Christianity

Holocaust survivor to thank Pope for priest who saved him

By Marcus Dysch, September 24, 2009

A Holocaust survivor whose life was saved by a Catholic priest during the war will visit the Vatican next month to thank the Pope.

Joseph Szlezinger was hidden in a Belgian convent and his mother Gita lived for 18 months in a basement after the priest, Father Clement, agreed to protect them from the Nazis.

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Ex-recruit warns: ‘beware missionaries’

By Marcus Dysch, September 24, 2009

A former member of Jews for Jesus has warned that missionary Christians are creating a “spiritual holocaust in our communities” by converting Jews.

Julian Ciss told an audience at Borehamwood and Elstree Synagogue how he had been recruited and later converted by the organisation.

He explained how he was approached by an evangelical Christian at a college art fair in his native Canada, and after beginning a relationship with the woman started attending her church.

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Historians back BBC over Jewish massacre claim

By Marcus Dysch, September 18, 2009

Israeli historians have backed the BBC after the corporation stood by comments made in a TV documentary claiming that an ancient Jewish tribe massacred Christians who refused to convert.

The Board of Deputies complained to the BBC over perceived inaccuracies and lack of context in The Frankincense Trail, in which presenter Kate Humble followed the trade route which first connected the Arab world with the West.

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Bishop: ‘Pope too sensitive over Shoah’

By Jessica Elgot, August 13, 2009

The head of a controversial Catholic sect has accused the Vatican of excessive sensitivity towards Jews and the Holocaust.

Bishop Bernard Fellay’s comments came after the row over Holocaust denier, Bishop Richard Williamson, which led to two Vatican officials being sacked by Pope Benedict XVI.

Bishop Williamson is a former member of Bishop Fellay’s sect, the ultra-conservative “Priestly Fraternity of Saint Pius X”.

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Israel envoy lauds Christian groups

By James Martin, July 23, 2009

Israeli ambassador to the UK Ron Prosor has thanked Israel’s Christian friends for their “constant support of the state of Israel in difficult times”.

In a unique event at the ambassador’s residence this week, Mr Prosor told more than 50 representatives of British Christian groups: “At a time when our enemies are getting louder in the UK, we truly appreciate the backing from another religious group.”

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Pope sacks officials over Holocaust-denier

By Jessica Elgot, July 10, 2009

Pope Benedict XVI has sacked two Vatican officials and abolished their department after they persuaded him to reverse the excommunication of a Holocaust-denying British bishop.

Bishop Richard Williamson has repeatedly and publicly denied the existence of Nazi gas chambers and has claimed that no more than 300,000 Jews perished in the Holocaust.

In January, Pope Benedict was persuaded to lift the excommunication of Bishop Williamson who was expelled from the Church by Pope John Paul II for internal Church reasons unrelated to the bishop’s Holocaust beliefs.

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Archbishop restrains anti-Israel Anglicans

By Keren David, May 14, 2009

Dr Rowan Williams, the Archbishop of Canterbury, has intervened to prevent a resolution highly critical of Israel being passed by an advisory committee of the Anglican Church.

The Archbishop’s contribution to the debate succeeded in softening the language of the resolution passed, although it still links Israel to an “apartheid” policy in the West Bank and makes no mention of Hamas.

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Jews thought of Jesus first, says Bible scholar

By Simon Rocker, May 14, 2009

The idea of a Messiah who is killed and then resurrected is a Jewish one that pre-dates Christianity, according to a Hebrew University scholar.

Israel Knohl, a professor of Bible, believes the evidence lies in the “Gabriel Revelation”, an inscription on a stone found at the Dead Sea, which dates back to the beginning of the first century CE or the end of the century before.

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Australian Bishop bans Jewish jokes

By Dan Goldberg, May 7, 2009

Heard the one about the Catholic bishop who wanted to ban Jewish jokes?

The Archbishop of Adelaide, Philip Wilson, has written to almost 150 priests saying Catholics should be sensitive towards Jews.

“While I know most of you would not tolerate the improper nature and offence caused by Jewish jokes, I sadly note that this has happened in our church in the past. I know you will agree with me that this is unacceptable.

“Since the terrible crimes committed against the Jewish people in the 20th century, Catholics must continue to search their hearts,” he added.

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Jews and Muslims vow to protest against the Pope

By Anshel Pfeffer, April 23, 2009

Muslim and Jewish protesters are planning to disrupt the visit of Pope Benedict XVI to Israel next month.

Residents of the Jewish Quarter in Jerusalem’s Old City are planning a demonstration against the closure of the area around the Western Wall for 12 hours during the visit. Protesters have vowed to flock to the Wall and remain there for the duration of the stay.

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