The Temple Institute on Monday announced a new initiative to identify, select and register kohanim who would be eligible to prepare the Red Heifer, as part of reinstating worship at the Holy Temple in Jerusalem when it is rebuilt.
In launching the registration program, the Temple Institute is moving to the second stage of its project to restore the concept of Biblical purity.
“Even before the Temple is rebuilt, the reinstatement of halakhically (according to Jewish law – ed.) approved kohanim is a pre-requisite for preparation of the Red Heifer which will enable the people of Israel to perform numerous Torah-based commandments, such as challah and terumah, according to the Torah’s true intentions,” said the organization in a statement.
There are complex requirements for members of the priestly lineage to be eligible to take part in the preparation of the Red Heifer, and rabbis and scholars at the Temple Institute have been intensely researching the subject for many years.
Potential kohanim candidates must have been born in Israel to a father of kohanic lineage, leading back to Aharon (Aaron) from the Torah, and they must have avoided exposure to the Biblical impurity rendered by death.