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North American Jews urge Israel to provide equal adoption rights for same-sex couples

Posted on August 14th, 2017
(JTA) 


Some 200 Jewish leaders and institutions from North America urged the Israeli government to end discrimination against same-sex couples who want to adopt children.

The call came in a letter to the government coordinated by A Wider Bridge, a San Francisco-based organization that focuses on ties between U.S. and Israeli LGBTQ communities. Signatories included Hillel International, leaders of the Central Conference of American Rabbis, the Union of Reform Judaism, prominent Jewish LGBT leaders and over 60 U.S. rabbis.

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Orthodox Judaism and LGBTQ Issues

Posted on August 7th, 2017
BY BEN HARRIS for myjewishlearning.com 


Efforts to make the community more compassionate have stopped short of sanctioning gay relationships.


The liberal Jewish movements have undergone dramatic shifts in their approach to gay, lesbian and transgender Jews in the past two decades, but among the Orthodox the changes have been far less dramatic — and in many quarters, virtually nonexistent.

Two seemingly clear biblical denunciations of homosexual sex, as well as the corpus of rabbinic commentaries and legal codes based on those verses, limit how far Orthodox Judaism, marked by its fidelity to traditional understandings of Jewish law, or halacha, can move on this subject.

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The 1930s Lesbian Boarding School Flick Banned by the Nazis

Posted on July 31st, 2017
BY JENNY LEVISON for Jewniverse    


Quick, a riddle: Who wouldn’t love a lesbian boarding school story?

Answer: Nazis.

Believe it or not, the first widely-released film featuring a lesbian plot came out in Germany just as Hitler was rising to power.

Despite being made in Germany, Mäedchen in Uniform was more successful elsewhere in Europe than in its home country. Its infamous goodnight kiss scene was even credited with starting a “stockings and kissing cult” in Romania.

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New Dating Site ‘Saw You At Stonewall’ Caters To LGBTQ Jews

Posted on July 24th, 2017
BY SHIRA HANAU for The Times of Israel


First-of-its-kind niche dating website focuses on the underserved Jewish LGBTQ dating scene; sliding scales place users on the Queer spectrum.



Matchmaker, matchmaker make me a queer match.


Though finding a Jewish partner is hard as it is, the challenge is intensified if you’re queer and Jewish. That’s why software engineer Joanna Halpern set out to create Saw You At Stonewall, a new matchmaking site for queer Jews.


“There’s tons of dating sites but there’s nothing specific to being Jewish and queer,” said Joanna Halpern, an undergraduate student at McGill University who identifies as a Jewish lesbian. “That’s what’s beautiful about this website. Unlike other dating apps, it has all the perfect questions for being Jewish and all the specific questions for being queer that other websites would be lacking.”


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North Carolina Pride organizers promise ‘solution’ so Jews can attend parade set for Yom Kippur

Posted on July 17th, 2017
From JTA


Organizers of North Carolina’s gay pride parade and festival said they would find a solution following complaints from the Jewish community about the event being scheduled for Yom Kippur.

“We’re going to solve that no matter what it takes,” organizer John Short told The Herald-Sun on Thursday. “Exactly how we’ll solve that we don’t know.”

Short said the Durham Pride parade’s volunteer organizing committee had Jewish members but it still had not realized the scheduling conflict. He added that “all the Jewish community will be able to attend” the event.

“We’ll develop a solution that will be able to be carried over in the future,” Short said.

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Did You Know...?

Beth El is raising funds for a new playground?

With seed money from Cantor Jason Kaufman's concert, the JCCNV was able to start a fund with all proceeds going towards a new playground for the preschool.  If you would like to donate towards this very worthy project, simply send your donations to Beth El Hebrew Congregation and notate "Playground."  If you donate on line, the playground fund is first on the list!

 

Lifelong Learning

Wednesdays during the school year @ 7:00 PM
See calendar for exact dates and subjects

 

ALIVE!

For more information about ALIVE! go to alive-inc.org.

 

Beth El House

For more information go to https://www.bethelhebrew.org/community/beth-el-house

Beth El House enables formerly homeless families to work toward self-sufficiency and confidence.

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United We Stand

 

Beth El Hebrew Congregation stands with the residents of Charlottesville in denouncing hatred. The truly shameful behavior of neo Nazi groups that descended upon the city was the latest example of domestic terrorism designed to further divide our nation. We believe that all people regardless of race, ethnicity, sexual orientation, or religious affiliation are an asset to the social fabric of the United States. Any attempt by hate groups to deny the rights of citizens will always fail because our fundamental beliefs in liberty and equality. Our prayers go out to the families of Heather Heyer,  Lt. H. Jay Cullen, and Berke M.M. Bates, along with all the counter protesters who were hurt.

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HIGH HOLIDAY FORMS

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NON-MEMBER TICKET REQUEST

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TO JOIN BROTHERHOOD OR SISTERHOOD CLICK HERE

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Summer services

begin at 6:30 PM

Services will not be streamed until the end of August due to renovations. We look forward to being with you towards the end of August.

 

upcoming events
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HIGH HOLIDAY CHOIR SCHEDULE

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SUMMER SOUL SHABBAT

August 11 @ 6:30 PM

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NEIGHBORHOOD COFFEE

Sunday, August 13 @ 2:00 PM

Contact the office for information

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CHAPEL IN THE WOODS WORKDAY

Sunday, August 27 @ 10:00 AM

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2017-18 WRJ PAID-UP MEMBER OPEN HOUSE

Saturday, September 9

1:00 PM to 3:00 PM

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NORTHERN VIRGINIA BREAKFAST FOR ISRAEL

at the JCC of Northern Virginia

Sunday, September 10 @ 10:00 AM

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WRJ/Brandeis BOOK & AUTHOR EVENT

Sunday, October 29

2:00 PM to 5:00 PM

 


There are activities, meetings, services and seminars at Beth El each week, ranging from service opportunities to Jewish learning and education, drawing members and guests from throughout the Washington, D.C. area.

the full calendar