For the first time in his seven years as leader of the Catholic church, Pope Benedict XVI will meet a delegation of Jewish leaders from South America.
The meeting, arranged by the Latin American Jewish Congress, will take place Thursday morning at the Vatican, focusing on interfaith dialogue and co-existence. Members of the delegation will include Rabbi Marcelo Polakoff, the head of the Latin American Rabbinical Assembly, and Jewish officials from Argentina and Brazil. The group plans to present the pope with a book co-written by Jewish and Catholic organizations in South America, “Forty Years of History,” which looks at the decades since the creation of the International Liaison Committee Between Jews and Catholics.
South America contains the largest Catholic population — roughly 300 million — of any continent.