The news that JTS is going to begin ordaining gay and lesbian rabbis is washing across the Jewish blogosphere. Chancellor-elect Arnie Eisen writes,
This matter has aroused thoughtful introspection about the nature and future of both JTS and the Conservative Movement to a degree not seen in our community since the decision to admit women to The Rabbinical School nearly twenty-five years ago. Convictions and feelings are strong on both sides. Some will cheer this decision as justice long overdue. Others will condemn it as a departure from Jewish law and age-old Jewish custom...
The immediate issue was the ordination of gay and lesbian students as rabbis and cantors for the Conservative Movement. But the larger issue has been how we can remain true to our tradition in general and to halakhah in particular while staying fully responsive to and immersed in our society and culture. How shall we learn Torah, live Torah, teach Torah in this time and place? Without these imperatives, the decision before us would have been far easier for many of those involved. That is certainly true for me.
Read the full text of his statement here on Jspot.
For many of my friends and colleagues, this shift has the capacity to be lifechanging. Please know that I am celebrating with you, and I raise my teacup in a hearty toast of mazal tov! What wonderful news, especially on the cusp of Pesach when we celebrate so many forms of liberation unfolding in our lives.