Chairman of the Executive of The Jewish Agency for Israel Natan Sharansky has released the following statement regarding the debate surrounding Rabbi Avi Weiss:
“Rabbi Avi Weiss is a prominent leader of the Modern Orthodox Jewish world. By his teachings and his personal example, he has inspired and raised generations of Jews in the spirit of kol yisra’el arevim zeh la-zeh (the principle that all Jews are responsible for one another) and with a deep commitment to the Jewish people and the State of Israel.
“Rabbi Weiss’s commitment and integrity are beyond reproach, which is why I find the ongoing discussion about his Rabbinic credentials absurd.
“As Chairman of the Executive of The Jewish Agency, I would like to state clearly that our shlichim (emissaries) will continue to honor Rabbi Weiss’s certifications and recommendations, as we have been proud to do up until now.”
Rabbi Weiss complained recently that the Israeli Chief rabbinate and the Rabbinical Council of America (RCA) were in cahoots to disqualify “Liberal Orthodox” rabbis by the Rabbinate refusing to honor their recommendation of their congregants as proper Jews.
As we wrote here earlier, this created a situation in which the largely anti-Zionist Rabbinate, comprised of wall-to-wall Haredim, was collaborating with the RCA, catering mostly to Orthodox Jews who are comfortable staying in New Jersey – to block Zionist Orthodox American Jews from making aliyah.
Hopefully, this madness will be corrected now, possibly with some additional help from Minister of Religious Services Naftali Bennett, who dropped the ball this year on electing a National Religious Chief Rabbi.