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December 15, 1989 - Image 16

Resource type:
Text
Publication:
The Detroit Jewish News, 1989-12-15

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

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Gay Shul Is Accepted,
But With Conditions

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16

FRIDAY, DECEMBER 15, 1989

(

Ellen Bernstein is a staff
writer for our sister paper, the
Atlanta Jewish Times.

EMBE

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insurance estimates accepted .

he Atlanta Synagogue
Council voted to admit
the city's only gay and
lesbian congregation under
the condition that it cease
publicizing its homosexual
orientation, a provision re-
jected initially by leaders of
the gay synagogue.
"We see this as no com-
promise. They want us to
hide our identity to the
world," said Betsy Goldin, a
representative of Bet
Haverim, who presented the
gay congregation's applica-
tion to the citywide council
of rabbis and synagogue
presidents.
After the Nov. 29 closed-
door meeting, Goldin said
she expected the Bet
Haverim board will also re-
ject the restrictions in a vote
Dec. 17.
In a 14-5 vote with one
abstention, the council ap-
proved the gay synagogue's
application under the condi-
tion that it only publicize its
Reconstructionist affiliation,
according to Marcia
Bergman, president of the
council.
It was Reform represen-
tatives who voted against
placing restrictions on Bet
Haverim's membership, said
the council's secretary,
Rabbi Barry Friedman of
Temple Emanu-el.
A proposal that Bet
Haverim could advertise its
"special outreach to the les-
bian and gay community"

was not met with opposition
by the traditional wing of
the council, said Friedman.
The proposal was not
brought to a vote at the
meeting.
The decision came after
several months of foot dragg-
in g by the fledgling
organization, which formed
early this year. Either way,
the outcome of the vote
portended the dissolution of
the organization. Both the
traditional and liberal wings
had threatened walkouts
over the gay shul's accep-
tance or rejection.
The more traditional
synagogue leaders said they
wouldn't recognize a
synagogue based on a sexual
orientation forbidden by the
Torah. Reform congrega-
tions have questioned their
involvement in an organiza-
tion that does not uphold
their liberal principles.
At least two Reform
leaders, Rabbi Alvin
Sugarman of the Temple and
Rabbi Philip Kranz of Tem-
ple Sinai, have indicated
they may quit the council if
Bet Haverim decides not to
accept the restrictions.
In a second vote, the coun-
cil defeated 11-9 a motion to
offer unconditional member-
ship to Bet Haverim. The
Conservative synagogues
sided with the Traditional
and Orthodox shuls in
voting down the motion. ❑

553-7111

Quayle Urges U.N.
To Repeal Resolution

New York — Vice Presi-
dent Dan Quayle last week
called on the Soviet Union
and other nations to cospon-
sor with the United States a
United Nations resolution
rescinding the 1975 legisla-
tion equating Zionism with
racism.
The new resolution, he
said, "would affirm that
Zionism is what Soviet For-
eign Minister (Andrei)
Gromyko rightly called it
back in 1948: the national
liberation movement of the
Jewish people," he told an
audience gathered for
Yeshiva University's annual
Chanukah convocation.
The vice president pledged
that he would tell U.N. Sec-

retary General Javier Perez
de Cuellar in his meeting
that the U.N. resolution
must be rescinded for the
organization to regain its
stature. A spokesman for the
secretary general said that
Quayle and Perez de Cuellar
did discuss the resolution.
At that meeting, Quayle
gave Perez de Cuellar a $65
million check, representing
the U.S. government's dues
to the international
organization.
Only last week, the United
States threatened to
withhold its contribution of
the General Assembly pass-
ed a resolution elevating the
status of the Palestinian
Liberation Organization.

is)

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