A group that seeks to convert Jews to Christianity removed from its website references to a scheduled fundraiser appearance by George W. Bush, though a Bush spokesman said the former president still plans to attend.
Bush was scheduled to headline a Nov. 14 fundraiser for the Messianic Jewish Bible Institute, with tickets ranging from $250 to $100,000.
Meanwhile, the Anti-Defamation League on Monday afternoon gently critiicized the former president for his participation in the event.
“We were disappointed to learn that former President George W. Bush has decided to move ahead with his plan to speak at a fundraising event for an evangelical proselytizing group whose stated goal is to convert Jews to Christianity,” said ADL national director Abraham Foxman
“President Bush is a friend who has an abiding love and respect for Israel and the Jewish people. I know that he does not represent or embrace the purpose or the mission of this group, and therefore I wish he would not speak there.”
The institute’s website says its vision “is to bring Jewish people into a personal relationship of faith with Yeshua the Messiah, knowing their acceptance will eventually mean life from the dead.”
Bush’s presence was scrubbed from the site by Friday morning. On Friday afternoon, Bush spokesman Freddy Ford told Mother Jones — the liberal magazine that first broke the story of the event — that the former president’s plans “haven’t changed” and that he would attend the event.
Staff at the institute would not comment.
Last month Bush was the surprise guest at the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations’ gala, warning against the threat of a nuclear Iran to Israel.
According to the Mother Jones report, the $100,000 tickets include a VIP reception with Bush and a tour of Israel guided by the institute’s president, Wayne Wilks.