Battle Over Jerusalem Worship Event

Angry Orthodox Jewish demonstrators attempt to disrupt Messianic Jewish Hebrew-language concert.

By Israel Today Staff | | Topics: MESSIANIC JEWS
Photo by Pexels/Suvan Chowdhury

Last Thursday night an angry Orthodox Jewish mob tried to interfere with an indigenous Israeli Messianic music event in downtown Jerusalem.

Not only that, but the Orthodox group tried to paint the event as “missionaries” preying upon Israeli children.

That is a patently false charge.

The concert was a continuation of a series of music conferences aimed to increase the quality and quantity of Hebrew-language praise and worship songs being written and sung in the Israeli Messianic Jewish congregations. The popular initiative started over a decade ago. It consists of collecting and selecting songs and then holding a recorded live concert approximately once every two years. The concerts fill a 600-seat auditorium twice over, and garner millions of video views on YouTube.

Those who attended the back-to-back concerts on Thursday had to brave a gauntlet of young Orthodox activists who had been riled up by their leaders into a state of fear and hostility. The fear stretches back to antisemitic European Church history in which Jews were persecuted, forced to convert to Christianity and expelled over the centuries.

Around 50 protestors intermittently succeeded in blocking the entrance amidst jostling and noisy intimidation. The initial police force present seemed to allow the antagonists to protest almost right up to the doors of the Messianic “Pavilion” venue, but eventually received reinforcements and asserted control. The Pavilion is located in the Klal Building’s indoor mall, just a stone’s throw from the outdoor Mahane Yehuda market.

In light of the partial blockage, the organizers of the concert occasionally channeled ticket holders into the auditorium through a side door.

Despite considerable resistance and intimidation, the event still took place, and gave renewed significance to the term “freedom of worship.”


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