Israel sends olive tree to Pope
JERUSALEM — An olive tree more than 200 years old grown near Nazareth has been sent as a gift to Pope Benedict XVI from Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu.
The tree was to be planted Oct. 26 during a ceremony at Viale Degli Ulivi, or Olive Tree Boulevard, in the Vatican Gardens.
Netanyahu said the tree symbolizes the blooming friendship between Israel and the Vatican, and it represents the aspiration to foster peace and brotherhood between peoples and religions. The gift follows the prime minister’s recent visit to the Vatican museum.
The Jewish National Fund selected and shipped the tree to the port of Ravenna in Italy. JNF world chair Effi Stenzler will attend the ceremony. pop