Shalom Life | September 06, 2014

New York Synagogue Bans Hebrew

The orthodox Satmar sect of Kiryas Joel, in Orange County, says it is forbidden to speak "in the impure sectarian Hebrew language"

By: Daniel Koren

Published: August 18th, 2014 in News » World

New York Synagogue Bans Hebrew

Yes, you read that headline correctly.

As Failed Messiah points out, an ultra, ultra-Orthodox synagogue based in the community of Kiryas Joel - located in Orange County, New York - has taken an unusually unorthodox approach to how they run their congregation and prayer services, by banning the language that is most associated with Judaism, and Torah (no, not Yiddish): Hebrew.

The ultra-Hasidic Satmar sect has posted a notice for their community members to read, which informs that speaking in any form of modern Hebrew (different from Biblical Hebrew) is forbidden.

The notice (see above) was translated into English by Failed Messiah, which you can read below:

“REQUEST AND WARNING: It is forbidden to speak in our Beis Hamidrash in the impure sectarian Hebrew language.”

(Or, “In our study hall [synagogue], it is forbidden to speak the language of minim [sectarians; any breakaway group from Judaism, used rabbinically primarily as a term for Christianity], the impure Hebrew.”)

Just like rabbis who have banned women from attending university, or claiming that eating too much soy would 'make you gay,' it seems that this ultra-Orthodox congregation may be taking their unrelenting devotion a step too far.

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