A chief rabbi for dialogue

UJA Federation of Greater Toronto leaders urge Netanyahu to support David Stav or risk weakening the state of Israel

Dear Mr. Prime Minister,

We are writing to you about the forthcoming election for Ashkenazi Chief Rabbi and the implications of this election for Diaspora Jewry.

Since Israel’s creation, the Israel-Diaspora relationship has been evolving and maturing into a true partnership basted on mutual expectations, mutual respect and mutual understanding. Each partner has so much to contribute to each other and, most importantly, to the sacred cause of Jewish Peoplehood.

The strength of our partnership, indeed, the strength of the Jewish People, depends on inclusiveness — our collective commitment of provide a place setting for every Jew who is truly devoted to the wellbeing of our Jewish state.

That is why it is so important for Israeli’s Ashkenazi Chief Rabbi, whose decisions touch Jewish lives everywhere, to demonstrate a spirit of inclusivity and a deep desire to bring Jews in every corner of the world closer to Jewish life, Jewish tradition and the Jewish People, rather than driving them further away.

If the Chief Rabbi’s policies and pronouncements create contempt for Judaism, disillusionment with Judaism or disenfranchisement from Judaism, the State of Israel will weaken and the Jewish People will suffer.

As representatives of the remarkably diverse Greater Toronto Jewish community, whose historic bond to Israel is indestructible, we urge you to support the candidacy of Rabbi David Stav in the upcoming election. We believe that his tenure as Chief Ashkenazi Rabbi would begin a new era of dialogue, openness and understanding.

The relationship between the Chief Rabbi and those whom he serves requires substantial change. Otherwise, we, as a people, risk growing alienation from the customs, values and religious traditions that have sustained us for thousands of years.

Now is the time for change to take place. We urge you to seize the opportunity.

Respectfully submitted,

Richard Venn
Chair of the Board

Ted Sokolsky
President & CEO

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