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Saturday, August 11, 2007

Cardinal Lustiger--the Ultimate Jew for Jesus

Guys, I am sorry, but I just can't drink that Kool Aid. I am sure that Cardinal Jean-Marie Lustiger was a nice man and a good cardinal but I don't see all the Jewish fuss about his death. Its OK to feel sorry for the guy and his family and his friends but to morn him as one of our own is silly. If a guy has the title Cardinal in his name, and he doesn't play baseball in St. Louis --he just isn't a Jew.

If he was a Jew he would have spent his life having wine and challah on Friday night instead of the wine and wafer on Sunday morning. Yet at his funeral today, they said Kaddish, they put soil from Israel in his coffin.Didn't they read the paper Lustiger converted and lived his life as a Catholic--a big shot one to boot. He wasn't a Jew--He was the Ultimate Jew for Jesus.

Kaddish read at Lustiger's funeral
France bids farewell to Paris archbishop who was born Jewish and converted to Christianity during WW2 France bade farewell to Cardinal Jean-Marie Lustiger on Friday in a ceremony that mixed prayers from his Jewish roots with the rites of the Roman Catholic Church, a faith to which he converted during World War Two.

A cousin of the late archbishop of Paris, Arno Lustiger, read the Kaddish, the Jewish prayer for the dead said in Aramaic, the language Jesus spoke, at the start of the ceremony outside Notre Dame Cathedral in central Paris.
Another family relation, Jonas Moses-Lustiger, read Psalm 113 in Hebrew and French, a psalm of special significance to both Jews and Catholics. A large crowd had gathered in silence under overcast skies in front of a packed cathedral. French President Nicolas Sarkozy broke his summer vacation in the United States to lead political figures.

Lustiger, who died from cancer on Sunday aged 80, was hidden in Catholic boarding schools during the 1940-1944 Nazi occupation of France and converted from Judaism during the war. His mother was arrested and died in the Auschwitz death camp. Jewish religious and community leaders and dignitaries from other religions also attended the funeral, conducted by Lustiger's successor as Archbishop of Paris, Andre Vingt-Trois, and a message from Pope Benedict was read out. Lustiger's coffin was borne into the cathedral by six priests and was laid to rest in the archbishop's crypt at Notre Dame in line with tradition.


fashionista cat in a zero gravity shoe-store said...


I've found your blog through Jack's.

While I certainly understand your concern about the Jewish affilitation or whatnot of the late Cardinal Lustiger, I'd like to note though that the approaches to mourning are decided on by those that are left behind and those usually choose what consoles them most. Psalms generally are a part of Catholic liturgy, there's nothing extraordinary about a psalm being read at a Catholic funeral (I've attended a few). Christian customs have also had a great impact on Judaism, which can be easily seen if one is willing to see how Judaism and Christianity interacted in their earlier European days and how they influenced each other (Noteworthily, Jewish historic research prior to WW2 (and usually also those born prior to WW2) even used to make a point of that while later researchers often grossly ignore it - and that ignorance is not scientific in any academic standards whatsoever. Would you like a doctor to purposely deliver you a wrong diagnosis just because he doesn't like the concept of the one that actually fits you?). I haven't had the time yet to read all your posts, but if you point out that Lustiger was not a Jew for not being shomer shabos (do you know for sure?), I expect I'll find plenty of postings on the non-Jewishness of Conservative and Reform Jews, the many Jews that converted during times of persecution, and all those celebrities that lately have discovered their Jewish roots ;)

Mr Bagel said...

Could it be Yid, that the timing of Cardinal Jean-Marie Lustiger's conversion, the context at the time of his conversion, his youthful age at the time, his position on antisemitism and Israel's right to exist all contributed to a some what more tolerant understanding of who he was?
Mr Bagel
Checkout: Bodgey Bagel's Caption Contest

Unknown said...

actually I am a conservative Jew. I Cardinal Lustiger was not a Jew because he believed in Jesus. because he took communion etc. A Jew who is not observant is a Jew. A Jew who believes that Jesus is the Messiah is not a Jew but s Christian.

Unknown said...

Yes My Bagel friend it could be. Keep in mind I am not knocking his conversion above---I am knocking the fact that we Jews go gaga over him. And I would have have no problem if people mourned him as a righteous gentile--but I do have a problem with people mourning him as a Jew--it puts down both his adopted faith and Judaism.

Anonymous said...

Ignorant Goy comment: I thought perhaps he was categorized as an Apostate Jew. Still a Jew but practicing another religion. For example, if he decided to return to Judaism he wouldn't have to "convert" back as if he were a gentile (is that true?). Also, doesn't the Apostate retain certain Jewish obligations (kaddish for his parents) but forfeits Jewish rights and privileges (jewish burial ground).

As as Catholic, of course, I loved the guy.