Conservative Judaism

Movements Announce Cross-Denominational Synagogue Inclusion Effort

The Reform, Reconstructionist, Orthodox and Conservative movements announced on Monday a plan for collaborating to work toward the increased inclusion of people with disabilities in synagogues.

Rabbi Lynne Landsberg of the URJ has helped to spearhead the Hineinu initiative.

Listen To The Music Of Prayer

08/08/2013 - 20:00
Jewish Week Online Columnist

Although those who daven (pray) regularly rarely think of it in these terms because they take it so for granted, music plays an irreducibly crucial role in Jewish prayer 

On the most basic level, if the proper nusach, or musical mode, is being used by a Hazzan or other prayer leader, a knowledgeable Jew will, immediately upon entering a synagogue prayer service, be able to tell whether it is a Shabbat, holiday, or weekday, or, for that matter, one of the High Holidays.  The words that make up our prayer book are not “said,” per se, but chanted, according to traditional customs and melodies that often date back thousands of years.

Rabbi Gerald Skolnik is spiritual leader of the Forest Hills Jewish Center.

Conservative Synagogue Group $5.7 Million In Debt, According To Audit

United Synagogue hopes to balance budget in two years through cuts, fundraising and membership hike.
01/07/2013 - 19:00

The congregational arm of the Conservative movement ran a cumulative budget deficit of more than $5 million over the past two years, JTA has learned, renewing longstanding concerns for the future of one of the movement's key institutional pillars.

“Let Them Come to Boston!”

12/27/2012 - 19:00
Online Jewish Week Columnist

In 1963, the late President John F. Kennedy delivered one of the most stirring and memorable speeches of his brief presidency to a throng of hundreds of thousands of Germans gathered in Berlin. 

Rabbi Gerald Skolnik

Conservatives Walking Intermarriage Tightrope

In two new books and a poll, the middle movement struggles to find balance on thorny issue.
10/09/2012 - 20:00
Associate Editor

It’s long been a truism that, of the major streams of American Judaism, the Conservative movement is the one with the largest gap between bima and pew.

Where Conservative rabbis often resemble Modern Orthodox ones in their personal ritual observance — Shabbat, kashrut and so on — the movement’s rank and file tend to behave more like their peers at Reform congregations.

Federation of Jewish Men’s Clubs Rabbi Charles Simon.

Technology vs. Shabbat: An Interview with Rabbi Daniel Nevins

E-books became the dominant format for adult fiction in 2011 surpassing hardcover books and paperbacks according to the BookStats annual survey. We are increasingly choosing to read our novels, magazine, newspapers and even children’s books on e-readers and tablets. But is it permissible to do this on the one day of the week that Judaism commands us to unplug?

Rabbi Daniel Nevins answers questions concerning the use of technology on Shabbat.

Lifting Our Heads High As Conservative Jews

06/25/2012 - 20:00
Special To The Jewish Week
It seems that every significant study of the Jewish people is released while we read from the Book of Numbers, the book that derives its English name from the first official census of the Jewish people. It’s as if counting the Jewish people is imbedded in our DNA. That census, conducted 3,000-plus years ago, however, was much more limited in scope: Only men age 20 and older who are able to go to war (Numbers 1:3) were to be counted. From the Torah’s census of 603,550 Israelites of age for war, scholars estimate that the total population was in the 2.5 million range. 
Rabbi Steven Wernick

Self-Image and the Non-Orthodox World: The Case For Auto-Emancipation 2012

06/19/2012 - 20:00
Jewish Week Online Columnist

If you’ve spent any serious time in Israel and have traveled to its major cities, you will undoubtedly have noticed that virtually all of them have streets named after famous, deceased Zionist leaders and thinkers. There are countless boulevards, highways and avenues named after Herzl, Ahad-Ha’am, Ben-Gurion, Rothschild, Begin, Rabin, Ussishkin, Arlozorov… you get the picture.

Rabbi Gerald Skolnik is spiritual leader of the Forest Hills Jewish Center.

Koach Saved For Now

Conservative movement sets aside $100k for campus program.
06/11/2012 - 20:00
Staff Writer

Koach, the college program of the Conservative movement that was to have been defunded for budgetary reasons, was granted a six-month reprieve Sunday by the directors of the United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism.

Conservative Movement: Yes Gay Marriage, No Shabbat Tech

In one week, decisions both liberal and traditional on 21st-century issues.
06/04/2012 - 20:00
Special To The Jewish Week

Conservative rabbis reminded their constituents this week that, at least when it comes to texting on Shabbat, they can still be counted on to be conservative, with a small c.

It was a week that Conservative rabbis were welcomed by the Obama White House, which apparently still sees their votes in play (as opposed to the Reform and Orthodox who are firmly pro-Democratic or pro-Republican). And it was a week in which the rabbis issued guidelines on performing same-sex marriages (two rings and a modified marriage contract).

Ari L. Goldman
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