Re: risk of LDS baptism #general

Myrna Levin <mlevin1412@...>

Thank you, Ellen, for expressing so eloquently what I was feeling regarding
the recent Mormon attempt to baptize the Holocaust victims. And thank you
to Ernest Michel, a Holocaust survivor, who led the attempt to stop this
affront to the Jewish people.

Myrna Nadel Levin
McAllen, TX

Searching: NADELSTECHER, Sanok and neighboring area, Poland

-----Original Message-----
From: Ellen Zyroff <ezyroff@...>
To: JewishGen Discussion Group <jewishgen@...>
Date: Thursday, August 03, 2000 12:10 PM
Subject: Re: risk of LDS baptism

I am writing regarding messages about the perceived silliness of
concern about Mormons converting people without their permission:

Taken literally, this sounds like a "non problem," but it's not.

Symbols have power. History and life experience prove that
symbolic acts can threaten freedom, personal autonomy,
and change people=92s hearts and minds. They can heal or
they can hurt.

Several years ago it became known that the Mormons had begun
systematically baptizing Holocaust victims whose names they had
identified as such. The program was not haphazard, lighthearted,
or "silly." The motivation was serious and Church resources were
being used to accomplish the objectives of the program.
After serious protests >from Jewish groups, the Mormons
promised to stop that practice.

The insult and hurt at such a thing are deep. Jews who died because
they were Jews are considered in Jewish tradition to have died
for the sanctification of God=92s name.

When an organized religion for which converting masses of people
to a new religious identity is a raison d=92=EAtre works systematically
to negate the Jewishness of Holocaust victims after their death,
it is historical and documentary revisionism, a religious attack on
Jewish martyrs, a violation of their sacred memory, a theft of
their proper identity, and an affront to the integrity and equanimity
of Jews of all generations. The same holds
true for surrogate baptizing, posthumous or otherwise, of any Jew.

Ellen Zyroff

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