Bishop accuses Vatican of 'excessive sensibility' towards Jews
Head of ultra-conservative Catholic sect says he is 'embarrassed' by Holy See's reaction to Holocaust comments
The head of an ultra-conservative Catholic sect has attacked the Vatican for the "excessive sensibility" shown to the Jewish world following comments made by a Holocaust-denying priest.
Bishop Bernard Fellay, superior general of the Priestly Fraternity of Saint Pius X (SSPX), told the Italian news agency Apcom that he felt "embarrassed" about the Holy See's behaviour when it emerged last January that Richard Williamson, a member of the conservative sect, denied that millions of Jews were murdered in Nazi concentration camps, as well as denying the existence of Nazi gas chambers.
Fellay also said Jews should not concern themselves with church affairs, referring to an outcry over a prayer that called for their conversion to Roman Catholicism.
In the wide-ranging interview, given last Friday, he said: "It is not their religion. Leave us alone. They are matters which concern the Catholic church. If we wish to pray for the Jews, we will pray for the Jews in the manner we see fit. I do not know if they pray for us, but I would say that this is their problem."
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My coverage of this radical anti-Semitic group is available here. I'm working on an extended piece outlining the background of the so-called "traditionalist Catholics" and their extensive ties to fascism and anti-Semitism. These are people with a long history of putting their ideas into action with horrific results.