Tuesday, November 16, 2010

The Shiloh Legacy

In the early 1990s, Bodie Thoene wrote three evangelical Christian novels in a series called “The Shiloh Legacy,” which details the lives of various people during the Great Depression and World War II. Two of the characters in this series are Jewish: Max Meyer and his cousin Trudy. While it is strongly implied that both characters convert to Christianity during the course of the novels, it is never explicitly discussed.

The books in question are A Thousand Shall Fall, In My Father's House, and Say to This Mountain, all published by Bethany House. Here is a sampling from In My Father's House:

"Bubbe Fritz did not approve of this because Irene was definitely not Jewish. But tonight at the sight of her, Bubbe Fritz said in a kindly tone, "Well, so Max's little shiksa has come to make sure he is not a casualty in the last hour. Nu!" ... "I don't want to hear such things [about Max marrying a Gentile]! He'll get over her!" ... "Is this what we came to America for?" Trudy did not say that she believed this was the best part of America.... A girl from the Irish neighborhood falling in love with a tall handsome Jewish boy from Orchard Street." (pp. 86-87).

Later in the book, the family is upset about Max and Irene (an Irish-American woman) planning on getting married. "Bubbe would weep loudly and slam doors. Zeyde would cluck his tongue and blame himself because he had let everything go to pot the moment he kept his store open on Shabbat." (p. 148).

Trudy says to Max: "What is it Bubbe says? Tova toireh mikol sechoireh? The Torah is the best merchandise." (p. 156).

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