Hundreds of people came out to protest a Christian conversion ceremony in Rishon Leziyon on Saturday morning.
Activists from Lehava, including its head Bentzi Gosptein, broke into the cultural center where the event was taking place and blocked the entrances.
Police at the location were unable to control the activists, who entered the hall again and again. As a result, the district commander decided to close the event and stopped further missionaries from arriving.
During the course of the protest, Lehava activists managed to rescue six Jews who were expected to undergo a baptism and conversion. Two of the six were Holocaust survivors who had been brought by their caretakers, the group says. During the struggle, three Lehava members were arrested, though they were later released.
Gopstein says that "Dozens of activists who were with us in difficult conditions in Rishon Leziyon over Shabbat fought bravely and managed to prevent the Christian baptism. We hope that the local authorities will draw the appropriate conclusions and will no longer permit such ceremonies in the future. In any case, we will go anywhere there is an attempt to convert Jews. Rishon Leziyon residents deserve praise for their mobilization in defense of mitzvot."