ROME, Jan. 18 (UPI) -- Pope John Paul II hosted a classical music concert in Rome as part of his effort to foster inter-faith reconciliation among religions.
The pope sat with Israel's two chief rabbis and leading Muslim clerics in the audience for the debut of "Abraham," a new choral work by an American composer, the BBC reported Sunday.
The Vatican said the concert Saturday night was intended to promote the commitment to peaceful co-existence among all the children of Abraham -- the biblical patriarch revered by members of all three faiths.
Gustav Mahler's "Second Symphony," known as "The Resurrection," was also played by the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra under the baton of Gilbert Levine, a personal friend of the pope.
The mixed choir of singers from the London Philharmonic, Turkey, the pope's home town of Krakow, Poland, and Pittsburgh performed.
The Knights of Columbus in the United States contributed the $500,000 estimated cost of the concert.