HomeNewsAfter 800 years, Church...

After 800 years, Church of England Apologizes for Anti-Jewish Laws

A church service in London on May 8, 2022 marked the 800 years of the Synod of Oxford. The synod was the passing of anti-Jewish laws that eventually led to the expulsions of Jews from the UK.

Britain’s Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis and representatives of Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby attended the special service held at Christ Church in Oxford. The Church of England apologized for its “shameful actions” for the Synod of Oxford, reports The Times of Israel.

Let us pray it inspires Christians today to reject contemporary forms of anti-Judaism and antisemitism and to appreciate and receive the gift of our Jewish neighbors. —Archbishop of Canterbury Justin Welby

Passed in 1222, the synod banned social interactions between Jews and Christians, forced Jews to wear identifying badges, and imposed specific tithe on Jews. Jews were also outlawed to work in certain professions and build new synagogues. More anti-Jews laws followed, including prohibitions on land ownership and passing on inheritance to children. The laws became more draconian that 3,000 Jews were expelled from England in 1290. King Edward’s edict forbade them to return for more than 360 years.

Archbishop Welby tweeted: “Today’s service is an opportunity to remember, repent and rebuild. Let us pray it inspires Christians today to reject contemporary forms of anti-Judaism and antisemitism and to appreciate and receive the gift of our Jewish neighbors.”

The Diocese of Oxford issued a statement saying, “Our intention is for this commemoration to be a strong signal of such rich potential, reflected in the depth of interfaith encounter and service that increasingly exists in Oxford and across our society.”

The Church of England (C of E) was not created until the 1530s, but Jonathan Chaffey, archdeacon of Oxford, said it’s now time for Christians to repent their “shameful actions” and to “reframe positively” relations with the Jewish community.

The church has made efforts to renew ties and improve relationships with British Jews in the past years.

In 2019, the C of E issued a document in the hopes of promoting Christian-Jewish ties. The document, God’s Unfailing Word, urges Christians to atone for its participation in antisemitism acts in the past, reports The Guardian. It revealed that centuries of stereotyping and persecution of Jews became a “fertile seed-bed for murderous antisemitism.”

“Christians have been guilty of promoting and fostering negative stereotypes of Jewish people that have contributed to grave suffering and injustice. They therefore have a duty to be alert to the continuation of such stereotyping and to resist it,” according to the document.

It also acknowledged that two C of E cathedrals, Norwich and Lincoln, were associated with the spread of the “blood libel” in the late Middle Ages.

Tony Kushner, professor of Jewish/non-Jewish relations at Southampton University, said, the C of E’s apology for the synod is the “hardest step.” He added, “Accepting that blood libels, massacres and expulsions were wrong is straightforward…accepting that Jews have a validity of religion is more challenging.”

Kushner explained that the C of E didn’t exist during the synod, yet it still apologized for something that it was not responsible for. “But if it regards itself as the leading voice of Christianity in Britain today, then the apology has some merit in recognizing injustices that were done.”

- A word from our sponsors -

spot_img

Most Popular

Subscribe to our newsletter

To be the first to.know what's happening in the Christian community

More from Author

Group Gives 10,000 Bibles to London’s Children

The Trinitarian Bible Society announced that over 10,000 Bibles have been given to London schools within three years.

Prayer, Faith Can Help Teens with Mental Health Issues

A study on teens and young adults confirmed that those who pray and have a relationship with God were more likely to flourish in life more than their peers.

More than 7,000 Kids Decide to Follow Jesus –YFC

The Youth for Christ announced that 7,323 kids and teens decided to follow Jesus Christ this year, twice the record reported in 2021.

Billy Graham Archive & Research Center is Now Open

The new Billy Graham Archive and Research Center opened in Charlotte, North Carolina on November 7, the birthday of the late evangelist.

- A word from our sponsors -

spot_img

Group Gives 10,000 Bibles to London’s Children

The Trinitarian Bible Society announced that over 10,000 Bibles have been given to London schools within three years.

Prayer, Faith Can Help Teens with Mental Health Issues

A study on teens and young adults confirmed that those who pray and have a relationship with God were more likely to flourish in life more than their peers.

Count Your Blessings Daily, Not Just Once a Year

I heard about a family seated around their table looking at the beautiful golden-brown turkey. Dressing and gravy, sweet potatoes, cranberry sauce, various vegetables, and casseroles complemented the turkey. From the oldest to the youngest, they went around and expressed their praise.

More than 7,000 Kids Decide to Follow Jesus –YFC

The Youth for Christ announced that 7,323 kids and teens decided to follow Jesus Christ this year, twice the record reported in 2021.

Billy Graham Archive & Research Center is Now Open

The new Billy Graham Archive and Research Center opened in Charlotte, North Carolina on November 7, the birthday of the late evangelist.

MercyMe hopes new album can help heal divisions: ‘We’ve got a divided body of Christ’ 

Bart Millard and his MercyMe bandmates began writing some of the songs on their latest album in the middle of the COVID-19 pandemic, long before the nation was divided over issues that now dominate the headlines.  Millard, though, believes the album’s release in 2022 had been God’s plan...

‘Praise the Lord!’ Ukrainian Christians Cheer Kherson Liberation

Ukrainian Christians celebrate the liberation of Kherson with cheers of praise and thanksgiving, seven months after Russia occupied the city.

JESUS Film Makes History, Now Translated in 2,000 Languages

The JESUS film makes history as it is now translated into its 2,000th language making it the most translated film of all time.

U.S. Renews Calls Against Blasphemy Laws

The United States joined 15 countries in expressing concern over international blasphemy laws.

Franklin Graham Attracts Record-breaking Audience in Italy

More than 13,200 people gathered for an evangelical outreach led by Franklin Graham in Milan, Italy on October 29.

A Hindu PM Marks a Historic Moment in the UK

Rishi Sunak becomes Britain's first Hindu prime minister. He is also the first person of color to hold the highest office in the UK.

A New Biblical Worldview Study Series is Now Available Online

Family Research Council and Summit Ministries announced a partnership launching a new biblical worldview series called Now We Live.