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April 21, 2014 / 21 Nisan, 5774
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Posts Tagged ‘Catholic’

Venezuelan Anti-Semitism at New Heights in Race between Chavez and Capriles

Sunday, September 9th, 2012

Anti-Semitism in Venezuela has spiked during the electoral race for president between a Catholic man of Jewish descent and President Hugo Chavez, according to a new report.

State media and supporters of Chavez, who has ruled the country for the past 14 years, regularly “vilify” his opponent, Henrique Capriles Radonski, derisively referring to his Jewish roots, a study by Tel Aviv University’s Kantor Center for the Study of Anti-Semitism found.

“This is done in a variety of methods, such as defamation, intimidation and conspiracy theories, many of which portray Capriles as a Zionist agent, and by mixing classic and neo-anti-Semitism,” said the report, authored by Lidia Lerner, an expert on Latin America. “A Capriles victory, it is claimed, will inevitably lead to Zionist infiltration.”

The election is scheduled for October 7.

Op-Eds warning of a “Zionist takeover” if Capriles wins repeatedly have appeared in government-controlled media since Radonski’s candidacy was announced in February, the report said. He also has been the subject of anti-Semitic cartoons.

Radonski was elected to run against Chavez as the representative of the Democratic Unity coalition, a collection of 30 parties that compose the bulk of Venezuela’s opposition. Capriles’ father was a Catholic of Sephardic Jewish descent. His mother’s family was comprised of Eastern European Holocaust survivors. He does not hide his Jewish roots but considers himself a devout Catholic.

WBO Welterweight Champ to Visit Israel

Thursday, May 24th, 2012

Manny Pacquiao, the World Boxing Organization welterweight champion, will visit Israel after his title defense fight against Timothy Bradley on June 9, according to his Jewish promoter Bob Arum in a report by JTA.

The Filipino boxer and is also an elected politician in the Phillipines, serving as senator of the Sarangani province.  He is considered one of the top two best pound-for-pound fighters by The  Ring magazine.

Pacquiao is a devout Catholic.

Punch The Other Cheek

Wednesday, May 16th, 2012

http://notajew-jew.com/?p=72

I was bullied as a child.  A lot.  And every time my schoolyard bullies tormented me, I obeyed the teachings of Jesus and turned the other cheek.

The problem with turning the other cheek is: it doesn’t work.  Not with bullies.  Not even with Catholic school bullies.  Because bullies don’t consult the “Good Book” before they do bad things.

So, day after day, when I turned my other cheek, my schoolyard bullies saw it as weakness and punched my other cheek.

After years of being terrorized like this, and wishing in vain that my bullies would go away or tire of tormenting me, I finally decided to disobey Jesus and change tactics.  I grabbed the biggest, meanest bully by the throat, slammed him against a wall, lifted him off the ground, and breathed my warning into his shocked and trembling face.  I can’t remember what I said to him.  But I knew, from the terrified look in his eyes, that he believed every damn word of it.  Because I spoke to him in the language that he understood.  The language of the bully.

My years of torment ended in that moment.  I was never bullied again.

That was my first big break with the teachings of Jesus.  Because turning the other cheek to a bully – whether in a schoolyard or on the world stage – never, ever works.

Just ask any kid.  Or any Jew.

Suspended For Being Too Jewish?

Tuesday, May 15th, 2012

http://notajew-jew.com/?p=55

My earliest thought of Judaism came in Catholic school, when I cussed out my grade three teacher for being an anti-Semite.

I was no Biblical expert at the age of nine, but even my cursory understanding of the Bible told me that Christians had a heck of a lot in common with Jews.  But my grade four brain, trapped in a grade three class, couldn’t yet formulate the brilliant observations of a Dennis Prager or Rabbi Joseph Telushkin about the Jewish foundation of ethical monotheism that Christians and the rest of the world inherited.  Or the passionate Christian defense of Judaism from the great Pastor John Hagee (for whom I have had the great honor of writing; more on that later).  No, I just stood up and cussed out my grade three teacher for crapping on Jews.

Perhaps that was the first indication of my latent Jewish tendencies: not what I said to my teacher, but my instinct to stand up and say it.  Outspokenness.  A rather Jewish trait, I’m told, which did not serve me well at any level of school, anywhere (I bounced around to every school in town, and to one of them twice).  Witness my suspension notice for “persistent opposition to authority,” and my Grade 3 report card, which observed that I have “a good religious knowledge but fails to relate to his peers due to his ‘superior’ attitude.”

So it appears, as early as grade three, that I was already exhibiting early-onset symptoms of “chosenness.”

Premature Jew – Bashing

Monday, May 7th, 2012

http://notajew-jew.com/?p=124

I suppose it all began when I was Jew-bashed on a subway platform.

This was before I was a Jew.  Actually, depending on when you read this, right now is before I am a Jew – because this is a blog about my journey from being “Not a Jew” to becoming a “Jew.”

Back to my premature Jew-bashing.

This was way back when I was a Catholic.  Actually a lapsed Catholic.  All right, an agnostic.  Fine, you dragged it out of me: I was practically a bloodsucking atheist.  In fact, the best way to describe me at the time was a Godless Pre-Emo Twilight Eclipse boy.  Back then, we called it “New Romantic.”  But if you say that to kids nowadays they just stare at you.

Like the 50 year-old Italian guy on the subway platform who stared at me and called me an “effing Jew.”

Before I could tell him I was not an “effing Jew” and, in fact, half-Italian (like you, you effing Guido), he grabbed me with strikingly-powerful old-guy-plumber-hand strength, and shoved me – almost into the path of a speeding subway train and almost to my death.

So I was Jew-bashed, and almost killed, before I had my first thought of becoming a Jew.

On the bright side, things can only get better for me as Jew from here on in, right?

Right?

Vatican Rep Wants Alliance With Jews, Muslims, to Combat Gay Marriage

Thursday, May 3rd, 2012

A Vatican representative has issued a call for the world’s foremost religions to unite to take a stand against gay marriage.

Archbishop Antonio Mennini, the “Apostolic Nuncio” (Vatican representative) to Great Britain has proposed enlisting the help of all Christian denominations, as well as Jews and Muslims, to oppose the proposition of legalizing gay marriage in England.

In an address to Catholic bishops from England and Wales, Mennini warned against political and cultural influences forcing reforms on religion, and suggested an alliance with Jews and Muslims in order to combat the immorality of homosexual marriage.

“It seems to me that, concerning the institution of marriage, and indeed the sanctity of human life, we have much in common with the position of the Jewish community, the Chief Rabbi and many of the more significant representatives of Islam,” the Archbishop said, according to a report in Britains’s Telegraph newspaper.

Local Quakers, Buddhists, and members of the Pagan Federation have already publicly supported the right of religious leaders to decline to perform same-sex marriage ceremonies, although their position supports basic freedom of clergy members to reject or support the marriages.

Mennini’s comments come after a series of high-level discussions between Muslim and Jewish leaders and Equalities Minister Lynne Featherstone, who is investigating the possibility of legalizing gay marriage in the UK.

For now, English and Scottish Muslim groups, imams, and councils have opposed the plan to legalize gay marriage, as has the head of the Network of Sikh Organisations.

Liberal and Reform synagogues, on the other hand, have expressed support for same-sex marriages.  Rabbis in the main United Synagogues have come out against the proposal.  Soon-to-be-retired Chief Rabbi Lord Sacks has not come out publicly against the measure, but friend and advisor Rabbi Yitzchak Schochet of Mill Hill United Synagogue in north London called the potential legislation an “assault” on religious values.

Archbishop Peter Smith of Southwark told the Telegraph that while no official contact has yet been made between the Catholic Church and Jewish groups, “We will work with anyone who agrees with us that to redefine marriage is not a good thing for society and will lead to more confusion.”  He added that the Church of England is onboard with the Catholic Church’s position.

Hungarian Jewish Writer Seeking Canadian Asylum May Not Be Jewish

Tuesday, March 6th, 2012

Jewish writer Ákos Kertész, 80, winner of Hungary’s prestigious literary award the Kossuth, arrived with his wife in Montreal last Wednesday, saying he was seeking asylum in Canada because of a “political campaign” against him, Reuters reports.

According to Reuters, last August Kertész condemned Hungary’s role in the Holocaust. In response, “a political campaign was mounted against him, not only by the Budapest city hall but also from within the government and parliament,” a statement he released said Sunday.

“Following the political campaign by the pro-government press, Mr Kertesz suffered threats and harassment, he felt his life was in danger,” the statement added.

Eva S. Balogh, who fled Hungary to Canada after the failed 1956 anti-Soviet revolt, writes that Kertész is actually Catholic: “His father, because of the numerus clausus that restricted the number of Jews allowed to enroll in Hungarian universities, couldn’t continue his studies. Thus he attended “free university” courses where he met Vilmos Juhász, a historian and journalist and a Catholic convert from Judaism. Under his influence Kertész’s father converted and the two of them started an organization called Hungarian Holy Cross Assocation that represented Jewish converts from the early 1930s until 1945.”

Nevertheless, Balogh adds, “Whether a believing Catholic or not, the elder Kertész was considered to be a Jew and taken to a series of labor camps.”

Balogh describes the Kertész affair:

What did Ákos Kertész do that upset the Hungarian right so much? He wrote an open letter to László Bartus, editor-in-chief of American-Hungarian Népszava, the oldest Hungarian-language paper in the United States, in which he bitterly complained about Hungarians who are “genetically servile” and who therefore allow the dictatorial Viktor Orbán to rule over them. He said a few harsh things, no doubt about it. He compared his fellow Hungarians to pigs who for the slop the farmer puts in front of them happily grunt, not realizing that they will be killed.

Balogh says the question of Ákos Kertész’s letter became a topic of parliamentary discussion, when on September 12 an MP the Hungarian political undersecretary of the Ministry of National Resources, whether the government was contemplating stripping Kertész of his Kossuth Prize. The answer was that Kertész should apologize; if not, “he is not worthy of it.”

Sister Rose Thering: Sister Rose’s Passion

Tuesday, January 24th, 2012

Sister Rose’s Passion is a documentary film on the life of Sister Rose Thering, a life that stood for love of Jews, for fighting prejudice, anti-Semitism and Holocaust denial. The film won an award at the Tribeca Film Festival and was nominated for an Academy Award in 2005, a year after it was made. And the heroine of the documentary, Sister Rose Thering herself received more than 80 humanitarian awards. Among them, the Anti-Defamation League’s Cardinal Bea Interfaith Award, was its first prize ever awarded to a woman.

It was in her early childhood that Rose instinctively rejected expressions of anti-Jewish prejudice. Born on Aug. 9, 1920, the sixth of 11 children, she grew up on a Wisconsin farm where Jews were spoken of in whispers, where in her parochial school catechisms and other religious texts portrayed Jews as Christ-killers. Rose, having learned of the stereotypical messages of intolerance early in life, found them truly troubling. She joined the Sisters of St. Dominic at 16, and earned a bachelor’s degree from the Dominican College in Racine in 1953, a master’s degree from the College of St. Thomas in St. Paul in 1957 and a doctorate at St. Louis University four years later. In recognition of her interfaith work, the Rose Thering Endowment for Jewish-Christian Studies was established at Seton Hall in 1992; it has given scholarships to 350 teachers for graduate studies on the Holocaust.

Later, as a teacher, she examined the Catholic textbooks of her students critically and was shocked by what she found. She was in her 30′s and had been teaching for some time when she resolved to act against what she saw as a fundamental flaw in church teaching. “I had ordered the most widely used Catholic religious teaching material from high school and grade school,” Sister Rose recalled. “When I began to read, it almost made me ill.” She cited a passage that asked, “Why did the Jews commit the great sin of putting Jesus himself to death?” and another declaring, “The worst deed of the Jewish people was the murder of the Messiah.”

The result of Sister Rose Thering’s indignation was her study of anti-Semitism in Catholic texts and a dissertation for her 1961 doctorate at St. Louis University that propounded the evidence: textbooks and preaching that proliferate calumnies against Jews and Judaism.

In 1962, when Pope John XXIII convened the ecumenical council known as Vatican II, he used Sister Rose’s study to draft portions of the historic Vatican document “Nostra Aetate” (“In Our Age”). It was this document that reversed church policy and declared of Jesus’ death “what happened in his passion cannot be charged against all the Jews, without distinction, then alive, nor against the Jews of today.” Her conclusion: “The Jews should not be presented as rejected or accursed by G-d,” is a most significant contradiction to age-old church doctrine.

“They were 15 lines in Latin,” Sister Rose commented later about Nostra Aetate, “but they changed everything.” Indeed, in Catholic texts, in sermons, and in other pronouncements of the church, a new attitude toward Jews was officially adopted and discussions between Catholics and Jews have been elevated to a more respectful plane. At Seton Hall, where she joined the faculty in 1968, Sister Rose established workshops on Judaism for church leaders and teachers, helped write a law mandating the teaching of the Holocaust and genocide in all elementary and high schools in New Jersey, and led student groups on 54 tours of Israel.

After her death at age 85, ADL’s Abe Foxman summed up Sister Rose Thering’s life: “She changed the course of history. She was a woman of valor who brought enlightenment, honor, scholarship, and pure passion to remembering and teaching about the Holocaust, to battling the demon of anti-Semitism and to challenging the ignorance and prejudice and the teaching of contempt for Jews.”

Printed from: http://www.jewishpress.com/sections/jewess-press/impact-women-history/sister-rose-thering-sister-roses-passion/2012/01/24/

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