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Britain’s new chief rabbi, Ephraim Mirvis, is sworn in

Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis with Prince Charles following Mirvis' induction ceremony as the chief rabbi of the United Hebrew Congregations of the UK and the Commonwealth at the St John's Wood Synagogue in London, Sept. 1, 2013. ( Photo by Stefan Rousseau - WPA Pool/Getty Images)

Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis with Prince Charles following Mirvis’ induction ceremony as the chief rabbi of the United Hebrew Congregations of the UK and the Commonwealth at the St John’s Wood Synagogue in London, Sept. 1, 2013. ( Photo by Stefan Rousseau – WPA Pool/Getty Images)

(JTA) — Britain’s new chief rabbi, Ephraim Mirvis, was sworn in in the presence of the heir to the British throne, Prince Charles.

Some 1,400 guests were present at Sunday’s ceremony at St. John’s Wood Synagogue in north London, in which Mirvis was sworn in as the chief rabbi of the United Hebrew Congregations of the Commonwealth.

It was the first time a member of the royal family had attended such a ceremony.

Rabbi Jonathan Sacks, who retired after 22 years in the chief rabbi post, participated in the rite.

Mirvis said he would work to enhance Jewish education, to build and strengthen Jewish communities and encourage social responsibility. He has said he will make uniting the branches of Judaism a priority.

Mirvis, a native of South Africa, is the former chief rabbi of Ireland. He is Britain’s 11th chief rabbi since 1704.

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