Chief Rabbis: Don't postpone circumcision because of coronavirus

Chief Rabbis of Israel issue letter stating except in case of infected newborn, there is no reason to postpone Brit Milah.

Mordechai Sones ,

Elijah's Chair
Elijah's Chair
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Israel Chief Rabbi David Lau and Rishon L'Tzion Rabbi Yitzchak Yosef today issued a letter stating there is no allowance to postpone a Brit Milah circumcision due to the coronavirus crisis.

"At this difficult time when the virus is hurting many people, we write these lines to strengthen our brethren the Israelites in every place on the importance of observance of Brit Milah. There is no need to overstate in words the importance of this commandment that our Master the Shulchan Aruch called 'greater than all the other positive commandments.' Enough to quote our Sages of blessed memory who said: 'Great is Milah that were it not for Brit Milah G-d would not have created His world, as it says: 'If not for my Covenant day and night, I would not have fixed the laws of heaven and earth'," the rabbis wrote.

To read the full rabbi's letter in the original Hebrew click here.

They add that "Throughout the ages campaigns were conducted to uproot this commandment and throughout all generations Jews have given up their lives to uphold it. The history of the Jewish People tells us that this commandment is kept in every condition and any situation.

"We heard that there are those who allowed themselves, due to the coronavirus spread, to postpone this commandment. This is forbidden. It is mandatory to observe Brit Milah on the eighth day and only in cases of a sick newborn should it be postponed," the rabbis clarify.

They continue: "According to the guidelines of the health officials and the inter-ministerial committee of the Chief Rabbinate and the Health Ministry for circumcision, the mohelim received clear instructions on how to observe circumcision these days while strictly adhering to the rules of hygiene and sterilization, and the committee ensures this is done.

"We urge continued fulfillment of this commandment in its proper time, even in these days. And thanks to the observance of the Torah commandment, the Almighty shall pour His blessing upon us, on all of Israel, and the entire world for complete healing," the rabbis sign their letter.

מחייבים נוכחות בלניות בטבילה, על פי ההלכה. הרבנים הראשיים לישראל
צילום: יונתן זינדל, פלאש 90


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