A plea that the Jewish people “display good will instead of hatred” toward the Nazis who are provoked to committing violence by an attitude of antagonism, was voiced by Professor Henry J. Cadbury, of Bryn Mawr, chairman of the American Friends Service Committee, in an address at the opening session of the forty-fifth annual convention of the Central Conference of American Reform Rabbis held here at the South Mountain Manor Summer Resort. More than 150 rabbis from all parts of the United States and Canada attended.
“Persecution of the Jews in Germany by Hitler and his Nazis can be ended,” said Professor Cadbury, “not by the hate that the Jews may display but by the good will which they should show.
“By hating him and trying to fight him, you will only help make him worse in his attack on the Jews. But if the Jews the world over would try to convey to Hitler and the people of Germany their ideals and appeal to their conscious sense of justice, the problem would be solved much sooner.”
‘WAR WITHOUT BLOODSHED’
The speaker described the boycott of products made in Germany as a “declaration of war without bloodshed.” He urged that Christians, “as their duty,” help right the injustice done by the Nazis. He said that “for the sake of Christianity and its doctrines,” non-Jews join in the movement to “help the Jewish people in Germany.”
The afternoon session was devoted to reports submitted by education committees.
Rabbi Abraham J. Feldman, of Hartford, chairman of the Educational Committee, said in his report that the increasing interest in adult education in this country can be attributed to “vision and foresight” of people who, apart from what is still hoped may be temporary disturbances, believe that religious education for children alone will never be adequate. This, they believe, must be supplemented by education for adults. The Rabbi asked that the committee be permitted to continue its program of adult education, and that support be given to the Hebrew Union College.
NEW INTEREST IN EDUCATION
Dr. Leon Fram, of Temple Beth El, Detroit, speaking of new experiments in adult Jewish education, said that one of the most encouraging phenomena in the field of Jewish education today is the recent growth of revival of interest in education for adult persons. Adults who are themselves fascinated by the study of Jewish history, he said, will have all the keener sense of the responsibility of a Jewish education for their children. Children who know that their parents are engaged in Jewish study are bound to feel an increased respect for their own educational training.
Dr. Fram said that courses of instruction in Jewish history, religion, literature and culture are being offered in some twenty-five schools, chiefly in large cities. Classes, he said, meet once a week. A conservative estimate of the number of attending students, he said, approximates 5,000. Many of the schools are housed in temples and synagogues, he continued, but a number of them are found in community centers and Hebrew school buildings.
‘MORE THAN RELIGION’
Rabbi Morton M. Berman, director of Jewish education in the Free Synagogue of America, speaking of Jewish education and Jewish experience, said that increasing acceptance of the view that Judaism is something more than a religion, ought to impel the Jews to “revolutionize both the content and the method of Jewish school programs.” Failure of the Jewish people to teach their children that Palestine is the center of Jewish civilization, he said, and not as a remote ancestral home, was deplored by the speaker.
He urged that more time be spent in teaching the children more about what he termed “Jewish living.”
The evening session will be devoted to the annual message of the president of the organization, Rabbi Samuel H. Goldenson, of New York City.
The Archive of the Jewish Telegraphic Agency includes articles published from 1923 to 2008. Archive stories reflect the journalistic standards and practices of the time they were published.