The Chief Rabbinate’s Latest Power Grab

Once again, Israel’s Chief Rabbinate is showing no understanding of Diaspora Jewry and the path of destruction they are sowing in the global Jewish world.

from The Jerusalem Post:

New marriage license guidelines

New directives issued by the Chief Rabbinate demand that marriage registrars send any person whose parents’ wedding was not performed by a rabbinate-recognized body to a full-fledged “inquiry into their Judaism” at a rabbinical court.

Hundreds of thousands of Israelis, including many immigrants – from Western countries as well as from the former Soviet Union – fall into that category.

… “This is another attempt to add another layer of bureaucracy. Instead of the chief rabbinate playing a role in bringing people closer to Judaism, they’re succeeding in creating a feeling of estrangement,” said Jewish Agency Chairman Natan Sharansky Tuesday night.

Some American Jewish organizations were particularly incensed by the new instructions.

“We await clarifications, but at first glance, speaking out of a deep desire for intra-Jewish dialogue, this looks like a power grab of breathtaking scale,” said Dr. Ed Rettig of the American Jewish Committee. “We may hope and pray that someone in the system will wake up to the dangers [that] this new policy [poses] to the credibility of the Chief Rabbinate in the world Jewish community.”

One senior American organizational official who asked not to be named slammed the rabbinate as “behaving more like bishops than rabbis.”

“Don’t they understand how much damage they are doing in the Diaspora when they behave like they can do to Jews whatever they like?” he said to the Post on Tuesday. “This is un-Jewish and not smart.”