As we move into the 21st century, and continue to examine our institutions and foci, the leadership and members of the Council of Australian, New Zealand and Asian Progressive Rabbis believe that it is particularly important to reassert that the modern Jewish concern for social justice and the environment (in which Progressive Jews across the globe have played a central and formative role) is not only essential, but also is an authentic reading of our ancient sources.
During the last Assembly of the UJR AmLat, the affiliation of the Congregação Israelita Capixaba (CICAPI) to the regional reform movement was approved. Welcome to our global family!
Temple Israel Heritage Centre in Hillbrow, South Africa, celebrated Mandela Day by handing out blankets, food parcels, and clothing to over 30 homeless residents, including adults and children.
The 4th Kinus of the Ibero-American Institute for Reform Rabbinical Education, the biannual face-to-face meeting that marks a key instance in the institution’s school year, was held in Campos do Jordao, Sao Paulo.
We are pleased to welcome Beit Luria to the Word Union family and congratulate the South African Union for Progressive Judaism (SAUPJ) on their 11th member congregation. Please join us in wishing Beit Luria, and the SAUPJ, much strength and continued growth on this exciting journey.
Marking the 75th anniversary of the liberation of Belarus from Nazi occupation during World War II, the capitol city of Minsk, as well as Novogudok, located 150 km southwest, hosted commemorative events for the ‘Memorial Days’ festivities. The anniversary celebration also displayed the resilience of the Jewish community in Belarus that is again robust 75 years later.
On June 13-21, 12 Netzer and Tamar graduates – Bogrim and Bogrot traveled from the UK to Riga and Vilna as part of a BogTour of the Baltics that explored Jewish heritage, peoplehood, history and building stronger Progressive Jewish young adult communities across Europe.
The fourth Union for Progressive Judaism music conference – Shir Chadash (A New Song) – was held on 12-14 July at Geelong Conference Centre, west of Melbourne.
In a grand ceremony, with thousands in attendance, the first graduates of the Institute for Modern Jewish Studies – Dan Menzhynov, Artem Kozliner, Shimon Nikitenko and Daria Sevastsyanchyk – received their bachelor’s degrees in Jewish Theology from the Russian State University for Humanities in Moscow.
Eager but anxious, I walk past the barricades which keep ultra-Orthodox men from blocking the entrance, and step into the women’s section of the Western Wall. Weaving through the private security and appalled young Orthodox girls who surrounded the service, I join the circle of women singing, their prayer books raised proudly in the air.