Reform Judaism stands in solidarity with Rabbi Gilad Kariv, the Executive Director of the Israel Movement for Reform and Progressive Judaism (IMPJ) and a candidate for the Knesset in the upcoming Israeli elections, in the face of unacceptable attacks on him and his Progressive Judaism.
Representatives from some of the Orthodox Religious parties have made comments far beyond the boundaries of reasonable political discourse – describing the Reform Movement as a “cult” and a “clownish religion” and claiming it is “destroying traditional Judaism”. Kariv in the Knesset was likened to “an idolator in the Temple”, “he can’t be seen there”. They have stated they will boycott him if he is elected, and would even refuse to count him in a minyan (quorum of ten) for prayers at the Knesset synagogue.
These comments are just the latest incitements against Progressive Judaism in Israel and have no place in a democratic society. We know that Rabbi Kariv and the Reform Movement in Israel will not be silenced and give them our full support as they continue to battle for recognition and respect in Israeli society.
Israel was founded as a Jewish state and the collective project of the entire Jewish people. It cannot fulfil these founding goals until all expressions of Judaism are given the same rights. We will continue to offer all the support we can to those in Israel seeking to bring this about.