Here’s my response, also posted in the comments section of “On the Main Line.”Anon writes:
If you do any research into 'messianic' congregations, you'll find that their goal is to convert Jews to full-blown Christianity. The 'congregation' is just a middle step to make the transition more palatable.
These places are funded primarily by Southern Baptist organizations who take very literally Jesus' exhortation to spread the gospel, "first, to the Jew."
And although there may be messianic congregants who are comfortable with benign coexistence, messianic leaders are all wholly dedicated to converting as many Jews as possible. And they'll employ viral tactics (recruit one person who brings a sibling, who brings a significant other, who brings a friend, etc.) or any other tactic that brings more Jews into the fold.
Back when Russian immigrants were arriving in droves, J4J missionaries were often there to greet them before any other Jewish agency, welcoming them, helping them with settling in the US, giving them a supportive environment, and slowly co-opting their Judaism.
One anti-missionary described it thusly: "When you walk into a messianic congregation, they welcome you, they care for you, and they make you feel at home. When you walk into an Orthodox shul, someone will come over and say, 'Can you move? You're in my seat.'"
So, long story even longer, Neshama did exactly the right thing, and Shlomo wouldn't have played this venue, either. It doesn't pay to attack their entire belief system on their turf. I think he would have invited everyone from Beth El to his shul, where he would have shown them an authentic Jewish celebration, and then work one-on-one with the folks who were turned on by the experience.
Down on the corner? Wow. This kind of thing continues to undermine the brilliance of the people who have been honest about their parodies who were unfortunatly chastized by the establishment. Why wasn't it ok for Lenny Solomon who used his honest "rip offs" were used to educate and be mikarev kids? Why wasn't it ok for Martin Davidson whose honest parodies brought us brilliant entertainment, only to have his original stuff ripped off by the establishment? Even Gershon Veroba's attempt to use parody for entertainment and Kiruv was not met with acceptance. And yet, Turkish Kiss and the like are sanctified with such hislahavus at weddings.
The double standard in jewish entertainment is truly mind boggling and those that know better continue to proliferate it despite their personal convictions. Will the Chussen/Kallah really notice or care that the band didn't play Turkish Kiss? Even at weddings now, the nice dinner music, often an obscure mix of Classical pieces, Opera and an occasional Yossi Green Ballad, are now interspliced with tunes from movie soundtracks such as Titanic, Jurassic Park and Shrek. Who wants to think of man-eating dinosaurs at a friend's wedding, much less while gnawing on greasy chicken before the Bag Bag dance?