Video of pope dancing with Hasidic Jews goes viral

Pope Francis meets with Rabbi Edgar Gluck, chief rabbi of Galicia, center left, during a private audience at the Vatican on May 8, 2017. Photo courtesy of L'Osservatore Romano Pope Francis meets with Rabbi Edgar Gluck, chief rabbi of Galicia, center left, during a private audience at the Vatican on May 8, 2017. Photo courtesy of L'Osservatore Romano  

It’s rare to see Pope Francis bopping behind the walls of the Apostolic Palace.

Actually, if anyone has ever seen any pope dancing they’ve never said anything, nor filmed it and put it on YouTube.

Advertisement

Yet there was Francis with a smile on his face, grooving to the music with a delegation of Hasidic Jews at the Vatican this week as they serenaded him with guitars and a chant in Hebrew of “Long years shall satiate him.”

If Francis was swaying more than dancing, well, the Argentine pope’s tastes run more to tango. And he is 80 years old and has a sore back.

Still, when Yeshiva World News posted the brief video to YouTube it quickly became something of a sensation.

The encounter took place during a 45-minute papal audience on Monday, May 8 with a delegation led by Polish Rabbi Edgar Gluck, who was accompanied by his son Zvi, who lives in New York, and other rabbis.

While the pope warmed to the traditional Jewish music and dance, the delegation also discussed issues of common concern, including the protection of Jewish cemeteries in Europe and fighting child sex abuse.

After the meeting, Zvi Gluck tweeted that the pope had told him and the delegation:

“Zero tolerance” Said Pope Francis, “We need to keep kids safe.”

Zvi Gluck is the founder and director of Amudim, an organization dedicated to helping victims of sexual and substance abuse and other problems in the Jewish community.

His 80-year-old father, Edgar Gluck, is the chief rabbi of Galicia and divides his time between Poland and the U.S.

The elder Gluck has been involved in preserving Jewish cemeteries in Eastern Europe for many years and discussed the issue when he met Francis during his official visit to Poland for World Youth Day in July 2016.

Gluck previously served as a member of the U.S. Commission for the Preservation of America’s Heritage Abroad.

Comments are automatically closed two weeks after an article's initial publication. See our comments policy for more.

Advertisement

Don't miss the best from America

Sign up for our Newsletter to get the Jesuit perspective on news, faith and culture.

The latest from america

The appointments are part of an ongoing effort to give a greater role to women in the work of the Roman Curia offices, the central administration of the Catholic church.
Gerard O’ConnellApril 21, 2018
Ivette Escobar, a student at Central American University in San Salvador, helps finish a rug in honor of the victims in the 1989 murder of six Jesuits, their housekeeper and her daughter on the UCA campus, part of the 25th anniversary commemoration of the Jesuit martyrs in 2014. (CNS photo/Edgardo Ayala) 
A human rights attorney in the United States believes that the upcoming canonization of Blessed Oscar Romero in October has been a factor in a decision to revisit the 1989 Jesuit massacre at the University of Central America.
Kevin ClarkeApril 20, 2018
Journalists photograph the lethal injection facility at San Quentin State Prison in California in 2010. (AP Photo/Eric Risberg, File)
In California, Catholic opponents of the death penalty are trying to protect the largest population of inmates awaiting execution in the Western Hemisphere.
Jim McDermottApril 20, 2018
Photo: the Hank Center at Loyola University Chicago
Bishop McElroy said that Catholics must embrace “the virtues of solidarity, compassion, integrity, hope and peace-building.”