Dean Rabbi Tamar

Israeli-U.S. Conservatives Still Split On Gays

Departure of two openly gay rabbinical students and three straight friends
from Machon Schechter highlights lingering differences.

05/11/2010
Israel Correspondent

Jerusalem — When, in 2007, the Conservative movement’s Jewish Theological Seminary decided to admit openly gay students for the first time, the decision presented these students with a dilemma: where to study during their mandatory third year in Israel.

Traditionally, JTS rabbinical students have spent their Israel year at Machon Schechter, the Israeli Masorti movement’s rabbinical seminary, which does not ordain openly gay students.

This worried Ian Chesir-Teran and Aaron Weininger, JTS’ first two openly gay JTS students.

Chesir-Teran, a 39-year-old father of three from East Meadow, L.I., above
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