Wednesday, January 26, 2022

Religious , Secular Jews Divided Over Ruling on the Langer Case

Israel Army sergeant-major Hanoch Langer ( picture , right ) marrying Yehudit Krispon , and his sister Miriam Langer marrying Daniel Levi at quiet wedding ceremonies held one alter the other m a Tel Aviv wedding hall in the presence of their closest relatives and Defense Minister Moshe Dayan .

Nearly 5 , 000 people gathered in Mea Shearim to protest against Chief Rabbi Goren s decision on the Langers and to rent their garments as a gesture of mourning .

Religious , Secular Jews Divided Over Ruling on the Langer Case

JERUSALEM - ( WNS ) - Chief Rabbi Shlomo Goren's swift resolution of the case of Hanoch and Miriam Langer who had been classified as mamzerim has created a sharp rift within the world s secular and religious Jewish communities . Conservative Judaism leaders attending the World Council of Synagogues convention here appeared unanimous in their approval of Rabbi Goren s handling of the case . Rabbi Judah Nadich , Rabbinical Assembly of America president , cabled congratulations to Rabbi Goren on the great ruling which will increase the glory of the Torah . Prof . Simon Greenberg , Jewish Theological Seminary ot America vice chancellor , said the ruling was the spirit of halacha . Great Britains Chief Rabbi Immanuel Jakobovits , who is Orthodox , indicated his approval , but cautioned We cannot change the law completely . Leaders of the religious communities of Bnei Braq met to consider establishing their own rabbinate and marriage registry . Denmark's Chief Rabbi Bent Melchior said he was unhappy with Goren's ruling , which removed the taint of illegitimacy from the Langers and permitted them to marry their fiances , because it did not solve the overall problem of mamzerut (illegitimacy) . The Rabbis action proved immensely popular with a majority of Israelis although it engendered bitterness among diehard conservatives in the rabbinate and in ultra-Orthodox circles . Leaders of the Agudath Israel of America at its 50th national convention in Atlantic City , N . J ., condemned Goren' s action and said the 1 , 000 Orthodox leaders attending the convention feel it will be necessary to review the entire status of Israel's official rabbinate as it is presently structured . Meanwhile , Rabbi Goren is under heavy police guard as a precaution against physical assaults by religious zealots.  Ashkenazic Chief Rabbi Shlomo Goren detailed to reporters at his home why he had decided that the stigma of bastardy should be lifted from Hanoch and Miriam Langer , the former halachic mamzerim who wed their fiances last week after a Goren appointed court cleared the brother and sister . Rabbi Goren explained that there was no conclusive proof that Abraham Borokovsky _, the first husband of the Langer's mother , had converted to Judaism , and thus his marriage was halachically void . Even if Borokovsky had converted , the Chief Rabbi continued , it was done for personal gain — to marry the Langer's mother — because he had returned to Christianity immediately after the supposed conversion and had baptized his son .  Quoting Maimonides and other commentators , Rabbi Goren said that a convert to Judaism who returns to his original religion is considered as never having been a Jew . Furthermore , Rabbi Goren said , the Langer's mother had converted to Christianity and prayed in church before marrying Borokovsky , making the supposedly Jewish ceremony halachically invalid . Finally , Rabbi Goren explained , Borokovsky had never taken his conversion to Judaism seriously , was unable to recite the Shma and did not know how to lay tefillin . Thus , Rabbi Goren concluded , Borokovsky was not a Jew , his marriage to the Langer's mother was invalid , and she was officially single and eligible to marry Langer and have children by him . Rabbi Goren said that an earlier appeal to the Supreme Rabbinical Court had failed because its members had been threatened by terrorists who had also launched a campaign of unbridled terror against him . If such activities are not checked , he warned , dayanim ( judges ) will be unable to rule dispassionately and their judgments will lose their credibility .Ultra-Orthodox residents of the Mea Shearim quarter publicly rent their garments to protest the Langer decision . At a demonstration called by Neturei Karta , an extremist group that does not recognize the Israeli government — a crowd listened for more than two hours to rabbis denouncing Rabbi Goren for alleged desecration of the Torah . At the request of one speaker , the protestors quietly cut their jacket lapels and shirts with scissors and knives and sat briefly on the ground in a gesture of mourning . Posters on Mea Shearim walls asserted that future decisions by Rabbi Goren would be considered void . The posters were signed by several rabbis , including Yosef Shalom Chishin , who resigned as senior judge of the Supreme Rabbinical Court last month to protest Rabbi Goren s election as Ashkenazic Chief Rabbi .

No comments :

Post a Comment

please use either your real name or a pseudonym.