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Three men get onto a train going to Moscow.  One is a Russian Orthodox batyushka, one is a Roman Catholic Priest, and the other is a Rabbi.

These three religious men end up sitting next to each other on the train; and, because they are bored, very soon out comes a pack of cards and they start playing. 

But quite soon after, they hear the loud voice of a policeman in the compartment immediately next to theirs shouting, “You’re playing cards. You know it’s forbidden to play cards here. You must pay me a fine right now.”

The three realize they only have only a short time before the policeman comes into their compartment, so they quickly push all the cards onto the floor by their feet.  When the policeman comes into their compartment, the three religious men are looking very calm, serene, and virtuous. 

As soon as the policeman sees all the cards on the floor by their feet, he says to them, “I’m surprised to find you three religious men playing cards.  You know this is illegal and it’s setting a bad example to all here.”

On hearing this, the batyushka says to the policeman, “But sir, we are not playing cards.  We wouldn’t do such a thing.”

“So give me your word of honor that you weren’t playing cards,” says the policeman.

“I swear by the sweet name of Jesus that I didn’t play cards,” replies the batyushka.

The policeman cannot object to these solemn words and has to accept them.  He then looks at the Catholic Priest and says, “And you?  Please give me your word of honor that you were not playing cards.”

“I swear by the sweet name of the Virgin Mary that I didn’t play cards,” replies the Catholic priest.

As before, the policeman cannot object to these solemn words, and has to accept them.  He then slowly looks at the Rabbi, and with a wicked grin says, “So it must have been you playing cards, eh Rabbi?”

“Me?  Playing cards?” says the rabbi.  “This might be possible, but with whom?”

Filed under:   Non-Jewish, Rabbis

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