Chief Rabbi wishes King Charles a ‘refuah sheleima’ on behalf of entire community

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Chief Rabbi wishes King Charles a ‘refuah sheleima’ on behalf of entire community

Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis said in a statement he was 'saddened' to have learnt that Charles had been diagnosed with a form of cancer and had begun treatment

Lee Harpin is the Jewish News's political editor

Chief Rabbi Mirvis speaking with Prince Charles during the funeral
Chief Rabbi Mirvis speaking with Prince Charles during the funeral

Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis has issued a statement on behalf of the entire Jewish community of Great Britain wishing King Charles “a Refuah Sheleima” after Buckingham Palace confirmed he had been diagnosed with cancer.

Mirvis said he was “saddened to have heard about His Majesty The King’s diagnosis” adding: “I know that the Jewish communities of Great Britain and the Commonwealth will join me in wishing him a Refuah Sheleima – a complete and swift recovery.”

Charles III has been diagnosed with a form of cancer and has begun treatment, Buckingham Palace said on Monday, just a week after he was discharged from hospital for prostate surgery.

King Charles III during a visit to the JW3 Jewish community centre in London as the Jewish community prepares to celebrate Chanukah.

The Board of Deputies also responded to Monday’s announcement from the Palace tweeting:”Our thoughts are with His Majesty and the Royal Family at this time.

“We wish the King a Refuah Sheleimah – a full and speedy recovery. ”

Progressive Judaism (the Liberal and Reform movements) said: “We send our thoughts and prayers to His Majesty King Charles III and wish him a speedy return to full health and the service of our country. We have had the pleasure of working with the King at many points throughout the years and he is a dedicated friend to the Jewish community and faith world.”

Mitzvah Day CEO Stuart Diamond added: “Our trustees and staff send our warm wishes for His Majesty King Charles III’s quick recovery. Our thoughts and best wishes are with His Majesty and the Royal Family at this time. May strength and resilience guide him through this difficult period.”

Rabbi Avrohom Sugarman of The Pinter Trust said his organisation “extend our deepest sympathies” to Charles over the recent diagnosis adding:”Our thoughts and prayers are with you during this challenging time.”

The rabbi added the Trust “remain hopeful for your full and speedy recovery.”

Laura Marks CBE, the Chair of Mitzvah Day and Co-Founder of Jewish-Muslim women’s group Nisa-Nashim, has met with the King on a number of occasions.

She said: “His Majesty’s involvement with community relations goes back decades – summed up in his pledge to be Defender of all Faiths.

“As the most powerful and compelling convenor of people in the nation, I’ve seen his unparalleled willingness to bring people together around causes from Holocaust and genocide commemoration to hands on engagement in local community projects.

‘We all wish him better, refuah shlemah, to continue his essential work.”

The Jewish Leadership Council also issued their own “speedy recovery” plea to the King, who had long been known for his close and supportive relationship with the community.

Following the announcement, the 75-year-old Charles’s estranged son Prince Harry immediately made it known that he had spoken with the king about his diagnosis.His younger son, who now lives in California with his wife Meghan, said he would travel to see his father in the UK.

Israel’s president Isaac Herzog wrote on social media:”On behalf of the people of Israel, wishing His Majesty King Charles III a full and speedy recovery.

“I have greatly appreciated my recent conversations and the opportunities to meet with His Majesty, and have always greatly benefited from his wisdom and insight. I look forward to seeing His Majesty’s swift return to public engagements.”

Israel’s Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu responded to the news on social media writing:”Sara and I send our heartfelt well wishes to King Charles III and our prayers for his good health.”

While foreign minister Israel Katz wrote on X: “In the name of the entire people of Israel, I extend my prayers and wishes for the full recovery of the friend of the Jewish people, King Charles.”

The Palace says the King’s cancer was identified during his recent hospital treatment for a benign enlarged prostate.

A separate issue of concern was noted,” the Palace confirmed, and “subsequent diagnostic tests have identified a form of cancer.”

Chief Rabbi Mirvis meets King Charles

Charles, 75, has been advised to postpone public duties, but will “undertake state duties” and continue to meet Prime Minister Rishi Sunak weekly.

Sunak confirmed on Tuesday tthat he remains in “regular contact” with Charles and that he intends to “crack on like normal”.”All our thoughts are with him and his family,” Sunak said  adding: “I’m in regular contact as I always am.”

Charles  became king upon the death of Queen Elizabeth II, on September 8, 2022.

Meanwhile, the Prince of Wales is expected to return to royal duties on Wednesday – his first public service since his wife Kate had abdominal surgery last month.

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