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We're waiting for Elijah, not Jesus, say Jews
On Easter, the Chicago Tribune's Christine Tatum reported on Passover Seders celebrated by Christians. More than 250 Chicago-area churches held them this year, she said.

"It doesn't just help [Christians] understand the Lord's Supper a little better, but their Jewish neighbors too," explained Michael Rydelnik, a professor of Jewish studies at Moody Bible Institute (which has an annual seder). "They see Passover for what it was meant to be: a profound celebration of God's faithfulness to all who believe in Him."

But such services anger non-Christian Jews, who argue that there's no such thing as "Jews for Jesus." Tatum dutifully noted their objections.

"We have problems with Christians transforming our symbols and stories into a Christological message that robs us of our holy experience and thoughts," said Rabbi Yechiel Eckstein, founder of the International Fellowship of Christians and Jews.

Still, Tatum's report focused on what the services mean to Christians, not to Jewish opponents. "Those who [attend] say it's an amazing ritual filled with references to Jesus, and they credit the seder not only with deepening their understanding of his teachings but also with heightening their appreciation of the Jewish community."

Tatum's report appeared in the Tribune's opinion section, though it expressed very little of her own views. Without the first few paragraphs on her own "strong Christian upbringing," it could have appeared in the news section.

The article still outraged a lot of Jewish readers. "She has collected misinformation and outright falsehoods, and thus done great harm to the cause of interfaith understanding," said a letter to the editor from David Passman. "The Passover seder ...

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April 2003

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