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    He couldn’t have been a real priest

    He marched in a pro-Palestinian demonstration through Sydney the other week. He bore a placard, “They killed the the Prince of Peace, so what do you expect from them?”

    He wore a clerical collar. He appeared to be a priest calling on Christians to rise up against the Jews. I suspect he was not a real priest at all, but a dressed-up actor; clerical collars are easy to buy, and easier to borrow. A real priest, whatever his view of events in the Middle East, would not be so foolish as to peddle such anti-Christian sloganism.

    “Anti-Christian”? Surely the name for this is antisemitism!

    But it is anti-Christian too. It ignores the fact that after centuries of
    Jewish suffering, a series of official church statements has unambiguously repudiated the accusation of deicide. It takes no account of the fact that after centuries of careless misrepresentation, Christian scholarship today rejects the claim that it was Jews who killed Jesus.

    No real priest would be so ignorant as to be unaware of these developments.

    And no real priest would shoot himself in the clerical foot by denigrating the Jews.

    A “priest” who can find nothing good to say about Jews and would presumably prefer them all to lie down and die is doing no-one a service.

    To be fair, he would have to deny himself the benefit of all the ongoing
    Jewish contributions to civilisation. He would have to rewrite history,
    leaving out Einstein’s theory of relativity, as well as tests and treatments for syphilis, diabetes, convulsions, malnutrition, infantile paralysis and tuberculosis discovered by Jews.

    He would have to live without the movements in art, music, literature,
    philosophy, science, medicine, law, media, education, democracy and commerce developed by Jews.

    Naturally he would have to manage without the Scriptures, the Psalms and the Ten Commandments; without monotheism, love of God, love of one’s neighbour and love of the stranger; without the sanctity of life, the dignity of all human beings; the concept of the Messiah…

    And to go in for really serious denigration of Jews, he’d have to give back the Jew Jesus too – and Christianity itself.

    No – whoever he is, he can’t be a real priest, and what he says can’t be Christianity.

    Article from 2002.

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