The Tzohar Rabbinical Organization praised the Knesset Law Committee after it approved the passage of the Giyur Bill on Monday 3 Marcheshvan. The bill, which would effectively transfer the authority for giyur to local rabbinical authorities in place of one central rabbinate thus opening the door to expedite thousands more conversions each year. Gedolim in in both the chareidi and dati leumi communities are adamantly against the bill, which they warn will divide the Jewish People and invalidate Chief Rabbinate of Israel giyur.
According to Tzohar Founder and President Rabbi David Stav, “This important decision will hopefully lead to a dramatic change in how Israel relates to Jewish conversions and in so doing help reverse the trend of assimilation that represents a painful scar within Israeli society today.”
The Tzohar organization further called on the Prime Minister to “act in the nation’s interest and lead the Government in finding an effective solution to the growing assimilation existent within our society.”
According to data recently released by Tzohar, over 700,000 Jews living in Israel are prohibited from marrying by the Chief Rabbinate because their Jewish ancestry cannot be easily verified and an additional 300,000 people living in Israel are non-Jews who are fully acclimating into Israeli society. “Without a comprehensive reform of the conversion process that will effectively determine these people’s halachic-Jewish status, the country will face a major threat to its Jewish identity represented by growing assimilation and marriage outside of the confines of Jewish law,” said Nachman Rosenberg, Executive Vice President of Tzohar.
(YWN – Israel Desk, Jerusalem)