Rise of anti-Semitism topic of discussion in multi-faith Calgary event – Calgary Herald

Posted By on May 8, 2021

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'We want to nip anti-Semitism in the bud, catch it before it becomes more prevalent and do what we can to combat it to fight against it and to provide love and support for Jewish people,' said Rev. Ray Matheson

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Theres something about this pandemic thats causing a disturbing rise in anti-Semitic hate crimes.

Thats one of the reasons the Calgary Council of Christians and Jews is holding a free online event entitled Combating Anti-Semitism, with guest speaker Avi Benlolo, an internationally renowned expert in Holocaust studies and anti-Semitism.

Rev. Ray Matheson, president of the Calgary Council of Christians and Jews, says dangerous lies and conspiracy theories blaming Jewish people for COVID-19 are growing online and attacks against Jewish places of worship have been increasing in the U.S. and Canada.

We want to nip anti-Semitism in the bud, catch it before it becomes more prevalent and do what we can to combat it, to fight against it and to provide love and support for Jewish people, said Matheson.

So many churches in Germany were silent during the Holocaust. They didnt speak out. And so we want to speak out with our Jewish brothers and sisters, he said.

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Ive been told that often when a Jewish person meets a Christian they wonder, would that person hide me, would they take me in during a Holocaust. We want our Jewish friends to know that were with you, we would take you in but were going to do everything we can to make sure that theres no danger so you dont have to be taken in, said Matheson, who added that Christians and Jews share some of the same religious texts what Christians call the Old Testament and Jewish people call the scriptures.

In an event marking the beginning of Jewish American Heritage Month in May, U.S. President Joe Biden mentioned the troubling rise of anti-Semitism.

These Jewish Americans have created lives for themselves and their families and played indispensable roles in our nations civic and community life, making invaluable contributions to our nation through their leadership and achievements, Biden said on April 30.

There is also a history far older than the nation itself of racism, bigotry and other forms of injustice. This includes the scourge of anti-Semitism. In recent years, Jewish Americans have increasingly been the target of white nationalism and the anti-Semitic violence it fuels.

The CCCJ event will take place Tuesday at 7 p.m. There is no cost. To receive a Zoom link to the virtual event, email joalin37@gmail.com

lcorbella@postmedia.com

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Rise of anti-Semitism topic of discussion in multi-faith Calgary event - Calgary Herald

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