Deep theological questions discussed at Liberal Kallah

Liberal Judaism's rabbis and cantors at Kallah

28 December 2018

The Conference of Liberal Rabbis and Cantors held its annual Kallah (retreat) at Charney Manor, Oxfordshire, with the tranquil setting providing an inspirational backdrop to deep theological questions raised by Liberal Judaism’s new draft liturgy.

As well as covering traditional theologies, the 25 colleagues studied feminist approaches and more generally the naming of God in liturgy, all very much informed by the introduction of feminine Hebrew in the draft Liberal siddur.

Rabbi Aaron Goldstein, chair of the Conference of Liberal Rabbis and Cantors, said: “Our annual Kallah is vital to building trustful and supportive relationships that allow us to address vital issues in contemporary society that impact Judaism.”

Liberal Jewish communities around the UK have spent 2018 trialling the first draft of a new Shabbat morning service and sending their feedback. It was also used at Liberal Judaism’s Biennial Weekend.

The feedback will help shape the first new Liberal Jewish Siddur since 1995, which is being edited by Rabbis Elli Tikvah Sarah and Lea Mühlstein with the input and support of the Conference of Liberal Rabbis and Cantors.

The liturgy is designed to be fully accessible and inclusive, and feminised Hebrew is also being used for the first time for some prayers.

Aaron added: “The last year has highlighted how relevant our adoption of feminist values is in our development of Judaism.”

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