Joseph, Morris

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JOSEPH, MORRIS (1848–1930), English Reform rabbi, preacher, and writer. The son of a London minister, Joseph served as minister (rabbi) successively at the North London Synagogue, the Liverpool Old Hebrew Congregation, and, after an interval of nearly 20 years, at the West London (Reform) Synagogue. When in 1890 the newly founded Hamp-stead Synagogue, a constituent of the *United Synagogue, elected him as their minister, Chief Rabbi Hermann *Adler vetoed the appointment because of Joseph's unorthodox views, in particular regarding the restoration of the sacrificial cult. This was apparently no obstacle to his teaching homiletics at Jews' College in 1891–92. His views on Reform were very moderate. He expressed them in his Judaism as Creed and Life (1903 and several editions to 1958), which became a widely read and popular book. Joseph also published three volumes of sermons, Ideal in Judaism (1893), Message of Judaism (1906), and Spirit of Judaism (1930). He also contributed to the Jewish Quarterly Review, the Jewish Chronicle, and Hasting's Encyclopaedia of Religion and Ethics. Joseph was active in Jewish literary societies and the Jewish Peace Society.


jc (Apr. 25, 1930), 10–12; West London Synagogue Magazine, 4 (1930), 146–83; R. Apple, The Hampstead Synagogue 1892–1967 (1967), 9, 14, 17, 18, 23–6, 35–7.