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September 27, 2016 / 24 Elul, 5776
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Knesset Bill to Cut Number of Chief Rabbis by 50%



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Sephardi Chief Rabbi Yitzhak Yosef (L) with Ashkenazi Chief Rabbi David Baruch Lau during the Swearing-in ceremony of the Rabbinate Council at the president's residence in Jerusalem, in 2013. Does anyone in America feel the need for a chief rabbi? Then why should Israelis have to endure two, or even just one of them?

Sephardi Chief Rabbi Yitzhak Yosef (L) with Ashkenazi Chief Rabbi David Baruch Lau during the Swearing-in ceremony of the Rabbinate Council at the president's residence in Jerusalem, in 2013. Does anyone in America feel the need for a chief rabbi? Then why should Israelis have to endure two, or even just one of them?
Photo Credit: Yonatan Sindel/Flash90



No, actually, we must rid ourselves of state controlled spiritual services and bring our individual communities together, separately and happily. In a country that centralizes everything, from education to health to police to courts, at least let the people have their own local religious leader.

Incidentally, the new law would also make the rabbinical courts independent of the office of the chief rabbinate, rather than the current situation in which the two chief rabbis alternate serving as the head of the Rabbinate Council and as chief religious court judge, of the Higher Rabbinical Court.

Now take one additional step and let those rabbinical courts be formed and assembled wherever they’re needed, rather than by government fiat. Stop centralizing the Jewish State.

JTA content was used in this report.

Yori Yanover

About the Author: Yori Yanover has been a working journalist since age 17, before he enlisted and worked for Ba'Machane Nachal. Since then he has worked for Israel Shelanu, the US supplement of Yedioth, JCN18.com, USAJewish.com, Lubavitch News Service, Arutz 7 (as DJ on the high seas), and the Grand Street News. He has published Dancing and Crying, a colorful and intimate portrait of the last two years in the life of the late Lubavitch Rebbe, (in Hebrew), and two fun books in English: The Cabalist's Daughter: A Novel of Practical Messianic Redemption, and How Would God REALLY Vote.


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