January 25, 2006


Category: Theology :: Permalink

In Wednesday the Rabbi Got Wet, the sixth of Harry Kemelman’s Rabbi Small mysteries, a member of the temple wants to buy a building out in the country to use for religious retreats. Rabbi Small, however, is opposed to the idea. When the man asks why, the rabbi responds:

“Because it smacks of Christianity rather than Judaism,” said the rabbi promptly. “It suggests convents and monasteries, an ivory-tower attitude. Retreat — the word itself suggests retiring from life and the world. That’s not Judaic. We participate” (p. 17). 

I was surprised to discover that some Jews identify Christianity with retreat. And yet, given the way the church has behaved in much of its history, I suppose I shouldn’t have been.

Posted by John Barach @ 8:55 pm | Discuss (0)

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