Why don't catholics evangelize to the Jews

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I have often heard that our Pope is the successor of Peter who was placed at the head of the Church. Peter's chief concern was to evangelize to the Jews. Later, Paul was given the mission to evangelize to the Gentiles. WHy is it that our pope's chief mission is not still to spread the truth to the Jews? I was dating a jewish person who I took to church with me. He was not well received in the church. I was embarrassed by the treatment he received. We went to see two different priests to talk about how we could marry in the church. It was my impression that the priests were also very reserved...not enthusiastic about welcoming him to be with us in celebrating the mass.

-- Cheryl Novak (cnovak4449@aol.com), March 23, 2002



Please be more specific, Cheryl.
Tell us what you mean in saying that "he was not well received in the church." Without actual facts, I cannot judge whether or not your reaction is reasonable.

I have a feeling that this may just have been the awkwardness felt by the other people -- not that they were unwelcoming, but that they may have been momentarily speechless, never having seen a Jewish man come to Mass?

Or is it possible that you went with a bit of nervousness and worry about a problem happening -- and then, since things didn't turn out exactly as you had hoped, you may be having an exaggerated reaction? (I think it's called a "self-fulfilling prophecy.")

Again, what specifically did the priests do or say that makes you call them "reserved ... not enthusiastic about welcoming him." Is it possible that they are young priests who have never tried to help a Catholic/Jewish couple, making them a bit unsure of themselves right now? Or is it possible that they have seen several bad experiences (i.e., divorces) among Catholic/Jewish couples that they have prepared for marriage?

By the way, orthodox Catholics (including the pope) are quite happy to welcome every single Jewish person on Earth to enter the Catholic Church. There are many "completed Jews" (Catholics accepting their Messiah) in the world, including the cardinal archbishop of Paris.

God bless you.

-- J. F. Gecik (jfgecik@hotmail.com), March 23, 2002.


I thought I would tell this which you are probably quite familiar with. About three years ago a magazine 9LOOK or similar) had a feature on the Holy Father on his life. He grew up in a neighborhood of mixed Catholic and Jewish kids and the boys used to play soccer a lot and other games. It was said that when there were not enough Jewish boys to make a team, some of the Catholics joined the Jewish boys and they played til the game ended.

During the war the Pope as a seminarian and his fellow students made as many false papers as they could and saved many Jews from the cattle cars to the death camps. All of the Jewish boys except one by the name of Jerzy (last nameI forgot) who survived the death camps, remained friends to this day. Last I know is that Jerzy is still alive and a frequent personal friend and visitor of the Holy Father to this day.

I thought this would be appropriate to mention as this is both the Passover Season for the Jews and our Passover Season too which we call now as Easter. The Holy Father is also well versed in the Jewish prayers too. God Bless.

-- Fred Bishop (fcbishop@globaleyes.net), March 24, 2002.

If I may Fred,
If the pope cannot (will not)convert his childhood pal, what in the world would make you think that you might convert a CP advocate!! LOL
love, Chris

-- Chris Coose (ccoose@maine.rr.com), March 24, 2002.

John --

I can't agree with you that Jews who become Christians are "completed Jews." Everyone -- Jews and Gentiles -- needs to be "converted." We need to leave our sinful life and follow God.

-- Steve Jackson (SteveJ100@hotmail.com), March 24, 2002.


Good question, once a thief always a thief. I guess you are absolutely right on that thought. I was only concerned for the unknowing the whole time of the fact that they who have not heard the most current thoughts may be led astray by the unknowing or uncaring. It is Christian and Holier to be truthful than it is to lead others directly to more sin. It is something that was ingrained into me by my parents, Godparents and the many whom I grew up with. Fault, maybe, but I guess I care too much for the ones who could be led by a false prophet. Remember Chicken little? Bless you --Keep it up --It helps this lonely soul.

-- Fred Bishop (fcbishop@globaleyes.net), March 24, 2002.

I'm thinking that it takes quite a bit of humility to admit that truth is often times accompanied by our well known adversary pride.
Love, Chris

-- Chris Coose (ccoose@maine.rr.com), March 24, 2002.


Question for you. Has your fiance converted to Christianity, specifically Catholicism?

From your post, it sounds like maybe he hasn't, that he is not a Christian and that you expected that you could marry a non-Christian in the Church and that he could receive the Eucharist. Is that true? Just wondering if the cool reception you received maybe wasn't because he's ethnically Jewish, but perhaps because he hasn't embraced Catholicism and that your expectations were unusual and awkward for them.


-- non-Catholic Christian (dlbowerman@yahoo.com), March 24, 2002.

Cheryl Novak wrote:

WHy is it that our pope's chief mission is not still to spread the truth to the Jews?

Cheryl, The Catholic Church's primary mission, under the Guidance of the Holy Spirit, is to be an instrument for the Salvation of each person's soul. The Church's propagation of the Faith, the support of virtuous acts by individuals and groups, and discouragement of sinful behavior all reinforce this goal of bringing all of humanity to God.

I'm engaged. My fiancee is Catholic. My priests were also "reserved." I think that 50% divorce is a sobering statistic for someone who regularly plays part in the Sacrament of Matrimony. I don't have a "personal" relationship with the priests of my parish (my fault); but those around me (my family, her family, our friends) are wonderfully supportive. My friends include priests who are personally excited for me.

On the other side, I think that the Church's representatives (both staff and clergy) can use a little more "User-friendliness" training.

May God bless you,

Mateo Mateo.

-- (MattElFeo@netscape.net), March 25, 2002.

Though I mentioned that my fiancee is Catholic, my experience is interesting because both of us are Catholic! :-)

Mateo (not Mateo Mateo!)

-- (MattElFeo@netscape.net), March 25, 2002.

Matteo, you are probably right in both instances.... the divorce rate is high and the clergy are cautious. Also, the hope that we all could be a little more "userfriendly" is well-taken and appreciated. Thank you all for your input. cheryl

-- cheryl novak (cnovak4449@aol.com), March 25, 2002.


I just stumbled across this link on the EWTN website discussing the relationship between the Jewish and Christian faiths.


I only read a little bit of it--it's long! If you read it, please let us know what you think of it.

You are in my prayers, Mateo

-- (MattElFeo@netscape.net), March 26, 2002.

"If you do not exclude them, in less than 200 years our descendants will be working in the fields to furnish them substance, while they will be in the counting houses rubbing their hands. I warn you, gentlemen, if you do not exclude Jews for all time, your children will curse you in your graves." Ben Franklin

-- Ron (RonBegone@yahoo.com), March 26, 2002.

I believe that it proper to point out the fact that the Catholic Church does not seek to operate as some Protestant faiths do. For the most part, Catholic missionary efforts are founded in the hope that they can offer aid, not conversion, as Protestant missionary often do. We do not seek to beat conversion into those who are from another faith from ours. We do, however, excitedly support those who seek us out for entrance into our Catholic faith.

-- Melissa (holy_rhodes@earthlink.net), March 27, 2002.

Good point, Melissa.

I hope you are having a holy "Holy Week!"

In Christ,


-- (MattElFeo@netscape.net), March 27, 2002.

I am the man who loves Cheryl Novak. I had no idea about this site until Cheryl sent it to me saying that besides e-mailing me this is what she does in trying to leaqrn more about the questions of her faith. There are always two sides of the story, hers, mind and the concensus. Here is my story, I had gotten a divorce from my 2nd wife and I am not a person who goes into a singles bar or a singles dance and try to meet someone. I had been using the internet, specifically jdate (jewish dating) and other singles services. This is a good way to meet someone as long as they are honest, I have found most women do not ssend in a current picture or give there true age. I am sure most people who are reading this e-mail have heard of a service or two. Jdate also owns American Singles and gave me a free service to try it and I thought this was neat. I perused all the women on this singles service and came across one profile that is of Cheryl's. Her profile and picture mesmerized me. I had a feeling, out of the 500 women on this service she was the only one I wanted to meet. The only way I could meet her was to join. A very clever way they got you to put up $19.95 I gave my credit card and wrote to her. She wrote back and the letter were very nice and she was beautiful more from the inside of her body and also from her picture seem very attractive. I dreamed about Cheryl and although I knew she was Catholic I dreamed of her wonders, she loved helping people, her very bright mind and personality and her love for Jesus. When I was getting divorced I turned to G-d for comfort and started to take torah study I was engulf by all I didn't know and craved more and more information and when I met Cheryl, She introduced me to Jesus for the first time. I enjoyed the bridge between both religions. I started going to Church with her and she started going to synagogue with me. You couldn't ask for anything more. I participated in all of her holidays, we graces my home with Mary and some pictures and some of her possesions. She fasted with me on Yom Kippur. The rabbi's embraced her and her priest rejected me and suggested we go to another church. In fact the first time I took Cheryl to synagogue I was a stranger there and the rabbi gave me a leah( honor) invited me to read from the torah and blessed my relationship with my parents, my children and the love of my life, Cheryl. I was very happy and Cheryl began to make me aware of Jesus, who I didn't realize was a rabbi. I started reading books on Jesus's life and everyday we talked about the bond and the love we had for ewach other. One night I had dreamed that Jesus approached us in Jerusalem as Cheryl and I was touring this wonderful city. It was my desire to one day take her there. I had gone to Israel a few years before and studied the torah at the Yeshiva (university) at the Kotel (wailing wall). I wanted Cheryl to see where I had walked in the old city and a trip to digs where Jesus walked. When I came out of the digs (two cities below the service)I was changed and need to give back to mankind and to g-d my service in charity and a certain amount of my time which Cheryl will tell you I am very focued in some charities not only financila but in tgiving of my time to help latch key kids in underprivedged areas. Well, I had this dream that Jesus approached us as we were sitting on the stone bench in the digs and thanked me for bringing Cheryl to Israel. He blessed us and we drank wine and talked about ? I can't remember but do remember the thank you and some prayer. Jesus recognized I was jewish and we never talked about conversion or following him just a thank you for bringing her there.

Cheryl thinks because of this dream that I should be a beliver of Jesus. I will tell you that I do believe in Jesus as her messiah as the father and son and holy spirit for cheryl. I believe in G-d, in fact I have told Cheryl that enen Jesus believed in on G-d, he was jewish born of a jewish mother, became a rabbi at a very early age and did more for the jews and othe peoples in his time. I have had many talks with priests about Jesus and one priest at one of the churches that Cheryl and I went to admitted it was a mystery to him also about the trinity. Believe me I don't know where this story is going but I truly love this woman she has a heart and spirit that no one else in the past has ever shown me. She is the love of my life and we are like two peas in the same pod as the saying goes in thoughts and action. I have been married twice before both ten year marriages and I have a daughter from my first marriage. I have talked to one priest and he is trying to get a special clarification on the annulment proccess, because in any language and every religion if I do thatit will surely hurt my relationship with my only daughter. Cheryl wants a church wedding and I am willing to marry her in a church, but I can't and won't jepordise or sacrifice my realtionship witrh my daughter or the future of being a grand parent. I love chery she is trhe love of my life. The local priest near my home and I have a very special relationship he gives me time with him and thinks we would make a good couple. He recognizes me when I come to church with a nod or a handshake. So now cheryl who loves me very much is now insiting on two things in order for us to get married. Two annulments which I can't do and conversion to Catholism. I guess I could go on. I have had two of the most wonderful years of my life with her, she has changed my life and I have come to love her and her Jesus but as a man it is hard to annul something and convert to something after being a jew for 56 years. Cheryl and I have ended our relationship but we still talk and write to each other 4 or 5 times a day. She is my best friend, my soulmate, my love and now you know my story or at least most of it. It is 4 am and I just can't sleep. Tonight I was at a passover sedar, a sedar that cheryl and I went to last year but she did not go with me this year. What you might reffer to as Jesus's last supper. As a post note we do not write G-d out because we feel that if we print it on paper and you throw it away they his name is being put in the trash, so we always write his name as G-d. Thank you for listening, any comments or help or should cheryl just go and find a good catholic man and our problems will go away. Thank you and shalom, Jerry

-- Jerome M. Wenger (wengerpick@aol.com), March 28, 2002.


I have two comments to you. The first one is a decree of nullity from the Catholic Church is a statement that the marriage was not a sacrament due to lack of canonical form. It does not say that your daughter was "illegitimate" so it should not affect your relationship with her.

Secondly, you would not have to convert to Catholicism in order to marry Cheryl. You would simply have to be aware of the promise of Cheryl that she would raise any children in the Catholic faith. This doesn't seem to be applicable to you two.

I will pray for you two so that any and all decisions of yours are guided by God.

-- Glenn (glenn@excite.com), March 28, 2002.

There were actually two things that Jerry told me when he had the dream. There were two dreams...One of the dreams Jesus said that He was the messiah and he handed Jerry his cup. I believe that Jerry was also given the bible in one of the dreams. Knowing the bible as I do, those are clearly an invitation by Jesus. What do you think? Cheryl

-- Cheryl Novak (CNovak4449@aol.com), March 28, 2002.

Dear Cheryl:

Your first question, Why is it the Church doesn't evangelise Jews;--can easily be answered. The Jews as a people have had the Gospel preached to them. Most Jews today are well aware of the place Jesus Christ holds, vis a vis Judaism. In so many words, they know the Catholic Church above all is proclaiming Him the Holy One of Israel, their own Messiah who was to come.

First off, many Jews have accepted Him and the Holy Gospel, and converted to the faith. There are others who have ''assimilated'' Jesus, without accepting Catholicism as a Church of their own. These call themselves Messianic Jews. They believe in Him as their Messiah, but as far as I've been able to see, make THEMSELVES the new Church. I don't think it is a visible Church with sacramental or liturgical rites.

You may be sure the day will come when all Jews as a people will see Jesus as their Messiah, and come to conversion en masse. God will decide when.

I love to say to my Jewish friends that my Blessed Mother in heaven, the holy mother of God, is Jewish. Jesus Christ came to become a man from the purest Jewish stock. Yahweh our Almighty Father has always loved Israel as a people (not necessarily a nation). So, if you are married to a modern Jew who loves God, you don't have to be separated from Jesus, much less His Holy Church.

In time, if you pray, God may send your husband grace to believe in Christ, too. The Gospel will be carried to him by none other than YOU. You will act as an evangelizer for the Church. Just remember, you have to PRAY for this grace. God will do the converting, not us.

-- eugene c. chavez (chavezec@pacbell.net), March 28, 2002.

I address this to our troubled, yet gentle Jewish brother. I can tell that you have feelings that are very difficult to sort out. I also appreciate your desire to do what is right for your faith and your beloved's faith as well.

As a devout Catholic, I can understand your challenge to a slight degree. While I was in high school, I dated a Russian Jew, defected from (then)Leningrad. While his parents accepted both me and my faith, his babouschka HATED me and my faith. I attended seders, I was welcome at temple services, and embraced in the home by his mom and dad, yet the matter of Jesus was always a barrier.

I agree with the previous post that stated an anullment would not negate the validity of children. I also agree that your conversion is not required to be wed. I lastly agree that you can marry, as long as you agree that any of your children can be, and will be raised as Catholics.

I have a deep and profound respect/regard/appreciation for the Jewish faith. My faith believes that a Jewish man died to save me. I know Jesus was a faithful and wise Jewish man. Because of this fact, the Catholic faith has much to be thankful for. I'm certain that you have noticed how (in many regards) our services have maintained old Jewish methods and practices in our worship.

That you have had encounters with a priest who was not welcoming is horrid. Not all Catholic clergy are of this attitude. Find another priest, or parish. You should find that most Catholic priests are very warm to the Jewish brothers and sisters from which our faith was born.

*I* welcome you. And I thank you for your message. I also hope for the best and happiest resolution to this engagement.

Shalom, and pax vobiscum.

-- Melissa (holy_rhodes@earthlink.net), March 31, 2002.

Jesus was a born a jew from a jewish mother, was bar Mitzvah was a rabbi and had a passover sedar. You need to know us Jews believe he lived as a jew participated his life and expanded the old testatment. No need to evangelize his greatness, even Jesus believed in one G-d.

-- jerry wenger (wengerpick@aol.com), April 01, 2002.

Dear Wenger --
Please tell us you LOVE Jesus. That's much better than to just proclaim Him a loyal Jew; which He was.

Our New Testament is repulsive to many good Jews today. Maybe because they feel it must challenge the Old one--

But you've said something very close to the truth. Jesus ''expanded'' on the Old Testament. He didn't destroy it. Certainly Jesus called God ONE. He IS One; but as the New Testament reveals, God is Three Persons giving us ONE God. The inner life of God is threefold.

How could we, impossibly earthbound, know what to make of this? We say--mathematically-- ONE can't be THREE. --If you left it up to even the smartest man to INVENT-- He would never dare invent three Persons living the interior LIFE of ONE God. It would just sound absurd.

We only know it because God has wanted us to see. He is the REVEALER of this mystery, Wenger-San.

Did God reveal the Trinity? You're darn-tootin'.

Jesus, as the Eternal Son of the Father-- revealed it. His life is a revelation and a proof. He raised the dead. He healed the most horrible lepers. He communed with God the father, even up until the final moment of His life.

And then, by the power of His own Almighty Father; He arose from the dead-- and lives today at the right hand of the Father. We have no room to doubt, Wenger. God Himself has revealed all this to us. We could never have discovered this mystery; much less imagined or invented it. Face the facts. When God says this to you-- You must believe. Just as Abraham and Isaac and Jacob learned to believe. Don't second-guess Him!

-- eugene c. chavez (chavezec@pacbell.net), April 01, 2002.

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