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Rabbi Jakobovitz Advises Orthodox to Counter Dissidence with Persuasion

Dr. Immanuel Jakobovitz, Chief Rabbi of the British Commonwealth, warned here last night that Orthodoxy must learn “in this democratic age,” that spiritual leaders cannot impose their authority by rules but “only by persuasion and winning over dissidents can their convictions prevail.” Dr. Jakobovitz spoke at the world conference of Ashkenazic and Sephardic synagogues which opened here Monday.

The conference also heard from Israel’s Ashkenazic Chief Rabbi Issahar Unterman, who opposed legislation for a unified Orthodox liturgy. Rabbi Unterman held that unification would come about of its own accord as a result of improved communications media.

The heads of the various delegations representing Orthodox congregations in America and other countries were received by President Zalman Shazar last night, and were later welcomed by Jerusalem’s Mayor Teddy Kollek at a reception at the Israel Museum. The wives of delegates who accompanied them to the conference met at a separate session this morning under the chairmanship of Mrs. Sarah Herzog, widow of Israel’s late Chief Rabbi. Later, the group toured East Jerusalem, visiting the West Wall and the sites of synagogues that were destroyed during the Jordanian occupation of the city.

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