Conservative Judaism celebrates first gay marriage between rabbis

Gay rabbis Becca Walker (left) and Ariella Rosen (right). (YouTube / Women’s League for Conservative Judaism)

Two queer conservative rabbis have married, a historic first for the conservative Judaism movement.

Conservative Judaism is the second largest Jewish denomination in North America, and over the past two decades it has become increasingly inclusive of LGBT + people.

Rabbis Becca Walker, 33, and Ariella Rosen, 35, met at a Rabbinical Assembly retreat in Connecticut in May 2018 for early career female rabbis, according to the Jewish Telegraph Agency, and instantly realized they had a connection.

Walker moved to Toronto, Canada, and they started dating long distance, but when the pandemic hit they moved in with Rosen’s family.

Realizing that they no longer wanted to separate, they decided to get married legally so Walker could join Rosen in Toronto and hold their wedding at a later date. Over a year later, they were finally able to do just that.

On October 24, at a Jewish summer camp, Walker and Rosen were married in front of family and friends, including 19 other rabbis.

They were married off by another female queer rabbi, Megan GoldMarche, with a few blessings adjusted to say ‘bride and groom,’ and with both women breaking a glass. During their exchange of rings, they exchanged the traditional language for a “brit ahuvot”, or alliance of love.

Rosen said, “It was a privilege that we carry, that others before us have already done the important work of creating a framework that we feel was meaningful and viable for who we are.”

Rabbi Ashira Konigsburg, director of operations for the Rabbinical Assembly of the Conservative Judaism movement, said the assembly is not aware of any other cases of two Conservative rabbis marrying in a same-sex marriage.

While Walker said their marriage “shouldn’t be groundbreaking,” she added, “I’m glad more people are seeing this because it makes people feel like there is a place for them too.”

Conservative Judaism approved same-sex marriages before they were legal across America

According to the Human Rights Campaign, in 2006, the Rabbinical Assembly’s Committee on Jewish Law and Standards (CJLS) approved the ordination of openly LGBT + rabbis.

The movement approved same-sex marriage ceremonies in 2012, when same-sex marriage was legalized in the United States in 2013, the Rabbinical Assembly said in a statement, “Judaism views marriage as a sacred responsibility, not only between partners, but also between the couple and the wider community.

“Our movement recognizes and celebrates marriages, whether between same-sex and opposite-sex partners. So we celebrate today’s Supreme Court decisions on same-sex marriage.

In 2016, the Rabbinical Assembly adopted a resolution, “Affirming the rights of transgender and gender nonconforming people,” affirms its “commitment to welcoming, accepting and including people of all ages. gender identities in Jewish life and society in general ”. .

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