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April 13, 1984 - Image 16

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1984-04-13

Disclaimer: Computer generated plain text may have errors. Read more about this.

16

THE DETROIT JEWISH NEWS

Friday, April 13, 1984

National decisions split rabbis

BY IRVING GREENBERG

OUT FOXES
THE TAX MAN
WITH HIS GREAT

TAX
REDUCTION SALE

CUTS PRICES
BELOW COST

APRIL
15th

SUNi);AY

ELECTRIC GUITARS

$

Fender, Gibson, Ovation, Wasnourn, G & L,
Hondo, Kramer, Magnum, Vantage, & Others

ALL MODELS REDUCED

AMPS for GUITAR
BASS, & KEYBOARD

"421 9

99

from

398

PEAVEY'S

from



99

Peavey, Acoustic. Fender. Roland.

Marshall, & Others



`''—k) :

Ludwig, Slingerland, Pearl, Gretsch, Rogers, Rolo,
Toms, Paiste Cymbals, Zildjian Cymbals

ALL MODELS in ,,, 50% OFF

$269

va-c, 6

<--At

70%

P

from

- 10AM to 9PM

N

DRUM SETS

from

FENDER STRATOCASTERSIby soulLIR

PEAVEY'S

Special to The Jewish News

ALL upto50% OFF

ELECTRIC BASSES

:1;14

from $139

Ibanez, Fender, Kramer, Washburn,
Magnum, Peavey, Vantage, & Others

KORG POLY 61



ALL MODELS REDUCED uon 70%

REG. $1495

ACOUSTIC GUITARS

from $44

$149

\,„„olonow,

1/'

from
Martin, Ovation, Fender, Guild, Washburn,
Yamaha, Ibanez, Hondo, Magnum, & Others

n E.

r • - '

70 0

DUCFD

KORG POLY 800 08 49
Prices Slashed! 0

SCHOOL BAND INSRUMENTS

Approved

by Board of Education

NEW & USED

from $ 8 g

Vito, Leblanc, King, Armstrong, Gemeinhardt,
Roth, Holton, Getzen, & Others

ELECTRIC PIANOS
SYNTHESIZERS

Univox, Moog, Yamaha, Fender Rhodes, Korg,
Sequential Circuit, Hohner, Crumar, & Others

ALL BAND ACCESS.
SHEET MUSIC,

35% OFF

SUNDAY'S
PRICE

0

WASHBURN'S,

ALL upti,50% OFF

PA & PRO SOUND GEAR

TASCAM

Korg, Delta Lab, Crown, Peavey, Tascam,
Electro-Voice, Acoustic, JBL, Biamp, Shure, SRO,
Atidio-Technica, Bullfrog, Gauss, Roland, & Others

Porta - Studio

ALL upt050% OFF

Reg. $1495

$995

fill Min dik AO AM

$275

DELTA LAB DIGITAL $199

UP TO 60% OFF

MIN11•1111113_

MOOG
ROGUE

COMPLETE P.A. SYSTEM

from

$399

EVERYTHING REDUCED up to 70% 1

REGAL TIP & PRO MARK
DRUM STICKS

Electronic Guitar
TUNER

PEAVEY MICROPHONE
with clip, cable, & case

Peg. 56.90

Sunday Only
519.95

Reg. 5131

Every day low price S3.57

SUNDAY ONLY S2.98

SALE $59

limit 6 sets per customer

ALL CABLES

2 for the list
price of one

STRINGS

LIGHTING
D.J. Equip
30 - 60°o Off

3 sets for the
price of one

wonderl
mi]un

I

DEARBORN
13519 MICHIGAN

WEST BLOOMFIELD
33084 NORTHWESTERN

OAK PARK
GREEN-8-CENTER

Near Schaefer

At Orchard Lake Rd.

Across from Northland

584-8111

855-6333

967-0234

EASY
FINANCING
AVAILABLE

New York — An impor-
tant religious experiment
designed to protect the
unity of the Jewish people
has broken down. Six years
ago, the Conservative, Re-
form and Modern Orthodox
rabbis of Denver, Colo. set
up a common process of con-
version to Judaism. All pro-
spective converts were in-
structed, then examined by
a joint Beth Din (legal
board) and converted in a
manner enabling their
Jewish status to be recog-
nized by all the denomina-
tions.
The agreement was kept
a local secret during its
lifetime, but its collapse has
been widely publicized. The
breakdown is another warn-
ing that the religious bonds
that bind Jewry are fraying
rapidly.
The Denver arrangement
was a model for world Jewry
of how to avoid the bitter
fighting over "Who is a
Jew?" Learning and knowl-
edge levels for converts
were set. All the rabbis
taught classes. They all ex-
tended themselves to meet
the needs and standards of
the others. Reform rabbis
undertook to teach converts
the expectations of obser-
verance — including Shab-
bat and even kashrut. They
also agreed that all converts
in this program would have
to undergo immersion in a
mikveh and hatafat dam brit
— "drawing a drop of blood"
— symbolic circumcision for
already circumcised males
— although, classically, Re-
form had rejected these
Halachic requirements.
A Beth Din composed of
one Reform, one Conserva-
tive and one Orthodox rabbi
was set up. In accordance
with the Halachah, candi-
dates were specifically
asked at the examination to
undertake observance of
commandments. The
Halachic rabbis accepted
the convert's commitment
to observe laws without
questioning details — thus
tacitly recognizing that the
converts would not neces-
sarily meet traditional
standards in their mitzvah
keeping.
Other Orthodox rabbis
around the world are mak-
ing a similar concession but
only privately, for their own
converts. The accommoda-
tion is done to permit con-
version of a Gentile mar-
riage partner or in recogni-
tion of the realities of
Jewish non-observance.
Rabbi Shlomo Goren,
then Chief Rabbi of Israel,
set up an even more liberal
official pattern to make
possible the absorption of
Soviet emigres — many of
whom were going to live
non-Orthodox lives. The
significant breakthrough in
Denver was the willingness
of traditional rabbis to
make the same arrange-
ment for non-Orthodox col-
leagues' converts — for the
sake of the unity of the
Jewish people. By their ac-
tions, the traditional rabbis
tacitly recognized the value

of Reform and the fact that
many semi-observant Jews
are highly committed
mainstays of Jewish survi-
val.
To prevent challenges to
the legitimacy of Halachic
actions by a Beth Din which
included as a member a Re-
form rabbi who might be
personally non-observant,
the Reform rabbis also
agreed that the final ritual
act of immersion would be
supervised and witnessed
by a trio of Orthodox rabbis.
Normally, such exclusion is
a denial of Reform legiti-
macy and Reform will not
participate in such an ar-
rangement. But having
been given standing in the
conversion process and the
examining Beth Din, the
Reform rabbis reciprocated
to avoid political problems
for their traditional col-
leagues.
The final procedure
enabled three Orthodox
signatories to vouch for the
convert to Israeli and*other
sources which would not
have accepted open Reform
participation in the process.
If the Denver arrange-
ment were adopted
worldwide, it would prevent
the bitter fights over "Who
is a Jew" and protect com-
munal unity in matters of
personal basis. Instead, the
Denver process has been de-
stroyed. What went wrong?
The key blow was the
Reform rabbinate's decision
to no longer require conver-
sion from Jews of pat-
rilineal descent. This bid
fair to create a whole gener-
ation of Jews, recognized as
such only by Reform
Judaism. Their number
would dwarf the hard-
earned gains in unified con-
version in the Denver pro-
gram. The demonstrative
rejection of concern for the
Halachic community's
standards shook traditional
rabbis' will to extend them-
selves for unity with Reform
Jews.
The traditional rabbis
were also disturbed by the
new Reform outreach pro-
gram which reverses the
1,800-year-old Jewish hesi-
tation to proselytize. The
national Reform movement
proposed to set up a model
outreach program in De-
nver. The traditional rabbis
saw the outreach program
as a cheapening of the con-
version process, and a fig
leaf to cover increased ac-
ceptance of inter-marriage
(since most of targets would
be non-Jewish spouses of
Jews). They feared being
used to legitimate a flock of
converts of questionable
commitment and they drew
back.
When the Denver Reform
rabbis finally saw that the
joint program was in
jeopardy, they responded by
offering to ask patrilineal
children to go through con-
version. But they would not
promise to refuse recogni-
tion to any such children
who declined to do so. The
Reform rabbis also prom-
ised not to participate in the
national outreach program.
But the damage was done.

The very fact that the ar-
rangement was now in-
volved in , controversy
brought it to the attention of
right-wing and national Or-
thodox groups. This in-
creased the pressure on the
traditional rabbis to break
off. It is a sad commentary
on Jewish religious life
today that those who favor
unity are on the defensive
and must keep their efforts
secret.
In the past decade, mod-
em Orthodoxy has been in
headlong retreat from its al-
liance with other Jews and
its more modern positions,
under the pressure of the
growth and triumphalism of
right-wing yeshivas and the
baal teshuvah and
Lubavitch movements. The
philosophical collapse and
institutional retreat of this
group which embraces the
claims of Halachah and the
political and cultural needs
of the less observant Jewish
community is undermining
bridges between tradition
and Jews living in the mod-
ern Jewish condition.
The threatened outcome
is a kulturkainpf in Israel
and communal divisiveness
and increased assimilation
of non-observant Jews in
America.
A major effort to renew
modern Orthodoxy should
be supported by all Jews.
(Now, many non-observant
Jews are unwittingly
strengthening the polariza-
tion process by their support
of right-wing Orthodox out-
reach without, at the same
time, asking questions
about their delegitimation
of other Jewish move-
ments.)
Long-term, systematic
dialogue between the de-
nominations (along the
lines of National Jewish Re-
source Center's CHEVRA
program) must be broadly
established. Unless action
for unity through Jewish
learning and law is started
soon, Jews will be engaged
in a religious civil war
within a generation.

Copyright 1984, the National
Jewish Resource Center

Aid for Falasha
kids in Israel

Jerusalem (JTA) — A
team of experts from the
aliyah and youth depart-
ments in the Jewish Agency
have joined forces to deal
with the problems of chil-
dren from Ethiopia who
have recently reached Is-
rael without their parents.
Jewish Agency chairman
Leon Dulzin said the
number of these children is
steadily rising and their
problems require special at-
tention.
There have been media
reports here of orientation
difficulties these children
experience in youth aliyah
boarding schools. In some
cases the Israeli children
who are pupils in these
schools — many of them
from disadvantaged
families — have reacted
with indifference or even
hostility to the young
Ethiopian newcomers.

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