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Rabbi Jan Uhrbach, who was recently named interim dean of the rabbinical school of the Jewish Theological Seminary of America (JTS), the conservative movement’s flagship seminary. Credit: Courtesy.

First woman dean of JTS believes in bringing competing interests together

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Before she entered the rabbinate, Jan Uhrbach was a litigator who yearned for work that aligned with her deepest values, including her spirituality. “The law is combative, especially litigation, and I wanted to make a...
The Israeli Supreme Court in Jerusalem on May 4, 2020. Photo by Oren Ben Hakoon/POOL.

Religious pluralism won’t be achieved in the courts

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Reactions to this week’s Israeli Supreme Court ruling about recognizing the validity of conversions to Judaism by non-Orthodox denominations are all out of proportion to its actual significance in terms of the number of those affected...
Israeli Supreme Court president Esther Hayut and Supreme Court justices arrive to petition against the Jewish Nation-State Law at the Supreme Court in Jerusalem on Dec. 22, 2020. Photo by Yonatan Sindel/Flash90.

Landmark decision recognizing non-Orthodox conversions performed in Israel sparks fierce debate

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Israel’s Supreme Court handed down a bombshell decision on Monday recognizing Reform and Conservative conversions for those seeking to obtain citizenship. The result has caused an uproar in Israel and within the Jewish Diaspora, with some saying it...
Esther Hayut, president of Israel's Highest Court, the Supreme Court, March 14, 2019. Photo by Hadas Parush/Flash90.

Israel’s High Court: Reform, Conservative conversions in Israel valid for ‘Law of Return’

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The Israeli Supreme Court on Monday issued a bombshell ruling that recognized conversions by the Reform and Conservative movements in Israel, therefore enabling Israeli citizenship under the “Law of Return.” The 8-1 ruling, which ended...
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu visits the site of a deadly terror attack near Ariel in the West Bank on March 18, 2019. Photo by Marc Israel Sellem/POOL.

Why US Jewish leaders have a problem with Netanyahu

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I recently wrote about the foolish and arrogant letter sent by the American Reform and Conservative movements and some of their associated organizations to U.S. President Donald Trump, demanding that in light of newly re-elected Israeli...