21 December 2012

Women Rabbis - Who Needs to Be Comfortable?

Thank you to Marc Leibowitz for bringing to my attention this exchange on the Atlantic blog, following up on an Op-Ed in the Washington Post about how we view women clergy.

I will add my limited wisdom here:

First of all, on the other side, I cannot tell you how many times (with different congregations), I have heard the story of the religious school child who asked the question, "Boys can grow up to be rabbis, too?".  

I am only too grateful for the pioneering women who became rabbis, paving the way for a more gender inclusive Judaism, as well as chevre for me as a Reform Rabbi.  While there are still many things that still need to be fixed (pay equity, for one), there is no way that I could enumerate all the benefits of having Rabbi Regina Jonas (z'l), Rabbi Sally Preisand, and my friends Rabbi Shira Stern, Rabbi Julie Wolkoff, and Rabbi Sue Levi-Elwell (to name just a few) to pave the way so that I could have so many female rabbis as mentors, models, and colleagues.

I will add that I am not one who fears the "feminization of the rabbinate" or feels the need for men to recapture Jewish ritual, the bimah, or the leadership of the Reform movement (still overwhelmingly led by men). 

Comortable? After all, Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel (supposedly) said that is a rabbi's job to  “comfort the afflicted and afflict the comfortable".

No comments:

Post a Comment