MOSHE RAZIEL SHARIFY 311.
(photo credit: Rhonda Spivak)
A 14-year-old boy petitioned the High Court of Justice on Wednesday to force the Chief Rabbinate to check his ordination exam, so that he may be able to be ordained as a rabbi.
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After being tested over the course of a year by 10 senior rabbis, Moshe Raziel Sharify of Netanya had filled the necessary forms and was invited by the Department of Examinations and Certifications of the Chief Rabbinate for the rabbinate’s written exam in July.
However, Chief Sephardi Rabbi Shlomo Amar, who came to wish the
examinees luck, noticed the young face and ordered that his form not be
checked and graded in line with the rabbinate’s policy that the minimum
age for ordination is 22.
In a preliminary meeting of the Council of the Chief Rabbinate over
Sharify’s ordination, Chief Ashkenazi Rabbi Yona Metzger had been in
favor of allowing the young man to become a rabbi. However, as director
of Metzger’s office Rabbi Haim Hemdinger told The Jerusalem Post in
August, the chief Ashkenazi rabbi’s opinion did not win out, with Amar
leading the opposition.
All the same, the invitation for the exam was sent to Sharify, but
according to sources in the rabbinate, only out of the desire to
encourage his exceptional skills and ambition, without the intent to
actually consider his candidacy. The rabbinate later said that the
invitation was a mistake.
Following the incident, Sharify’s father Nissan, who has a doctorate in
law, said he would petition the High Court of Justice to have his son’s
examination marked and counted, like the examinations of all other
On Sunday the court received the petition, filed by Nissan and his firm,
which demanded that the young Sharify’s test be checked, and to
overrule the rabbinate’s policy that determines 22 as the minimum age
for ordination, or at least to order the forming of a committee to
examine exceptions to the rule.