Shenley Synagogue’s American-born rabbi, Natan Levy, has been forced to stop working until the United Synagogue can secure him a permit.
Rabbi Levy joined Shenley as part-time minister in 2008. He had planned to make aliyah this year but decided to remain with the Hertfordshire community.
However, his previous work permit related to his role running the Jewish responsibility unit at the London School of Jewish Studies, which ended in September.
Shenley chairman Anthony Harris wrote to members: “Due to the constraints of immigration law, until his application has been decided, the rabbi is not allowed to carry out his ministerial duties.
“It goes without saying that we hope the rabbi will receive his new work permit as quickly as possible.”
Delia Goldring, the US’s consultant human resources director, said: “The United Synagogue was made aware of this issue just before Succot by the London School of Jewish Studies, who had previously been Rabbi Levy’s main employer.
“It has therefore stepped in to do everything it can, including working with specialised immigration and employment lawyers, to ensure that a new work permit can be issued as soon as possible.”