May 20, 2024
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May 20, 2024
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Jerusalem—Following several years of lobbying and publicity efforts, the Tzohar Rabbinical Organization celebrated a historic legislative victory recently when the Knesset passed the “Tzohar Law.”  In October, the newly elected chief rabbinate had attempted to block the legislation.

Now couples across Israel will be allowed to apply for marriage licenses in any local rabbinate in Israel. Previously, the couple could only marry in the rabbinical jurisdiction where either the bride or groom officially resided and where the local rabbinate functioned as mini-monopolies, which caused widespread resentment among both religious and secular couples. In addition to severe bureaucratic obstacles, many ultra-Orthodox local rabbis prohibit Zionist rabbis from performing weddings. This behavior causes thousands of secular couples to prefer civil ceremonies in Cyprus and Prague instead of Jewish marriage in Israel. These couples are usually unaware that their children will find it almost impossible to prove their Jewish roots in the future.

“This breakthrough is a historical victory for the future of the State of Israel and the Jewish people,” said Rabbi David Stav, founder and president of the Tzohar Rabbinical Organization.” Many people are unaware that Israel is suffering from a wave of mass assimilation and intermarriage. This is mostly due to bureaucratic factors rather than halachic challenges. Tzohar rabbis are devoted to removing any and all administrative obstacles, while remaining one hundred percent committed to halacha. We have a historic responsibility to preserve the future of the Jewish people. We cannot afford to sit by and lose a single Jewish family. This law is also a major breakthrough in Tzohar’s efforts to fight for the legitimacy of hundreds of North American community rabbis who are fully committed to halacha and devote their nights and days to preservation of the Jewish people.”

Since its founding in 1996, Tzohar volunteers have assisted more than 90,000 secular brides and grooms throughout their Jewish marriage process, as well as numerous other national Jewish identity initiatives.

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