To The Editor:
I was shocked to read your recent article "The Crusades of
1999. " I don't understand why Yated Ne'eman sees fit to teach temmimim bnei temmimim the basics of Christianity. Do the gedolim truly feel that we must learn about the twelve apostles and Paul's innovations? Did your Vaada Ruchani actually decide that it would be of great benefit to bnei Torah to be educated about "un-Jewish concepts such as the inborn guilt of a human which must be eradicated by believing in Yoshke and hell for all those who didn't believe in him"? Is the "Second Coming" meant to be part of our vocabulary? I highly recommend your editors be more vigilant in the future.
The Editor Replies:
We appreciate our reader's bringing his criticism to our attention. The article did pass through the normal channels and reviews.
The paper is not meant to be an Oz Nidberu sheet, as the Steipler Gaon said to the founders, and as we have stressed repeatedly. Those whose world is solely the daled amos shel halacha probably do not need it.
Unfortunately many of us do not live such insular lives.
For those who have contact with the outside world, in one way or another, it is important to know what is going on.
A case in point was brought to our attention. An American tourist came into a yeshiva in Yerushalaim and said that he wanted to help them. The agreed to keep in touch. He went back to America, and recently sent them a check for $200 that he said he raised for them. At the bottom of the check it said, "Boruch Hashem Yeshua." The staff of the yeshiva noticed the message at the bottom but they assumed that he meant that he was sending them help -- until they saw the article in Yated and realized that the man is probably a missionary. Now they know that they must terminate their relationship.