President, students, Lady Elaine reflect on life after Rabbi Sacks

Over 200 government officials, Jewish figures and religious leaders commemorated the teachings of Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks and his impact on modern Israeli society.

 President Isaac Herzog hosts the second annual Sacks Conversation, in memory of the late former British Chief Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks. (photo credit: KOBI GIDEON/GPO)
President Isaac Herzog hosts the second annual Sacks Conversation, in memory of the late former British Chief Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks.
(photo credit: KOBI GIDEON/GPO)

Israeli President Isaac Herzog was joined by over 200 government officials, Jewish figures and religious leaders to commemorate the teachings of Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks and his impact on modern Israeli society. President Herzog spoke about his relationship with Rabbi Sacks at an event hosted at Beit HaNassi.

Former student of Rabbi Sacks and founding Director of Yeshiva University's Sacks-Herenstein Center for Values and Leadership, Dr. Erica Brown, led the discussion with Herzog as part of the second annual "Sacks Conversation" series.

"We will see Rabbi Sacks' legacy from generation to generation. It will change the dialogue in the Jewish world," President Herzog said. "The real impact that Rabbi Sacks had on me is with the weekly reading on the Torah portion. I say so because I continue reading his books and they are a fountain of strength, an unbelievable fountain of originality, of ideas, of understanding the content of the Bible and of course, with immense sources of wisdom, knowledge from all facets of humanity."

"I continue reading his books and they are a fountain of strength, an unbelievable fountain of originality, of ideas, of understanding the content of the Bible and of course, with immense sources of wisdom, knowledge from all facets of humanity."

President Isaac Herzog

"Attending the event today is particularly special for me because all through the years, Israel has meant so much to both my late husband, Rabbi Sacks, and I," Lady Elaine Sacks added.

 President Isaac Herzog hosts the second annual Sacks Conversation, in memory of the late former British Chief Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks. (credit: KOBI GIDEON/GPO) President Isaac Herzog hosts the second annual Sacks Conversation, in memory of the late former British Chief Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks. (credit: KOBI GIDEON/GPO)

"For my husband, Torah and Halacha were not just spiritual guides for the individual but a blueprint for society. More than once he recounted that Israel is the only place on the planet where the Jewish people have a chance to create their own society in accordance with our own faith. Here, in Israel, the Jewish values of responsibility, the dignity of difference, Chessed and Tzedakah can truly be woven into the fabric of society, thereby creating this ideal civilization."

"For my husband, Torah and Halacha were not just spiritual guides for the individual but a blueprint for society. More than once he recounted that Israel is the only place on the planet where the Jewish people have a chance to create their own society in accordance with our own faith."

Lady Elaine Sacks

What is The Sacks Conversation?

The Sacks Conversation is a well-known annual event organized by the nonprofit organization The Rabbi Sacks Legacy. Guided by a board of Sacks family members and close supporters, the nonprofit is dedicated to preserving the vision and philosophies of Rabbi Sacks.

“Rabbi Sacks’ teachings continue to be relevant and guide conversations around the world, his timeless vision continuing to ring true today. This year, we wanted to bring the Sacks Conversation to Israel, which was so central to his message and where so many of his colleagues, students and supporters live. We are grateful to President Herzog for hosting this important event and critical conversation,” said Rabbi Sacks Legacy Chief Executive Joanna Benarroch. 

Through publishing his work, maintaining an active social media presence, and programming, The Rabbi Sacks Legacy continues to engage followers of Rabbi Sacks, allowing future generations to see and understand the works of this world-renowned leader.