Pope Francis, Israeli President Shimon Peres and chief Palestinian Holocaust denier Abu Mazen will pray this evening for peace in the Middle East.
The prayer session will be held in the Vatican Gardens, where there are no Christian religious symbols.
It is unclear whether Peres, an avowed secularist and scion of the anti-religious Labor Zionist movement, will receive instruction on Jewish prayer from Rabbi Abraham Skorka, the pope’s rabbinic advisor and personal friend. There is also no word from Peres’ office about whether the outgoing president will ask the Pontiff to open Vatican archives and to restore Jewish property to its rightful owners. It is widely believed the Church holds priceless manuscripts and property stolen from Jewish communities around the Christian world over the past 1800 years, as well as some of the Holy Vessels stolen from the Bet Hamikdash when the Temple was destroyed in the year 70 CE.