Israel prepares massive dismissal of insubordinate rabbis

"Rabbis, rabbinical judges and registrars employed by the state" are going to be replaced -- i.e. fired from their employment -- because of insubordination.

We agree that they should be shown the gate.

Their recalcitrance to accept the governmental conversion process is detrimental to the growth and well-being of the Jewish State and the Jewish People.
State to reform conversion process to counter rabbis' stringency
By Amiram Barkat

Rabbis, rabbinical judges and registrars employed by the state are becoming increasingly reluctant to acknowledge state-approved religious conversions, and the government intends to retaliate by implementing a far-reaching reform of the conversion process, officials who deal with conversions told Haaretz recently.

One example of this reluctance was the case of a woman whose conversion was recently annulled by the Ashdod Rabbinical Court, as reported last week.

The woman, who converted 15 years ago, was declared a non-Jew along with her children because she did not observe religious law.

The court also declared Rabbi Haim Druckman, the director of the government's Conversion Administration and the rabbi who performed the conversion, to be sinners who brought non-Jews into the Jewish community.

According to Rabbi Shaul Farber, founder of Itim (the Jewish Life Information and Advocacy Center), registrars in several religious councils have been instructed not to acknowledge conversion documents issued by the Conversion Administration.

Instead, they were ordered to direct the converts to a rabbinical court for further review.

Immigrant Absorption Minister Ze'ev Boim is therefore advocating the formation of an alternative conversion apparatus, independent of the rabbinical courts.

"Conversion should be entrusted to progressive rabbis who recognize the national importance of the matter and the immigrants' needs," he told Haaretz.

To address this issue, the director general of the Absorption Ministry, Erez Halfon, is currently drafting a reform of the Conversion Administration.

Halfon's reform committee is expected to propose unifying all institutions that deal with conversion under one administrative umbrella.

It will also advocate doubling the number of rabbinical judges who review conversions and appointing progressive rabbis to the panels.

"Rabbinical courts are intimidating converts as well as rabbis by setting unreasonable requirements," Halfon charged.

"For example, they even demand that converts' partners adopt a religious lifestyle," he continued.

The Conversion Administration was created by former prime minister Ariel Sharon, who sought to increase the number of converts within the Russian immigrant community.

Currently, the number of converts totals approximately 1,000 per year, which constitutes a 20 percent increase since the Conversion Administration was established.

But the state had hoped for more converts and is not satisfied with this figure.

1 comment:

Gil Student said...

I'll believe it when I see it.