Montreal (Jun. 29)
President Truman’s establishment of an investigatory Committee on Civil Rights was commended last night in a resolution adopted at the closing session of the annual convention of the Central Conference of American Rabbis, and the hope was expressed that after the committee makes its report several months hence the President will set up a “permanent commission to safeguard the civil rights of American citizens of political, social or religious minorities.”
The convention also voted to engage a permanent executive secretary for its Commission on Justice and Peace, because of “the growing importance of its activities in the field of social justice and peace.” It also established a new Committee on Religion and Pastoral Psychiatry. Support of the national United Jewish Appeal was urged in another resolution.
A new code of confirmation was set up following the recommendations of a special committee headed by Rabbi Albert T. Bilgray, of McKeesport, Pa. It calls for confirmation for both boys and girls between the ages of 15 and 17, after a minimum of four years attendance in religious schools. The new code, which sets a higher standard for religious training of children, urges that all confirmation ceremonies be held during the Sabbath of Shavous.
Dr. Abraham J. Feldman, of Hartford, Conn., was elected president of the CCAR, to succeed Dr. Abba Hillel Silver. Dr. Feldman, in addition to his rabbinic duties, edits the Hartford Jewish Ledger. Other officers elected were Dr. Jacob R. Marcus, of Cincinnati, professor of history at the Hebrew Union College, vice-president; Rabbi Isaac E. Marcuson, of Macon, Ga., administrative secretary; Rabbi Sidney L. Regner, of Reading, Pa., finance secretary; and Rabbi Phineas Smoller, of Chicago, treasurer.