Friday, August 28, 2009

Heichal Shlomo Deceived by Missionary Group : UPDATE #1

Posted by Jewish Israel


Jewish Israel has revised this posting due to new information received on August 30th. The management at Heichal Shlomo was aghast at reports that their facilities – including their Renanim Synagogue – were to be used by missionary Christine Darg and Women of the Walls for a worship convocation and banquet. The management at Heichal Shlomo at no time agreed to such usage of their facilities, nor had they seen the publicity and invitation advertising the events.

An advertisement and invitation has been disseminated by parties associated with Christine Darg, indicating that Heichal Shlomo is to be hosting a Christian “worship convocation” and banquet sponsored by evangelical missionary Christine Darg of Exploits Ministries. The event is scheduled for October 1, 2009 (a day before Erev Sukkot), and is being promoted as a prelude to ICEJ’s Feast of Tabernacles. The advertisement for the event calls for an afternoon “Daughter of Jerusalem” Worship Convocation in the 18th Century Renanim Synagogue of the Heichal Shlomo, followed by a banquet at the Heichel Shlomo.

Jewish Israel alerted our Rabbinic Advisor, Rabbi Dr. Sholom Gold. He immediately notified the relevant parties of this urgent and distressing matter. More details and a full report (with a likely positive outcome) is forthcoming.

Heichal Shlomo is a complex which for years served as the seat of the Chief Rabbinate of Israel, and currently houses the Great Synagogue, the Jewish Heritage Museum, the Renanim Synagogue and a number of rabbinic offices.

A poster advertising “The Daughter of Jerusalem” Worship Convocation and Banquet can be seen here. The Daughter of Jerusalem facebook page created by Christine Darg was also carrying a graphic of the inivitation to Heichal Shlomo ( see advertisement page).

According to the ad, other known “messianic”(Christian) and evangelical personalities will be featured at the event. Also participating is at least one Knesset member and Jewish community leaders - including Josh Reinstein the Director of the Knesset Christian Allies Caucus. Christine Darg and her husband Peter regularly work with the Knesset Christian Allies Caucus and organize events for them.

In the past Reinstein has consistently denied working with missionary groups and has upheld the position that “The Christian Allies Caucus…refuses to work with the messianic Jewish community on the grounds that it actively seeks to convert Jews. ‘We believe they work against the interests of the State of Israel.” David Rotem, the current Chairman of the Knesset Christian Caucus also reaffirms that “the caucus's guidelines bar any connection with missionary groups.” And the Caucus admits that “it is legally bound to refrain from all connections with missionary groups in order to have NGO status”

However, according to a trustees report for Exploits Ministries, Christine and Peter Darg describe Exploits as “a missionary society.” Their objectives include taking "the Good News of Jesus Christ back to the Bible Lands where the Gospel began, to both Jew and Arab …”. A similar message is prominently featured on the Exploits Ministries web site homepage.

The Dargs have been directly involved in projects which target the Jewish people for conversion. Christine can be heard on radio describing her work and declaring that, “The Russian Jews are the most open Jewish people group to the gospel on the face of the earth at this moment. The Russians today were begging us for New Testaments … ". Peter Darg can be seen on video promoting a missionary publication on the New Testament in Hebrew, “It’s heartbreaking…that Jewish souls will be lost to eternity unless they come to know him [Jesus] as their Jewish Messiah…I encourage you to sponsor a chapter of the much needed bible so that you can show the love of Yeshua to the Jewish people here in Israel…”

Rabbi Glick of the Temple Institute can be seen in a video clip participating in a highly unorthodox ceremony with Christine Darg. The video was entitled, “Exploits Watching for the Return of Jesus to Jerusalem”

Other featured participants in the advertised Worship and Banquet event include the Christian Embassy’s Charmaine Hedding, Christian worship leader Rosalind Hershkovitz, Female Christian vocalist Vesna Bühler, and “messianic Musicians” Merv and Merla Watson.

Jewish Israel feels that the management of Heichal Shlomo was deceived and that it is more than disturbing that an Orthodox landmark and synagogue in Jerusalem was almost used for a Christian or interfaith worship gathering . This should serve as a wake-up call to the Jewish community to become aware of the prevalence of evangelical missionary deceptions and it should alert the Knesset Christian Allies Caucus and Knesset members to be fully aware of the evangelizing intentions and agenda of a number of the individuals and organizations that they work with.

The management of Heichal Shlomo reported that they had received numerous calls and emails from concerned parties (we have removed Heichal Shlomo's email and phone number in anticipation of a positive outcome to this matter.)

Jewish Israel will continue to keep you posted. Contact us at info@jewishisrael.com

[note: The following is an exclusive Jewish Israel report. Please credit Jewish Israel with a link if you choose to use and disseminate this information]

(Thanks to a special Jewish Israel member who tipped us off on this story)

10 comments:

Anonymous said...

this is pretty insane. have the chief rabbis okayd it? they are the ruling halakhic authorities in the state of israel.

ellen said...

I'm sure they would never approve of it, and I doubt they even know about the event (but I'm sure they will hear about it soon).

What is incredible is that the Orthodox Jewish community in America manages - for the most part- to stick to the halacha on this issue (thanks to Rav Soloveitchik z"l), but the Israeli Orthodox community is blindly stumbling and trampling fences on a regular bases (on this issue)- thanks to some of the Rav's purported talmidim. Go figure...

Lady-Light said...

Glad you sent me here-this is what I was missing? It's terrible. I want to cross-post this on my blog (with links, of course).
Is this what Israel has come to?

Shtuey said...

I think they ought to hold this...whatever it is...in a padded room...maybe in Luxembourg.

Keli Ata said...

What accounts for all of this open door policy with missionaries? Boosting the Israeli economy via tourism? Evangelicals bribing Israeli politicians? Or (sigh) good natured Israelis being accomodating to visitors?

Something is very wrong.


Israelis can't be this desperate for support that they'd allow this to happen.


OT: Jews for Judaism has recently posted several anti-missionary videos on You Tube. The videos are concise, comments are moderated so there's no missionary feedback responses, and deal with key topics that missionaries use to trick Jews.

Hadassa said...

Shalom!
Rabbis born and raised in Israel, even the "biggest" can be incredibly bad at identifying missionaries and other Xtians with whom we should make no contact. In order to prevent embarrassment, I won't give details, but I personally know of two cases in which Israeli rabbis didn't recognize the dangers, but Americans, not all of whom were rabbis (including me),did. I'm surprised that Heichal Shlomo is getting involved with this because many English speaking olim are involved with the Great Synagogue.
Keep your eyes and ears wide open. You might catch something that the rabbis don't.

Shiloh said...

Tell the truth to Jews and the world about this historical Jew and you will instantly end any missionary activity. Jews would then be interested in following the Torah and goyim would want to do the same (some suggest as benei noach). But instead, you have your slanderers who attack those Jews who can utterly destroy the teachings of Esav, the Great Lie. The ultimate in Chillul haShem. So, do it the hard way, the proven unsuccessful ways. We never learn.

Anonymous said...

For those that don't know poster Shiloh, he's a believer in Jesus, who almost sounds like a Jew. Hence the term "historic Jew." More like hysterical Jew, if you know what rantings of his you can find in the NT.

You just have to wait a little bit till Shiloh comes out of the closet. He's very shy.

goyisherebbe said...

When someone who is a believer in what authentic Judaism describes as idolatry, they should not be allowed to post on the blog. Moderate. Delete. Do whatever you have to do.

Batya said...

goyish, commenting and posting aren't the same. I prefer that the genuine Torah-true commenters correct all the lies. Sometimes I do delete, but not automatically, except the commercial spam etc.