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Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis, former chief rabbi of Ireland, named Britain’s next chief rabbi

(JTA) — Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis, the spiritual leader of one of the largest congregations in London and a former chief rabbi of Ireland, was named Britain’s chief rabbi-designate.

The appointment of Mirvis, 55, of the Finchley Synagogue, was announced Monday by the United Synagogue, an umbrella organization for Britain’s 65 Orthodox communities, the Jewish Chronicle reported.

He will be Britain’s 11th chief rabbi, succeeding Rabbi Jonathan Sacks, who has served in the post since 1991. Sacks will step down in September after announcing his retirement two years ago.

Mirvis served as the chief rabbi of Ireland from 1985 to 1996. He also is qualified as a shochet, mohel and cantor.

The South Africa native comes from a family of rabbis and teachers, according to the newspaper.

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