Rabbi Moshe Sternbuch
Rabbi Moshe SternbuchFlash 90

The Head of the Rabbinical Court of the Eida Haharedit (Jerusalem Haredi Council), Rabbi Moshe Sternbuch, vehemently condemned the synagogue officials of a Lithuanian (non-hassidic)-haredi synagogue in Beit Shemesh who honored a woman with "Gelilah," the ceremonial wrapping of a Torah scroll.

The incident took place during a Torah dedication ceremony at a synagogue in Ramat Bet Shemesh Daled. A video that was posted to social media this week shows the woman, who apparently is involved in the donation of the new Torah scroll, rolling and dressing the Torah scroll in the sanctuary as men surround her.

The synagogue officials claim they received a dispensation from one of the local rabbis, but the rabbi denied the claim.

In response, Rabbi Sternbuch voiced his opposition and even referred to the modern-haredi community as "a community with haredi roots," hinting that a haredi community would not be able to allow such an incident.

"Every heart here trembled when we heard a community with haredi roots sank so low and honored a woman with Gelilah, and published that it lifted the honor of the Torah and the honor of the haredi woman," he wrote.

He ended his words with a harsh statement: "Brothers of the house of Israel, we will cut ourselves off from them, and it will be good for us and for our children."