Scott Tomar 0

Rename "Conservative" Judaism as Masorti Judaism

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The Conservative Judaism movement currently uses two different names for itself: in North America, it is "Conservative" Judaism, and in Israel and the rest of the world, it is "Masorti" Judaism. This dichotomy is reflected in official publications, such as the United Synagogue for Conservative Judaism's "Voices of Conservative/Masorti Judaism". The term "Conservative" was originally adopted because the movement was formed in response to the Reform Judaism movement, and was viewed as a movement to "conserve" many elements of traditional Judaism while adapting to modern society. It defined the movement by what it was not, rather than by what it was. In modern society, the term "Conservative" is frequently misinterpreted as reflecting political or social conservatism. Masorti is Hebrew for "traditional", a more accurate and positive description of the movement that is in the language of the Jewish people. We, the undersigned officers, congregants, and clergy in Conservative/Masorti congregations, believe that the worldwide solidarity of the movement would be well served by adopting a single name for our movement: Masorti Judaism. We urge the United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism to change its name to the United Synagogue of Masorti Judaism and use the single term Masorti Judaism in all of its publications and communications. We urge other organizations within the movement to drop the use of Conservative Judaism and instead adopt Masorti Judaism in the organizations' names, publications, and communications.


Scott L. Tomar, DMD, DrPH President-elect, Congregation B'nai Israel Gainesville, Florida


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