John Allen skriver om bispekonferansen om Midt-Østen, som nylig ble holdt i Vatikanet. Ee det slik i katolisk teologi i dag at løftene til Abraham og hans barn ikke lenger handler om jødene i det hele tatt (som en canadisk erkebiskop sa ved avslutningen av synoden), eller ser Kirken i dag i dag på en dobbelt oppfyllelse av Guds løfter, til Kirken og til jødefolket (slik pave Johannes Paul sa ganske tydelig)? Og når jødene og staten Israel er i nyhetsbildet blir reaksjonene alltid kraftige. Slik skiver Allen:
… In some ways, reaction to the close of the Oct. 10-24 Synod of Bishops for the Middle East is following the same script.
The synod produced 44 propositions for Pope Benedict XVI and a 5,000-word final message, both of which contain a bewildering array of insights and ideas for solidifying the Christian presence in the Middle East and contributing to its great dream — which is that the tiny Christian minority, hanging on by the skin of its teeth, can somehow catalyze a democratic revolution in the region, building societies based on religious freedom and equality before the law.
Yet the only storyline that’s had any traction in the American press is Israeli and Jewish backlash to a comment by one synod participant in the closing press conference on Saturday.
In a nutshell, Greek Melkite Archbishop Cyrille Bustros, who heads the Eparchy of Newton, Massachusetts, told reporters that Christ “abolished” the notion of a “Promised Land” for Jews, because the Kingdom of God is for all. (Bustros was speaking in French and used the word abolie, while the English translation given over the headphones was “nullified,” which is the term that appeared in many English-language reports.)
While there may have been a few other aspects of the synod which didn’t go down well in Israeli and Jewish circles, this was the shot heard ‘round the world.
Theologically, Bustros’ comments seemed to revive what the late Cardinal Avery Dulles called “crude supersessionism” — meaning that the coming of Christ rendered Judaism irrelevant. That position has been widely held to have been rejected by the Second Vatican Council and subsequent papal teaching, such as a November 1980 speech by John Paul II to a delegation of Jews in Germany in which the late pope referred to “the Old Covenant, never revoked by God.”
Politically, many Israelis took Bustros’ remarks to suggest a wholesale rejection of the legitimacy of Israel’s identity as a Jewish state. Reaction has been swift and severe. … …