JTA reports that last month, the 140 member International Rabbinic Fellowship narrowly voted down admitting women to its ranks as either full or limited members.
The Dec. 20 vote came after what the president of the organization, Rabbi Barry Gelman of Houston, told The Jewish Week was a “wonderfully healthy and passionate discussion.”
This is the liberal orthodox group co-founded by R. Avi Weiss of Riverdale, where Rabbah Sara Hurwitz gained fame. Glad to hear that there was neither a rubber stamp nor a hasty thumbs down, but a vigorous debate. Judaism always should be both vigours and a debate, a wrestling with God and the law. In this respect, IRF demonstrates how it is similar to its Conservative cousins- not in that it would consider women as members, but that it would engage in thoughtful debate of the subject.