Eye-witness Tells of Hate Instilled by Passion Play

The Passion Play, which was given again in Oberammergau, Germany, this year and which was witnessed by a quarter of a million people has had the effect of arousing hatred toward the Jew in the minds of all the onlookers, declares David Ewen, who himself witnessed the play, in an article in the current issue of the New York “Jewish Tribune”. After describing the performance itself, which he regards as a great artistic spectacle, and the Biblical setting of the little town of Oberammergau, Mr. Ewen writes:

“I was able to stay in town for another evening and see what havoc the Passion Play has wrought. It has insidiously instilled hate into their hearts. One could see clearly that these people had undergone a rigorous emotional experience. If only it had been the healthier experience of a spiritual awakening and of a greater religious consciousness. But a religious consciousness was awakened in their hearts not half so much as a burning hate for the Jew. For the Passion Play’s greatest aim was to exalt Christianity by pushing Judaism into the mire; to exalt the Christian by splashing mud upon the Jew. And when one considers that close to a quarter million people will see the Passion Play, all to be equally influenced and overwhelmed by the spectacle, then only do we realize the terrible influence that it is exerting”.

Commenting upon this, the “Jewish Tribune” says editorially:

“A quarter of a million people, instead of seeing love and mercy enshrined, are saturated with a vindictiveness against the very people from among whom their saviour arose. What shall be the verdict of the churchman upon this other spectacle that is being presented in Oberammergau; not on the side of the stage where Jesus and Judas speak their lines, but on that other side where sit thousands of onlookers and where, day after day, the ideals of love and humanity are crucified anew?”

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