Jonathan Romain
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Rabbi, writer and broadcaster, Jonathan Romain is minister of Maidenhead Synagogue in Berkshire. He writes for religious and national papers and is often heard on the BBC. His many books include ‘The Jews of England’ and ‘Faith and Practice : A Guide to Reform Judaism Today’. In 2004, he received the MBE for his pioneering work nationally in helping mixed-faith couples, a theme covered in his book ‘Till Faith Us Do Part’ (HarperCollins). He is chaplain to the Jewish Police Association, is a board member of the Three Faiths Forum, chair of the Accord Coalition (which campaigns for inclusive education) and a Patron of Dignity in Dying

Entries by Jonathan Romain

What the Quenelle Is Going on With Anelka and the FA?

(5) Comments | Posted 10 January 2014 | (23:00)

Yesterday, France's equivalent of our Supreme Court banned the French comedian, Dieudonne, from performing his roadshow in Nantes on the grounds that it represented a "serious risk" to public order and to French "values and principles, notably human dignity".

This begs a big question about what the English Football Association...

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Ignore the French and Legalise Brothels

(40) Comments | Posted 28 November 2013 | (23:00)

Britain should not emulate France and the bill that is currently before the French Parliament, which will severely penalise anyone caught using the services of prostitutes. Instead, we should move in the opposite direction and legalise brothels.

True, this might seem odd coming from a rabbi - "aren't you clergy...

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The Religious Right Makes an Unexpected Comeback in British Jewry

(17) Comments | Posted 13 November 2013 | (23:00)

An astonishing reversal of fortunes is taking place in British Jewry that will not only affect its future, but also the way in which Jews are perceived generally.

According to figures just produced by the community's representative body, the Board of Deputies, marriages within the strictly Orthodox (Charedi) community are...

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For the Sake of Faith, Remove Face Veils

(66) Comments | Posted 5 November 2013 | (23:00)

Is it possible to be passionately committed to religious freedom and yet opposed to face veils such as in the burka or niqab? I would argue 'yes'.

As a Jewish person living in Britain, I belong to a minority group and I am well aware that I am fortunate to...

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Was Anti-Semitism Lurking Behind the 'Daily Mail's Attack on Ralph Miliband?

(69) Comments | Posted 3 October 2013 | (13:22)

What is really going on at the Daily Mail?

Their attack on Ralph Miliband is so preposterous that there must be a hidden motive behind it. But what?

Yes, he was a Marxist - and the Mail does not like Marxists - but that...

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Forget About What They've Called the Royal Babe, How Do You Feel About Your Own Name?

(161) Comments | Posted 23 July 2013 | (09:17)

It is astonishing how many people do not know what their name means. It is not because they lack intelligence, but because English is a language with so many foreign roots that we have often lost touch with the origins of words. So whereas 'Myrtle' or 'Lilly' obviously refer to...

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Proposed Church of England Takeover of State Schools Should Ring Warning Bells

(152) Comments | Posted 4 July 2013 | (00:00)

Lest anyone think the headline of this article is a secular attack on faith, let me assure them that I am not Dawkins-in-disguise. I value faith - both my own (Judaism) and that of others. I also like churches and often visit them when on holiday because of the deep...

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It's Time to Play Fair and End Religious Restrictions for Children at State-Funded Schools

(7) Comments | Posted 7 June 2013 | (10:44)

If you were in a debate about the meaning of British identity or citizenship, one of the key values that would no doubt be highlighted is fairness - be it in one's personal dealings and 'fair play', or in a legal context and equity in public life.

So you would...

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China's Ancient Jewish Community Is Re-Emerging - But to Unexpected Problems

(28) Comments | Posted 27 April 2013 | (00:00)

One of the greatest anti-stereotype legends is that of the British Jew with western features and dark curly hair who goes to China, visits a synagogue and finds it full of Chinese-looking people. When asked why he has come, he explains he is Jewish and wants to attend a service....

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Benedict XVI's Resignation Undoes the Damage of John Paul II's Final Period

(12) Comments | Posted 11 February 2013 | (23:00)

By resigning, rather than dying in office, Pope Benedict has at last earned his place in the history books alongside his predecessor, making a unique contribution that no one could have imagined.

Ever since he took over from John Paul II, he suffered from comparisons with the latter's charisma. JPII...

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Cameron Should Not Do a Gillard When he Calls the General Election

(0) Comments | Posted 31 January 2013 | (12:19)

What would you think of David Cameron if he called a general election on Christmas Day? Among the politer reactions would be 'Did he really have to choose that day?

This the Jewish equivalent of what Australian prime minister Julia Gillard has done in calling a general...

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British Jews Don't Need Another Chief Rabbi

(20) Comments | Posted 19 December 2012 | (23:00)

British Jews are about to experience a religious revolution parallel to that going on in the Church of England. After being used to Rabbi Jonathan Sacks leading the helm for just over 20 years, a new Chief Rabbi has been appointed.

If the church is still hopelessly divided over women...

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Religious Reasons for Supporting Assisted Dying

(7) Comments | Posted 10 December 2012 | (23:00)

If you think all ministers of religion are against assisted dying, think again. It is true that the religious hierarchies are against it, but a growing number of Christian and Jewish clergy have a more nuanced view and now think it can be appropriate in certain circumstances. The once uniform...

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Faith Schools: Richmond Opts for Religious Discrimination

(30) Comments | Posted 3 December 2012 | (08:44)

An extraordinary situation has developed in the London Borough of Richmond, in which a new school is needed. However, rather than follow clear government guidelines to invite bids for a free school - and accept one being proposed by a local community group that would be open to all local...

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