SBC's Sibley: Catholic statement is anti-Semitic
"There can be no more extreme form of anti-Semitism" than the U.S. Conference of Catholic Bishops' statement that "Jews already dwell in a saving covenant with God" and therefore shouldn't be evangelized by Christians, says Jim Sibley, coordinator of Jewish ministries for the Southern Baptist Convention's North American Mission Board.

"It is never good for the Jews whenever the Roman Catholic Church fails with respect to the gospel," he said. "When they used coercion, the Jewish people suffered horribly and were hardened against the good news of their messiah. Now, in singling out the Jewish people for evangelistic exemption, they are withholding the hope of Israel."

The statement, Sibley says, "unequivocally says that the bishops have abandoned any semblance of biblical authority. … Originally, the only form of evangelism was Jewish evangelism."

So far, Weblog hasn't seen a response from Roman Catholic leaders, but The Dallas Morning News quotes Abraham Foxman, director of the Anti-Defamation League, who calls Sibley's analysis "offensive and completely absurd. … Coming from a ministry with a track record of denigrating other religions and engaging in aggressive campaigns aimed at converting Jews, this statement is the height of hypocrisy."

Meanwhile, Al Mohler, president of the Southern Baptist Theological Seminary, and Michael Brown, president of ICN Ministries, appeared on MSNBC's Donahue program last Tuesday to talk about the Catholic bishops' statement. Here's the transcript, where you can read Mohler and Brown stay pretty calm and then get called "a spiritual Neanderthal with repulsive, revolting views," spiritual terrorists, spiritual Nazis, racists, anti-Semites, Crusaders, and heartless, inhuman liabilities to Christianity. Donahue's other guest, Rabbi Shmuley Boteach, really loses it—but of course that's what he was brought aboard to do.

Church raids beach for snails
The Tribune of San Luis Obispo, California, reports that members of Happy Times Church from Los Angeles traveled up to Pismo Beach for a picnic and began collecting snails—at least 14,000 of them. According to The Tribune, you're only allowed to take 35, and that's with a fishing license. When police arrived, the four church members told them they'd put the snails back. Then police found 200 pounds of them in an ice chest. "We had a discussion with them about lying," officer Brian Martin told the Tribune. They could face up to $50,000 in fines. Weblog is sure there's a Music Machine song in here somewhere . …(Thanks to Jim Romenesko's Obscure Store for the link.)

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