(photo credit: screenshot)
Rabbi Moti Elon, who was convicted of indecent assault against a minor less than four years ago, this week opened a study center in central Jerusalem.
Elon was convicted on two counts of indecent assault by force against a minor in August 2013, but never served any jail time. Instead, he was given a six-month commuted sentence which he served in community service.
Elon always denied the allegations, never admitted to his crime and never apologized to his victim. Nonetheless, he did not appeal the conviction in the Jerusalem Magistrate’s Court.
His new study center, Beit Vaad U’Midrash, will host religious lessons and lectures throughout the week. Elon himself will teach three times a week on topics of Jewish law and mysticism.
According to an assistant, Elon, who lives in Migdal near Lake Kinneret (the Sea of Galilee), has been teaching in Jerusalem ever since his conviction with several hundred people attending his lessons.
The assistant said that Elon had decided to set up the study center to “organize” his teaching activities in Jerusalem and to create “a framework” for his lectures and lessons, but that it was not an educational institution and the rabbi was not returning to public life.
He added that the establishment of the center was simply a natural response to the “grassroots” demand for Elon’s teachings and to broaden their accessibility. He noted that a 10-minute audio lecture by Elon is currently distributed daily on WhatsApp to some 5,000 people.