The following are highlights that I noted in an international conference call for the leadership of the Reform movement this morning, February 4.
Rabbi Rick Jacobs, President of the Union for Reform Judaism, Rabbi Gilad Kariv, Chair of the Israel Movement for Progressive Judaism, and Anat Hoffman, Director of the Reform movement’s Israel Religious Action Center and Chair of Women of the Wall, discussed in detail the significance of Sunday’s cabinet decision.
Rabbi Jacobs emphasized: “We sought to change the state of Israel with this decision – we could not nor did we wish to change Orthodox Judaism. That’s for them to do!”
Rabbi Kariv shared three insights:
1. This is the first time in the history of the Israeli Reform movement that an agreement has been achieved by negotiations in the Knesset and not through the Supreme Court;
2. Israeli law recognizes that there is more than one way to worshipGod in Judaism;
3. The upper Kotel plaza has been removed from the purview of the Chief Rabbi of the Wall and has been reclaimed according to national democratic parameters that will allow women and men of the IDF to gather together there for ceremonies.