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Rabbis tell congregants to shun JW3 over ‘activities against halachah’

The protest was triggered by the centre’s 'GayW3 Week' of special activities

    JW3 has come under fresh attack from a group of Orthodox rabbis who have told their members to shun the London Jewish community centre .

    It follows a letter of denunciation earlier this year believed to have been prompted by the centre’s “GayW3 Week” of special activities.

    The new notice, which has been circulated to members of a number of Ashkenazi and Sephardi synagogues in north-west London, claims that certain programmes and activities at the centre “promote a way of life which is in total contradiction to Orthodox Judaism and halachah”.

    It says “members of our community should distance themselves fully from JW3, its activities and services and refrain from visiting JW3 even for recreational purposes only.”

    The 25 signatories include Rabbi Yisroel Meir Greenberg of Golders Green Beth Hamedrash, commonly known as Munks, and Rabbi Shimon Winegarten of Bridge Lane Beth Hamedrash – two of the most prominent steiblach in Golders Green; Dayan Abraham David, of the Sephardi Od Yosef Hai community in Hendon; and Rabbi Aaron Bassous, of Beth Hamedrash Knesset Yechezkel, a Sephardi congregation in Golders Green affiliated to the Union of Orthodox Hebrew Congregation.

    However, a spokesman for the S & P Sephardi Community said they understood  that Dayan David had not authorised the use of his signature. Dayan David sits on the Sephardi Beth Din, which is responsible for licensing the kosher restaurant at JW3, Zest.

    The names of the four rabbis were among seven which appeared on the earlier letter, which accused the centre of  “launching campaigns and initiatives that promote lifestyles and behaviours forbidden and condemned by the Torah”. 

    The latest letter states it is “not intended… for circulation outside the strictly Orthodox communities of the UK”.

     

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