Modern Orthodox

Rabbinical Council Of America Officially Bans Ordination And Hiring Of Women Rabbis


The Rabbinical Council of America, the main modern Orthodox rabbinical group, formally adopted a policy prohibiting the ordination or hiring of women rabbis.

Israeli women of the Women of the Wall organization praying just outside the Western Wall, in Jerusalem’s Old City. JTA

As KJ Returns To A Restored Shul, Rabbi Passes The Torch

Four years after a fire damaged Kehilath Jeshurun, the building reopens with a revamped space and a new senior rabbi.

Staff Writer

In June of 1958, 26-year-old Rabbi Haskel Lookstein sat on the bima of Congregation Kehilath Jeshurun and delivered his first sermon as the Upper East Side Modern Orthodox congregation’s assistant rabbi.

Congregants of Kehilath Jeshurun carry Torah scrolls during the dedication ceremony. Courtesy of Kehilath Jeshurun

Orthodox Jews Are Mostly Republicans, And More

The research center's 2013 study yields more insights, especially about the Orthodox.


Ever since the Pew Research Center released its landmark 2013 survey of U.S. Jewry, the study has become central to debates about everything from intermarriage to Jewish education. Now comes a new treasure trove of data from Pew about Orthodox Jews, extrapolated from the data amassed for the 2013 study (from 3,475 interviews with Jews conducted that year).

Members of the Jewish Orthodox community walk down a street in a Brooklyn neighborhood on June 14, 2012, in New York City. JTA

In Protest, Rabbi Avi Weiss Leaves RCA

Cites failure of Orthodox rabbinic group to admit Chovevei Torah graduates.

Staff Writer

Rabbi Avi Weiss, the maverick Modern Orthodox spiritual leader who has distanced himself from that movement in recent decades by forming his own “Open Orthodox” rabbinical school and ordaining women, this week cut his ties with Modern Orthodoxy’s mainstream rabbinical group in protest.

In Protest, Rabbi Avi Weiss Quits Rabbinical Council Of America


Rabbi Avi Weiss is quitting the Rabbinical Council of America to protest its failure to admit as members rabbis whose sole ordination is from the rabbinical school he founded.

Weiss leads a vigil and march in New York City in remembrance of the three Israeli boys who were kidnapped and killed. JTA

Orthodox Rabbis Join The Conversation On LGBTQ Inclusion


A group of modern Orthodox rabbis have done what advocates for Orthodox gays and lesbians say would have been unthinkable as recently as five years ago: They spoke at a conference on the treatment of gay, lesbian and transgender people in Orthodox communities.

Why We Need To Redefine ‘Orthodoxy’

Looking to the right for legitimacy is a loser's game for traditional Judaism.

Special To The Jewish Week

Never let the competition define you. Never peg your own identity to a rival. Never allow the other side to dictate your character and never abdicate your own individuality and uniqueness.

Orthodoxy is still moving to the right, the author writes. Fotolia

A Five-Point Plan

How we're navigating the conflict over our partnership minyan.


I live in a town with one Orthodox synagogue. That is not simple if you prefer progressive Orthodoxy. It's sometimes not even simple if you like old-fashioned Modern Orthodoxy. But the community is diverse, our friends are here and we have carved out a liberal outpost for ourselves in "Kol Echad", a partnership minyan. A partnership minyan is a mechitza minyan, with a divider between men's and women's sections; where women read from the Torah; receive aliyot and lead prayers on for selected parts of the service.

Audrey Trachtman

Quotes Of The Day

"As a member of a 'modern Orthodox' congregation, I am prepared to abide by the minhag of the group. However, I can't help but hear in this article echos of the reasonable segregationist..."

Not A Proud Moment For The RCA In Dealing With The Chief Rabbinate


The setting was the annual dinner of the SAR Academy, a leading Modern Orthodox day school in Riverdale, enrolling over 1000 students from homes throughout the tri-state area. SAR’s long-standing school president closed the evening by applauding Rabbi Avi Weiss for his tireless advocacy on behalf of the Jewish people in the face of the Chief Rabbinate of Israel’s efforts to delegitimate him. A standing ovation ensued. For one evening, at least, grass-roots Modern Orthodoxy had spoken out in unequivocal opposition to the senseless and arbitrary actions of Israel’s Chief Rabbinate.

Israel's Chief Rabbinate council, 1959. Wikimedia Commons
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