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After the rabbi heard his tale of woe, the sage asked the newlywed to remove his shtreimel, the round fur hat worn on important occasions by chassidim. The rabbi took it and shook it vigorously. This dislodged many more pieces of grain, left from those the congregation had showered upon him as a blessing for a bountiful future when he had been called up to the Torah before his wedding a week before.

The great Maggid of Jerusalem, Rabbi Shalom Schwadron, wonderfully distilled the moral of the story. Before you criticize others, check your own shtreimel first.

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Even if you are Anglican.

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13 COMMENTS

  1. You would have to follow synod pretty selectively to miss the extensive time given to indigenous justice and reconciliation issues at home. As for the beam in one's own eye, why not urge Israeli political leaders to behave justly, instead of trying to shield them from the consequences of their choices? I haven't met an Anglican who would deny the millenia-old connexion between Jews and the Land of Israel, but I have met zionists of a certain stripe who would deny the existence of a Palestinian people, much less their connection to anything.

    The Revd Ateek's observation is apt: you would think one people that has experienced dispossession, wandering, and the world's spite would have rather more compassion for another in those same shoes.

  2. Can we please get away from crying "antisemitic" whenever someone disagrees with the policies of the Israeli government?! Hating a people and disagreeing with a government are two extremely different things. Come on people.

  3. Yes, as a country and as churches, we horribly wronged our first nations people. But I don't think it's a fair comparison. We acknowledge that what we did was WRONG. Churches and the government have made formal appologies. We're working on reconciliation and land claims. We're not perfect by any stretch. Our first nations communities deal with poverty, addictions, and poor living standards, and that's unacceptable. But again, not the same situation happening present day in Canada and Israel. As a country we are still reeling from the consequences of our actions. It did more than hurt a people, it effect and hurt (and continues to hurt) our entire country. If anything, shouldn't this history lesson rededicate us to fight harder to ensure our mistakes are not repeated by our friends in Israel?

  4. I think the situations certainly have similarities here and there historically but of course the bias of this article is allowing for the emphasizing of similarities without looking at all the ways in which the situations differ. I personally find it refreshing that these Churches are encouraging education and awareness of the illegality of the settlements instead of ignoring the many injustices taking place against the Palestinians because it involves the holy land… PS let's catch up soon, I wanna hear about your trip!

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