The completion of a dream – David Touboul is ordained as a Masorti Rabbi
December 1, 2010
After nearly 5 years of study, practice and patience, David Touboul was ordained as a Masorti Rabbi by the Schechter Rabbinical Seminary in Jerusalem last night. The Schechter Rabbinical Seminary ordained 3 new Rabbis at its 23rd Ordination Ceremony, bringing the total number of graduates to 84 since the Seminary began in 1984.
For David, the path to become a Rabbi was both challenging and rewarding; as a Masorti Olami Schorsch Rabbinic Fellow, he always knew that he was destined to become a communal and spiritual leader of Masorti Jews in France, and travelled many times throughout his period of Rabbinic study to France to engage with his kehillah. In summer of 2009, he completed the 4 year course of Rabbinic Study, and moved permanently to Nice, France to work with Masorti kehillah Maayane Or, as well as other Masorti kehillot in Southern France.
Throughout his Rabbinic training, David has proved his high standard of knowledge and competence in written and verbal manners. In October, David was interviewed and approved by a Bet Din of Masorti Rabbis, completing the final stage to becoming a Rabbi.
Last night, at a moving ceremony at Masorti kehillah Magen Avraham in Jerusalem, David along with fellow Rabbinic candidates Michael Even David and Liron Levy, gave Divrei Torah speeches after having received their Rabbinic Smicha certificates and symbolic Tallitot from the Schechter Rabbinical Seminary. The tallitot and certificates were given by Rabbi Mauricio Balter, President of the Rabbinical Assembly in Israel, along with Schechter Rabbinical Seminary Dean, Rabbi Moshe Silberschein and Associate Deans Rabbi Tamar Elad-Appelbaum and Rabbi Shlomo Tucker.
In his Dvar Torah speech, David talked about the completion of his dream to be a community leader and teacher. He said that the path to becoming a Rabbi was no small challenger, but that he knows the road ahead will be filled with even greater challenges, but also greater benefits. He spoke of his exceptionally strong commitment to young people, and when asked where he would like to be in 10 years, he answered, “performing the wedding of young men or women who I had taught for their Bar or Bat Mitzvah”. David acknowledged too, the role of the older generation, and told of how he is aware of how much there is to learn from those with wisdom and life experience.
Among the evening’s speakers were Professor Arnold Eisen, Chancellor of the Jewish Theological Seminary of America; Rabbi Moshe Silberschein, Dean of the Schechter Rabbinical Seminary; and Rabbi Hanan Alexander, Chairman of the Board of Governors of the Schechter Rabbinical Seminary. The ceremony concluded with a blessing from Rabbi David Golinkin, Chair of the Schechter Institutes of Jewish Study. Music throughout the evening came from NOAM Israel’s Vocal troupe, Shirat Machar, as well as a string trio.
As part of the Rabbinic Ordination celebrations, earlier in the day, the Schechter Rabbinical Seminary held a seminar on ‘the Relationship between Israel and the Diaspora today’. The seminar was attended by Rabbinic students from Israel as well as visiting students from North America, who are enrolled in the JTS Rabbinical Seminary and spending 1 of their years of study at Schechter. Faculty members and leader from across the Masorti movement in Israel attended to hear key-note speaker, Professor Arnold Eisen, Chancellor of JTS. Dr. David Breakstone, Vice-Chair of the World Zionist Organization gave a response, and discussion groups of various topics of Israel-Diaspora relations followed. The seminar was concluded with a presentation from Rabbi Tzvi Graetz, Executive Director of Masorti Olami and MERCAZ Olami, about the work and challenges of the Masorti movement around the world.
For a full gallery of pictures from the Oridanation Ceremony and the Israel-Diaspora seminar, click here.