Former UK Chief Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks diagnosed with cancer

The 72-year-old rabbi is one of the most influential Jewish leaders in the world and has survived two other bouts with cancer.

By Joseph Wolkin, World Israel News

Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks, the former head of British Jewry, announced on Thursday he is undergoing treatment for an undisclosed form of cancer. The ex-chief rabbi of the United Kingdom “remains positive and upbeat,” according to a statement from his office.

Rabbi Sacks is a two-time cancer survivor, but details about his bouts are unknown other than from his 2012 book, “The Great Partnership: Science, Religion, and the Search for Meaning.”

“He is looking forward to returning to his work as soon as possible,” said an official statement from the rabbi’s office. “For those who wish to include Rabbi Sacks in their prayers and thoughts, his Hebrew name is HaRav Ya’akov Zvi ben Liba.”

Rabbi Sacks’ newest book, “Morality: Restoring the Common Good in Divided Times,” was released in September. In total, he’s published more than three dozen books over the course of his career.

He is largely credited with reviving Britain’s Jewish community, which he details in “Future Tense.” The 72-year-old retired as chief rabbi of Britain in 2013 and is considered to be one of the most influential Orthodox rabbis across the globe. He is also involved in interfaith relations throughout Britain.

Rabbi Sacks is currently a finalist for the prestigious Genesis Prize, which is the Israeli version of the Nobel Prize.