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Church report admits Christian anti-Semitism helped lead to Holocaust

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Published: 26 November 2019

Last updated: 4 March 2024

Church of England report that acknowledges ‘fertile seed-bed for murderous anti-Semitism in the modern era’; UK chief rabbi slams evangelical attempts to convert Jews

THE CHURCH OF ENGLAND has admitted that centuries of Christian anti-Semitism helped lead to the Holocaust.

In a major report that was three years in the making, England’s established church cited “the attribution of collective guilt to the Jewish people for the death of Christ and the consequent interpretation of their suffering as collective punishment sent by God” as being among the ideas that “contributed to fostering the passive acquiescence if not positive support of many Christians in actions that led to the Holocaust.”

The report, “God’s Unfailing Word: Theological and Practical Perspectives on Christian–Jewish Relations,” also urged Christians to accept the importance of Zionism for most Jews.

In an oblique swipe at opposition leader Jeremy Corbyn, it warned that “some of the approaches and language used by pro-Palestinian advocates are indeed reminiscent of what could be called traditional antisemitism.”

In an afterword to the report, the UK’s chief rabbi takes the church to task for failing to reject outright the work of evangelical Christians who attempt to convert Jews.

Ephraim Mirvis praises the 105-page report for being “sensitive and unequivocal in owning the legacy of Christianity’s role in the bitter saga of Jewish persecution.”

Mirvis goes on, though, to express his “substantial misgiving” at its unwillingness to condemn the “efforts of those Christians, however many they may number, who, as part of their faithful mission, dedicate themselves to the purposeful and specific targeting of Jews for conversion to Christianity.”

FULL STORY Church of England report admits Christian anti-Semitism helped lead to Holocaust (Times of Israel)

Church of England says Christians must repent for past anti-Semitism (Guardian)
Document acknowledges Christians’ part in persecution of Jewish people over centuries

Church of England teaching document calls for repentance over role of Christians in centuries of anti-Semitism (Church of England)

Photo: The Archbishop of Cantebury Justin Welby and the British Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis at the Western Wall in 2017 (Yonatan Sindel/Flash90)

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