Religion Magazine

Thoughts on the Jerusalem Chief Rabbinate Race

By Gldmeier @gldmeier
thoughts on the chief rabbinate of Jerusalem elections:
 - Rav Moshe Chaim Lau has now lost two chief rabbinate races in just a few months. It is clear the only reason he was imported to the Jerusalem race was because of his family name giving him a chance to win. Jerusalem has plenty of qualified rabbis.
 - to continue that thought, with Rav Lau having now lost two chief rabbi races, will he be marked as a "loser" and end up with no further opportunities? Will his family connections prevent that? Is he "big" enough for this to not happen? Peres was branded a "loser", but that did not prevent him from running and eventually winning...
 - Rav Shlesinger saved himself the loss by pulling out, though that situation was dirty. UTJ should have backed him instead of Lau considering his loyalty to UTJ leadership, his standing in the Jerusalem rabbinate, and his many years of experience and reputation. All this makes the original point clear to me that Rabbi Lau was only brought in because of his name. Perhaps all this was maneuvered in order to save Rav Shlesinger's reputation.
 - the entire method of rabbinic elections needs to be somehow reformed. It is too political, too dirty, and that is not how rabbinics should be determined.
 - the Sefardi situation is just strange, with Shas and Rav Amar's alternating cold and hot relationship.
 - may the winners serve Jerusalem, Israel and the Jewish people with honor and dignity.
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