With Chief Rabbi of Iran Yehuda Gerami’s visit to the United States coinciding with the Kinus Hashluchim, the rabbi took the opportunity to meet with and share ideas with other rabbis from across the globe.
By Chabad.org Staff
With Chief Rabbi of Iran Yehuda Gerami’s visit to the United States coinciding with the world’s largest rabbinic conference—the International Conference of Chabad-Lubavitch Emissaries, being held this weekend in Brooklyn, N.Y.—the rabbi is taking the opportunity to meet with and share ideas with other rabbis from across the globe, including from Russia, Turkey and Australia.
Born and raised in Tehran, 35-year-old Rabbi Gerami studied in Israel and America before returning to lead Iran’s ancient Jewish community, which is concentrated in the major cities of Tehran, Shiraz and Isfahan.
Today, Iran is home to about 20,000 Jews and the community’s roots and unique customs stretch back more than 2,500 years. Over the last 10 years, Gerami has been busy overseeing a network of Jewish schools, supervising kosher food production for the entire country and maintaining the integrity of the local mikvahs. In fact, Gerami spearheaded the construction of a brand-new, state-of-the-art mikvah in Tehran, which opened in May, 2021. Additionally, the rabbi has opened a yeshiva and kollel, institutions that have both been instrumental in raising the level of Jewish knowledge in the country and train and certify rabbis, shochetim, ritual scribes and mohelim.
Many of the rabbis and community leaders Gerami has been meeting with on the sidelines of the conference, such as Rabbi Berel Lazar, chief rabbi of Russia, assist Iran’s Jewish community on a regular basis.
Gerami also met with rabbinical members of the Alliance of Rabbis in Islamic States (ARIS), including its chairman, Rabbi Mendy Chitrik, head rabbi of the Ashkenazi community of Istanbul. The session allowed rabbis from throughout the Muslim world to discuss issues that impact their communities in particular.
The visit was coordinated by Merkos L’Inyonei Chinuch’s Suite 302.
“It’s been an amazing experience,” said Gerami. “The outpouring of brotherly love and support from my colleagues serving Jewish communities around the world has been heartening. Even more than the practical discussions we’ve had, it is the feeling of ‘shevet achim gam yachad’ that I will bring back with me to the Jews of Iran.”
(Reprinted with permission from Chabad.org)