Mechalel Shabbos Café Opens in Beit HaKerem Neighborhood of Jerusalem


The café operating in the Vaad Building in the Beit HaKerem neighborhood of Jerusalem has been open on Shabbos for two weeks. The rav of the neighborhood, Rabbi David Shapira, sent a shaliach on Shabbos and verified the Bar Café was operating. Now, he is turning to the chareidi city councilmen to assist in closing down the Shabbos operation.

In his letter sent last week to the chareidi councilmen, Rav Shapira points out the area used by the café belongs to the matnas (community center) of Beit HaKerem, but communications between him and the community center have broken down. He is asking the councilmen who exactly is the decision-maker here, as the premises is under the responsibility of the community center.

Rabbi Shapira also seeks to learn if and what agency is providing kashrus supervision for the café, adding his fears that if permitted to operate on Shabbos; after a period of time, other stores may follow suit chas v’sholom.

The chareidi councilmen in the city have already brought the matter to the attention of Mayor Moshe Leon and city director-general, Itzik Lari.

In an official response, Jerusalem City Halls released a statement, “We will maintain the status quo in the city as agreed and decided”.

The Beit HaKerem Cooperative added: “The establishment serves all residents of the neighborhood and others, even on weekends. There is a hot water pot and a [Shabbos] platta, and the option to pay with coupons.”

(YWN Israel Desk – Jerusalem)