Rift between oldest synagogue, Jewish congregation
AP staff report:
A disagreement over the ownership of a set of Torah finial bells from Colonial times that is worth millions has led to dueling lawsuits between leaders of the nation’s first Jewish congregation and the nation’s oldest synagogue.
The dispute started after leaders of the nearly 250-year-old Touro Synagogue in Newport, R.I., agreed to sell the bells, called rimonim, for $7.4 million to the Museum of Fine Arts in Boston. The sale is opposed by leaders of Congregation Shearith Israel in New York City, who say it owns Touro and the rimonim.
Weird story about ownership, religion, and — somehow — ownership of religion.