Reform Movement

Israeli MK Apologizes, Says Comments On Reform ‘Misinterpreted’

02/06/2014
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JERUSALEM — Israeli lawmaker David Rotem apologized for comments attributed to him that members of the Reform movement are not Jewish, saying his words were “misinterpreted.”

In A First, Reform Rabbis On Israel's Payroll

01/03/2014
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Israeli government money was transferred for the first time to the Reform Movement in Israel to pay the salaries of four community Reform rabbis.

The transfer of the more than $86,000 on Wednesday comes 18 months after Israel’s Supreme Court approved an arrangement to enable non-Orthodox rabbis who lead congregations to receive state salaries like their Orthodox counterparts.

Rabbi Miri Gold: Sued Israeli government for funding access.

The List: Biggest Inclusion Plays And Players Of 2013

As we start the New Year, it’s important to look back on what was accomplished for inclusion of Jews with disabilities this past year. We planted the seeds for future progress. Most of the work focused on “setting the table” for inclusion: raising awareness, creating critical policies and standards, and developing and conducting training for professionals. Hopefully, 2014 will be the year of implementation. Meanwhile, here are the top plays and players of 2013.

Inclusion leaders, from left: Shelley Cohen, Donn Weinberg and Jennifer Lazlo Mizrahi. Photo courtesy Jennifer Laszlo Mizrahi

An Investment In Souls

Rabbi David Ellenson remembers the legendary philanthropist whose eye was trained on the future.

12/24/2013
Special To The Jewish Week
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Many will surely speak of Edgar Bronfman and his legacy — and deservedly so. I will leave it to others to describe his extraordinarily privileged background, his many achievements in the realm of business and commerce, and his manifold philanthropic works. Each area of his exceptional life is worthy of a full-scale treatise, and I have no doubt that a complete academic biography of the man will soon emerge — the temptation for an academic or graduate student to describe the history of Jewish life in our day through an exploration of this one man’s life is surely irresistible.

Edgar Bronfman: Hailed for candor, humor and curiosity.

Westchester Rabbi Aaron Panken Elected President Of Hebrew Union College

08/01/2013
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Rabbi Aaron Panken was elected president of The Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion, the Reform movement’s rabbinical school.

Rabbi Aaron Pankin, a resident of Mamaroneck, will succeed Rabbi David Ellenson in running four HUC campuses.

Child Struck By Lightning At URJ Summer Camp Remains Critical

06/30/2013
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Ethan Kadish, the only one of three campers still hospitalized after being struck by lightning last week at a Jewish camp in Indiana, remains in critical but stable condition.

The 12-year-old from Cincinnati requires help with his breathing and needs his chest cleared, according to his family, who set up a website, Caringbridge.org/visit/ethankadish, to provide updates on his condition.

“Ethan continues to work with his medical team on recovery,” the Kadish family wrote. “We want to let all of you know that his recovery is going to take time.”

From Crawling Under Tables To "Youth Person Of Honor:" How Did We Get Here?

It's all too familiar. It's 5 on a Tuesday afternoon. A room full of fidgety fourth graders. A teacher going around the room, student by student, asking each one to practice reading Hebrew. And to make it harder, there is one student in perpetual motion who disrupts everything, by climbing out of his chair and crawling under the desks. Fast forward seven years.

Lisa Friedman

Why We Still Wait For The Messianic Times

03/18/2013
Jewish Week Online Columnist

Ani Maamin – I believe with perfect faith in the coming of a messianic era. In Reform ideology, we don’t necessarily wait for an individual Messiah, but we do encourage people to do all they can to create a better world, and to work towards a time when all will be peaceful, loving, and safe. Among Jews of various denominations, we have differing opinions about what will bring the Messiah. Some believe that, once every eligible Jew has observed certain mitzvot (like laying tefillin or lighting Shabbat candles), the Messiah will finally arrive. Others believe that, once things get particularly bad, the Messiah will surely come. I have a bit of a different idea.

Rabbi Marci Bellows

Beyond Burial

The problem of prayerbooks: awash in holy books, synagogues ponder how to collectively, creatively dispose of old friends.

02/15/2013

After years of watching synagogue members die or move away, the Sephardic Jewish Center of Canarsie made the difficult decision to downsize.

Synagogues that upgrade to newer editions of prayer books often have to bury the old ones. Adam Jones/Creative Commons

Reform Movement Promotes Young Leadership

02/07/2013
Special To The Jewish Week

I  read Rabbi Ashira Konigsburg’s Opinion piece, “Forever Young? Community Relegates Adults to ‘Kids’ Table” (Feb. 1) and was intrigued by her assessment that organizations “must find ways to engage and cultivate genuine new leadership” rather than relegating young leaders to the proverbial “kids’ table.” I couldn’t agree more, which is why I felt inspired to share the very positive experiences I’ve been fortunate to have as a young lay leader in the Reform Movement.

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