There were over two hundred Cardinals, Archbishops
and Bishops gathered at the Domus Galilee
on the Mount of Beatitudes for a convivence
organized by the Neocatechumenal Way this
January. The Minister of Tourism and the
Mayor of Galilee spoke passionately about
the close relationships that there should
be between Christians and Jews. Christianity
is after all an offshoot of the Jewish religion.
This is why, I suppose, there is a certain
familiarity to our ears when we listen to
"What would you do if you found a million
rubles in the market place and you knew to
whom they belong? Would you withstand the
temptation and return the money?" The
Jew thought for a moment and then answered.
"If I knew that the money belonged to
a millionaire, I am afraid I would not be
able to withstand the temptation and I would
keep the money. But if I knew that the million
rubles belonged to the poor people, I would
be quick to return it to the last penny!"
Two Jews men wanted to cross a river that
was infested with crocodiles. "Are you
afraid?" asked one to the other. "Don't
you know that God is good and merciful?"
Yes, I do," said the other. "But
what if God suddenly chooses to be good to
the crocodiles and provide meat for them?"
A Jew came to Rabbi Akiba on the eve of the
Passover. "Rabbi, I've a question,"
he said. "Is it permissible to use four
cups of milk at Seder instead of wine? "Why
should you want to substitute milk for wine?
Are you ill?" "No, rabbi, but I
can't afford the wine." The discerning
Rabbi said, "I am sorry. It is forbidden
to substitute milk for wine. Take these 20
rubles and purchase wine. "After the
man left, his wife angrily chided. "Twenty
rubles for wine? Two or three would have
been sufficient." "Don't be angry,"
the rabbi replied. "If this man was
prepared to drink milk at the Seder, he also
didn't have money to buy meat and perhaps
not even fish and matzo. Now he will be able
to observe the Seder properly." This
is the real meaning of Passover. "If
your brother becomes poor, you shall support
A grocer lost his store and had no visible
means of support. One of his customers was
very concerned and said, "Don't you
have any means of support whatever?"
The grocer replied, "To tell the truth,
I have three!" "Three?!" the
customer exclaimed knowing the man's financial
condition. "What are they?" And
the grocer replied. "My God, my health
and my hands."
A man called his friends together for dinner,
asked them to name their favorite charities,
and then made out substantial checks to them.
The friends asked him, "Did you find
gold?" And he replied, "No, I found
There is a passage in the old Jewish book
of Zohar, the chief text of the Jewish Kabbalah
that goes like this: "Whenever the Jews
on earth rejoice in their festivals, they
give praise to the Lord. They put on fine
clothes and load their tables with good food.
So the angel asks, 'Why do the Jews pamper
themselves so much?' And God answers, 'they
have a distinguished guest today. I am with
(c) Fr. Pius Sammut, OCD. Permission
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