29 Friday, January 3, 1986
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Continued from preceding page
resistance on womenIs 'participa- leration and a respect for others'
tion, says some of his older viewpoints," he says.
(male) members were' 'very en- • Toleration, respect for other
thusiastic about it." While he points of view, and also pati-
says, "I don't draw women to the ence, 'fairness — these qualities
bimah kicking and screaming," all enter into a discussion of
he is pleased that so many of •women's participation in Con-
the female members want to servative Jewish synagogues.
take part. He says Beth Shalom Some women desperately want
was the first . Conservative •to join the men as equals, and
synagogue in the area to begin they have the education and
calling women to the Torah commitment" that makes them
(1.974) and also initiated adult feel worthy. Other women are
Bat Mitzvah training eight indifferent or don't want to
years ago. (Shaarey Zedek and share the men's religious oblige-
Adat Shalom also have these
programs today.) He may be
most proud of the' fact that a
graduate of the Beth Shalom re-
ligious school, Debbie Newman,
is a freshman in the Jewish
Theological Seminary's graduate
rabbianical school. Rabbi Nelson
says Newman's decision to be-
come a Conservative rabbi is -
"part of the payoff" for his con-
gregation's enthusiastic support
for women in religious life.
For Rabbi Rosenbaum of B'nai
Moshe, whose congregation
membership is neither so liberal
as Beth Shalom nor as tradi-
tional as Beth Achim, it is im-
portant to respect the needs of
all members, male and female.
• "Last year (at B'nai
"A congregation is a commun-
ity," Rabbi Rosenbaum says.
Moshe), women of all ages
"We accept the legitimacy of dif-
-- 13 in all — read the
ferent needs of people in terms
of social action and the same is
entire Book of Ruth on the
true that people have different
second day of Shavuot. And
religious needs. In Europe, you
could vote with your feet which
you know what? The ceiling
congregation you would go to"
didn't fall in, not even the
•because there were more choices
available, reflecting the diver-
sity of people living in an area.
Rather than concentrating
strictly on the issue of a wo-
men's minyan, Rabbi Rosen-
As Libby Weingarden of
baum would like to see alterna- tions.
Shaarey Zedek says, "If
tive styles of minyanim to Cong.
weather is bad and I don't
satisfy needs of various mem- the
want to walk (to the synagogue),
bers of the congregation. For I'll
read that _Torah portion at
example, there could be a be- home.
stay home. I•,think
ginner's minyan, for people un- there's I a can
familiar with Hebrew. It would women in tremendous
Judaism and it's not
be a basic service with a discus- on the bimah."
sion of the prayers. A Havurah
But for Rena Tobes, of B'nai
minyan could emphasize the
Torah portion, says Rabbi Moshe, allowing the same re-
Rosenbaum. The participants ligious privileges as men means
would prepare and lead discus- women can experience the joy of.
sions on their portion. This for- worshipping God in the fulled
mat stresses personal involve- fashion.,
"Last year (at B'nai Moshe),
women of all ages 13 in all —
An egalitarian service, of the read
the entire Book of Ruth on
type approved by the Committee
second day of Shavuot," says
on Lair and Standards of the the
"And: you know what?
Rabbinical Assembly would be' Tobes.
all right, too, if the members The ceiling, didn't fall in, not
want it. By the same token, he even the roof." 0
feels a- traditional' service with a
mechitza (segregated seating of
men and women) also would be'
a possibility. Rabbi Rosenbaum
would let members pursue these Tel
ideas and their continuance
would depend on "how their • Tel Aviv (JTA)
kind of service is received --• if exploded outside a fast food re-
it attracts others' interest."
in. Malchei Israel
• "Our strength (at B'nai staurant
Square opposite the City Hall
Moshe) has been our heimish- last Thursday, shattering win-
ness, the feeling of being part of dows in nearby shops and cafes.
a family, even though there are There were no' injuries but a
many different personalities woman, passerby was taken to
within a family," says Rabbi. Ichilov Hospital where she was
Rosenbaum. As people learn 'to treated for shock. The blast was
express themselves, and come •the second terrorist bombing in
into contact with diverse opin- two months' in downtown Tel
ions, congregants "will learn to- Aviv.
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