The Ethics Daily website reports today (October 26, 2010) that a special Vatican meeting on the Middle East ended on October 23 with a dispute in Catholic-Jewish relations, after an American archbishop declared the Bible does not give Jews privileged rights to the land of Israel.
"We Christians cannot speak of the 'promised land' as an exclusive right for a privileged Jewish people," said Archbishop Cyril Bustros, a native of Lebanon who is currently a Melkite Greek Catholic bishop in Newton, Massachusetts.
"This promise was nullified by Christ," Bustros said at a Vatican press conference marking the end of a two-week session of the Synod of Bishops. He added, "There is no longer a chosen people -- all men and women of all countries have become the chosen people."
Rabbi David Rosen -- director of interreligious affairs for the American Jewish Committee and an adviser to Israel's Chief Rabbinate -- said Archbishop Bustros' comments "reflect either shocking ignorance or insubordination in relation to the Catholic Church's teaching on Jews and Judaism."