Woman is No Bar to Rabbi’s Candidacy

The Chief Rabbinate has given Rabbi Yisrael Lau permission to stand for election as Ashkenazic chief rabbi of Tel Aviv, where the electoral body now includes a woman.

Lau, who is chief rabbi of Netanya, is considered the leading candidate for the prestigious post. But although a liberal within the context of Orthodox Judaism, he was reluctant to enter his name, because of the possibility the Chief Rabbinate would raise objections to a woman elector.

The Jerusalem rabbinate was indeed unhappy. But it agreed to let Lau run, because a less suitable rabbi might be appointed if he does not.

In an unrelated development, the Jerusalem rabbinate has canceled the kashrut license of the Conservative movement’s youth hostel on Agron Street.

No explanation was given. The hostel has had a kashrut license since it started operating 14 years ago.

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