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Dulzin Urges Reform Judaism to Help Stem Assimilation Trends

Leon Dulzin, treasurer of the Jewish Agency urged Reform Judaism to help stem assimilationist trends throughout the world. Speaking at the closing session of the 18th international conference of the World Union for Progressive Judaism, Dulzin said the Reform movement could play a crucial role in reaching and influencing many Jews who would otherwise be lost to Judaism.

The Jewish Agency official said one of the basic weaknesses of Zionism and of Israel is that there is no religious “pluralism” in Israel. He said while religion has been a creative factor in Zionism, Institutionalized Orthodoxy in Israel has become an instrument of political parties resulting in the abuses of the very ideals they were seeking to maintain. Dulzin said the Who is a Jew controversy is really a question of “who is a convert,” and is a matter for the entire Jewish people to decide and not for political parties or even a Jewish State.

The conference passed a resolution affirming its demand “that the State of Israel recognize the right of all affirmative expressions of Judaism to equal treatment under the law.” The conference also called on the government of Israel not to change the present Law of Return in a way that would “deny the Jewishness of converts admitted to Judaism by non-Orthodox rabbis.”

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