With the integration of religion and state here, it's bound to happen that state bureaucracy will trickle down into the religious services... Everyone hates bureaucracy, so when it's part of "organized" religion, it has the potential to create lots of tension.
However, after reviewing the issue last night with JoeSettler, I've realized that I was wrong and I think (for change) the new process will help streamline matters of conversion here in Israel.
It may be slightly annoying to RCA rabbis, but I don't think the process is out take away from their prestige.
If you were a potential Ger who wanted to come to Israel. Would you rather go to an authorized/certified Rabbi so that when you make Aliyah the process has its bumps minimized, or would you rather come to Israel and spend a year or two trying to prove that you are Jewish because no one ever heard of this Rabbi from Kalamazoo?
And if you were a Rabbi, wouldn't you want to be certified, knowing that if you give a Get to someone, if they decided to make Aliya (to Israel, the country with the largest Jewish population) they could quickly get on with their life there without a hassle?
Eretz Yisrael is being revitalized in its role as part of the nucleus of Judaism, and Rav Amar is trying to smooth out a lot of the more serious problems that have up to now existed in the bureaucratic process. He's doing this the same way Microsoft, Sun and John Bryce do it: Standardization, Authorization, and Certification (respectively).
These days (actually for around the past decade) if an Oleh wants an Israeli driver’s license and already has a foreign one he is now required to take a driving test - but it didn’t used to be that way. After a noteworthy number of Olim came over from a particular region, the DMV finally realized that a rather significant number of them were showing the DMV fake driver’s licenses...
People with no driving experience (or valid licenses) were getting valid licenses in Israel with fake ids! Not having access to foreign records, or an easy/quick method of determining which licenses where actually genuine (many of the fakes were printed on the same machines as the genuine articles, just so you understand the extent of the problem), the DMV made a decision that all Olim that present a preexisting license must take a driving test.Not fair to the other Oleh groups that wouldn’t pull that trick, but no one was going to profile a specific Oleh group and say only they had to take the test despite showing a license.
Wherever I am, my blog turns towards Eretz Yisrael