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Gays in Updated Jewish Prayer Book

Gays in Updated Jewish Prayer Book


A new book for adherents of Conservative Judaism for the High Holy Days will modernize prayers and will for the first time include one for Jewish gays, according to The New York Times.

Rabbi Edward Feld headed the committee that wrote and translated the new book over a period of 12 years. It marks the first updating by the Conservative movement in nearly four decades.

The new book, or mahzor, as the prayer book for Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur is known, will include for the first time a prayer for a deceased "partner"-- an effort to include gay Jews -- and also one for "a parent who was hurtful."

The Conservative movement represents the middle ground among the three major branches of Judaism in approaches to gay issues, women's rights, and other societal matters. The Reform movement has historically been the most accepting of gays and Orthodox Judaism the least.

The High Holy Days culminate with Yom Kippur, the day of atonement, beginning Friday at sundown.

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