Religion: Play Passions

A decision at Oberammergau

Despite the Nazi Holocaust, the Oberammergau Passion Play, Bavaria's decennial Catholic folk pageant, has gone on using an 1860 text that portrays Jews as Shylocks and Christ killers. Since the Second Vatican Council's denunciation of antiSemitism, however, a group of townspeople led by Head Woodcarver Hans Schwaighofer has been agitating to dump the lurid script. Last year Schwaighofer's group staged a trial run of a 1750 version that makes Satan the heavy and, like the New Testament, portrays the Jews as divided over Jesus. In February the town council...

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