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L.A. seminary
admits gay and lesbian applicants

L.A. seminary
admits gay and lesbian applicants

A West Coast seminary for Conservative Judaism has accepted its first openly gay and lesbian applicants since the movement decided to ease its ban on ordination of gays.The Ziegler School of Rabbinic Studies, based at the University of Judaism in Los Angeles, has admitted a gay man and a lesbian for the fall semester, a school spokeswoman said Tuesday. The New York City-based Jewish Theological Seminary, the movement's flagship school, is still debating its policy. In December a panel of scholars who interpret Jewish law for the movement voted to allow the seminaries to decide on their own whether to admit openly gay students.But the Committee on Jewish Law and Standards left enough leeway to allow synagogues that consider same-sex relations contrary to Jewish law to bar gay clergy from their pulpits. Conservative Judaism holds the middle ground in American Judaism, adhering to tradition while allowing some change for modern circumstances.

The larger and more liberal Reform Jewish branch and the smaller Reconstructionist wing allow gays to become rabbis; the Orthodox bar gays and women from ordination. (AP)

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