On Friday afternoon, 18 April , after visiting the United Nations, the Holy Father went to the residence of Archbishop Celestino Migliore, Apostolic Nuncio and Permanent Observer of the Holy See to the U.N., who gave him hospitality during his stay in New York. In the afternoon, the Holy Father visited Park East Synagogue, where Rabbi Arthur Schneier welcomed him. The following is the Pope's Address, which he gave after receiving the Rabbi's tribute.
Dear Friends, Shalom!
It is with joy that I come here, just a few hours before the celebration of your Pesah, to express my respect and esteem for the Jewish community in New York City. The proximity of this place of worship to my residence gives me the opportunity to greet some of you today. I find it moving to recall that Jesus, as a young boy, heard the words of Scripture and prayed in a place such as this. I thank Rabbi Schneier for his words of welcome and I particularly appreciate your kind gift, the spring flowers and the lovely song that the children sang for me. I know that the Jewish community make a valuable contribution to the life of the city, and I encourage all of you to continue building bridges of friendship with all the many different ethnic and religious groups present in your neighborhood. I assure you most especially of my closeness at this time, as you prepare to celebrate the great deeds of the Almighty, and to sing the praises of Him who has worked such wonders for his people. I would ask those of you who are present to pass on my greetings and good wishes to all the members of the Jewish community. Blessed be the name of the Lord!