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  סיון 28, 5768 , 01/07/08

Self-Proclaimed Messianic Jews Claim Discrimination

Representatives of member congregations of the United Messianic Jewish Congregations umbrella organization overwhelmingly passed a resolution at their annual business meeting on June 26 calling on the government of Israel to "eliminate discrimination against Messianic Jews under Israel's Law of Return."

The Law of Return, first established in 1950, allows any Jew in the world to immigrate to Israel and receive citizenship. It was later modified to exclude "a person who has been a Jew and has voluntarily changed his religion."  The Israeli Supreme Court ruled nearly 20 years ago that this category included the self-proclaimed Messianic Jews, even if they continued to maintain Jewish practices and identity; belief in the divinity and/or Messianic status of Jesus ("Yeshua" in Hebrew) was enough to exclude them from the Law of Return.

In April, the court ruled that a person who is technically not Jewish, because he or she does not have a Jewish mother, but only a Jewish father, is not subject to this exclusion, and decreed that 12 "Messianic Jews" of this category were qualified to immigrate under the Law of Return. Now, the UMJC is calling on the government of Israel to end the exclusion of "Messianic Jews" with Jewish mothers as well.

Other archived news briefs:Jul 01 2008, 02:43 AM, 7/1/2008