Bishop John Keenan, Bishop of Paisley said;
"In 1965, Pope Paul VI in the document Nostra Aetate proclaimed; "in her rejection of every persecution against any man, the Church, mindful of thepatrimony she shares with the Jews and moved not by political reasons but by the Gospel's spiritual love, decries hatred, persecutions, displays of anti-Semitism, directed against Jews at any time and by anyone." This unequivocal denunciation of anti-Semitism ushered in a new era in Catholic-Jewish relations. It was followed almost 20 years later when Pope John Paul II described the Jewish people as; "our elder brothers in the faith of Abraham." when visiting a synagogue in Rome. Since then Pope Benedict and Pope Francis have visited Israel and restated the importanceof the spiritual patrimony, which we share.
Bishop Keenan added:
"Mindful of our unique bond with Judaism, recent murderous attacks on Jewsacross Europe and a growing tide of anti-Semitic incidents at home are upsetting for Catholics to witness. We deplore such intolerance and hatred and commit ourselves to peaceful coexistence and respect. The Jewish community in Scotland is small, located mostly within the Diocese of Paisley and according to some reports it is shrinking as many Jews decide to seek security and safety among larger communities elsewhere in the UK or in Israel. Their departure is Scotland's loss, as a nation we will be culturally and spiritually impoverished without a Jewish community and we should do all that we can to affirm and assure Scotland's Jews that they are valued, welcomed and safe. In the Diocese of Paisley, we look forward to the forthcoming Jewish-Catholic joint campus school, its construction in partnership with the civic authorities in East Renfrewshire is a sign of the mutual respect which underpins our relationship.