[The purpose of the Digest is informative: Preference is given to papers not generally accessible to our readers. Quotation does not indicate approval–Editor.]
The recently created Synagogue Council of America is the subject of comment in the “Jewish Daily News” and the “Jewish Morning Journal,” orthodox dailies of New York.
A critical view of the Synagogue Council is taken by Gedaliah Bublick, editor of the “Jewish Daily News,” who devotes an article to the matter in the Nov. 12 issue. Believing that cooperation on matters affecting “national religious Jewish interests” is impossible between Orthodox, Reform and Conservative Jews, Mr. Bublick writes:
“We know that the views of the Reform. Orthodox and Conservative on Jewish national religious matters differ completely. How then can people who hold such autithetical opinions work to gether in the question proper on which they are divided? How can three groups mutually defend a proposition on which they are at variance?
“The three branches of American Judaism, Orthodoxy, Conservatism and Reform, each have a different conception as to what is Judaism and how Jewish religious life is to be conducted. These three groups cannot even unite on such an essential basis of national Jewish life as Kashruth.
“Reform, Orthodoxy and Conservatism cannot go hand in hand in any issue related to national religious Jewish life.’ They can only work together in the fields of charity, relief, the defense of Jewish interests against anti- Semitism, protection of Jewish rights, wherever it is possible. But for this purpose” Mr. Bublick contends “no new organizations are necessary. American Jews always cooperated and will continue to cooperate in charrity drives, relief drives, in a fight against the enemies of immigration, in all matters related to the Jews that are not connected with religious questions.”
A different opinion is voiced by the “Jewish Morning Journal.” Since the Synagogue Council will not interfere with the religious and administrative autonomy of each group, the paper feels it can accomplish good work.
“What some Jews will object to in this movement,” the paper points out, “is that it resembles the ‘Church Councils,’ more precisely, the Protestant Church Council of the American Christians. Some of these bodies do worthy work, even from the Jewish viewpoint, and certainly from a general human viewpoint. It is permissible for us to ‘imitate others’ in so far as form of organization is concerned, and every attempt at unity in the Jewish camp is welcome. But Jews are suspicious and jealous when it comes to matters of faith. And it will take time before the new organization will convince everyone of its usefulness through its good deeds.’