November 20, 2005


The Pope was Jewish says historian (Manchester Metro News, 4/14/05)

Yaakov Wise says his study into the the maternal ancestry of Karol Josez Wojtyla (John Paul II's real name) has revealed startling conclusions.

Mr Wise, a researcher in orthodox Jewish history and philosophy, said the late Pope's mother, grandmother and great-grandmother were all probably Jewish and came from a small town not far from Krakow.

Posted by Orrin Judd at November 20, 2005 8:41 PM

Wow! And we almost had our first Jewish President -Jewish Forbes Kerry.

Posted by: obc at November 20, 2005 8:56 PM

So there's good Chinese carry-out in or near the Vatican?

Posted by: ghostcat at November 20, 2005 10:04 PM

Wise guy....

But who really knows? There may be a Jew lurking in every one of us!

On the other hand, if there's any credence to this report, then John Paul II is a real success story, maybe--hopefully?--even a trend setter!

(But then, what are the odds that Foxman and Joffe paid Father Franz to say it! Talk about win-win!)

Posted by: Barry Meislin at November 21, 2005 6:54 AM

Why is this startling? The way I heard it, the whole Catholic Church was founded by a Jewish carpenter. :-)

Posted by: Mike Morley at November 21, 2005 8:28 AM

I agree with Barry. Chatting once with a friend I observed that given the paucity of records I would never know if any of my mother's European peasant forebears were Jews.

My friend smirked and said, "We are everywhere. Bwahahaha!"

In any event, even though the idea has been bourne out somewhat by genetics, matrilineal descent as the marker of Jewishness is just a custom that made sense for a people that frequently found itself under someone's thumb -- Egyptians, Babylonians, etc.

We Catholics could do worse than a Pope with some Jewish ancestors.

Posted by: Ed Bush at November 21, 2005 8:30 AM

So a Jew, a Polack, and the Pope walk into a bar...

Posted by: joe shropshire at November 21, 2005 1:09 PM