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Reform Wedding (illustration image).

Half of US Reform Rabbis Officiate at Intermarriages

14 Tammuz 5772 – July 4, 2012
While the Central Conference of American Rabbis (CCAR) does not have statistics on how many of its 2,000 Reform rabbis in North America officiate at intermarriages, when pressed, Rabbi Hara Person, director of CCAR Press, estimated "it's about half." A resolution proposed at CCAR's 2008 annual convention called for dropping the official opposition to intermarriages. The resolution was tabled but the practice is now commonplace.

It’s Official: No Circumcision in Germany – Jewish Hospital Bans the Brit

13 Tammuz 5772 – July 3, 2012
The Jewish Hospital in Berlin has suspended all religious circumcisions of children following a ruling delivered by a German court banning the practice.

A Revolutionary Rabbinic Idea For Organ Donations

9 Tammuz 5772 – June 28, 2012
JERUSALEM – A leading Orthodox rabbi in Israel has a revolutionary proposal for the harvesting of organs from a clinically dead patient. At present, his proposal not only has no support from other rabbis, it is also against Israeli law – but he is not fazed.

Shocking German Ruling May Lead to ‘Circumcision Tourism’

Head of the Religious Community of Islam in Germany Ali Demir predicted that a ban on circumcisions in Germany would lead to the development of "circumcision tourism in neighboring countries in Europe." ADL's Abe Foxman called on Germany's parliament to change the law, lest Jews again feel unwanted in Germany.

Haredi Draft Proposal Offers Few Sticks, Many Carrots

8 Tammuz 5772 – June 27, 2012
The Plesner Committee, tasked with crafting an alternative to the Tal Law for haredi service in Israel, is reportedly drafting a proposal which would defer the enlistment of haredi men till age 22, offer financial incentives to yeshivot that have younger enlistment rates, and begin to levy economic sanctions on haredim who don't enlist by age 23.
Religious Circumcision

German Court Criminalizes Religious Circumcision

7 Tammuz 5772 – June 26, 2012
A Cologne district court ruled on Tuesday that parents may not have their sons circumcised for religious reasons, essentially criminalizing religious circumcisions.
A "wonderful, diverse group of Camp Sdei Chemed girls" being both modest and cute.

Lakewood Girls School under Attack for Controversial Letter on Modesty

24 Sivan 5772 – June 14, 2012
The Lakewood, NJ, Bnos Yaakov elementary school is not happy over the fact that an internal letter to its students has been published online. It contains a story with a disturbing notion of purgatory for girls who don't obey the laws of tzniyut (modesty).

Reform and Conservative Leaders Deemed Rabbis, to Receive Israeli State Funds

9 Sivan 5772 – May 30, 2012
The Israeli government announced on Tuesday that, for the first time, it will pay the salaries of a small number of Reform and Conservative rabbis who are considered leaders in their communities, and will also recognize them as rabbis.

Saudis Outraged by McDonald’s Toy They Believe to be Insulting to Muhammed

8 Sivan 5772 – May 28, 2012
Saudi Muslims have launched several campaigns against McDonald's in "response to the savage attacks on the noble Prophet," under banners like "Help your Prophet!" and "Together in support of the Prophet."
Mincha prayer at Citi Field during the Asifa.

At Least 50 Thousand Haredim Assemble to Decry Dangers of the Internet

29 Iyyar 5772 – May 21, 2012
More than 50,000 ultra-Orthodox Jewish men packed Citi Field in Flushing, Queens, on Sunday, for the Asifa, a gathering decrying the dangers of the Internet. Organizers have also rented the nearby Arthur Ashe Stadium for the overflow crowd. Event spokesman Eytan Kobre said the group wants to teach families how to use technology responsibly.
Chief Judge of the Jerusalem Rabbinical Court Rabbi Eliyahu Abergel.

Rabbinic Court Annuls 20-Year Marriage: Witnesses not Shabbat Observers

26 Iyyar 5772 – May 18, 2012
In a precedent setting decision, the Chief Judge of the Jerusalem Rabbinical Court Rabbi Eliyahu Abergel this week freed a woman from her aguna status (separated from her husband but unable to marry another) and annulled her marriage because the witnesses who signed the ketubah were not Shabbat observers. The plaintiff's husband had fled Israel to Florida and was refusing to sign a get.

New Poll Shows Ultra-Orthodox Increasingly Interested in Integrating

24 Iyyar 5772 – May 15, 2012
On the issue of ultra-Orthodox military service, 41% of those surveyed said they would be moderately or very interested in joining the Haredi IDF program, while 59% said they had either little or no interest. Still, the percentage of interest is substantially higher than the current annual rate of Haredi enlistment in the IDF.
President Barack Obama on Wednesday reversed his position on same-sex marriage.

Obama Endorses Same-Sex Marriage; Rabbis Debate Homosexuality

18 Iyyar 5772 – May 9, 2012
President Obama on Wednesday went on the record with a statement that he now supports same-sex marriage, a reversal of his longstanding opposition. While US public opinion on this issue has seemingly reached a point of no return, the debate within Orthodox Judaism has centered on accepting gays rather than legitimizing the gay agenda. But a few cracks have appeared even in that wall.

Vatican Rep Wants Alliance With Jews, Muslims, to Combat Gay Marriage

11 Iyyar 5772 – May 3, 2012
A Vatican representative has issued a call for the world’s foremost religions to unite to take a stand against gay marriage. Archbishop Antonio Mennini, the...

International Religious and Cultural Leaders Convene in Kiev for Interfaith Forum

8 Iyyar 5772 – April 30, 2012
‘Global Winds of Change’ Conference addresses role of religion in democracies and changing societies.
Rinkle Kumarib's case has become the focus for Hindus seeking rights in Pakistan.

Forcibly Converted Hindu Women Opt to Stay with Husbands, But Story Remains Murky

28 Nisan 5772 – April 20, 2012
Three young Hindu women who were kidnapped, forcibly converted to Islam and married off to Muslim men, chose this week to live with their husbands instead of their families. It has been rumored that the three women had been threatened by Pakistan People's Party parliamentarian Mian Mithu with "dire consequences" if they decided to return to their parents.
Prominent Turkish intellectual and religious leader Adnan Oktar.

Prominent Turkish Muslim Leader Sends Passover Blessings to the Jewish Nation

17 Nisan 5772 – April 8, 2012
Adnan Oktar (also known by his pen name Harun Yahya), a prominent Turkish intellectual and religious leader with mass following, has communicated and met personally over the past decade with many Orthodox rabbis from Israel and abroad, expressing his friendship to the Jewish nation and his reverence to the Torah. Oktar has sent the Jewish Press his blessing to the Jewish nation on the occasion of Passover.
The slaughtered "Pascal" goat's blood was collected in a gold vessel to be sprinkled on a makeshift altar, in the middle of a JCC basketball court.

Pascal Sacrifice ‘Exercise’ Yields Majestic Street Theater in Preparation for Passover, Redemption

11 Nisan 5772 – April 3, 2012
The air at the event in Jerusalem was rife with the kind of excitement one finds in rock concerts. The thick crowd pushed, shoved, pressed, retreated temporarily, then pushed as relentlessly and eagerly as before. If the core idea of the entire event was to urge our Redemption from above by starting it down below, then this one had to have cut through a whole bunch of "klipot."
Harpsichordist Barbara Cadranel in front of her controversial mezuzah.

International Harpsichordist Ordered to Remove Mezuzah from her Doorpost

10 Nisan 5772 – April 1, 2012
Barbara Cadranel, a renowned harpsichordist who delights audiences around the world with her unique interpretation of Baroque as well as contemporary music, says she's feeling "violated." The attorney for her Condo Association says his client permits residents to display religious objects on the outside of their doors, but not on "the frame around the door." One neighbor suggested the mezuzah could be a fire hazard…
Former Mayor of London Ken Livingstone speaking at Finsbury Park Mosque.

Video: London Mayor Wannabe Will Make London ‘Beacon’ of Islam

27 Adar 5772 – March 21, 2012
Speaking at last Friday's prayer at the North London Central Mosque, also known as Finsbury Park Mosque—and formerly controlled by convicted terrorist recruiter Abu Hamza al-Masri—Ken Livingstone, the Labor party's candidate for mayor of London, pledged to "educate the mass of Londoners" about Islam.

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