Avi Weiss to step down as Hebrew Institute of Riverdale rabbi


(JTA) — Rabbi Avi Weiss said he will be step down next summer as spiritual leader of the Hebrew Institute of Riverdale in New York City.

Weiss, an ardent activist on behalf of embattled Jewish communities who has pushed a more religiously liberal brand of Orthodoxy, made the announcement Thursday during holiday services at the Bronx synagogue. The rabbi, 70, said his retirement would be effective in July.

He said he will continue to serve as rabbi-in-residence at the synagogue, the Forward reported.

Weiss is the founder of Yeshivat Chovevei Torah, a liberal Orthodox rabbinical school, and Yeshivat Maharat, an institution for women that has graduated two cohorts of female spiritual leaders called maharats, an acronym meaning female spiritual, legal and Torah leader.

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