Rabbi Harold Schulweis is my hero. But I know that he is a hero to many. Unwilling to accept the status quo, he has always been willing to stand up for those on the periphery whom the community could easily overlook. And he has been creative and forward-thinking in developing programs so that everyone could feel at home in the synagogue and in the Jewish community. He continues to be a major voice in world Jewry, particularly in the Conservative movement. He has even taken on those who welcome only halachically Jewish children of intermarriage in the movement’s own Ramah Camps. We are particularly pleased that he has chosen to be an outspoken advocate for those non-Jews who have married into the Jewish community and are raising Jewish children.
We join the Los Angeles Jewish Chronicle in celebrating his 80th birthday and encourage those who follow his progressive thought on outreach to look for his article, “Reaching In and Reaching Out,” which will appear in an upcoming issue of the CCAR Journal which I am editing with Paul Golin, Asst Executive Director of JOI, where Rabbi Schulweis poignantly states “How we deal with the stranger tells us who we are and what we intend to become…. Reaching in to reach out is the exemplification of Godliness.”