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Germany ordains 'first' rabbis
BBC News ^ | 09/14/2006

Posted on 09/14/2006 11:13:01 AM PDT by Republicain

A group of rabbis has been ordained in Germany for the first time since World War II and the destruction by the Nazis of the country's Jewish seminaries. Three Jewish graduates from the Abraham Geiger College in Potsdam were ordained in the eastern city of Dresden.

More than 100,000 Jews live in Germany but there is a dearth of rabbis - there are only about 25 of them serving 100 congregations, a BBC reporter says.

For years Germany has had to rely on rabbis imported from abroad.

The ordination took place in Dresden's new synagogue which was rebuilt after the fall of the Berlin Wall.

Daniel Alter of Germany was the first of the three men to be confirmed as rabbi.

He was soon joined by Tomas Kucera of the Czech Republic and South Africa's Malcolm Matitiani.

Mr Matitiani has been studying in Germany for the last five years.

After his ordination he is planning to go back to his synagogue in Cape Town.

He said he hoped the ordinations would help reintroduce Judaism to Europe and revive Jewish life.

"It's a triumph of the good in humanity over the evil of [the Nazi] period," he said.

Growing Jewish population

The last seminary, the Berlin-based College of Jewish Studies, was destroyed by the Nazis in 1942.

The Jewish community in Germany had some 600,000 registered members before the Holocaust and the war, the BBC's Tristana Moore in Berlin says.

Thanks to an influx of Jewish immigrants from the former Soviet Union, Germany has the fastest-growing Jewish population in Europe, our correspondent says.

Community leaders are hoping that the ordinations in Dresden will pave the way for more home-grown rabbis.


TOPICS: Culture/Society; Foreign Affairs; Germany; News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: europe; germany; jew; rabbis

1 posted on 09/14/2006 11:13:03 AM PDT by Republicain
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To: Republicain

Imported Rabbis? Are they better than the domestic variety?........


2 posted on 09/14/2006 11:15:28 AM PDT by Red Badger (Is Castro dead yet?........)
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To: Red Badger

Not if "Made in China", I presume.


3 posted on 09/14/2006 11:17:39 AM PDT by Republicain
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To: Republicain

....Funny, you don't look Jewish........(old Joke)......


4 posted on 09/14/2006 11:21:32 AM PDT by Red Badger (Is Castro dead yet?........)
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To: Red Badger
....Funny, you don't look Jewish........(old Joke)......

...it's because my parents were so poor they couldn't afford a sharp knife...(a not-quite-as-old joke).

5 posted on 09/14/2006 11:24:37 AM PDT by ElkGroveDan (The California Republican Party needs Arnold the way a drowning man needs an anvil.)
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To: Red Badger

They get in through Germany's porous southern border. They show up to pick fruit and become rabbis.


6 posted on 09/14/2006 11:32:28 AM PDT by em2vn
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To: Republicain
When I first read the headline, I thought it said "Germany ordains first rabbits." And then I thought, "yea, they would do that."
7 posted on 09/14/2006 11:34:28 AM PDT by waimea.man
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To: em2vn

Oh, Then they're just doing the bris that Germans won't do?......


8 posted on 09/14/2006 11:36:10 AM PDT by Red Badger (Is Castro dead yet?........)
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To: Red Badger

Very, very good. Were those the words of German President Busch?


9 posted on 09/14/2006 11:40:11 AM PDT by em2vn
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To: ElkGroveDan

So, what's makes you so special you think you need sharp?


10 posted on 09/14/2006 11:40:37 AM PDT by Old Professer (The critic writes with rapier pen, dips it twice, and writes again.)
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To: em2vn

Germans, always kvetching about somting!.........


11 posted on 09/14/2006 11:41:31 AM PDT by Red Badger (Is Castro dead yet?........)
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To: Alouette; SJackson

ping


12 posted on 09/14/2006 11:42:52 AM PDT by darkangel82 (Higher visibility leads to greater zottability.)
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To: em2vn

..........oi, vay....!! why three rabbis....?
there is an old Jewish expression....

"you have two rabbis, you get three opinions....!"

wonder how many opinions you get with three rabbis..??
considering the results of Herr Hitler's
"final solution" to the Jewish "problems"
in Germany at that time, I'm surprised that anybody
would even want to be ordained a Rabbi in Germany
in this day and age.....
in any event,...."L'Chaim.....!!"* and congratulations
to them all....!!

*"To life....!!"


13 posted on 09/14/2006 11:56:57 AM PDT by Thunderchief F-105
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To: Republicain; 1st-P-In-The-Pod; A_Conservative_in_Cambridge; af_vet_rr; agrace; albyjimc2; ...
He said he hoped the ordinations would help reintroduce Judaism to Europe and revive Jewish life.

Jews have been doing that in Europe since, like, 1945, and in the former Soviet Union since 1990.

Where's this guy been hiding and what's he been doing?

FRmail me to be added or removed from this Judaic/pro-Israel/Russian Jewry ping list.

Warning! This is a high-volume ping list.

14 posted on 09/14/2006 12:02:18 PM PDT by Alouette (Psalms of the Day: 104-105)
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To: Republicain
Chabad has 14 centers in different cities in Germany.
15 posted on 09/14/2006 12:32:19 PM PDT by Alouette (Psalms of the Day: 104-105)
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To: Republicain
The revival of the Jewish community in Germany is a triumph of good over unthinkable evil, though it is not without mixed vibes.

The presense of a fair number of Jews there demonstrates that Hitler's "Final Solution" was a failure, that the current German government and prime minister have been moving away from the heinous policies of the past, and that fears about a return of a reunified Germany to its antisemitic roots (prevalent especially in Jewish circles c. 1990) have been disspelled.

On the other hand, one would have to think that Jews living in Germany today must find it awkward and eery to know that they are daily among perpetrators of the Holocaust and their linear descendants.

16 posted on 09/14/2006 12:59:19 PM PDT by justiceseeker93
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To: justiceseeker93
...that the current German government and prime minister have been moving away from the heinous policies of the past,...

Sorry for the nitpicking, but: Germany is a federal republic, not a unitary state. The single German states have prime ministers (Ministerpräsidenten), the German nation has a chancellor.

On the other hand, one would have to think that Jews living in Germany today must find it awkward and eery to know that they are daily among perpetrators of the Holocaust and their linear descendants.

The problem with the "linear descendant" thing is: The further you go back in time the more ancestors you have to take the blame for ;-).
17 posted on 09/14/2006 3:46:23 PM PDT by wolf78
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To: justiceseeker93
they are daily among perpetrators of the Holocaust and their linear descendants.

Since the very youngest Germans who were of legal age during the Nazi era are now in their 80's there are very few of these possible perps left. As for descendants, holding them responsible would be to hold them attainted, and bills of attainder are properly unconstitutional. The concept of racial guilt is an abomination which has been a source of genocide through history.

18 posted on 09/14/2006 3:47:56 PM PDT by Lucius Cornelius Sulla
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To: Lucius Cornelius Sulla

Still, must be freaky...I sometimes imagine how it might be as a Jewish kid in Germany, living a normal childhood, going through Kindergarten, and when I turn 12 or something, SURPRISE!


19 posted on 09/14/2006 3:55:22 PM PDT by Schweinhund
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To: Republicain

It's a shame it took sixty years...


20 posted on 09/14/2006 3:55:58 PM PDT by Androcles (All your typos are belong to us)
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To: Androcles

> It's a shame it took sixty years...

Yes, but I forgive the Jews for it -.-


21 posted on 09/14/2006 3:59:55 PM PDT by Schweinhund
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To: Lucius Cornelius Sulla
I don't argue with your contentions that (1) there are relatively few Holocaust perpetrators remaining in the German population, and (2) descendants of those people are not responsible nor legally accountable for the crimes of their elders.

The point was essentially psychological as to the effects of that history on Jews living in Germany today.

22 posted on 09/14/2006 6:39:55 PM PDT by justiceseeker93
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To: wolf78
You are correct. I was referring to the current German chancellor and complimenting her for setting an example of decency toward Germany's Jews and toward Israel, especially in view of the recent invasion of Moslems into Germany (as elsewhere in Europe).
23 posted on 09/14/2006 6:54:55 PM PDT by justiceseeker93
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To: justiceseeker93
I agree with your main point that this rebirth is welcome and agree that this history could be disquieting -- I guess it shows that people can get beyond even the most terrible history due to strength and resiliency.
24 posted on 09/14/2006 6:58:06 PM PDT by Lucius Cornelius Sulla
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