Introducing first, in the red corner, hailing from Newport, Rhode Island, where there are a lot of Dunkin’ Donuts shops, and praying at the 250-year-old Touro Synagogue, brick-for-brick the oldest synagogue in the United States… Congregation Jeshuat Israel!
Last month, a federal judge finally delivered a 106-page ruling that grants the congregation control over its own destiny, deeming it the trustee of Touro and the rightful owner of a pair of rimonim, valued at $7.4 million… Ladies and gentlemen, your Heavyweight Congregation of the Woooorrlllldddd, Jeshuaaaaat “Hey, That’s Mine” Israellllll.
(Crowd goes wild)
And in the blue corner, hailing from New York’s tony Upper West Side, and praying together since 1654, pound-for-pound the oldest congregation in the United States… Congregation Shearith Israel!
Last month, a federal judge took away Shearith’s trustee status and therefore its control over Touro Synagogue, as well as a pair of rimonim valued at $7.4 million. Now, it’s appealing the decision for your Pay-Per-View enjoyment.. Ladies and gentlemen, the former Heavyweight Congregation of the Woooorrlllldddd, Shearith “That’s Really Ours Tho” Issssssrael.
(Crowd goes wild, right?)
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Storied Congregations in Legal Battle Over Torah Bells Worth $7.4 Million
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Jonathan Zalman is a writer and teacher based in Brooklyn.