Rabbi Aaron Lankry, Rav of Bais Medrash Ohr Chaim in Forshay, has been named the first Chief Rabbi of Honduras, a country which currently does not have any religious Jews, VIN reports.
At a Wednesday meeting at the Sheraton Crossroads in Mahwah convened to draw business to Honduras, Honduran Minister of Government and Justice Hector Leon Ayala said that it was an honor for the country to create the new office.
The idea to create a chief rabbinate was sparked by an economic interest, explained Jay Bar-Levy, who works closely with Rabbi Lankry in Monsey. Having a chief rabbi in the republic would create the possibility of Honduran food items becoming kosher certified which could potentially increase exports, Bar Levy told VIN.
Rabbi Lankry, who has yet to visit Honduras, is hoping his position will give him the opportunity to work with the large number of Hondurans Marranos and determine their Jewish validity. He also believes his position can help foster stronger ties between Israel and the Central American country.