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    Ultra-Orthodox Israeli Mayor Cancels Ceremonies for Disabled Children

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    The ultra-Orthodox mayor of central Israel's Rehovot city ordered to relocate a traditional bar- and bat-mitzvah ceremony for disabled boys and girls scheduled for Thursday, Haaretz reported on Wednesday.

    MOSCOW (Sputnik) – According to the media outlet, Mayor Rahamim Malul asked the school principle to move the traditional ceremony to an Orthodox synagogue from the city’s Conservative synagogue, where it normally takes place.

    Orthodox and Conservative Judaism are two streams that have lots of differences. In an Orthodox synagogue ceremony, girls would be prohibited to wear prayer shawls and some prayers will be substituted in accordance with the Orthodox prayerbook, the mayor said.

    The parents of the schoolchildren had an urgent meeting on Wednesday morning and decided to postpone the ceremony until the consensus on the venue is reached.

    Spokeswoman for the Rehovot municipality Carmel Cooper explained that the change of location was made because some parents objected to hold a ceremony in a Conservative synagogue.

    “These parents complained to the municipality that holding the ceremony at a Reform [sic] synagogue prevents them from coming,” Cooper was quoted as saying by Haaretz.

    The bar- and bat-mitzvah is a traditional ceremony in Israel, which marks children’s transformation into adult members of the Jewish society. The program for disabled children has been run by the conservative movement across Israel over the past 25 years.

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