BOSTON (Nov. 15)
A “progressive rapprochement with the Conservative wing of Judaism” was urged by Dr. James G. Heller, of Cincinnati, in the principal address delivered last night at the 75th anniversary banquet of the Union of American Hebrew Congregations. The banquet is one function of the 40th biennial convention of the U.A.H.C.
Dr. Heller expressed the opinion that many of the leaders of Conservative Judaism, which he described as being “poised at some point midway between Orthodoxy and Reform, were sympathetic to greater cooperation with Reform.” In urging early exploration of “rapprochement,” Rabbi Heller said that “in many ways Reform Judaism has moved back towards the Jewish people, and towards a warmer interpretation of its own life, we have drawn near the majority of Conservative rabbis and thoughtful laymen. And as Conservatives have thought through their own position, they have thought themselves in large part into the theoretical standpoint of Reform Judaism.”
The second major task before the Union, said Dr. Heller, is to “attack the problem of the unaffiliated Jewish masses on a much broader front. We have made the barest beginning until now. No one familiar with the American Jewish scene will deny that this problem has grown to alarming proportions.”