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Third of American Rabbinate is in U.S. Armed Forces, Rabbinical Convention is Told

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Rabbi Robert Gordis of New York was today elected president of the Rabbinical Assembly of America, the central body of Conservative rabbis, which is holding its 44th annual convention here.

Rabbi Louis Levitsky, retiring president, reported at the convention that the synagogues are faced with a man-power shortage since one-third of the American rabbinate – about 250 – are in the armed forces, while another 50 are being processed. Rabbis are being forced, he said, to devote time to congregations other than own, in order to meet the spiritual needs of the communities.

Dr. Louis Finklestein, president of the Jewish Theological Seminary of America, disclosed plans for an expansion of that institution. Dr. Mordecai Kaplan, stressed that in any expansion plans the question of raising educational standards must be taken into consideration in order that select young men might be trained to assume leadership.

Other officers elected were: Dr. Israel Goldman, vice-president; Dr. Arthur H. Neulander, treasurer; Dr. Elias Charry, recording secretary, and Dr. Herman Cohen, corresponding secretary. Dr. Louis Ginsberg, dean of American Talmudists, and the outstanding scholar on the Talmud in the country, was honored during the convention at a dinner marking his 70th birthday.

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