Rabbi Perry Tirschwell vows to return the movement to its roots, and live up to its name.
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Rabbi Perry Tirschwell became executive director of the National Council of Young Israel on Aug. 1 and vowed to revitalize the organization after an upheaval that saw a motion of no confidence in the leadership and threats by congregants to withhold donations.
Constitutional change on contentious issue a top priority for new directors.
Delegates representing 140 Young Israel congregations in the United States voted overwhelmingly last week to amend the constitution of their parent body, stripping it of the right to seize the assets of any member congregation that seeks to resign, is expelled or dissolved.
Delegates voted overwhelmingly to amend constitution after rebellion in 100-year-old organization.
(Adds comments from Young Israel officers and leaders of member synagogues, details about amendment process.)
Delegates representing 140 Young Israel congregations in the United States voted overwhelmingly Tuesday evening to amend the constitution of their parent body, stripping it of the right to seize the assets of any member congregation that seeks to resign, is expelled or dissolved.
Number of dissident congregations is growing, and have issued letter calling for fundamental changes.
One the eve of the National Council of Young Israel’s 100th anniversary dinner, an event that would ordinarily be cause for pride and celebration, long-running dissatisfaction among member synagogues with the group’s leadership continues to grow.
One dissident member now speaks of the “demise of this once-storied organization” even as more than 400 supporters are expected to laud the group’s leaders and former leaders Sunday at Terrace on the Park in Queens.
President Barack Obama’s call for Israel to withdraw to its pre-1967 borders with “mutually agreed swaps” in order to create a Palestinian state in the West Bank and Gaza has split the American Jewish community along predictable lines: one right-wing group denounced Obama as the “most hostile president to Israel ever,” while centrist and left-wing groups commended him.
WASHINGTON (JTA) -- A combination of timing, diplomatic considerations and, above all, good old-fashioned nudging has culminated in the biggest push in years to free Jonathan Pollard.
Insiders associated with the push, which resulted last week in a congressional letter to President Obama asking for clemency for the American Jew convicted in 1987 of spying for Israel, say the main factor was one man: David Nyer, an Orthodox activist from Monsey, N.Y.
It has come down to this in the long-running battle between the leadership of the National Council of Young Israel and a group of dissident members wanting changes to the movement’s constitution: “disembodied signature pages.”
In the latest skirmish between the two, a lawyer for the NCYI rejected a petition the dissident leaders assembled, which they said was from 25 percent of NCYI congregations. It called for the proposed constitutional changes to be considered at the group’s next national meeting, which is to be held here on Dec. 15.
(JTA) -- Orthodox and Reform Jewish groups are backing a letter circulating in the House of Representatives asking President Obama to extend clemency to Jonathan Pollard.
Pollard, a former civilian intelligence analyst for the U.S. Navy, has been serving a life sentence since 1985 for passing classified information to Israel.
U.S. Reps. Barney Frank (D-Mass.), Bill Pascrell (D- N.J.), Edolphus Towns (D-N.Y.) and Anthony Weiner (D- N.Y.) are circulating the letter among their colleagues and plan to submit it to Obama in the coming days.
WASHINGTON (JTA) -- Don't expect a familiar American echo now that West Bank settlers are gearing up to fight the possible extension of Israel’s settlement freeze.
Activists on the left and right in Israel usually get their allies in the American Jewish community to fight for the cause of the day with congressional lobbying and protests to Israeli and American officials.
Thirty-five congregations press for special meeting with leadership to amend constitution.
The schism between the National Council of Young Israel and its member synagogues deepened this week amid fears by some congregants that the donations they make to their local synagogues might be subject to seizure by the National Council.
Those concerns surfaced in the wake of the recent aborted attempt to seize the assets of a member synagogue in upstate New York.