(Vatican Radio) Pope Francis has sent a message to the Jewish community of Rome as it prepares to celebrate the feast of Passover. The feast, which commemorates God’s delivery of Israel out of Egypt and slavery, begins at dusk on Friday 22 April and ends on Saturday 30 April. In his message addressed to Dr. Riccardo Di Segni, the chief rabbi of Rome, the Holy Father said that God will accompany the Jewish community with “an abundance of blessings”, protecting them and bestowing peace upon everyone. Before ending his message, the Pope asked Di Segni to pray for him, and he prayed that God will allow the Catholic Church and the Jewish community to grow in friendship. See the Pope’s full message below:
To the Chief Rabbi of Rome, Doctor Riccardo Di Segni, In remembering with renewed gratitude our meeting on 17th January, when I was cordially welcomed by you and by the Jewish Community of the city in the Great Synagogue, I wish to express my most heartfelt wishes for the feast of Passover. It points out that the Almighty has released his beloved people from slavery and brought them to the Promised Land . May God also accompany you today with the abundance of his Blessings, protect your community and, in His mercy, bestow peace upon everyone. I ask you to pray for me, as I assure you of my prayers for you: may the Almighty allow us to be able to grow more and more in friendship. Franciscus, PP. 21st April 2016.