The Orthodox Conversion Agreement

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-Rabbi Marc Angel calls the recent RCA deal with Israel’s Chief Rabbinate “a complete capitulation� to haredi standards. But others defend it. (The Jewish Week)

-Rabbi Haskel Lookstein, one of Modern Orthodoxy’s elder statesmen says, “I am very much afraid of this system. The RCA is making it more difficult for people to convert just as the Chief Rabbinate has made it more difficult for people to convert in Israel. We are replicating their mistakes.� (The Jewish Week)

-But Moshe Kletenik defends it: “it ensures that its converts will be assured that their status as Jews will not be questioned in the future, whether in Israel or in other major mainstream Orthodox communities….it introduces long overdue standardization and comprehensive record-keeping into the conversion process.� (The Jerusalem Post)

-Rabbi Barry Freundel makes “The case for ‘centralized’ conversions� saying that it standardizes the procedure, while Rabbis Marc Angel and Avi Weiss say this is “Taking power away from the rabbis.� (The Jewish Week)

-And Rabbi Moshe Kletenik decries the criticisms as “incorrect. Worse yet, such critics are publicly undermining a long overdue and eminently reasonable solution that would facilitate the acceptance of such converts into the Jewish people and faith.� (NJ Jewish News)

Posted on March 24, 2008

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