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A Costly Alarm System

Opening his front door, the Rabbi found himself face to face with the local priest. "Rabbi, may I have a few words with you?" asked the priest.

"Of course, Father," replied the Rabbi somewhat nervously.

"Rabbi," began the priest, "It must be evident to you that in this town we are plagued by thieves. Scarcely a day passes without one of my flock coming to me bemoaning the fact that his house has been broken into. On the other hand, I have noticed that thieves do not bother you Jews nearly as much."

"Father, you are correct."

"Yes, but why is that?" inquired the priest.

"Look at this little box here on the side of my doorpost," said the Rabbi. "It's called a mezuza. We Jews believe that when we put a mezuza on the entrances to our houses, the Holy One, may His Name be blessed, protects both us and our property."

"In that case", replied the priest, "I must have one!"

Not wishing to be the cause of an incipient pogrom, the Rabbi reluctantly handed over a mezuza to the priest.

Some two weeks later the Rabbi was awakened by the sound of someone pounding violently on his door. Dressing himself hastily, he made his way down the stairs.

"Who's there?" the Rabbi asked tremulously.

"Open the door! Open the door!" screamed a voice on the other side.

Leaving the door on the latch, the Rabbi cracked the door wide enough to see the priest standing in front of him, his eyes wild with great distraught.

"What happened?" asked the terrified Rabbi. "Were you not protected from robbers?"

"I was! But these people were worse than robbers!" screamed the priest.

"Who?" asked the rabbi.

"Fundraisers!"

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