Rabbis' rage after judge insists that a girl of 10 can convert

By Jennifer Lipman, August 9, 2012

Rabbis have criticised a judge for ruling that a Jewish 10-year-old from Essex can convert to Christianity against the wishes of her mother and all four grandparents.


Reform conversions are on the rise again

By Simon Rocker, June 28, 2012

The Reform movement is expecting a rise in conversions of more than a quarter this year — what may be its highest number on record.

Conversions are projected to reach 190 by the end of the year, compared with 144 cases — 105 adults and 39 children — last year. The Beth Din has already had to lay on two extra sessions to cope with the demand and is fully booked until January.


Tabick achieves another first at Reform Beit Din

By Simon Rocker, February 23, 2012

Once Britain's first woman rabbi, Jackie Tabick is now the first female convenor of the Reform movement's Beit Din, following the retirement of Rabbi Rodney Mariner.

She will take up the part-time post in April, while continuing her congregational role as rabbi of North-West Surrey Reform Synagogue.

Rabbi Tabick will oversee the authority at a time of increased applications for conversion.


Drew, our Jewish wedding singer

By Julie Burchill, February 3, 2012

So Drew Barrymore may be converting to Judaism. Perhaps when she marries art consultant Will Kopelman in a traditional Jewish ceremony later this year, Adam Sandler will be the best man and seafood will be noticeable by its absence at the bridal buffet.


Keeping the faith - or a marriage of convenience?

By Jessica Elgot, February 2, 2012

In Rabbi Jonathan Romain's conversion class, there have been couples converting together, religious Christians, an ex-Muslim convert, policemen, soldiers and housewives.

But although converts come to him from all walks of life, as the Movement for Reform Judaism's conversion expert Rabbi Romain has identified some key trends.


Algerian convert wins deportation appeal

By Simon Rocker, October 19, 2011

An Algerian asylum-seeker who was threatened with deportation has won temporary respite after a judge granted him leave to remain in Britain.

But Krim Aitziane, 49, still faces an uncertain future after the Home Office said that it would contest the immigration tribunal ruling.

A spokesman for the Home Office said: "We are extremely disappointed with the court's judgment and we are appealin


Algerian Liberal convert now faces deportation

By Simon Rocker, June 16, 2011

An asylum-seeker from Algeria who converted to Judaism in the UK is facing deportation after being detained by immigration officials this week.

Jews from Birmingham and Leicester are concerned for Krim Aitziane, who was removed from the Midlands to a detention centre near Gatwick on Monday.

Mr Aitziane, thought to be 49, received a Liberal conversion in the UK, but dresses strictly Orthodox


Conversions cause political storm

By Anshel Pfeffer, December 16, 2010

The Knesset voted unanimously on Wednesday in favour of a law affirming the conversions carried out by the IDF's rabbinate, despite warnings by the Charedi parties of a political crisis.

The Shas leader, Interior Minister Eli Yishai, said following the vote that: "If the law goes ahead, we will consider leaving the coalition".

Shas and United Torah Judaism both oppose the law which will give conversions performed in the IDF the same status as those carried out by the civilian conversion courts of the Chief Rabbinate.


Hall of Fame: Leonardo DiCaprio

December 6, 2010

"Leo's sudden intense interest in Israel, its culture and religion is the clearest sign yet that he intends to marry Bar.

"He is looking into converting for her."


Israel's conversion crisis was fabricated

By Nathan Jeffay, November 18, 2010

Israel's converts can breathe a sigh of relief -a new conversion crisis has been averted.

Two months ago in the High Court, a lawyer representing the state cast doubt on Jewishness of the 4,500 people who had converted through the military. Its objection was procedural: while civilian conversions pass the desk of Shlomo Amar, the Sephardic chief rabbi, IDF conversions do not.