Orthodox women

A Year Of Advances For Orthodox Feminists

01/14/2014
Special To The Jewish Week
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This past year was a good one for Orthodox Jewish feminists, and the years ahead hold great promise. Last June, Yeshivat Maharat, which ordains women as spiritual leaders and religious authorities, graduated its first three “maharats,” as they are called. (“Maharat” is a Hebrew acronym for “manhiga hilchatit ruchanit toranit,” a female legal, spiritual and Torah leader.) More than 500 people, from all branches of Judaism, turned out for the ceremony in New York. In December, JOFA (Jewish Orthodox Feminist Alliance) held its eighth international conference, attended by more than 1,000 people in an atmosphere of exuberance and optimism.

Francine Klagsbrun

Advancing New Reasons To Ordain Orthodox Women

07/30/2013
Special To The Jewish Week
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The recent conferral of the title “maharat,” the equivalent of “rabbi,” to three Orthodox women has rekindled a long-standing debate within the Orthodox community about ordaining women.

Elli Fischer

Maharats March Into Jewish World

First-ever ordination at Orthodox women’s seminary seen as ‘sea change,’ but steep hurdles persist.

06/19/2013
Special To The Jewish Week
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It was a rite of spring, as graduations are.

But this one, like Stravinsky’s 100-year-old musical score, was a controversial and bold break with tradition and all that came before.

Rabba Sara Hurwitz, left with Maharats Ruth Balinsky Friedman, left, Rachel Kohl Finegold and Abby Brown Scheier. Joan Roth

Orthodox Women Reach A Milestone

Maharot will perform virtually all the same pastoral and spiritual functions as male rabbis, plus some.

05/28/2013
Special To The Jewish Week
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Orthodox women are making history in front of our eyes. On June 16, three women will be ordained to serve, in effect, as Orthodox rabbis, given the title of Maharat (an acronym for the Hebrew words meaning leader in legal, spiritual and Torah matters).

Zelda R. Stern and Elana Maryles Sztokman.

Michelle Sarna, Empowering Orthodox women.

Staff Writer
05/22/2012

 

Michelle Sarna, 33

As a member of the New York University community for nine years, recently as an NYU Law School Tikvah post-doctoral scholar and previously as an NYU JLIC educator, Michelle Sarna was gratified when Shalhevet, NYU’s Orthodox student group, elected its first female president four years ago – succeeded by three more female presidents.

Michelle Sarna

Zamir Lifts Women’s Voices

11/01/2010
Special to the Jewish Week

To be a Jewish musician is easy, says Matthew Lazar, but to be a Jew and a musician is sometimes difficult

Nevertheless he has overcome many hurdles over the years as he guided the world-renowned coeducational Zamir Chorale as its director and conductor — in an age when modern Orthodox Jewish sensibilities shifted fundamentally to the right.

Zamir Chorale was founded by Stanley Sperber in 1960. He made aliya in 1972 and passed the baton to Lazar.

Theodore Bikel presents talit to Matthew Lazar at Zamir gala. Photo by Tim Boxer
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