Conservative Judaism to reconsider stance on gays

BY Advocate.com Editors

February 25 2003 12:00 AM ET

Conservative Jewish leaders announced February 22 that they will seek to change their religion's official stance on homosexuality by petitioning the Committee on Jewish Law and Standards and asking the board to reconsider its policies, according to the New Orleans Times-Picayune.

The president of the United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism, Judy Yudof, said that at the committee's meeting, scheduled for March 5, she will "ask the committee to revisit the policy on gays, to research to determine whether it is or is not halakic [legal according to Jewish law] behavior."

Conservative Judaism is seen as a theological middle ground between the more conservative Orthodox branch and the liberal Reform branch, which allows gays and lesbians to be ordained and to have commitment ceremonies in the temple. The last time Conservative Jewish leaders officially discussed homosexuality was in 1992, when they issued their latest policy, which bars gays and lesbians from rabbinical or cantorial schools but allows them to be members of Conservative congregations.

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