Memorial Service in Yitzhak Rabin Synagogue Brings Together Israelis from All Walks of Life

04 November 2009 By New Israel Fund

Several days prior to Yaakov Teitel’s arrest, Israelis mulled the consequences of incitement and intolerance as the country marked the 14th anniversary of Yitzhak Rabin’s assassination by Yigal Amir. The annual memorial service held by NIF grantee Yudbet Heshvan – Promoting Tolerance in an Orthodox Context at the Yitzhak Rabin Synagogue in Rehovot (the only synagogue in Israel named for the slain prime minister) was the subject of a feature in the daily Yediot Ahronot.

The article spoke of the cross section of Israeli society who attended the memorial service including Rabbi Simcha Kook, the great grandson of the founder of national religious Zionism, and the Rabin family themselves.

Dr. Gadi Gveriyahu leads the service at the Yitzhak Rabin Synagogue in Rehovot.

Dr. Gadi Gveriyahu, Executive Director of Yudbet Heshvan, told Yediot Ahronot, “The trend is towards more religious and political extremism. We work to support the many moderate voices in the Orthodox camp that are spread around the country.”

Rachel Rabin, sister of the late prime minister, said, "This is an exceptional initiative in the Orthodox sector. This is almost the only organization prepared to consider the importance of Yitzhak's memory and I value this attempt to introduce a new spirit into relations between Orthodox and secular."

Leah Shakdiel, the first-ever woman to sit on an Orthodox Council said, "The Orthodox public should lead on values of justice and peace but to my regret it is exactly the opposite. The moderate stream does not act against extremism and are a party to this transgression. We must not give up."