New Orleans Court Rules Against Mixed Seating in Local Synagogue

Judge Frank J. Stitch of the local Civil District Court issued an injunction yesterday against mixed seating in the formerly Orthodox now Conservative Chevra Thillim Synagogue here.

The judge ruled that mixed seating was contrary to the objects and purposes for which the congregation had been organized and the conditions of the donation of Benjamin Rosenberg for the original building and the uptown site and building fund for the new edifice.

The evidence showed, Judge Stitch held, that the practice of separate seating was in effect since the congregation was founded in 1887 and that since mixed seating is in violation of Orthodox Polish Jewish ritual and ancient Orthodox forms and ceremony, its institution would violate the trust imposed by Mr. Rosenberg.

The injunction was sought by a minority group in the congregation after the majority voted for mixed seating. During the court proceedings, Rabbi Solomon J. Sharfman, president of the Rabbinical Council of America, testified that mixed seating was forbidden by Jewish law, citing Talmudic sources for his contention.

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