Monday, June 11, 2012

Convert of R' Karelitz rejected by Rabbinut Court

Haaretz   The Netanya Rabbinical Court recently rejected a request by a woman to have her conversion recognized, even though it had been conducted by the Bnei Brak Rabbinical Court of Rabbi Nissim Karelitz, which is considered one of the most respected rabbinical courts in the ultra-Orthodox world.

This was an extraordinary decision, since state rabbinical courts usually approve the rulings and conversions of Haredi rabbinical courts automatically. But the Netanya panel, headed by Rabbi Shlomo Shapira, declared that Haredi rabbinical courts have no intrinsic advantage and that conversions by the state rabbinical courts are preferred. [...]


  1. Excellent. When the charedim lose their control, sanity will be restored in the religious world.

  2. This is encouraging. The Charedi control is really toxic.

  3. The title and the stub are a bit misleading. First the lady tried to have her "Jewishness" recognized by the Netanya court using forged documents.

    When she was found out she went to the Karelitz court and tried to pull the same scam. They, lacking the resources of the state, insisted on a Giur L'Chumra.

    The lady then went back to the Netanya court to register a marriage with a Kohen. When they declined her because she was a gioret, she tried to insist that the giur l'chumra was essentially a de-facto recognition of her Jewishness.

    The Netanya court did decide to challenge the Karelitz Badatz on the giur l'chumra but that was only because the lady did it with forged documents, and with held that fact and that she had already been denied by the Netanya B"D on account of those forged documents.

    Suddenly the story sounds a lot less sensational. I'm guessing(admittedly this is only a guess) that the Karelitz Badatz isn't going to mind so much, since the lady's first act was to try to violate halakha by registering to marry a Kohen.

    1. If "lacking the resources of the State" can lead to erroneous rulings, isn't it best then for a proper Jew to use the State's Bet Din from the outset?

  4. Recipients and PublicityJune 12, 2012 at 7:38 AM

    Unfortunately, the Shavei Israel organization run by Michael Freund has relied (manipulated?) on Rabbi Nissim Karelitz to promote and justify their proselytization agenda to the world, see:

    *Chuetas of Majorca & Shavei Israel (, March 18, 2012).

    *Hareidi Rabbi: Part of Spanish Island’s Descendants Are Jews (Israel National News/Arutz Sheva, 7/11/2011): "...Shavei Israel Chairman Michael Freund revealed that Rabbi Nissim Karelitz recently issued a written opinion stating clearly and unequivocally that the Chuetas are part of the people of Israel. Freund works to bring “hidden Jews” back into the regular Jewish community and has led the effort to gain recognition of the Chuetas as Jews. Rabbi Karelitz is the Chairman of the Beit Din Tzedek (High Rabbinical Court) of Bnei Brak and is considered to be one of Israel’s foremost arbiters of Jewish law. He is the nephew of the famed Chazon Ish, one of the greatest and most well-known rabbis of the 20th century..."

    *Keeping Kashrus Alive In Poland ( "...The beis din of Harav Nissim Karelitz, shlita, is frequently consulted..."

    *We need to embrace ‘zera Yisrael’ (Jerusalem Post, 07/27/2011) Just conversion policies are not only possible, they are necessary...The recent news that members of the Chueta community of Mallorca have been recognized as Jews by Rabbi Nissim Karelitz of Bnei Brak is certainly historic. Thanks to the hard work of Michael Freund and Shavei Israel, this will open the door to over 15,000 people whose Jewish ancestors were forced to convert to Catholicism 500 years ago, helping them return to the Jewish people..."

    It is time to demand more accountability of Rav Nissim Karelitz in the dangerous and murky sphere of converting gentiles, not unlike the accountability that was requested of Rav Reuven Feinstein of New York when he backed similar plans by the disgraced Leib Tropper and EJF to convert questionable people just as Michael Freund does now with his claims of Rav Nissim Karelitz's "support" for proselytization.


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