Jews-For-Jesus Saved From Suit

Woman Claims She Was Erroneously Reported Converted

Associated Press/May 5, 2004

West Palm Beach, Fla. -- A judge has dismissed a defamation lawsuit from a woman who sued a religious movement for claiming she converted to the organization's beliefs.

In her lawsuit, Edith Rapp claimed her stepson wrongly proclaimed in a Jews for Jesus newsletter that she tearfully converted to the movement at her husband's bedside.

But attorneys for Jews for Jesus claimed that calling Rapp "a Jewish believer" was not defamatory because it is not "highly offensive to a reasonable person."

Circuit Judge Catherine Brunson dismissed the lawsuit yesterday, but she did not rule out the possibility that the suit could proceed if it is amended.

The suit emerged as Jews for Jesus began a two-week campaign in Palm Beach seeking to inform Jews of its belief about the divinity of Jesus Christ. Volunteers and employees distributed gospel tracts, went knocking door-to-door and called residents.

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