Last Updated 5/17/2019 at 2:30 PM
Chicago, West Rogers Park: The Torah-observant world has been rocked this week by the disturbing news of Messianic Christians infiltrating their community. As reported in Yeshiva World News, “David and Rivkah Castello moved to West Rogers Park in Chicago a few months ago, and they dress, act, and behave like Frum Jews, and daven in local Shuls. Rivkah works as a babysitter for young children in the neighborhood.” David even had his hair in long peyot. Yet despite David and Rivkah’s intense efforts to blend in, alert members of the Community began to detect their deception after the couple
vaccinated their kids began to exhibit suspicious behavior like showing up on time to community events. The Daily Freier was on the scene to get all the facts.
The Daily Freier first spoke with David’s acquaintance Nachum, to hear his suspicions. “David was perfectly happy davening in any of the local shuls, and he didn’t even have a Shul that he hated so much that he wouldn’t be caught dead there.” Nachum then looked around the room and dropped his voice to a whisper. “Plus, his pants legs were long enough to reach his shoes.”
The Daily Freier then spoke with Yankel, who sits next to David in Mincha sometimes. “He kept bragging about his wife’s gefilte fish, which is really weird. But when he said that he was looking forward to Pesach ‘because of all the yummy matzoh‘, I alerted my Rosh Yeshiva. I mean, I also told him that David didn’t know how to unfold a plastic tablecloth.”
Yet if it were not for the keen perception of the Community’s women, David and Rivkah’s deception might have gone undiscovered. “I really liked Rivkah and loved her cooking.” explained neighbor Sarah Shterna. “But when she told me that the soup she served on Shabbat had been in her freezer less than 5 months? Well, something just didn’t feel right. Also, she didn’t start her Pesach cleaning until early March.”
As we spoke to Sarah Shterna, another neighbor heard our conversation and joined in to share her story. “I started to feel uneasy around Purim when we got their mishloach manot and it didn’t have a “theme” or a poem attached.” noted Devorah Leah. “But then Rivkah showed up to my son’s Bris at 10…. after I told her that it started at 10.”
The Daily Freier asked Devorah Leah about David and Rivkah’s future in the Community. “I’m not sure. The deception really hurt our feelings.” Deborah Leah thought for a moment and continued. “But if they ever try to do this the right way, their level of effort trying to act and look more Jewish than the Jews means they have the potential to be even more annoying than most converts.”