By Nathan Wertheimer
First off, there are limited written articles about Jewish-Christian Tallis/Prayer Shawl out on the Internet. Plus, it was to educate my fellow churchgoers at my church. There are different points of view of non-Jewish people wearing a Christian Tallis/Prayer Shawl. This is one reason why I decided to write an in-depth article on this religious piece of clothing. I will explain my opinions later and reasons why. Please keep an open mind.
Here is some brief history about the Jewish Tallis/Prayer Shawl. Any type of prayer shawl is religious piece of clothing. Please be respectful towards this clothing. Generally, this clothing is worn on the outside over by individual regular clothing. Many people forget Jesus Christ wore a Tallis/Prayer Shawl when he was a Rabbi and a Priest. The bible says, during a Jewish worship not everyone could be underneath the tent. So a prayer shawl was worn to protect from the sun. Some religious people would say that a prayer shawl is a personal tent to communicate with God and rightfully so.
Have you ever seen anyone wear a Tallis/Prayer Shawl to a Pentecostal Church Worship Service before? Personally, I have never seen anyone wearing a Tallit/Prayer Shawl at Pentecostals of Apopka Church. So I decided to wear my own Jewish Tallis/Prayer Shawl to the church with permission from the Pastor Caleb Hill. I was given his blessing to do so. Even though not knowing if the other church members would accept me wearing it.
What a great story I’m about to tell you. For Christians who want to wear a Tallis/Prayer Shawl it is a personal choice. Don’t let anyone stop you from wearing one. Yet, I did encounter one person tell me not to wear my Jewish-Christian Tallis/Prayer Shawl in the church. I explained to him my reasons to wear one. This person judged me, which was not fair. Love people who they are and don’t judged them by what they wear! One person will not stop me. Later, this individual accepted me for the way I am. Power to the Tallis/Prayer Shawl!
The first time in a long time, I wore my old Jewish Bar Mitzvah Tallis/Prayer Shawl to a Pentecostals of Apopka worship service. I not have the experience putting the Tallis over my head to pray just yet. I was nervous to do so, so I held off until the right time. I felted I needed a new Judeo-Christian Tallis to be worn in the church for prayer and to read up on the customs and traditions of a Tallis/Prayer Shawl.
Then a month ago, I purchased new gold and black Covenant Prayer Shawl Messianic Jewish-Christian Tallis on eBay, which was made in Israel. It measures 71.5” x 19”.
This product is inexpensive to buy along with the Tallis clips. The cost of both items is around $25. So I decided to wear it to Sunday Worship Services. I felt very proud to wear it. No one had said a word about removing it while I was in church on that day. This church is open to many old religious traditions. By now, most people in the church knew that I was raised in a Jewish household and I’m in the processing of converting into Christianity. The church is not pushy to force one into their religion. Go at your own pace and let it happens over time to receive the gift of the Holy Ghost.
A Tallis/Prayer Shawl is a sacred religious piece of clothing. There are many ways to correctly wear a Tallis/Pray Shawl. I preferred wearing it around my neck and draped in front, just as the clergy would. During prayer time, I placed the Tallis/Pray Shawl over both shoulders and moved it over my head like a hoodie. It was very comfortable to wear.
Here are some guidelines to follow when wearing a Tallis/Prayer Shawl in the church. You don’t have to be Jewish to wear a Tallis/Prayer Shawl. Even Jesus Christ wore one too. Generally men wear them, but women are welcome to wear them too. Don’t wear them in the restroom/bathroom if possible. One places their Tallis/Prayer Shawl over their head at the time the Bishop/Pastor calls out for an alter call or gives a prayer. One is welcome to wear it in bible study, for medical procedure being done, for a home prayer use, and much more. Be respectful when wearing one. Some Jewish people might be offended. I personally am not, but will encourage anyone who wants to wear them. The Tallis/Prayer Shawl is not up for debate.
If you are having a hard time focusing on communicating with God and Jesus, I guess covering your whole face with the Tallis/Prayer Shawl to block out some distractions. This is helpful for some people with ADHD. Just closing your eye may not help. So there are some added benefits of a Tallis/Prayer Shawl
The Tallis/Prayer Shawl should be worn in a temple/church or private setting only. It is not advise to wear them off church property or in public setting. This is for safety reasons. Once on church property, then place your Tallis/Prayer Shawl on yourself in the Lobby inside of the church. When not wearing your Tallis/Prayer Shawl it should be stored in a plastic bag inside of a nice case to protect it. Your Tallis/Prayer Shawl may become discolored and fade overtime. Mine discolored from the tassels and that was to be expected.
When wearing a Tallis/Prayer Shawl is a spiritual act. In Jewish traditions they say to prayer (Blessing) over the Tallis/Prayer Shawl before putting it on. Here’s the Prayer/Blessing, “Blessed are you Lord our God, Ruler of the Universe, Who has sanctified us with your mitzvoth, And commanded us to wrap ourselves in tzitzit.”
Here is my first experience wearing my Jewish Tallis/Prayer Shawl at a worship service alter call. I closed my eyes and repented to Jesus Christ and God. Then two guys came around me put their hands on my shoulder and back that were praying with me. My eyes were flickering and my right hand and leg began to shake. That is when I knew I could feel God’s presence. Then I was baptized with the Holy Ghost. Each person may feel the Holy Ghost in different ways. No, I did not speak in tongue on that day. At some point, I may get the chance too. It was a great experience. This experience is open to all people and not just a select few. Please don’t hold back and sit in the pews during an alter call. Get up and move towards the front of the church stage for the alter call.
Another experience that I had with my new Judeo-Christian Tallis/Prayer Shawl, was when I stepped up to the front of the stage and moved my Tallis/Prayer Shawl partially over my head. It felt good. Many people were watching to see what I was going to do next. That was to be expected because no one had seen this done in the church before. Someone commented to me that it might be hot underneath there. No, I did not feel a temperature difference at the time. However, I did feel God’s presence with me. Plus, many of the congregants could feel the vibe and energy that I was given off. It was kind of neat thing. I could feel people touching my shoulder and back. After the worship service many people were asking me about wearing a Tallis/Prayer Shawl. It was an honor to answer all of their questions about my religious clothing. Today, many people support what I am doing.
Finally, many congregants were very respectful towards me when I was praying with God and Jesus. It was an experience I will remember for a lifetime. Don’t be afraid to get in front of the stage an experience the Holy Ghost for your self. I truly believe there is something spiritual about wearing Judeo-Christian Tallis/Prayer Shawl. Try it for yourself and see. I promise you’ll be closer to God and Jesus. God bless you and your family. If you have any questions please feel free to email me at firstname.lastname@example.org . Some comments maybe added to this article for all to read.
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