Article Regarding May 1931 Conference of the Agudath Harabbonim
May 22 1931
THE JEWISH CRITERION
May 22, 1931
SEE JEWISH SPIRIT SUFFERING DECLINE
Belmar, N. J.—The spirit of the Jews in America has suffered a sharp decline, for otherwise they would never permit the present deplorable condition of the country's Jewish religious institutions, according to Rabbi Chaim Igloo Bloch, in addressing the annual convention of the Agudath Harabbonim, Orthodox rabbinical conference. This view was echoed by Rabbi Israel Rosenberg, President of the "Ezrath," a fund for the support of Jewish schools in Europe. Rabbi Rosenberg asserted that he felt disinclined to make his regular annual appeal for the Ezrath, in view of the fact that Jewish schools in the United States are so desperately in need of aid. He declared, however, that aid for Europe must be forthcoming. He described the hardships of European Jewry, but pointed out that despite their difficulties European Jews make extraordinary sacrifices in order to give their children a religious education. But in the United States things are far worse. He said that spiritual desolation seems to have overwhelmed American Jewry.
Rabbi Rosenberg further suggested that a plan should be adopted to insure the perpetuation of Jewish religious institutions in the U. S. He proposed that Jews be taxed five dollars a year "for support of the Torah." He said that at least 100,000 Jews could be found who would contribute to such a fund annually. Other speakers included Rabbi Meyer Berlin, President of the World Mizrachl, and two visitors, Rabbi Ignac Sher, head of the Slobodka Yeshiva, and Rabbi Ezekiel Sarno, head of the Hebron Yeshiva.
The closing sessions of the convention saw the adoption of a resolution to send a telegram to Secretary of State Stimson asking the United States Government to take steps to secure the prevention of anti-Jewish discrimination in Mexico; an attack on those Jewish employers who discriminate against their co-religionists in giving out jobs; and a plea by Aaron Teitelbaum for the preservation of decorum in the Orthodox synagogue, in order to prevent the continuous diversion of members to the Conservative synagogues. Rabbi Eliezer Silver was re-elected President of the Agudath Harabbonim.