A messianic ‘rabbi’ from Stanmore, whose unconventional lifestyle featuring seven ‘wives’ and at least 19 children, has died at the age of 60.
Philip Sharp will be laid to rest at Bushey Old Cemetery on Wednesday, in accordance with his wish to be laid to rest near his mother.
The focus of numerous tabloid stories and television appearances for his multiple marriages, Sharp claimed polygamy was part of a divine plan, revealed to him by God.
According to the Times of Israel in 2013, he was legally married to one wife – Hadas – and lived with at six others for over a decade, fathering multiple children, not all of whom were Jewish.
Sharp’s unconventional family was the focus of a 2013 Channel 5 documentary, The Girl With Seven Mums, which featured his daughter Ellie, then 10-years-old, describing what it was like to grow up with multiple mother-figures.
In 2018 he appeared on ITV show ‘This Morning’ to defend his lifestyle.
As well as engaging in polygamy, his 1993 rabbinic ordination from the International Alliance of Messianic Congregations and Synagogues was revoked.
His Twitter profile claimed he has ”made pilgrimage through Christian, Messianic and Jewish Faith groups reaching leadership level in each.”
Melvyn Hartog, United Synagogue’s head of burial, confirmed: “We are burying Philip Sharp tomorrow [Wednesday]. He was not a United Synagogue member, but his siblings are carrying out his wish to be buried near his mother at Bushey Old Cemetery.”