NEWS A New Italian Rabbi

Jacov Di SegniBy Rachel Silvera

The Italian Jewish Community welcomes the ordination of a new rabbi. After the written and oral exam, the Italian Rabbinical School awarded the title of rabbi to Jacov Shalom Di Segni. Twenty-nine years old, born and bred in Rome, Rabbi Di Segni was tested by a commission made up of the Chief Rabbi of Rome, Riccardo Di Segni, the Chief Rabbi of Milan Alfonso Arbib, the Chief Rabbi of Naples Umberto Piperno and rabbis Vittorio Della Rocca, Alberto Funaro and Gad Eldad.

Before analyzing his work and sheilot (three written questions), the candidate lectured on the book of Shemot with the commentary of rabbi Umberto Cassuto. The topic was especially complex because the commentary is not accepted by the Orthodox world. Rabbi Cassuto, did not intervene in the biblical text but analyzes it in its integrity, noted the candidate.
“When Rabbi Cassuto was teaching and received complaints from his students, he told them not to touch the text, but to leave it alone,” rabbi Vittorio Della Rocca said.

The questions from the commission were also about the contemporary world. Rabbi Riccardo Di Segni, for example, asked the rabbi-to-be how to deal with social networks and how to use them to promote Jewish education. The candidate answered citing the case of a Facebook group where you can ask or answer questions about Halakhah, the Jewish law.
“In this case, the web can be very useful. But I believe we should always keep in mind that it can in no way replace real life,” he said.

Rabbi Jacov Di Segni, who currently lives in Jerusalem with his wife Debora and their two daughters Hanna and Rachel, also presented his essay on “Rav Menachem (Emanuel) Azaria Meir Castelnuovo: his life and works.”

To Rabbi Jacov Di Segni and his parents, Giuly and rabbi Gianfranco Di Segni, a warm mazal tov by the editors of the Italian Jewish paper Pagine Ebraiche!