Lighting the way for women rabbis


During this year’s festival for freedom, four extraordinary Jewish women –the first Reform, Reconstructionist and Conservative women rabbis, along with the first Open Orthodox rabba – got together Monday in Boston to light the Chanukah candles.

At this first-ever ceremony, the four spoke of their journeys, and the barriers still remaining to full female participation in Jewish ritual life.

Sally Priesand, who became North America’s first woman rabbi when she was ordained by the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion in Cincinnati in 1972, spoke first. She said that although she did not become a bat mitzvah or grow up in a particularly observant Jewish family, her parents gave her Jewish books and “the courage to dare and to dream.”

Read more here on the Jewish Women’s Archive blog.


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