Last night I had the privilege of visiting Park East Synagogue in New York to assist in the unveiling of a plaque honoring the historic visit of Pope Benedict XVI to Park East Synagogue during his 2008 visit to New York. It was the first time any pope had visited a synagogue in this country. My good friend, Rabbi Arthur Schneier, and I then addressed the 400 or so guests who were present at the Synagogue. I thought you might want to read my brief remarks.
Here’s an excerpt:
Without a doubt, my meetings with the Jewish community of New York have been amongst the most gratifying of all of my activities over this first year in office as Archbishop. At last count, I have met with approximately 40 separate Jewish groups and leaders, allowing me to gain a working understanding of Jewish life and concerns in New York, Israel and the world over. This evening’s gathering comes both at the second anniversary of the Holy Father’s visit to Park East Synagogue, and close to the one year mark of my own installation last April as the tenth Archbishop of New York. There could be no better moment than now for me to offer thanks for the friendship and support which I have received from all of New York, but with special affection from my Jewish colleagues whom I have come to know and admire. My prayers and good wishes are offered to you this evening that we may continue true friendship in the many years ahead.