “It marks a further important step in the process of normalization of relations between the Holy See and the state of Israel,” said Vatican Ambassador Archbishop Andrea Codero Lanza di Montezemolo, the document’s other endorser.
The agreement allows church institutions to retain full internal autonomy, but places their outside activities under Israeli jurisdiction. Before the accord, the church could not buy property inside Israel or appear in Israeli courts, Vatican officials said. Israeli officials called the agreement the most important between Israel and the Vatican since 1993, when the two normalized relations.
But Vatican officials said the document did not change their position that a special international status should be created to protect the religious and cultural diversity of Jerusalem. Jewish leaders said the agreement was a vote of confidence by the Vatican in Israel’s judicial system and the country’s governance of the land.
Now the Vatican had inside access to the Israeli judicial system. They could argue and appeal their cases of property rights, civil rights and eventual sovereignty issues that have for decades been held closely to their chests. As property rights owners, the Vatican could plead the case of the rights of the Palestinians in the legal court system of the Nation of Israel.
A Covenant between Vatican and Arafat the Palestinian Liberation Organization – 2000
On February 15, 2000, Pope John Paul II and PLO Yasser Arafat signed a covenant with each other just days before the pontiff made his historic visit to the Holy Land. As noted in the article in the Jerusalem Post authored by Lamia Lahoud titled, “Pope and Arafat sign bi-lateral Pact over Jerusalem”, it states the following:
Jerusalem Post – “Palestinian Authority Chairman Yasser Arafat is to meet with Pope John Paul II at the Vatican today and sign an accord to normalize relations between the PA and Roman Catholic churches in Jerusalem. Palestinian Legislative Council Speaker Ahmed Qurei told The Jerusalem Post that the agreement indicates a recognition by the Catholic Church of Palestinian claims to the city. He said the PA was lobbying international support for its claim to east Jerusalem. Emile Jarjoui, the PLO official who led talks with the Vatican, added that the agreement would "regulate the relationship between the Palestinian Authority and the Catholic churches in Jerusalem. The agreement would also state the Vatican's position regarding Jerusalem, the peace process, and Palestinian rights."
The Vatican has called Israel's annexation of east Jerusalem
and does not recognize Israeli sovereignty there. Arafat will also pay
an official visit to the Italian government as part of his diplomatic campaign
to gather support for Palestinian positions in the final status talks. Arafat
has been lobbying for his idea of sharing undivided Jerusalem, and creating
Vatican-style sovereignty in the Old City, his spokesman Nabil Abu Rudaineh
said. PA officials concede privately that Israel would
only accept the idea if it would keep the Jewish Quarter and the Western Wall.
The PA hopes to get the Vatican's backing for the idea.
So far the Vatican and the international community have supported internationalizing the Old City, an idea which both Israel and the PA reject, Palestinian Planning Minister Nabil Shaath said. However, Qurei said, should Israel and the PA fail to reach an agreement on sharing Jerusalem, the PA would agree to create an international city in the Old City, as stated in UN Resolution 181. Shaath said the PA was waiting for Israel to come with some suggestion of sharing Jerusalem to the final status talks, but so far Israeli negotiators have not addressed the subject.”
According to the “Basic Agreement between the Holy See and the Palestinian Liberation Organization” the following principles were affirmed concerning Jerusalem and the Holy Sites in Israel:
Basic Agreement: Vatican and the PLO - Declaring that an equitable solution for the issue of Jerusalem, based on international resolutions, is fundamental for a just and lasting peace in the Middle East, and that unilateral decisions and actions altering the specific character and status of Jerusalem are morally and legally unacceptable;
Calling, therefore, for a special statute for Jerusalem, internationally guaranteed, which should safeguard the following:
a. Freedom of religion and conscience for all.
b. The equality before the law of the three monotheistic religions and their institutions and followers in the City.
c. The proper identity and sacred character of the City and its universally significant, religious and cultural heritage.
d. The Holy Places, the freedom of access to them and of worship in them.
e. The Regime of "Status Quo" in those Holy Places where it applies;
In essence, Jerusalem would become an international city based upon international law and international guarantee. It was also determined in this document that any activity taken by the State of Israel to change this position of Jerusalem was against the law. Third, the Vatican-PLO agreement also recognized a “Palestinian” state that would be created in the Land of Israel and offers the help of the Vatican to assist in the establishment of this state. As stated by the Vatican, “"the agreement paves the way for establishment of full diplomatic relations with a Palestinian state when it is founded."
Temple Mount Faithful – ”It is no accident that this covenant was signed one month before the Pope's visit to Israel. The agreement is part of the long-term policy of the Vatican against Israel ever since the State of Israel was founded. This is a continuation of the historical hostility of the Vatican against the Jewish people. The Jewish people in the exile, mainly in Europe, and later also in South America have been persecuted by the Popes and the Roman Catholic Church and many millions were killed in terrible ways during the Inquisition, the pogroms and, in our time, in the Holocaust when 6 million Jews were killed including 1.5 million children and babies. During the Holocaust the Pope did not even try to prevent this killing or even state that he was against it. He was silent.
On the other hand, the leader of the PLO terrorist organisation, Yasser Arafat, continues, through this covenant, the long, bloody struggle of terror against Israel and Jews and his hands are covered in Jewish blood. His goal was, and still is, to destroy the State of Israel and bring another holocaust on the Jews in the land of Israel. He has now merely changed his strategy when he found that he could not achieve his goal by the means of terror. He has now decided to try to achieve his goal through diplomatic means and the so-called "Peace" negotiations. What he did not succeed in achieving on the battlefield because the G-d of Israel did not allow him to, he is now trying to achieve around the negotiating table.
The traditional anti-Israeli position of both these sides created this covenant against the G-d and people of Israel. They joined forces against Israel and Jerusalem as the godly eternal capital of Israel. Yesterday's picture of the terrorist Yasser Arafat kissing the hand of the Pope after the signing of the covenant, showed an unholy and hypocritical covenant between a mass-murderer and a Pope who the Vatican says is holy. How could the Pope allow this hand which is full of Jewish blood to hold his hand and kiss it. More than being a covenant between two lovers, this was a covenant of hate against Israel.
Within a month, in March 2000, Pope John Paul II was on a “spiritual pilgrimage” to the Holy Land. His itinerary included eight days in the countries of Jordan and Israel and visiting the Christian holy sites and Palestinian camps in the Palestinian controlled districts in the West Bank. Key sites of interest included a visit to Mount Nebo, the River Jordan, Church of the Nativity in Bethlehem, Church of the Resurrection in Jerusalem, Basilica of the Annunciation in Nazareth, the House with the Upper Room on Mount Zion and a special youth mass on the Mount of the Beatitudes.
As we have seen in the geo-political-religio pathway that has been forged between the Zionist State of Israel and the Vatican, it is hard to fathom as to whether this path was laid by Vatican or the Zionist government of Israel or both. The number of Jewish participants in this process has been phenomenal. Here we see the real life, Jews who have rejected the faith of their forefathers, the covenant of the God of their ancestors to the Land of Israel and the privilege to be called a “friend of God” like their ancestral forefather, Abraham. Here in living reality we now observe the real Sabbatean Jew, the prodigy of the Messianic revival of Shabbatai Zevi in 1666.
As we have seen this pathway to peace in the Middle East has taken many turns. The designs by the Europeans, which the rabbis of Israel call Edom, have been blatant, open and calculated. For years, Europe and the Vatican has sought to blunt the influence of the United States upon Israel, either by political or military assistance or by the affirmation of the Christian American public to the Israeli people and the Holy Land. The Europeans and the Vatican have bolstered their own personal agendas in Middle East by cash injections and secret politics to the Palestinians. In the year 2005, $600 million dollars was given alone to the Palestinian Authority. It can be fair to say that without Israel, the Palestinians in the Middle East would have no more international attention than the famine induced poor in Somalia or Bangladesh.
When the God of Israel stated:
Zechariah 12:1 – “Thus says the Lord, who stretches out the heavens, lays the foundation of the earth, and forms the spirit of man within him: “Behold, I will make Jerusalem a cup of drunkenness to all the surrounding peoples, when they lay siege against Judah and Jerusalem. And it shall happen in that day that I will make Jerusalem a very heavy stone for all peoples; all who would heave it away will surely be cut in pieces, though all nations of the earth are gathered against it.”
The political maneuvering has truly made a crooked path. In 1993, upon the signing of the Fundamental Agreement, Shimon Peres cut a deal with Pope Paul II that offered sovereignty of Jerusalem’s Old City to the Vatican. Later, after the signing of the historical agreement that gave the Vatican legal authority in the Land of Israel in 1997 and awaiting the fulfillment of the promise of the Pontiff that Israel would be blessed by his presence in 2000, one month earlier, Pope John Paul II and Yasser Arafat signed a covenant for the Palestinians that would take away the national control of the city that the Jewish people recognize as their capital, Jerusalem, and make it an international city, based on international law and protection. Also this covenant stated that it would be “against the law” for Israel to oppose this international control.
The influence of the Jesuits in America is most pronounced with the “Jewish neo-coms.” Since the days of Shabbatai Zevi, the Sabbateans have always seem to be in league with the Roman Catholic Church. They have “tempted” America to focus all international attention on “International Terrorism” and insert America into a “War on Terror” that threatens America’s own financial solvency and sovereignty.
Pontifical Order of St. Gregory the Great
It is interesting that it is always the Jew who becomes the Catholic and not the Catholic who is converted to Judaism and becomes a rabbi. Let us now meet a Jewish rabbi who has become a papal knight. On November 3, 2005, the Jerusalem Post posted an article titled, “Rabbi Rosen invested as Papal Knight.” In this article it stated:
Jerusalem Post – “Rabbi David Rosen,
the American Jewish Committee’s international director of inter-religious
affairs on Thursday became the first Israeli citizen, the first
Orthodox rabbi and the fifth living Jew to be
invested with a papal knighthood. Rosen received the decoration and citation
attesting to his new status as a Knight Commander of the Pontifical Order of
St Gregory the Great at a ceremony hosted at the Notre Dame of Jerusalem
Center by the Apostolic Delegate in Jerusalem and Palestine and the Apostolic
Nuncio in Israel Archbishop Pietro Sambi.
The investiture was conducted by Cardinal
Walter Kasper, President of the Holy See’s Commission for Religious
Relations with Jewry. The ceremony coincided with the 40th
anniversary celebrations in Israel of Nostra Aetate, the ground-breaking Vatican
II document that paved the way for mutual respect and dialogue between the
Catholic Church and the Jews. Kasper credited Rosen with being a moving
force in the realization and implementation of the spirit of Nostra Aetate. Noting
that Rosen is active in many fields, Kasper who has known him and worked with
him for several years said: “One meets him
everywhere that this dialogue is going on – and he keeps the dialogue going
Former Chief Rabbi of Ireland David Rosen
Rabbi David Rosen is a member of the Permanent Bilateral Committee for dialogue between the Chief Rabbinate of Israel and the Holy See he forms the main liaison between the Chief Rabbis of Israel and the Vatican. It is important to understand that the entire process of negotiation with the final establishment of full diplomatic relations with the Vatican, the Rabbinate of Israel have been partners in this process. This prophetic alliance with the “holy ones of Israel” has been ordained by the God of Israel to lay the final groundwork for the coming of the Messiah.
Called a “man of peace and dialogue who builds bridges, Rosen has been a member of the whole process of this ecumenical alliance that has been under the banner of those noble attributes of “hope and reconciliation, friendship and mutual understanding.”
of Rabbi Rosen was by Cardinal Walter Kasper, President of the
Holy See’s Commission for Religious Relations with
Born in Heidenheim-Brenz, Germany, in 1933, Cardinal Kasper later became
professor of dogmatic theology at the University of Tübingen, later bishop of
Rottenberg-Stuttgart, Germany. Known and respected for his work on Christian
ecumenical relations, Kasper was later appointed secretary of the
Pontifical Council for Promoting Christian Unity in Rome. Today he is the president
for the Commission for Religious Relations with the Jews.
It is interesting to note that Kasper aligns the interests of the Roman Christian Church as “Spiritual Israelites” along side of the literal Israelites of the Jews. Claiming for centuries, since the pen of the Doctor of Law, Augustine of Hippo, they have persuaded themselves that Rome was the “City of God.” Since this day, the Catholic Church has sought to displace the Jewish people of their birthright, of their covenant relations with God and now of their covenanted promise to live in the Land of Israel. As we have seen in the above documentation, the pathway of Rome to eventually assume control of that ancient city of “Ir David” with all the holy sites of Jewry, Christianity and Islam, has been a path of deliberate and well calculated intent.
prior to the investiture of Rabbi David Rosen, Rosen and Kasper presided
together on October 30 to November 1, 2005 at the Hebrew University
of Jerusalem in a seminar called the “Nostra Aetate: Origins,
Promulgation, Impact on Catholic-Jewish Relations in Jerusalem.” This
“scholarly” seminar hosted with the John XXIII Foundation for Religious
Studies in Bologna was to celebrate the 40th Anniversary of
the Conciliar Declaration Nostra Aetate, known as a watershed
in Catholic-Jewish relations.
This investiture was attended by Shmuel Hadass, who was Israel’s first ambassador to the Vatican and also there a tribute was given to Zvi Werblovsky whom Rosen lauded as an Israeli pioneer in the field of Jewish-Christian dialogue. After the ceremony, it is interesting that Rosen and his family went from Notre Dame over to the Dormition Abbey, the site of the Tomb of David and the House with the Upper Room that the Catholic Church so covets to possess.
It is not only the recent divisions that appear to be instigated within the Christian community inside the borders of Israel that is the concern but also whether any of these religious wedges that are thrust within the Arab and Israeli populations are prongs of continuing Catholic hegemony within the Land of Israel. On the other hand, the globalist government of Sharon facing the serious challenges of global terrorism and appears to be developing government restrictions even upon the Christian churches and communities in Israel.
On May 4, 2004, Jane Lampman with the Christian Science Monitor wrote an insightful article titled, “New constraints squeeze churches in Holy Land” that stated:
The Christian Science Monitor – “Christian churches in the Holy Land are facing an unprecedented crisis that some say is jeopardizing their future, including their capacity to maintain the faith’s holy sites and charitable institutions and to educate the clergy.
The churches’ difficulties have been building over the past three years as the Israeli government has failed to renew visas or residence permits for hundreds of religious workers, and has begun sending tax bills to charitable groups that have long had tax-exempt status, some since the Ottoman Empire. At the same time, the separation wall being built in Jerusalem and on the West Bank is slicing through religious facilities, in some cases taking land and blocking pilgrimage routes. All indications point to the fact that the church is slowly but surely being strangled,” says an official at the Latin Patriarchate, the Roman Catholic Church’s regional office in Jerusalem, which serves Israel, the Palestinian territories, Jordan, and Cyprus.
So great is the concern that Vatican diplomats have spoken out bluntly and Americans have sought US help. Bishop Wilton Gregory, president of the US Conference of Catholic Bishops, recently sent a letter to President Bush calling this “the most difficult situation in living memory for the Church in the Holy Land.” Israeli officials have said over several months that the visa problem is a bureaucratic issue, requiring new guidelines for security purposes. But to some church officials it looks like a concerted effort to make life difficult for Christians and Christian institutions.”
Part of the underlying issues is that most of the Christians in the Holy Land are of Arab descent. In spite of the progressive relationship between Israel and the Vatican, the Catholic leadership has a different vision for peace than the Israelis. The chief vision of the Vatican is to make Jerusalem and the holy sites a “special status” which means their desire to internationalize parts of the city of Jerusalem and all the holy sites common to the Jews, Islam and Christians.
In the real world, the Christian Churches are finding that many religious workers including those who have lives decades in the Land of Israel no longer have legal papers. They are unable to travel outside the State of Israel for any reason including emergencies. Called “tough politics” by some, the Catholic legal representative of the Franciscan Father David Jaeger stated, “In the Catholic world there is a growing view that Israel has deliberately framed a policy to hurt the Church.”
Its “visa” problem all appeared to begin about 2001 when the politicians of the ultra-Orthodox Shas Party and their party representative who headed the Interior Ministry, started broadly promote ways to exclude foreigners including Jews that were not properly converted to the Jewish faith. Obviously this included Jews in the Catholic faith. It was also noted that traditional churches with missions that showed public concern for the Palestinian felt that they were being selectively targeted for visa irregularities while Evangelicals with their strident pro-Israel appeal were given favorable treatment.
Yet the United Christian Council in Israel, an association of 30 Evangelical groups and the pro-Israel International Christian Embassy Jerusalem wrote that the crisis “is so acute that the ability to continue our work is being threatened.” “We are very concerned – we had to let 12 of our staff go at the end of last year.” Overall it appeared to them that the government of Sharon in 2004 was seeking to “limit and reduce the number of Christians in Israel.” Even one Catholic official, Rev. Robert Fortin stated, “They even are threatening to expel a sister who is 92 years old and has lived here for more than 50 years, and another who is 82.” The Catholic Church alone manages 151 institutions in Israel.
The Vatican has in turn protested that in spite of normalizing relations with Israel in 1993 and setting up diplomatic relations, the governments in Israel have not implemented the treaty, at least not to the Vatican’s satisfaction. After the 1993 agreement, only one of two treaties has been signed. The second, concerning the fiscal matters of religious institutions was never formalized. On September 2003, Israel broke off negotiations on the fiscal treaty.
What has burned these religious organizations who view themselves as charitable institutions, they are now receiving large tax bills in spite of agreements of long-standing tax exemptions. When the Lutheran World Federation (LWF), who operates a hospital on the Mount of Olives and vocational training in Jerusalem, the West Bank and Gaza, went to court to challenge their non-tax exempt status, the Jerusalem district court stated that the government of Israel has the choice to abrogate unilaterally such tax exemptions. The LWF now faced a $4 million property tax bill. In the meantime, the Greek Orthodox Church with the largest Christian membership in the Land of Israel has found that its patriarch for 2½ years since his election, has not been recognized by the Sharon government.
The year of 2006 was barely into its own when the international envoys for the Vatican were beginning their public relations agenda. They were trying to maneuver the Israeli political mindset to allow the Vatican to become a “permanent partner with Israel for peace.”
On January 4, 2006, the Jewish Newswire carried an article titled, “Vatican muscling in on Jerusalem” that started off with this headline, “Jews cannot be trusted with ownership of their ancient capital.” As stated by Stan Goodenough:
Jewish Newswire – “The Roman Catholic Church says the Jewish state cannot be trusted to exercise control over the city of Jerusalem – ancient and eternal capital of the people of Israel. In a statement whose arrogance and contempt he seemingly could not see, the Vatican’s legal advisor in Israel, David Jaeger, told an international conference in Haifa Tuesday that Jerusalem was too important a city to leave in the hands of either “Palestinians” or Jews. Jaeger’s view was that the status of Jerusalem required the approval of the international community as a whole.
Ironically the Vatican, which claims to be spiritual home to one billion of the world’s Christians, rejects the biblical stipulation granting everlasting possession of ancient Canaan, inclusive of Jerusalem, to the Jewish people. Since 1947 it has sought to have Jerusalem internationalized, confident that with Rome’s massive global constituency the pope will be able to exercise substantial control over the city.
Jaeger is historically on solid ground when he says the Palestinian Arabs should have no say over Jerusalem. The city has never been an Arab capital and the “Palestinians” have no historic or national rights to it (or to any other part of Israel’s biblical homeland).
The Jews, by contrast, have venerated the city as their holiest site for over 3000 years. Israel is the only nation that has ever had Jerusalem as its capital. During centuries of exile, Jews everywhere prayed daily to return to Jerusalem in order to be able to once again worship their God in this place. Jerusalem is described in the New Testament as the “City of the great King,” referring to Jesus of Nazareth who also bears the title King of the Jews. The book of Revelation, foretelling Jesus’ return to Jerusalem, calls Him the Lion of the Tribe of Judah – i.e. He remains Jewish.
In recent history, it has only been while under Jewish administration that Jerusalem has flourished and that protected access to all of its holy places (including Christian and Muslim sites) has been guaranteed. Between 1949 and 1967, when the Arab kingdom of Jordan occupied the eastern part of the city, the rights of Jews and Christians to visit their holy places was restricted, sometimes denied. The Jewish Quarter of the Old City was left to rot, its synagogues sacked and burned.
Despite this, the Vatican believes it should have a say that could deny the right of the Jewish people to keep their beloved capital in their hands.”
The Pravda Online spoke of this same meeting on January 4, 2006 with these words in an article titled, “Vatican envoy: Israel, Palestinians cannot be trusted to safeguard holy sites.” The observation by author Ahiya Raved stated:
Pravda Online – “Israel cannot be trusted? The Vatican’s legal advisor in Israel, David Jaeger, harshly criticized Israel’s policy regarding safeguarding Christian holy sites. Speaking during an international conference at a Haifa University conference Tuesday, Jaeger said Jerusalem is an important city the fate of which should not be left in the hands of Israel and the Palestinians…Jaeger said there is a contradiction between agreements signed between Israel and the Vatican on preserving Christian Holy sites and Israeli laws dating from the British mandate in Palestine. The Israeli government took away the courts’ authority to deal with issues related to lands and funds belonging to the Roman Catholic Church, causing legal disputes that have been dragging in courts for years, the Vatican envoy said.
The conference is a unique opportunity to hold academic discussions of issues pertaining to Jerusalem and holy sites, bring together intellectuals and experts from Israel, the territories and the international community. Dr. Yitzhak Reiter, one of the event’s organizers, said: “Our aim is to hold a discussion on the burning issue of Jerusalem – at a time of relative calm – in an attempt to try finding solutions acceptable to all sides. We should remember that the breakthrough that led to the Oslo Accord started with a similar discourse between
Israeli and Palestinian intellectuals under international sponsorship.”
Dr. Yitzhak Reiter is the Director of the Truman Forum for Public Debate at the Truman Institute, Hebrew University of Jerusalem. He was a former Associate Professor at the Department of Political Science of Ashkelon Academic College and teaches also at the Interdisciplinary Center, Herzliya, Hebrew University of Jerusalem and a research fellow at the Jerusalem Institute for Israel Studies and the Harry S. Truman Research Institute for the Advancement of Peace.
To understand the background of this Jewish scholar, Reiter, and his relationship with the vision given by the God of Israel for the Middle East, let us see his past associations. Dr. Reiter was one of 26 participants from Israel, Palestine, Jordan and America, who sent a 2000 Memorandum to the Office of the Prime Minister of Israel and to the Office of the Chairman of the Palestinian Authority, called the “Principles for Sharing Jerusalem.” Its purpose was to activate the “kind positive principles which are likely to be required to achieve a peaceful, negotiated solution for Jerusalem.” In January 31, 2000, Time Magazine reported that “a group of establishment figures in Israel has endorsed the idea of sharing Jerusalem with the Palestinians. ‘This is the real beginning of slaughtering of sacred cows,’ said Shlomo Gazit, a former head of Israeli military intelligence. After meetings between Israeli and Arab academics, diplomats and retired military officers sponsored by the Rockefeller Foundation and the University of Oklahoma, the participants agreed that West Jerusalem should serve as the capital of Israel and East Jerusalem as the capital of a Palestinian state. . .. .’There is ideology and reality, and we have to be realists,’ said Joseph Ginat, an anthropologist at Haifa University who initiated the project.”
As it to confirm the accusations of David Jaeger’s harsh criticism of Israel’s policy regarding safeguarding Christian holy sites, this Vatican spokesman began what appears to be the final thrust to gain access not only the Christian holy sites in Israel but all the holy sites of the Jews, Moslem and Christians. As the home of three of the great world religions, it would be 50 years after the inception of the State of Israel (1948) till the day when the Vatican established diplomatic relations with the Nation of Israel on November 10, 1997. This came on the heel of the Madrid Peace Conference on May 30, 1991 and the beginning of the Arab-Israeli peace talks
Chamish, a Jewish investigative reporter has been one of the most
dedicated Vatican observers in the land of Israel to date. On Part One of
this series, “The Vatican
comes to Claim its Own,” we give thanks to Barry Chamish for his
insight and interview with the German historian Dr. Asher Edar. As we
close, we will summarize the pathway of the Vatican, by reading Chamish’s
response to the news that the Church with the Upper Room was soon to be turned
over to the Vatican and then reading the interview with this German historian
Barry Chamish – Soon, in response to
the news, I wrote an article which proved the handover of the Old City of
Jerusalem was a done deal. In fact, it was one of the secret clauses of
the first Oslo "peace" accord signed by the Israeli government.
A week after, I received a phone call from a rabbi of the Diaspora Yeshiva.
He explained that the Tourism Minister was visiting their school the next
day and he was trying to fill the study hall to prove to the government
that their yeshiva was too valuable to be given away.
I replied that I
would not partake in such a spectacle. I might come if the students
forcibly barred the Minister or any government official from entering the
property. Hadn't he learned anything from Gush Katif? The government
of Israel couldn't care less about him and could care even less how many
students he can pack into a room. Mount Zion was a litmus test of how much
opposition the government and its corrupted army could expect when all of the
Old City was turned over to the Vatican.
He said I must talk
to the headmaster of the Yeshiva, Rabbi Goldstein. An hour later, I was honored
by a call from Rabbi Goldstein. Soon, however, I was in despair. As
far as he knew, the Vatican wanted to turn his school into a money making
tourist site and the Ministry of Tourism was being enticed by the
prospects of millions of Catholic tourists visiting Israel to see the Last
Supper room. I did my best to wake the Rabbi. I told him that tourism
was the facade, not the issue. I tried to explain the global forces
using their muscle to get the Jews out of Jerusalem's holy sites. I noted
that the government of Israel was the worst enemy of Judaism and that he
must block the entrance of their representative with whatever force he could
However, as with the
Rabbis of Gush Katif, my words were wasted. Mount Zion will give up
without a real fight. You watch. Nonetheless, the truth marches on. A brilliant
Jerusalem-based German-born historian, Dr. Asher Edar, also honored me with a
conversation. Vive le difference:
Chamish - Why is the Vatican
suddenly so interested in getting its hands on Mount Zion real estate?
Edar - There's nothing sudden about it at all. In fact, the roots of the desire go back 1200 years to the time of Charlemagne. He was the Vatican's military tool for converting Europe to Roman Catholicism. He succeed magnificently and created what is known as the Holy Roman Empire but what was then called The Holy Roman Empire Of The German Nation. Charlemagne's capital was at Aachen and there he built his first cathedral.
Chamish - Excuse me but, so?
Edar - Next to the yeshiva on Mount Zion is the Dormition Abbey, built by the Germans starting in 1906. It is an exact duplicate of Charlemagne's Aachen Cathedral.
Chamish - How did that happen?
Edar - Kaiser Wilhelm II came to Jerusalem in 1898 to build two churches, a modest Lutheran Church of minor religious significance and a magnificent Catholic structure on Mount Zion. In 1898, the ruler of a nation didn't make such a difficult journey to a diplomatic backwater unless it was extremely important. The Vatican was worried that the British had an operating church in Jerusalem and its presence could solidify and spread. The Vatican provided much of the funds for the trip and the bribe to the Turkish Sultan, Khamid. Since Wilhelm had a Protestant population to appease, he put up a smaller Lutheran church as well, but the real prize was Mount Zion.
Chamish - Why all the money and trouble if the Vatican gets the real estate? What was in it for Germany?
Edar - Germany has never given up its dream of reviving the Holy Roman Empire. At the height of that empire, their greatest king, Frederick the Great, marched into Jerusalem and became the city's king. Jerusalem was once part of the Holy Roman Empire and the dream is that it will be again. In this empire, the delineation of powers was strict. The pope was the spiritual leader, but the political leader was whoever ruled Germany. This dream led straight to World War I.
Chamish - Where do the Jews fit in all this?
Edar - Nowhere. Herzl tried to get a role for the Jews and met with Wilhelm in Jerusalem. Wilhelm would have nothing to do with him. His goal was to save Jerusalem for a Christendom led politically by Germany and spiritually by Rome. Nothing has changed except now the pope is a determined German. The Vatican want the Jews out of the Old City and apparently our government is agreeing with them.
concept of the shadow pictures of the past are to be re-visited at the time
of the end is also suggestive of the ancient mantra: “What goes around,
In the recent years, the geo-political world has been in a catastrophic tumult. No one seems to understand! Out the intifada, the fatwas of the Islamic clerics, the national security of Israel has been jeopardized; the emotional and physical security of the Jewish people has been challenged in a way not seen since the Holocaust. The physical security of the Land of Israel has been threatened in a way that no other nation on earth, even the United States during the Cold War, with nuclear annihilation.
Not since the days of the last messiah of Israel, Shabbatai Zevi has the level of messianic fervor been so profound. The top level Chief Rabbis of Israel are now proclaiming loud and clear, “Return to the Land of Israel” and “The soul of the Messiah is now on earth, he will be revealed to the Jewish people within the next one to three years.” The longing for a time of peace and for the messianic era could not be more acute and profound. The desire again for a temple is swelling within the land.
Yet the God of Israel has over and over stated what He requires for His people to do. It is not to the Americans or for a temple that the Jewish people need to be looking. Over and over, their prophets of old have warned them that if they turn their eyes away from the Lord of host, His judgments will fall upon them. How do they sweeten the future judgments that are prophesied to befall them? There is only one answer: “turn their eyes to the Almighty One of Israel.
The nation of Israel, under Hashem, the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob, will be invincible and untouchable. The judgments at the time of the end against Israel will “be sweetened” if they turn their eyes towards their God and call upon His Name. If not, the harsh judgment will also fall upon them as it will upon the gentile world. There is but an irrefutable promise by the Lord of hosts, “all Israel will be saved.” Do we believe the God of Israel will do what He says?
Ezekiel 36:16 (parts) - “Son of man, when the house of Israel dwelt in their own land, they defiled it by their own ways and deeds…therefore I poured out My fury on them for the blood they had shed on the land and for their idols with which they had defiled it. So I scattered them among the nations, and they were dispersed throughout the countries…
But I had concern for My holy name, which the house of Israel had profaned among the nations wherever they went. ‘Therefore say to the house of Israel, ‘Thus says the Lord God: “I do not do this for your sake, O house of Israel but for My holy Name’s sake…and I will sanctify My great Name, which has been profaned among the nations, which you have profaned in their midst; and the nations shall know that I am the Lord…when I am hallowed in you before their eyes.
For I will take you from among the nations, gather you out of all countries, and bring you into your own land. ..I will give you a new heart and put a new spirit within you; I will take the heart of stone out of your flesh and give you a heart of flesh. I will put My Spirit within you and cause you to walk in My statutes and you will keep My judgments and do them. Then you shall dwell in the land that I gave to your fathers; you shall be My people and I will be your God.”
Ezekiel 27:15-22 (parts) – “Again the word of the Lord came to me, saying, “As for you, son of man, take a stick for yourself and write on it: ‘For Judah and for the children of Israel, his companion.’ Then take another stick and write on it, ‘For Joseph, the stick of Ephraim, and for all the house of Israel, his companions.’ Then join them one to another for youself into one stick and they will become one in you hand…
Then say to them, ‘Thus says the Lord God: ‘surely I will take the children of Israel from among the nations, where ever they have gone, and will gather them from every side and bring them into their own land; and I will make them one nation in the land, on the mountains of Israel; and one king shall be king over them all; they shall no longer be two nations, nor shall they ever be divided into two kingdoms again.”
The Vatican Seeks to Reclaim its Own
Go to Part One – The Church with the Upper Room
The Jesuits and the Vatican Makes Its Bid to Take Possession of King David’s Tomb
The Cenacle or the Upper Room
The Hassidim, the Essenes and the House with the Upper Room
Noahide Laws of God
The Synagogue of the Hebrew Nazarenes
The Holy Roman Empire’s Legacy on the Mount of Zion
The German Influence in the Building of the Dormition Abbey
Frederick II, Holy Roman Emperor as the King of Cyprus and Jerusalem
The Knights of the Teutonic Order
Go to Part Two - The Pathway and the Players in the Bid to Control Jerusalem
Israeli President Moshe Katsav meets Pope Benedict XVI on November 17, 2005
The Pathway of the Vatican to Obtain Hegemony over the Holy Sites in Jerusalem
A Chronology of the Attempts by the Vatican to Displace Israel from the Old City Of Jerusalem
The Secret Negotiations between the Vatican, Israel and the Palestinians
Franciscan Father David-Marie A. Jaeger, Legal Papal Envoy
The Bethlehem Debacle in the Jewish-Vatican Relationship
Latin Rite Patriarch of Jerusalem, Michele Sabbah
The Hebrew Jewish Bishop Jean-Baptiste Gourion
Go to Part Three – “The Vatican Wants Jerusalem”
The Battle of Control between the Jewish Christian Catholics and the Arab Christian Catholics
Rome’s Model for the Control of Jerusalem
Vatican and Israel Agree to Normalize and Establish Diplomatic Relations – 1993
Fundamental Agreement between the Holy See and the State of Israel – December 30, 1993
Vatican and Israel Establish the Vatican’s Legal Status in Israel - 1997
Jewish Rabbi David Rosen – Papal Knight Commander of the Pontifical Order of St. Gregory the Great
The Vatican wants Jerusalem - Pressure On for the Internationalization of Jerusalem
Links to the Vatican and Mount Zion
Documents Relating to the Mt. Zion Situation – November 17, 2005
By the Committee to Save Mount Zion by the International Society for Sephardic Progress
November 1, 2005 - Strongly written letter to the Rabbi of Diaspora Yeshiva on Mt. Zion from David Bartheldy in Haifa. This letter is dated October 28, 2005. OPEN
November 2, 2005 - Draft of the Proposed Deal Between President Katsav of Israel and the Vatican. OPEN
November 8, 2005 - Letters Sent to the Diaspora Yeshiva OPEN
November 10, 2005 - Two letters sent to us from Councilwoman Mina Fenton of the Municipality of Jerusalem:
Letter 1 GIF or MS DOC - From David Bartholdi (sp?) to Director General of the Tourism Ministry introducing his Celestial Psalms Track initiative to turn the King David's Tomb building into a tourist project while claiming that Rabbi SZ Kahana's management was abysmal and scandalous, having broken the laws to take control of the site. Kahana was the founder of the religious school on Mt. Zion.
Letter 2 GIF or MS DOC - Letter from Eliyahu Lipschitz of the Tourism Ministry's legal office to Advocate Shlomo Avni, noting that the Bartholdi Project could be considered without tender but has to be proven financially sound first.
November 13, 2005 - LINK to Article 10 of Fundamental Agreement Between the Holy See and the State of Israel (December 30, 1993)
November 15, 2005 - This letter is to David Bartholdi from Reshut Ha Teva endorsing their development of the area. It shows that the developers are trying to garner as many "pro" letters for their project as possible in order to convince the state authorities to alter the zoning, etc. (open)
November 15, 2005 - This documents show that the Mt. Zion based Diaspora Yeshiva has applied to Tabu to develop the area and has received a very positive reply. (open)
November 15, 2005 - Correspondence Between The London Times and Ellen Horowitz of the Committee to Save Mt. Zion (open):
This demonstrates there was a swap deal on the agenda, that there was a Draft Agreement between the State of Israel and the Vatican, that the story originated from within the Vatican, and that is was disseminated via legitimate media sources. AND that the Vatican has been, is, and will continue to be very intent on getting the room which houses the Diaspora Yeshiva and the traditional Tomb of King David.
November 16, 2005 - The Status of Mt. Zion from the Rabbis of Mt. Zion. An official statement issued by the rabbis of Mt. Zion, Jerusalem for the Committee to Save Mt. Zion. (open)
November 17, 2005 - Shas MK Yitzhak Cohen asked on Nov. 16 a parliamentary question regarding the truthfulness of media reports that Mt. Zion will be given over to the Church. Minister Meir Sheetrit replied: "After investigation with the Holy Sites Administrator, it is clear that there is no such intention. [Note: only the transfer ownership of David's Tomb, since only the Tomb is mentioned, there is still room for doubt.] ". A second question regarding Hebron's Cave of the Patriarch is asked. http://www.knesset.gov.il/plenum/data/103145105.doc (archived here)
Archives by Barry Chamish
Katsav meets Pope Benedict XVI Jerusalem Post November 17, 2005
Israel to hand control of Jerusalem holy site to Vatican Haaretz November 6, 2005 HEBREW ARTICLE
Article on the Vatican and Mt. Zion Maariv Newspaper November 6, 2005 HEBREW ARTICLE
Follow the Papal Paper Trail Israel National News November 9, 2005 by Ellen W. Horowitz
"Katsav Won't Ink David's Tomb Deal Next Week" Jerusalem Post November 10, 2005
Letters to the editor, Jerusalem Post November 13, 2005
An exchange that makes sense Jerusalem Post November 13, 2005
Don't do it, President Katsav Jerusalem Post November 13, 2005
Jerusalem Old City Rabbis Declare Campaign To Protect Mt. Zion from Church Takeover. Hatzofe November 15, 2005
Jewish Activities Planned for Mt. Zion Israel National News November 15, 2005 IMPORTANT ARTICLE
Israeli Political Comic Strip Dry Bones - November 15, 2005
Vatican Seeks Pieces of Jerusalem The Trumpet November 16, 2005
Vatican presses visiting Israeli leader on pact Catholic News September 17, 2004 IMPORTANT ARTICLE
Poraz supports Vatican request for control over David's Tomb Israel National News - September 26, 2004 IMPORTANT ARTICLE
The Vatican and its Friends Israel National News 24 February 05 & April 4, 2005 Israel Insider Magazine
President Katzav to Visit Vatican Israel National News October 2, 2005
Vatican offers swap deal to regain site of Last Supper London Times October 13, 2005
Vatican in deal with Israel to look after Last Supper room The Australian October 14, 2005 IMPORTANT ARTICLE
Vatican in deal with Israel to look after Last Supper room Catholic News October 14, 2005
Vatican to trade Toledo synagogue for 'Last Supper' room in Jerusalem? World Jewish Congress October 14, 2005
ISRAEL TO CEDE CONTROL OVER SITE OF LAST SUPPER? EWTN Global Catholic Network October 20, 2005
Vatican: Parts of David’s Tomb to Be Under Papal Control [HEBREW] Israel National News October 20, 2005
Vatican: Parts of David’s Tomb to Be Under Papal Control Israel National News October 20, 2005
Paper: Israel, Vatican close to deal October 21, 2005 JTA
Vatican't Israel National News October 23, 2005 by Ellen W. Horowitz
Letter Submitted to the Editor Jerusalem Post October 27, 2005 by Yaffa Ganz
"Katsav, papal official deny 'site swap'" Jerusalem Post November 2, 2005
Mt. Zion Handover: President Denies, Reports Persist Israel National News November 3, 2005
Vatican Asks for Israel to Return Site of Last Supper AGI November 4, 2005 IMPORTANT ARTICLE
Can This Be Real? Israel National News November 4, 2005 Batya Medad
Report: Israel to hand control of Jerusalem holy site to Vatican Haaretz November 6, 2005
Israeli Concessions Stand Israel National News opinion by Michele Nevada November 7, 2005
Katsav meets Pope Benedict XVI Jerusalem Post November 17, 2005
Archives on the Vatican and the Zion Shrine at King David’s Tomb
Pope and King Seek Care of Zion Shrine NY Times July l 9, 1920 (PDF)
Catholics to Buy Site from Moslems; Negotiations Proceeding for the Cenacle NY Times July 8, 1930 (PDF)
Deny Purchase of Mount Zion Site NY Times July 9, 1930 (PDF) INTERESTING
Christians Enter King David's Tomb NY Times July 5, 1948 (PDF)
Vatican Accuses Israel NY Times July 8, 1949
Passover - Gates of Tomb of King David on Mount Zion Are Opened NY Times April 10, 1952 (PDF)
Jews Make Pilgrimage NY Times April 14, 1952 (PDF)
Israel Agrees to Internationalize Mt. Zion NY Times July 11, 1953 (PDF) IMPORTANT ARTICLE
Pope Visits Mt. Zion in 1964 NY Times January 6, 1964 (Large PDF)
Group Seeking $1-Million for 6 1/2 Acre Project NY Times January 6, 1964 (PDF) Teddy Kollek
Reports Mt. Zion Has Important Artifacts
Israeli-Vatican Difference Over Jerusalem Widened NY Times July 25, 1971(PDF)
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