UK clergyman calls on church to repent for past anti-Semitism

( An Anglican clergyman spoke on the church’s history of anti-Semitism and called on the institution to repent at the annual UK conference of the Church's Ministry among Jewish people.

Click photo to download. Caption: Painting of Christian Reformation leader Martin Luther, who is known for strong anti-Semitic views that were later appropriated by Adolph Hitler during the Nazi era, Anglican clergyman Simon Ponsonby said. Credit: Wikimedia Commons.

“The Apostles would not recognize much in the church today. A Christianity divorced from its Jewish roots has always opened itself up to the demonic spirit of anti-Semitism,” said Rev. Simon Ponsonby, a theologian from St Aldate's Church in Oxford, UK, according to the ASSIST News Service.

Ponsonby said that Christian figures and theologians incited hatred against the Jewish people in ways that were later re-used during the Holocaust. For instance, well-known Christian Reformation Figure Martin Luther used to say that the Jewish God can be found in the backside of a pig and called for the expulsion of Jews from Germany in his final sermon. Centuries later, these ideas would be implemented by Adolph Hitler.

“I felt ashamed to be a Christian when I read these things," he said. "I was appalled and traumatized."

Posted on July 17, 2013 .