Former Chief Rabbi of the U.K. Lord Immanuel Jakobovits
away at the age of 78. He was buried on Har
Lord Immanuel Jakobovits was born in Koenigsberg in February,
1921, the son of Julius Jakobovits, rabbi of the local
Orthodox congregation and later dayan in Berlin and
London. The family moved to London after Hitler rose to power
He studied at Jews' College and at the Eitz Chayim Yeshiva,
London. After serving as minister to a number of London
synagogues starting at the Brondesbury Synagogue, in 1949 he
became chief rabbi of Dublin and of the Jewish communities in
the Irish Republic.
From 1958 Rabbi Jakobovits was rabbi of the Fifth Avenue
Synagogue, New York until 1966, when he was appointed chief
rabbi of the United Hebrew Congregations of the British
Commonwealth, serving until his retirement in 1991. He was
knighted in 1981 and made a peer (Lord) in 1988.
To the end he maintained a full schedule. Although he had
generally weakened, he had not been especially ill. Soon
after havdoloh on motzei Shabbos parshas
which he made as usual, he suffered a severe stroke, passing
away several hours later of a massive cerebral hemorrhage.
Rabbi Jakobovits served as president of the Conference of
European Rabbis where, among other things, he led the effort
to regulate the Jewish conversion procedures.
Always an original thinker, he represented the Jewish world
with grace and dignity. Whenever he rose to speak in
Britain's House of Lords he commanded the rapt attention of
the entire assembly. British Prime Minister Tony Blair said
he was "a man deeply respected and widely admired throughout
the whole of this country for his faith, his ability, and
his courage. He will be sorely missed."
A service took place at London's Hendon Synagogue on Sunday
afternoon, followed by a levaya in Yerushalayim on
Monday morning. Speaking in Yerushalayim were current British
Chief Rabbi Jonathan Sacks, Rav She'er Yoshuv Cohen of Haifa,
HaRav Simcha Kook of Rechovot and Rav Shmuel Jakobovits, the
son of the niftar. All of the speakers noted that the
niftar created a tremendous kiddush Hashem in
of his extensive dealings with the non-Jewish world. HaRav
Kook said of him, "Kulo omeir kovod."
Chief Rabbi Jakobovits is survived by his wife, Lady Amelie
Jakobovits, six children, and many grandchildren and great-
grandchildren, all of whom are following the path that he