’Sociological differences explain division in Conservative Jewry’
Jan. 24, 2009 Matthew Wagner , THE JERUSALEM POST
Disagreement between the Israeli and American wings of Conservative Judaism over same-sex commitment ceremonies, the ordination of homosexual rabbis and other halachic issues reflects, in part, deep sociological differences between the two countries, Rabbi David Golinkin, president of the capital’s Schechter Institute of Jewish Studies, said on Thursday.
"I’d say there is no comparison whatsoever between there [the US] and here," Golinkin said in an interview with The Jerusalem Post. "It is like night and day. Israeli society is much more conservative on this issue [homosexuality] and many others. And if you speak to Israeli rabbinical students, almost all are opposed to any changes vis-à-vis homosexuality.
"Most are sabras and many are Sephardi, and I can assure you that they are not interested in changing policy. If we changed the policy they would not be studying in our rabbinical institute," he said.
Golinkin added, however, that the differences in approach between the international and American branches of Conservative Judaism regarding homosexuality could not be explained solely on the basis of a sociological analysis.
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