Women’s Wisdom: Reflections and Video on the 19th Annual National Masorti Women’s Day of Study


On Friday, June 30th, 350 Masorti women from around Israel gathered at Schechter for the 19th annual National Masorti Women’s Day of Study. Speakers included Rabbi Professor David Golinkin on”Halakhic Controversies Related to Women in Israel” and a panel, facilitated by Professor Alice Shalvi, on issues shared by women rabbis with: Rabbi Diana Villa, Rabbanit Dr. Jennie Rosenfeld and Rabbi Alona Nir Keren. A joint project of the Masorti Movement, the Women’s League for Conservative Judaism, and the Schechter Institute for Jewish Studies, rabbis and lay educators volunteer their time to provide engaging learning opportunities around the theme of “Women Birthing and Nurturing Our Nation: History, Society & The Arts.” A special thank you to Diane Friedgut, event chair, Schechter Rabbinical Seminary board member and Women’s League Israel representative, for her tireless efforts organizing the day.  Videos of the panel discussion and other sessions can be viewed below.

Deborah Bruce, International Vice President and Israel Chair of Women’s League for Conservative Judaism, attended the study day and shared this reflection:

“On a recent trip to Israel, I had the pleasure of spending time at The Schechter Institutes. As most know, each year, the Women’s League Torah Fund campaign raises much-needed funds for five worldwide rabbinical schools, including Schechter. I, like many, knew that Schechter educates and ordains Masorti Rabbis. I didn’t realize that Schechter is so much more. It is an important institution for furthering Masorti/Conservative Judaism in Israel.

Though established in 1984 with a student body of five students, the Schechter Institutes has grown into a major Israeli educational organization devoted to the broad dissemination of Jewish studies for all Israelis, serving 60,000 adults and children each year in Israel and Eastern Europe. They also run the largest Jewish Studies M.A. program in Israel, the Schechter Rabbinical Seminary, and Neve Schechter Center for Jewish Culture. Most fascinating to me was the TALI Education Fund, which provides pluralistic Jewish education to more than 46,000 children. By offering Jewish study in an environment committed to tradition, Schechter provides a vital dimension to Israeli education…

Over 400 participants gathered on Friday, June 29 for the most recent program, Women Birthing and Nursing Our Nation: History, Society & the Arts. Women’s League Israel Liaison Diane Freidgut receives much of the credit for coordinating this unique and accessible outreach program. Especially this week, I am grateful to Rabbi Prof. David Golinkin, the President of the Schechter Institutes, for a very informative day, and to the Women’s League sisterhoods and members who donated to make this event a reality. When we work together, great things can happen.”

Schechter is proud of its longtime partnership with Women’s League and with the Masorti Movement.  Together may we go from strength to strength!

Rabbi Diana Villa, Rabbanit Dr. Jennie Rosenfeld and Rabbi Alona Nir Keren discuss their roles as clergy. Facilitated by Professor Alice Shalvi.

Rabbi David Golinkin speaks on Halakhic Controversies Related to Women in Israel: 1918-2018.

Professor Alice Shalvi speaks on Women’s Wisdom has Built a Home in Jerusalem.

Rabbi Ariella Graetz Bar-Tuv speaks on Changing the Discourse: How Nechama Leibovich and Miriam Peretz Influenced Other Women.