Dialogika

Pope Francis

Letter to Chief Rabbi of Rome Riccardo Di Segni on the Death of Former Chief Rabbi Elio Toaff

[unofficial translation]

Dr. Riccardo Di Segni
Chief Rabbi of the Jewish Community of Rome

I wish to express my heartfelt sympathy to the bereaved family members and to the entire Jewish community of the Capital on the death of Prof. Rabbi Elio Toaff, the long-distinguished spiritual leader of the Jews of Rome.

A leading authority for decades on Jewish and civil Italian history, he was able to win widespread esteem and appreciation for his moral authority, combined with a profound humanity.

I recall with gratitude his generous commitment and sincere willingness to promote dialogue and fraternal relations between Jews and Catholics, who witnessed a significant moment in his memorable meeting with St. John Paul II at the Synagogue of Rome.

I offer prayers to the Most High, full of love and fidelity, to welcome him into his kingdom of peace.

From the Vatican, April 20, 2015