Vatican institutes Jewliciosu Greenkeit

At the recent Jewlicious Festival, one of our innovations was the institution of GreenKeit – a manifesto of sorts that merges environmental consciousness and traditional Jewish values. As such, we sought to reduce the festival’s carbon footprint and environmental impact by doing things like using compostable cutlery made out of corn and sugar cane, using American Apparel organic cotton t-shirts – heck even our name tags were made out of old cereal boxes!

You know what would have been cooler though? It would have been cooler if we would have been Catholic. Huh? Yeah, because then we would have been ahead of the curve! I say this in light of the Vatican’s institution of seven new mortal sins, with number three being listed as “polluting the environment.” This new Vatican initiative is meant to appeal to modern Catholics but really it’s a thinly veiled attack against the Jews. How so? Because number six is “becoming obscenely wealthy,” and we know that all Jews are very rich.

Wait a minute. #4: causing social injustice, #5: causing poverty, #6: becoming obscenely wealthy… do these mortal sins apply to uhm… certain institutions as well? Just asking…

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Founder and Publisher of Jewlicious, David Abitbol lives in Jerusalem with his wife, newborn daughter and toddler son. Blogging as "ck" he's been blocked on twitter by the right and the left, so he's doing something right.


  • The Vatican recently bought up disused land in Tiszakeszi, Hungary, which it’s planting in an effort to become the world’s first carbon-neutral state…. No doubt there has to be more self-scrutiny about poverty. If it weren’t for the Church, destitute countries like Spain, Austria, Italy and Chile might stand half a chance. And imagine what we could do with proceeds of an auction of, say, Michaelangelo’s Pieta? How about giving it to Archbishop Sabbah for Palestinian refugee relief?

  • Tom, Archibishop Sabbah and the Palestinians have been promised $7 billion this year by the EU – the Church’s former best contributors – just for being kind enough to go to Annapolis. As I understand it, children’s playground construction is still at a standstill, as it has been for 80 years or so. I would think the Church could find better uses for its funds, such as sponsorship of condom eradication organizations in the developing world. 😉

  • Tom, the Catholic Church should also consider withdrawing out of development aid, even if that leaves billions of ( mostly non-Christian) people without any chance of food, healthcare and education. It could bring its involvement in public life and social matters to an end, which over here would mean the closing down of thousands of free social work and homecare for the elderly agencies, schools, kindergartens and hospitals and an accordingly high number of unemployed people. The Pope may also want to consider offering his two-room appartment to American backpacking tourists. Afterall his place seems pretty feudal compared to the Elysee Palace, Bellevue Castle or the White House.

  • To get this straight, the encyclical ‘Humanae Vitae’ by Pope Paul VI. did not ban the use of condoms, but asked local bishops to issue guidelines on the use of contracepitives for their respective group of dioceses. Condoms have been and still are handed out by Catholic institutions in developing countries, but condoms alone won’t get AIDS in check. BTW, Orthodox Judaism bans the use of condoms as well for the very same reason that Catholicism does.

  • I find that photo disturbing too – how is that Cardinal Ratzinger and Rabbi Yo have exactly the same skin tone???

  • Middle, Archbishop Sabbah may be a bete noir in your book. Happily there exists an alternative. Make out your check to Patriarch Gregory III, patriarchal vicar of Jerusalem for the Greek Melkite Catholic Church. Our Melkite brothers and sisters acknowledge the Pope’s authority while maintaining their own autonomy. I’m hard at work finding out where he stands on condoms.

    Next time you’re in Boston, look me up and we’ll pass out clean needles at Brookline High, OK?

  • “with number three being listed as “polluting the environment.”

    Kudos to Ratzinger!

  • When they make something a sin, our “imp of the perverse” leads us to commit the sin anyway. When lust was out, I drooled over the babes next door.

    Now, I can’t wait to dump out all my trash on the high-speed lane of I-95….

  • Tom, Jerusalem Arabs are already subsidized by the Israeli taxpayer because they are residents of Israel. Even a Melkite is doing better than, say, the average Egyptian whose income, on a per capita basis, is lower than that of Gaza Palestinians, who, in turn, are far poorer than their Jerusalem counterparts. That, of course, doesn’t even touch on the vast land holdings in Jerusalem of the many churches whose presence there heralds back to the days when donkeys were prized as the BMW of the day.

    Next time I’m in Boston, would you mind if we dropped the do-gooder bit and just, you know, went to have a beer and some good Italian food?

  • are over 500 military “checkpoints” in greater Israel or recent calls from leading Israeli rabbi’s to kill 5 million people, condemning all Palestinians part of the traditional Jewish values you mention?

  • David, do your math. In 2002, in March, there were 130 Israelis killed in suicide bombings. Checkpoints weren’t as prevalent as they are now and there was no security fence. Israel has minimized terror attacks – although Palestinian attempts continue – with the checkpoints so that a handful of attacks every year, if that, get through.

    Checkpoints aren’t about values but about security which is a supreme value. There’s no question that on those occasions when Israeli soldiers act harshly unnecessarily, or act in ways that are anything less than official and pleasant at these checkpoints, they are acting in ways that are illegitimate and that happen to go against both Israel’s and the IDF’s values. But make no mistake if there’s no Palestinian terror there would be many, many, many fewer checkpoints.

    As for rabbis calling for anybody to be killed, they should be imprisoned. Fortunately, Israel remains a secular country and the pronouncements of the politicians whose parties are in power are more relevant than the rabbis with respect to how Israel acts.

  • Why can approx the same number of Jews and Muslims live in peace in USA but put them in the “holy land” and you get, well, a lot of military/violence, what’s different about the air here?

    As far the rabbi’s calling for the killing of millions, Israel is NOT secular. It is Jewish first then secular, in other words its “jecular”, secular for Jews. The rabbi’s get political and military protection and financial support especially from the 500 checkpoints.

  • Israel is secular. Sorry. Its Jewish identity from its founding was predicated on nationalistic principles, not religious ones. If the checkpoints protect the rabbis like they protect other Israelis, there’s little you can do about it because they’re serving their function.