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February 29, 1980 - Image 16

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1980-02-29

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

16 Friday, February 29, 1980

THE DETROIT JEWISH NEWS

Reform Seek Recognition for Its
Rabbis to Register Marriages

its rabbis, under law, as re-
gistrars of marriages.
Abu-Hatzeira, a member
of the National Religious
Party, is expected to reject
the request, in which case
the Progressive movement
said it would appeal to the
Israeli Supreme Court.
Marriages and all other
Jewish religious functions
relating to family life in Is-
rael are the exclusive do-
main of the Orthodox rab-
binate. The Progressives
announced their request tc
the Ministry of Religions
and their intention to•go to
the high court, at the open-
ing here last week of the
21st conference of the World
Union for Progressive
Judaism.
In its request to Abu-
Hatzeira, the Reform
movement noted that
several bodies other than
the Chief Rabbinate of
Israel are recognized by
law as registrars of mar-
riages. These are, apart
from the Christian, Mos-
lem and Druze denomi-
nations, the Rabbinical
Council of the Agudat Is-
rael — which does not
recognize the Chief Rab-
binate — and the court of
the Eda Haredit in
Jerusalem which does
not recognize the legiti-
macy of the state of Israel
in many respects.
The Reform movement

JERUSALEM (JTA —
The World Union for Pro-
gressive Judaism, repre-
senting Reform Jewry in
the United States and
around the world, has asked
Israeli Religious Affairs
Minister Aharon Abu-
Hatzeira for recognition of

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request by the Security
Council on Monday that the
mayor of Hebron, Fahed
Kawasme, be allowed to
come to New York to take
part in the ongoing debate
in the Council on Israel's
policy in the West Bank and

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its decision in principle to
allow Jews to settle in Heb-
ron.
In a letter to Secretary
General Kurt Waldheim,
Yehuda Blum, Israel's am-
bassador to the UN, said his
government decided not to
permit the mayor of Hebron
"to travel abroad at this
time."
Noting that Israel has fol-
lowed "a liberal policy" re-
garding the travel abroad of
the residents of Gaza, Judea
and Samaria, and that "Mr.
Kawasme himself has been
the beneficiary of this lib-
eral approach on numerous
occasions," Blum said that
"the purpose of his
(Kawasme) trip on this oc-
casion will be to lend sup-
port to Israel's avowed
enemies ... in their unre-
lenting political warfare
against Israel."
Earlier, Blum had
criticized the Arab states
for rushing to the Secu-
rity Council for support
of their "diversionary
and belligerent" goals
every time there was tan-
gible progress towards
Middle East peace.
On Sunday, for the second
time in two weeks, the Is-
raeli Cabinet postponed a
decision on how to resettle
Jews into Hebron.

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has asked that two Reform
rabbis be similarly recog-
nized according to regula-
tions that the Minister of
Religions is empowered to
issue.
"We will never agree to a
situation in which the
Jewish state, for coalition
considerations, gives
exclusivity to one stream in
Judaism," declared Rabbi
Richard Hirsch, Secretary
General of the World Union.
Hirsch, who has lived in Is-
rael for several years, re-
presents the world Reform
movement on the World
Zionist Organization
Executive.
He and other Reform
rabbis cited the recent
marriage of Detroiter
Karen Dickstein and
Howard Levine, both of
Kibutz Yahel, which was
solemnized by a Reform
rabbi, Adi Assavi and
then duly registered by
the Chief Rabbi of Eilat,
Moshe Hadaya. They
said that later Hadaya
was pressured into an-
nouncing that he would
not register such mar-
riages in the future.
For this reason, the Re-
form leaders explained,
they felt they could no
longer rely on the good will
of the Orthodox registrars
and must demand the right
for Reform rabbis to become
"register authorities."

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