B’nai Jeshurun e-mails on Palestinians raises issues about rabbinic leadership, especially when it comes to Israel.
Should congregational rabbis lead or follow? Should they be prophetic figures or pastoral ones, consensus figures or divisive ones? And should they wade headlong into thorny political territory?
These are some of the questions being asked this week in the wake of the backlash created when the rabbis of B’nai Jeshurun in Manhattan sent an e-mail to congregants heralding Palestinian recognition by the United Nations as “a great moment.” The letter has spurred a discussion of the role of a congregational rabbi, and how they are educated.