5 Things You May Not Know About Reform Judaism

This is really just a few facts.  My blog-bud Frume Sarah will be writing a guest post shortly that is more detailed about some of the things Reform Judaism does and does not believe.  But, to start, did you know that:

1) the Reform Movement originated in Germany in the nineteenth century, and that it PRECEDED Conservative and Reconstructionist Judaism?

2) the Reform movement originally rejected the concept of Zionism, but since the establishment of the modern State of Israel, wholeheartedly embraces it?

3) Reform Jews were instrumental in the fight for Civil Rights in the American south in the mid-20th century, including Cleveland’s own Rabbi Arthur Lelyveld, who marched with Martin Luther King Jr., and fought for voting rights for blacks in Mississsippi (and was beaten by white supremacists for doing so)?*

4) not all Reform clergy play the guitar.  Really.  Some do not even own anything tie-dyed.

5) Reform Judaism DOES exist in Israel.  Quite proudly, may I add.

*#3 is NOT to the exclusion of other kinds of Jews.  Just that Reform Jews played a big role.  I’m sure lots of other Jews participated in this life-and-country-changing period in American history.  However, today I’m referring to Reform Jews.

7 thoughts on “5 Things You May Not Know About Reform Judaism

  1. to your first point: Well of course, The baby of the family always gets to name the older siblings. Which is why, after our fourth was born, my kids became “Deder”, “Beebel” and “Jorjam”

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