In Israel this evening and tomorrow, it is Yom Hashoah, the Holocaust Memorial Day.
If you've read the news, there is a mighty unholy row going on between The Vatican and Israel over the controversial actions of Pope Pius XII during the Holocaust.
I'm not going to comment on this "broyges" as we call it, because I really don't know enough to make a valued judgement. However, The Vatican's decision to boycott the annual ceremony at Yad Vashem doesn't impress me very much. I would have expected an institution like this to rise above politics and show its religious credentials vis-a-vis respecting the nature of the day (i.e. the extermination of six million Jews) and act accordingly.
Christians and Jews have not had an easy alliance over the millennia. I had hoped that now that we find ourselves the joint target of Islamic Fundamentalists, we would be able to stick together. However, the thing that really sticks in the craw is the knowledge that our enemies will use The Vatican's actions as yet another "proof" of their belief that we fabricated the Shoah.
This row could not have come at a worse time, being as it is, in the painful shadow of Ahmedinejad's "Holocaust" conference. If anything, The Vatican should be going out of its way to mark the commemoration, irrespective of what we think of their former Pope. This is indeed a time for steadfastness and support from our Christian brethren, not dissension.
I sit here wondering how long it will be, before that madman in Teheran picks up on The Vatican's appalling behaviour (in boycotting the ceremony) and uses it as yet another stick to beat us with.
So much for promoting Judaeo-Christian relations, eh?