LONDON (Jun. 24)
The need for Jewish teachers in the smaller communities throughout the British Commonwealth was emphasized here today by delegates from Rhodesia and other countries and by Jewish educational authorities in Britain as the second conference of Commonwealth Jewish leaders turned to consideration of religious problems facing the various communities. The delegates also stressed the threats of intermarriage and assimilation.
British Chief Rabbi Israel Brodie, who presided, said that Jewish education in Britain was religious in character and that there was resistance to any attempts to secularize it. He also thought that this was so throughout most of the Commonwealth. He opposed asking the Jewish Agency for funds for Jewish education in countries out-I side Israel, asserting that funds contributed to the Agency were primarily meant for Israel and that the Jews had a tradition of paying for the education of their own children.
Dr. M. Epstein, head of Jews College, proposed that the number of rabbinical students entering the school from the Commonwealth nations outside Britain should be increased and he praised South Africa for setting up scholarships for the education of such students. Other speakers suggested that the communities abroad select their own students for rabbinical training in Britain rather than accepting British rabbis for posts in their countries. Also advocated was an exchange of ministers among various communities and a proposal that rabbis spend several months in Israel before taking up religious duties.
At a session devoted to work among Jewish youth, G. Saron of South Africa explained that in his country there was no system of youth clubs and that the only movement was a Zionist one. There is need for reorientation in youth work, he suggested, adding that the problem was causing some concern. He also suggested the training of youth leaders in Israel.
Monroe Abbey of Canada reported on the growing influence of the YMHA movement in Canada and reported that the most vocal young Jews in Canada were very left-wing in their views and that because of this a schism bad developed in the youth movement. In this view he was supported by Saul Kanee, also of Canada, who suggested that youth work in that country would have to be started all over again, because of this situation.