Skip to comments.Black Jews Gain Wider Acceptance
Posted on 07/23/2012 8:22:36 AM PDT by Cronos
The ordination took place on a sun-drenched Sabbath, in a synagogue used many decades ago by Lithuanian Jews. But on June 23, it was 200 mostly black worshippers, many in brightly colored African dress, who were on their feet, eyes fixed on a procession of eight white-robed rabbis with ceremonial miters crowning their heads as they strode, single file, down the aisle separating the mens and womens seating.
..For many mainstream Jews, this is a ceremony that might seem alien. But today, the differences between them and these black Jews, who have long been ignored or dismissed as inauthentic by the Jewish establishment, seems more like one of culture and ethnicity than Jewish identity.
The ordination pageant is rooted in biblical imagery. But that is not unusual for a movement whose modes of worship are at once traditional and steeped in black religious expression. The earlier three-hour Sabbath morning service, or shacharit, for example, was based on the Orthodox ArtScroll prayer book. But the inspirational preaching, punctuated by frequent cries of hallelujah, emet (truth) and ken (yes) from the worshippers, would be unusual in most synagogues. Even more so the joyful music of the choir, and its full rhythm section of keyboard, guitar and drums to sanctify the day.
Yahath, the movements newest cleric, began studying Hebrew and attending Sabbath services in the early 1970s. When I returned from Vietnam in 1972, he told the Forward, I knew Christianity didnt satisfy me. I was searching spiritually, until a friend talked to me about the idea that black people in America were connected to the Israelites in the Torah. That was the beginning....
(Excerpt) Read more at forward.com ...
100% FRAUD. These are racist, phony “Jews” led by Michelle Obama’s cousin. They have said in the past that European or white Jews were “fake” Jews. The Forward is a Marxist publication like Israel’s Ha’aretz, with an agenda to destroy religious Judaism.
The connection to the Israelites of the Torah is spiritual, not genetic. These are my spiritual landsmen.
“black Jews, who have long been ignored or dismissed as inauthentic by the Jewish establishment..”
Who is this that speaks for “the Jewish establishment”?
This is such BS.
Israel airlifted and saved tens of thousands of Black Ethiopian Jews (Falasha’s) from starvation and slaughter. in “Operation Solomon”
Maybe Israel is not part of “the Jewish establishment”?
If they are willing to follow the Jewish religion, in all its precepts, they are just as authentically Jewish as anybody else who becomes Jewish.
As with Christianity, some of the oldest Jewish communities in the world are in Ethiopia.
Untrue. These frauds have created their own council and go through phony 'conversions' that are not recognized as legitimate. Only if your Mother is a Jew are you a Jew. Otherwise you must convert. Orthodox do not recognize Reform conversions. They would consider these guys a total joke.
The Ethiopian Jews are legit and can trace their heritage back via DNA testing. These frauds - who are led by Michelle Obama's cousin - not only do not claim such a heritage but claim that European Jews are illegitmate. This is why the Forward published this crap - to confuse and divide. That is their true agenda: to undermine Judaism and replace it with secular humanism.
As I said, if they are following the Jewish religion, in all their precepts, they are Jewish. I didn’t say that if they just call themselves Jewish, they are Jewish.
Middle East and terrorism, occasional political and Jewish issues Ping List. High Volume
If youd like to be on or off, please FR mail me.
Some of these people are Jewish, as established by legitimate conversions, some aren’t. And it’s true that the Orthodox community might not recognize those who underwent Conservative or Reform conversion. As to who is the Jewish community who determines who is a Jew, it’s perfectly reasonable to identify that community as the recognized denominations, various Orthodox, Conservative, Reform, Reconstructionist, which excludes disconnected start up religious groups. It’s my understanding Rabbi Rabbi Funnye’s congregation is recognized by the Conservative movement and that’s he’s ordained, which is enough for me. It’s also my understandin that many of his members and many nationally are not Jewish, converts or otherwise.
Well it's NOT enough for me, given that the Conservative movement recently - unanimously - endorsed same-sex marriage.
Reasonable position, I noted it wouldn’t be accepted by everyone. Same sex marriage aside, I question how a Congregation can have non-Jewish membership as a matter of policy. Members should be require to convert in the manner of the Conservative movement.
The Bene Manashe (in n-e india) are not genetically jews, unlike the Bene Israeli (from bombay and southern india).
These black Jews are not genetically Jewish.
I did not know that. I thought Jewishness was limited to genetic descendents of Jacob
for ethiopian Jews that’s a different case — they are genetically descendents of Jews. For many of those mentioned in the article, this is not the case. They are not genetic descendents of Jacob.
that was my understanding
Otherwise you must convert. -- I don't understand that -- Jonty corrected me that a person who is not genetically descended from Jacob can become a Jew. I'm confused by your statement montag -- what of someone who is not descended from Jacob -- can they convert?
A Jew is born to a Jewish mother or converted ACCORDING TO HALACHA (Jewish law). DNA does not have direct legal status in Jewish law, nor do conversions not in accord traditional religious law.
It must be noted that each case is handled individually, but, generally, in cases where there is doubt as to the status of one’s mother, there is sometimes a kind of abbreviated conversion. This would be the case of certain Ethiopian (and other) Jews who are serious about their Judaism.
It should also be noted that a status granted by the State of Israel does not confer status under Jewish religious law.
the first one I understand. The second -- is it possible for a black person with no Jewish heritage or genetics to convert according to HALACHA?
Falashas. Read “The Sign and The Seal”.
Falashas. Read “The Sign and The Seal”.
Anyone from any ethnic group can convert according to Halakhah. Technically there are some restrictions placed on certain historical groups (male Moabites and Ammonites), but since we no longer know who belongs to these groups (or even if they still exist) no one is disbarred ethnically from converting to Judaism.
Absolutely, the same as any other non-Jew who may convert. These days, almost any Orthodox community of some size has a few black converts.
thanks, both those posts give me more information. what about acceptance by the wider, non-reform Jewish community?