Rosalind Moss was born in Brooklyn in 1943. Her parents were conservative Jews from Russia and Hungary. Her uncompromising search for the truth and meaning in life led her to Christ, who teaches and saves in the Catholic Church.
Ros remembers the days of her childhood: “Every tradition, every holiday, every celebration told us who we were — and who God was — and what His purpose for us was as His people, and the main goal was for us to continue in obedience and service to God who created us, and to wait for the coming of the Messiah […]. We loved who we were and we loved being the people of the God of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob. We loved the family we were and we loved being part of the Jewish people all over the world.”
Searching for the meaning of life
Even as an adolescent girl, Ros began to ask herself questions about the meaning of human life, suffering and death. Her older brother, David, stopped believing in the existence of God and claimed to be an atheist. After graduation, Ros received a responsible job in three corpor– ations. She earned good money; in her spare time, she loved dancing and horse riding. She was a successful woman and seemed to have everything she needed to be happy. But in reality, she felt a deep inner emptiness which she was not able to fill with anything. She fell in love with a man, but that great human love also proved ineffective to fill her deep spiritual emptiness, caused by the lack of meaning in her life.
All the Old Testament prophecies concerning the Messiah were fulfilled with the birth of Jesus
At that time, her brother David got married to Janet, who came from a Protestant family and considered herself an atheist. David and Janet decided to raise their children without religion. However, as the years went by, their inquisitive seven-year-old son began to ask what his parents believed and who they were. That was when David and his wife decided to look for a religion that would give their children a sense of belonging. They began to read the Bible and Christian books, and together with their children they attended services at a nearby Baptist church. One day, Ros, driven by plain curiosity, attended a service with them. The songs and prayers of the people gathered in the sanctuary touched her heart. Before Ros went back home, she received a copy of the New Testament from David, who encouraged her to read it.
A month later, while walking in the park on a Sunday afternoon, Ros unexpectedly experienced the presence of the personal God. It was a vast, ineffable love, with all-encompassing joy and peace.
During her next meeting with her brother David, Ros told him about that amazing experience of God’s closeness. Her brother encouraged her to be open to God’s inspiration, and he told her that in California there was a thriving community of Jews who believed that Jesus was the Messiah and God. They were Hebrew Christians, called Messianic Jews, or Jews for Jesus.
Jews for Jesus
Three months later, Ros went to California, and in the city of Santa Monica, while walking down the street, she accidentally met a long-haired young man in a T-shirt with the logo “Jews for Jesus”. She stopped him and began to talk to him. It turned out that his name was Mitch and he was a Jew. He believed that Jesus was the Messiah and God. It was inconceivable for Ros that a Jew could believe in such an absurd assertion that the man Jesus was God, particularly since every Jew knows that you cannot see God and stay alive. Ros was convinced that people who believed that Jesus was God were greatly mistaken.
True love for the Jews should be expressed in the fact that we will share with them the joyful truth about Jesus Christ
At the end of their conversation, Mitch gave Ros a leaflet with the following words: “If your birth hasn’t given you happiness, try to be born again.”
This sentence began to bother Ros, because how can you be born again? What does it mean? Mitch explained to her that God revealed himself not only for us to know that He exists, but above all for us to have a personal relationship of love with Him. Second birth has a spiritual dimension; it occurs when one believes that the man Jesus is the Messiah awaited by the Jews, the true God.
Ros wanted to know the truth, so she started going to the meetings of the community of Messianic Jews. For five months, she listened to the conference about the Old Testament prophecies of the coming of the Messiah, which were fulfilled in the birth, life, death and resurrection of Jesus Christ. Instinctively, she rejected the idea that Jesus Christ was that Messiah, although texts from the Book of Isaiah (Isa. 9:5; 7:14; 53:1–5) clearly indicate that those prophecies have been fulfilled in His person. However, it was very difficult to accept the truth that all the Old Testament prophecies concerning the Messiah were fulfilled with the birth of Jesus.
At nearly every meeting of the Messianic Jews, Ros would hear that Jesus died for her sins and for the sins of all people. She did not understand the meaning of these words; it seemed to her that they did not have any sense.
The breakthrough came in August 1976. Ros was sitting in a Hawaiian restaurant with 12 “Jews for Jesus”. These people began to say to her again: “Christ died for your sins, Ros, and for the sins of the whole world.” She replied that she did not understand the meaning of these words at all. Then they told her in detail what the Old Testament sacrifices looked like. They explained the truth about the original sin, the sin of Adam and Eve, which plunged the whole of humanity into a state of separation from God, in the bondage of sin and death. They made her realise that for a spiritually dead person divine things seem foolish. God hates sin, but loves the sinner, and therefore He gives all people the chance to have their sins forgiven and to build a loving relationship with Him. To this end, God himself became a true man and took upon himself the sins of all people, to atone for them in his suffering, death and resurrection. The Jews for Jesus explained to her that Jesus Christ was “the Lamb of God who takes away the sin of the world!” (John 1:29), to whom each sacrifice of the lambs in the Old Testament pointed. Ros was ready to believe in all this, but the biggest problem for her was to accept the fact that Jesus, being a true man, was also true God. In the end, however, she explained to herself that really a man himself cannot become God, but God Almighty could become a real man! “He can do whatever He wants, and I cannot tell him how to be God.”
The man Jesus is the Messiah awaited by the Jews, the true God
For two more months, Ros struggled within herself, then finally, on 17 October 1976, she received the sacrament of baptism. From that moment on, she gave all her life to Jesus as her only Lord. This act of commitment to Jesus meant that Ros was spiritually born again, that she became a new creature. The emptiness in her heart disappeared; she found the meaning of life. Finally, she had something to live for. It happened exactly as St Paul writes: “So if anyone is in Christ, there is a new creation: everything old has passed away; see, everything has become new!” (2 Cor. 5:17).
The way to the Catholic Church
Ros experienced indescribable joy and bliss from her union with Christ, constantly thanking Him and singing songs of praises to Him: “Let a thousand languages sing in honour of my Saviour! Indescribable love: how is it possible that you, my God, died for me?
I am loved with infinite love, guided by grace to know this love — you, Spirit from heaven, have taught me that it is so! Oh, this full and perfect peace! Oh, this divine rapture! In the love that will never cease, I am His and He is mine.”
Ros believed in the Jewish Messiah Jesus, whose name is the Greek translation of the Hebrew name Yeshua, which means “God saves”. And “Christ” is the Greek translation of the Hebrew word mashiach (in English: Messiah), meaning “Anointed One”. Messiah is Yeshua ha- Mashiach, or Jesus Christ, true God and true man.
Ros, filled with joy, called her brother David, announcing to him that she believed in Jesus, the Messiah — God who came to earth! Then a year later, David shared with Ros the good news that he also believed in Christ. At the same time, their sister Susan, who lived in Michigan, had a profound experience of the presence of Christ, and a few years later she also received the sacrament of baptism.
David and his sister Ros really suffered because of the lack of unity among Christians, so many divisions among them, mutual dislike or even hostility. The lack of unity among Christians is a very sad fact, which causes great pain to Christ. David and Ros intuitively felt that there must be one true Church founded by Jesus Christ. So they started looking for it.
Home at last
David joined the pro-life movement and began looking closer at the Catholic Church. Ros began to “make her brother aware”, repeating anti-Catholic slogans, which she heard from Protestants: that the Catholic Church was the work of Satan, the “whore of Babylon”. David firmly rejected such offensive words about the Catholic Church. He was interested in this topic, and the Church fascinated and attracted him more and more. On Christmas Eve 1978, he invited Ros to the midnight mass at the Catholic church. During the liturgy, Ros was very impressed with the Jewish elements woven into the liturgy of the Mass. She realised then how wrong all the people were who told her that Catholicism was an “evil religion”. After the mass, Ros heard shocking words from her brother: this is the synagogue, but with Christ! Exactly one year later, David made a profession of faith and was officially accepted into the community of the Catholic Church. Then he handed his sister Ros a copy of the Catholic magazine This Rock, published by Catholic Answers. It is from that magazine that Ros learned about the famous American convert Scot Hahn, a former Presbyterian pastor and professor of theology. A persistent and uncompromising search for the truth led Hahn to discover that the fullness of the revealed truth and the living presence of Jesus was only in the Catholic Church. Ros then purchased several tapes by Scott Hahn and his book Rome Sweet Home, which she read with bated breath. While listening to Hahn’s testimony, she was moved by a quote from a Catholic bishop, Fulton Sheen: “In America, there is not even 100 people who hate the Catholic Church, but there are millions of people who hate what they mistakenly consider to be the teaching of the Catholic Church.”
In America, there are not even 100 people who hate the Catholic Church, but there are millions of people who hate what they mistakenly consider to be the teaching of the Catholic Church
Ros then understood that reluctance, prejudices and often hatred to the Catholic Church are due to a lack of knowledge and to a falsified truth about it. Inspired by Scott Hahn’s testimony, Ros began to search for and learn the truth about the Catholic Church.
It took five years. During that time, Ros examined all the doctrinal differences between Evangelicals and Catholics. She read books by Protestant theologians, wishing to know their accusations against the Catholic Church. However, she soon realised that they opposed the doctrine which in reality was not the teaching of the Catholic Church.
Ros learned more fully the coherence and spiritual depth of the Catholic theology, and she admired it. Three books in particular really helped her to get fascinated by the richness and depth of the teaching of the Catholic Church: Bl. Cardinal John Henry Newman’s Essay on the Development of Christian Doctrine; Dietrich von Hildebrand’s Liturgy and Personality and Karl Adam’s The Spirit of Catholicism. Ros finally ceased to doubt the fact that the Catholic Church is in complete harmony with the Bible. The more she learned the teaching and history of the Catholic Church, the more she grew in the belief that it was the Church which Jesus Christ founded.
She finally made up her mind. On Easter Eve 1995, at St Joseph’s church in Millbrook, New York, Ros was officially accepted into the community of the Catholic Church, the Church which Christ himself established two thousand years ago. It is the Church built on the foundation of the apostles and the prophets, which survived cruel persecution, various heresies, apostasies and sins. The Church, which is the Mystical Body of Christ, preaches the unchanging teaching and therefore it is eternal, and the “gates of hell shall not prevail against it” (Matt. 16:18). It is in this Church that Jesus teaches, forgives all sins, gives eternal life and welcomes all sinners, because He wants to save everybody and make them holy.
A man himself cannot become God, but God Almighty could become a real man!
During the ceremony of being accepted into the Church, Ros received the sacrament of Confirmation and Christ in Holy Communion. She cried with joy that she was being granted such great grace. From that moment on, some friends and relatives treated Ros as a traitor of her nation and did not allow her into their homes. But she is not surprised by their aggression, because she knows that it is due to ignorance and a lack of faith. She prays for them to find the truth. She refers to herself the words written by St Paul: “I regard everything as loss because of the surpassing value of knowing Christ Jesus my Lord.” (Phil. 3:8).
The fullness of Judaism
Having entered the community of the Catholic Church, Ros believes that she has achieved the fullness of Judaism, the fulfillment of all the Old Testament prophesies. She now has the whole Christ, the Messiah who is constantly present in the sacraments of penance and the Eucharist, to forgive all sins, to give Himself to us as everyday Bread and an antidote to death. This truth is a source of indestructible optimism and joy for Ros. In the Catholic Church, Christ provides everything we need to mature to completely happiness in heaven. He gives us His Mother to lead us on the difficult path of faith and love. Ros says that Christianity is a Jewish religion, the fulfillment of all the prophecies of the Old Testament, that it is the most precious gift for every person and all of humanity.
After many years of evangelising, Rosalind was called by Jesus to the convent life. Sister Rosalind Moss was the founder of a new religious community
It started with Jesus, a Jewish carpenter, who was “God with us”, who “came to his own people” (John 1:11), that is, to the Jews. All his first disciples were Jews, because Christianity in its early days was considered a Jewish sect.
The Catholic Church was founded in Israel, and the first Christians were all Jews. The lack of faith on the part of many of them and the persecution of believers in Christ in those days were the same as today. So following Christ today costs the same as then.
Ros believes that true love for the Jews should be expressed in the fact that we will share with them the joyful truth about Jesus Christ, who is the Messiah and Saviour of the world. Jesus as the Passover Lamb was crucified and rose from the dead to give life to all who believe in Him and accept His infinite mercy. Ros says that just as the Jews were ordered to consume the Paschal Lamb, so we as Catholics are to consume the Eucharist, the Paschal Lamb, which is Jesus Christ, the risen Lord. The Lord Jesus said, “unless you eat the flesh of the Son of Man and drink his blood, you have no life in you. […] for my flesh is true food and my blood is true drink.” (John 6:53–55). Many have gone away, because they did not understand what Christ was saying. Ros understood that the Eucharist is not a symbol of the Body and Blood of the Saviour, but that it is Jesus Christ in His resurrected humanity. The Lord Jesus clearly said, “it was not Moses who gave you the bread from heaven, but it is my Father who gives you the true bread from heaven. For the bread of God is that which comes down from heaven and gives life to the world […]. I am the bread of life” (John 6:32–35). Ros is convinced that if non-Catholic Christians got to know the full truth about the real presence of Jesus in the Eucharist, then everyone would come to the Catholic Church, and they would receive Jesus present in the Eucharist on their knees. “In the same way — writes Ros — if the sons and daughters of Abraham, Isaac and Jacob knew that their Messiah came, that He entered into a new covenant with Israel, as the prophet Jeremiah prophesied, and through Israel with the world, and that He gave himself to us — the Living Bread, the true Manna from Heaven — they would also run to Him, yes, on their knees. And just like doubting Thomas the Jew, they would call together with every Jewish and non-Jewish believer in the world: ‘My Lord and my God!’”
Rosalind Moss became an ardent apologist and missionary. She found a job with Catholic Answers Publishing. She began to preach conferences on the radio and on television, as well as in parishes, sharing with others the treasure of the Catholic faith. She confessed: “As long as God allows me to live on earth, I want to proclaim to the world the truth about Jesus Christ and His one holy, catholic and apostolic Church”.
After many years of evangelising, Rosalind was called by Jesus to the convent life. Sister Rosalind Moss was the founder of a new religious community: the Daughters of Mary, Mother of Our Hope, in Tulsa, Oklahoma. “O the depth of the riches and wisdom and knowledge of God! How unsearchable are his judgments and how inscrutable his ways!” (Rom. 11:33).