Orthodox

Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis deals blow to women over partnership services

By Marcus Dysch, December 19, 2013

EXCLUSIVE

Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis has warned rabbis that partnership minyan services - where women can lead prayers - should not be permitted in Orthodox synagogues.

In a message sent to leading rabbis and rebbetzins on Wednesday evening, Rabbi Mirvis said the services were "not something that can take place within our synagogues".

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The holy hippy who got Arabs and Jews dancing

By Rabbi Gideon Sylvester, December 11, 2013

One of the most intriguing rabbinic characters of modern times was Rabbi Shlomo Carlebach; the charismatic outreach pioneer, storyteller, musician and hippy. His colourful career is the subject of a new biography by Natan Ophir.

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Daddy, can mummy light the candles too?

By Rabbi Natan Levy, November 24, 2013

Chanucah can celebrate insomnia. Last year, I returned home late from Trafalgar Square, to awaken a somniferous wife, who asked sleepily: “Why can’t I light for both of us?” Why can’t she? Gentle reader, let me tell you that story.

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Department for Education Inspectors target yeshivot

By Simon Rocker, November 21, 2013

Inspectors have been sent by the Department for Education into Hackney, north-east London as part of a drive to register strictly Orthodox yeshivot.

According to the law, children aged 16 and under must be taught in institutions officially recognised by the state.

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Halpern escapes charges on sex assault allegations

By Simon Rocker, November 21, 2013

The Union of Orthodox Hebrew Congregations has yet to say whether it is to reconvene a special rabbinic court to investigate the conduct of Rabbi Chaim Halpern following a Crown Prosecution Service decision not to charge him over allegations of sexual assualt.

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It’s the birth of a boom for the strictly Orthodox

By Simon Rocker, November 13, 2013

The latest set of vital statistics for British Jewry is again “a tale of two communities” — the strictly Orthodox gaining in strength while the rest of the population declines.

For a couple of decades or more, there were far more recorded deaths than births. But over the past two years, there have been 1,000 more annual births than deaths, largely due to the rise of the Charedim.

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Absence of Orthodox frees lawmakers to liberalise Israel

By Nathan Jeffay, November 7, 2013

On Sunday, the Knesset took the second major step in as many weeks to rein in the power that hard-line rabbis exert over the general population.

The government’s legislative committee threw its weight behind a bill to make conversion much more accessible. It will do so by decentralising conversion and empowering local, state rabbis to oversee the process.

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Candles (and Jews) blown out in Wales

By Isabelle Fraser , October 25, 2013

A group of Aberystwyth residents are up in arms over the exclusion of Orthodox Jews from their holiday homes.

Aberystwyth University has historically rented 150 student houses to members of Manchester’s Charedi community every August, for the past 20 years. This saw an influx of around a thousand Orthodox Jews to the area.

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The golden calf that Orthodoxy must slay

By Rabbi Dr Norman Solomon, October 20, 2013

After most of a century, I still get a thrill every time we recommence the Torah reading at the New Year, because I know it won’t be the same as last year. Partly it’s me — I’ve changed, I’ve learned something in the past year, so the way I read changes.

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School probed in exam row

By Simon Rocker, October 17, 2013

A strictly Orthodox girls’ school accused of censoring science questions in a GCSE paper this summer insists that it is complying with exam regulations.

The Oxford, Cambridge and RSA Board (OCR) confirmed this week that it had found that part of an exam paper had been “obscured” by the Yesodey Hatorah Senior Girls’ High School in Hackney, north-east London.

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