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July 05, 1991 - Image 25

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1991-07-05

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

PHIL JACOBS

Managing Editor

PHOTOS BY GLENN TRIEST

.7.1111.111,71
41111
111

A Jewish "believer" in
prayer.

Ronnie Schreiber ques-
tions the spirituality in the
room. But he knows Jews
are in there, and what is
even more bothersome for
the director of the Detroit
office of Jews for Judaism,
a national counter-
missionary organization, is
that something attracted
and keeps them there.
For some Messianic
Jews, it might have been a
lack of Jewish education
within the home. It could
have been a negative expe-
rience in a synagogue or it
could have been little ex-
posure or deep explanation
of the laws of the Torah.
Whatever the reason,
Jews for Judaism is taking
the national numbers seri-
ously. That more than
150,000 American Jews af-
filiate with a Messianic
congregation or a Chris-
tian church has turned the
problem into something
that could one day surpass
intermarriage, according
to Jews for Judaism
leaders. Locally, Mes-
sianics number around
300.
But what worries the an-
ti-missionaries even more
is the quality of person
becoming a Messianic Jew.
Ten years ago, when their
numbers were around
85,000, many of these peo-
ple were considered on the
fringe. They were men and
women with personal prob-
lems, looking for someone
to love. They were looking
for a crutch.
Today, more and more
people come into Messianic
Judaism bringing
academic degrees and
higher socio-economic sta-
tus.
The group Jews for Jesus
is an evangelistic, self-
described propaganda
organization with the sole
mission of bringing Jews
into mainline Christianity.
Messianic Jews, or Hebrew
Christians as they are
sometimes called, aren't
necessarily interested in a
church. They, instead,
want heimish congrega-

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