Elie Jesner’s Introduction at the Brunch
Elie Jesner offered a few words of introduction to the work of the Friends of Louis Jacobs and the Louis Jacobs Foundation – to preserve and make accessible the writings of Louis Jacobs, and also to enable Jews in England today to pursue the quest and to grapple with the burning questions of today.
Brunch Talk: Anglo-Jewry – Past and Future?
Rabbi Dr. Jeremy Rosen offered some comments in this session on his father’s involvement and relationship with the United Synagogue and Anglo-Jewry. Kopul Rosen was a London-born rabbi, educated in the Etz Chaim and Mir yeshivot. He acted as communal rabbi in Manchester and Glasgow, and then headed the Federation in London. During his brief career, which ended abruptly when he contracted leukemia and passed away in 1962 at the age of 48, he twice was considered for the position of Chief Rabbi, to succeed Hertz and Brody. Dissatisfied with the United Synagogue establishment, its President Robert Wayley Cohen, and various dayanim, he left the rabbinate and founded Carmel College. Kopul Rosen developed a friendly relationship with Louis Jacobs, whose teachings he admired. He attempted to defend Rabbi Jacobs at the time of the Affair, and later advised him not to trust William Frankel and not to further challenge the United Synagogue establishment.
It is not certain what would have happened if Jacobs had followed Kopul Rosen’s advice. The structure of the Anglo-Jewish establishment prevented several members of clergy of expressing their support for him, and Jacobs remained the target of virulent attacks from several of his detractors.
As a result, Jeremy Rosen refused to get involved in the establishment in England and moved to the United States. In the mid-90s, he was then invited to succeed Louis Jacobs in the New London Synagogue, and received the approval of the dayanim to re-integrate the synagogue within the United Synagogue if he took the role. But his disagreements with Jacobs on matters of liturgy and communal organization eventually prompted him to withdraw.
Ezra Margulies and Ivor Jacobs at the Appeal Brunch
Ezra Margulies, the website editor and project manager, and Ivor Jacobs, founder of the initiative, addressed the audience at the brunch with additional comments on the work undertaken by the Friends of LouisJacobs.org over the past year, and on the prospect for future initiatives. They also made an appeal for funds to allow the charity to pursue its work.
Intimate Interview – Rabbi Naftali Brawer and Rabbi Jeremy Rosen
A light-hearted, convivial, and also insightful conversation between Rabbi Dr. Jeremy Rosen and Rabbi Naftali Brawer, covering a broad range of topics, including Anglo-Jewish history and the Jacobs Affair; musar and hasidism; theology; and more.
The audience was also invited to interact throughout the conversation with additional comments and questions.