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French Reform Jews Deal with ‘negative’ Image, Adjustment to French Culture

A “negative” image that Reform Judaism appears to have presented among other Jews in Canada and the problem of Jewish adjustment to the predominantly French culture of Quebec province were the subjects of papers presented at the biennial convention of the Canadian Council of Reform Congregations here. Rabbi Arthur Benjamin of Ottawa’s Temple Israel said the “Achilles’ heel” of the Reform movement in Canada was “a negative approach to Judaism that defined itself as running away from the old man with the beard rather than toward a pattern of Jewish observance and expression of real quality and import.”