The Committee on Jewish Law and Standards is meeting March 7-8 to discuss the Conservative Movement's stance on homosexuality.
In preparation, Keshet invites all JTS students, faculty, and staff to:
Lost (and Found?)
a candid talk with the
affected by our policies
Wednesday March 1, 12:15-1:15
Gabriel Blau is an author, educator, and founder of God and Sexuality: an Academic Conference on Religion and Issues of Sexuality and Gender at Bard College.
Jarah Greenfield is a rabbinical student at the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College who could not apply to JTS because of the policy prohibiting lesbian and gay ordination. She serves on the board of Rabbis for Human Rights, and has studied at the Drisha Institute for Jewish Education.
Kate O'Brien attended the JTS Rabbinical School from 2001-2004 before being forced to leave due to the policy prohibiting lesbian and gay ordination. She is currently studying for masters’ degrees in Jewish Education and Bible at JTS and serves as director of Alma NY, a new progressive learning community.
This Wednesday, at JTS. All are invited!
Background: the Committee on Jewish Law and Standards is the Conservative movement's version of the College of Cardinals, but not as transparent. Demonstrating its commitment to halachic innovation, the CJLS has created the new halachic category of "homosexual" out of whole cloth. In the spirit of the rabbis who extended the Torah's "Do not cook a kid in its mother's milk" to prohibit eating, cooking, and deriving benefit from any mixture of meat and milk, the CJLS has taken an opaque biblical verse that chaza"l understood as banning a specific sex act between two men, and extended it to exclude anyone of either sex who identifies as "gay" or "lesbian" (with no actions necessary) from various communal roles. This is the part where Moses shows up to Rabbi Akiva's classroom and says "What are you thinking???"
Even when the CJLS is at its most inclusive, it says "We emphatically recognize the human dignity (k'vod habriut [sic]) of all such individuals, and invite them to participate within our religious communities." (Who is "we"? Who is "them"? Whose religious communities?)