Tags: chabad of irvine | court | ruling | religious

California Synagogue Can Continue Centuries-Old Religious Practice, Court Rules

Image: California Synagogue Can Continue Centuries-Old Religious Practice, Court Rules
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Sunday, 25 Jun 2017 08:30 AM

A small orthodox synagogue in California is free to continue practicing a millennia-old religious ceremony after a state court struck down an animal rights group's challenge to it.

Chabad of Irvine, represented by First Liberty Institute, was under fire from the Animal Protection and Rescue League, which objected to a centuries-old practice known as Kaporos.

According to the ruling, "the action is an annual Jewish religious ritual . . . in which live chickens are used to perform an atonement ritual and, later, ritually slaughtered in accordance with Jewish law."

The APRL argued that the ritual consitutues an "unlawful business practice" in violation of multiple state statutes and municipal codes, the suit says.

The court ruled, though, that the practice is, in fact, a religious one.

"[M]any religious services or ceremonies result in donations being solicited and made . . . But that does not convert those religious activities, rituals and observances into business practices," a news release read. "They remain religious activities, rituals and observances."

If the challenge had been successful, it could have threatened religious practices of synagogues and houses of worship throughout the state of California. According to the news release, the "court's decision is the second court since May to reject a lawsuit brought against the synagogue by activists."

"We are thrilled that, once again, another court has seen the importance of protecting our ability to practice a cherished tradition of our faith," Rabbi Alter Tenenbaum, the rabbi of the Chabad of Irvine, said. "As we live in peace and tolerance with one another, we hope these legal victories strengthen and encourage the religious liberty of everyone." 

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A small orthodox synagogue in California is free to continue practicing a millennia-old religious ceremony after a state court struck down an animal rights group's challenge to it.
chabad of irvine, court, ruling, religious
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2017-30-25
Sunday, 25 Jun 2017 08:30 AM
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