Lord Jonathan Sacks

Multifaith Chief Rabbi

By Simon Rocker, September 7, 2010

The Chief Rabbi is a man of many parts, apparently more than most of us know.

The Times reported that leading the attack on Stephen Hawking's claim that God did not create the universe was "the Chief Rabbi, Lord Sacks, the leader of the Roman Catholic Church in England and Wales, and one of Britain's most senior imams."

More..

Lord Sacks ponders issues of faith

By Simon Rocker, September 2, 2010

The Chief Rabbi Lord Sacks says he has put his faith "on the line" for his annual Rosh Hashanah broadcast this year when it goes out on BBC1 onSunday night.

Entitled The Case for God? the programme features him in conversation with four of Britain's "cleverest" critics of religion - as he calls them.

Three are Jewish - Howard Jacobson, Alain de Botton and Lisa Jardine. The fourth, neurobiologist Colin Blakemore, argues that science has made religion irrelevant.

At one point, the Chief Rabbi is asked by Howard Jacobson whether he is sure there is a God.

More..

Chief Rabbi set to represent all faith communities

By Simon Rocker, September 2, 2010

The Chief Rabbi, Lord Sacks, has been asked to give the response at the Pope's main interfaith meeting during his state visit to Britain in two weeks' time.

Pope Benedict will address leaders of the country's faiths at St Mary's University College, Twickenham, a Catholic teacher training institution that is part of Surrey University.

More..

Sacks 'dismayed' by Cameron's Gaza comments

August 12, 2010

Chief Rabbi Lord Sacks has attacked David Cameron's description of Gaza as a "prison camp".

Lord Sacks said many in the Jewish community felt "dismay" about the Prime Minister's remarks and urged him to show more "balance" when discussing the conflict in the Middle East.

He made the comments when he addressed the congregation in St John's Wood Synagogue last Shabbat.

More..

Interfaith support for opposition to food labelling

By Robyn Rosen, July 15, 2010

Muslim leaders have joined the concern expressed over new EU regulations which mean kosher and halal meat will be labelled “meat from slaughter without stunning”.

The European Parliament voted in favour of the amendment to the provision of food information to consumers last month, just two weeks after New Zealand banned the kosher slaughter of animals.

The decision, which only applies to food killed by religious slaughter, was widely condemned by the Jewish community with Henry Grunwald, chairman of Shechita UK, calling it “discriminatory”,

More..

Beth Din stalls organ donation drive

By Simon Rocker, July 15, 2010

The founder of a campaign to encourage Orthodox Jews to carry organ donor cards has voiced frustration at the time taken by the Chief Rabbi to issue new guidelines on the subject.

Lord Sacks's office said its views on organ donation would be available before Rosh Hashanah.

But Robert Berman, who runs the Halachic Organ Donor Society (Hods), said he had been led to believe that the policy was due out last August.

More..

Young leader Marc Weinberg mourned

By Jessica Elgot, July 8, 2010

The Chief Rabbi Lord Sacks has paid tribute to Marc Weinberg, the former executive director of Bnei Akiva and co-founder of the London School of Jewish Studies, who died last Thursday in Israel of leukaemia, aged 35.

Lord Sacks described him as "one of the outstanding leaders of his generation" whose "vision, faith, passion and compassion drew people to him, and he drew the best from them. In a short life he wrote a long chapter in the story of our people in our time. He will be deeply mourned and long remembered."

More..

Chief Rabbi praises young volunteers

June 17, 2010

The Chief Rabbi lauded the achievements of young volunteers at the annual Yoni Jesner Awards, named in memory of a Bnei Akiva leader killed in a terrorist attack in Israel in 2002.

Lord Sacks and Marsha Gladstone, Yoni Jesner's mother, presented awards at St John's Wood Synagogue to year-eight pupils involved in the scheme, which promotes volunteering within the community and in wider society.

Recipients have assisted causes ranging from residential homes for the elderly to environmental projects.

More..

Chief Rabbi: 'I did my best for women'

June 10, 2010

The Chief Rabbi, Lord Sacks, has defended his efforts to improve equality for women during nearly two decades in office.

His record was challenged by June Jacobs, a former president of the International Council of Jewish Women, at questions tabled following a lecture the Chief Rabbi gave to the Institute for Jewish Policy Research in London this week.

More..

Chief Rabbi opens Lubavitch centre

By Robyn Rosen, June 10, 2010

Officially opening the £1.5 million Lubavitch Children's Centre in Stamford Hill on Monday, Lord Sacks said he became a rabbi because of the Lubavitch movement.

The Chief Rabbi told more than 150 guests: "In April 1968, I attended the opening of the first Lubavitch building with others and it was the connection made at that wonderful occasion that drew myself and Elaine [Lady Sacks] into the ambit of Chabad Lubavitch. And it changed our lives. I would not be a rabbi, let alone the Chief Rabbi, if Lubavitch did not hold out its hand to me.

More..