Statement as issued Thursday by the Fort Wayne congregation:
Members of Congregation Achduth Vesholom extend their heartfelt condolences on the death of Bishop John D’Arcy. Bishop D’Arcy was a genuine friend of the Temple and Jewish community.
Many years ago, he and Rabbi Richard B. Safran, now our Rabbi Emeritus, were responsible for creating the Catholic-Jewish Dialogues that provided the opportunity to promote understanding and the exchange of ideas, as well as the establishment of many friendships. His deep desire to make the dialogues meaningful was apparent to all who participated. Bishop D’Arcy wanted sincerely to follow the dictum of the Pope to make amends for the centuries of anti-Jewish sentiment, and locally he was responsible for creating successes.
When Cardinal Cassidy, from the Vatican, came to Fort Wayne, the bishop encouraged him to speak at the Temple. He met with our congregants and underscored the importance of the efforts of Bishop D’Arcy to create good will and understanding between the two groups.
At the time the bishop was working on fulfilling his dream of a Vincent House, he invited members of the Temple to come to a planning meeting and, as a result, found enthusiastic support. The bishop’s love for humanity, his inherent goodness, his ready smile, his way of life – all were tremendously admirable. His death is a keen loss for us all, regardless of our faith. May his memory be for blessing.
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