The case of Father Daniel, the Roman Catholic monk of Jewish origin who was refused a plea to be counted as a Jew by an Israeli Court, is now widely known. The writer of this article is therefore not prompted by a taste for the sensational. By the time this reaches his readers they will have had ample opportunity to reflect on the case for themselves. Naturally, many are puzzled because this is an unusual case and full of complexities. As far as Hebrew Christians are concerned, especially those in Israel, they are more than puzzled; they are perplexed, and with good reason. It is in an effort to sort out the tangle of this case that this article is written.

Hebrew Christians have been aware for some time of the precariousness of their position in Israel. The International Hebrew Christian Alliance has had occasion to consult Israeli officials and seek clarification on some important issues. There was, however, understandable reluctance on their part to embarrass the government before world opinion, particularly because of the internal political complications which tie the hands of the more liberal elements. But since the case of Father Daniel, which received wide publicity abroad, we face a new situation. There is now nothing to hide, and we are able to speak plainly, though without rancor.

It is a feat of providence that the test case should involve no less a man than Oswald Rufeisen (Father Daniel). He was referred to by one of the judges as “this remarkable man,” and with good reason. The man who was refused the right to the Law of Return which applies to every other Jew except the Christian, is a war hero. He has shown a quality of courage during the time of persecution by the Nazis which is seldom equaled (for details ...

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