Sunday 19 October saw over 300 people gathering at the Grand Cafe and Beach near the Waterfront in Cape Town to enjoy this special event as we commemorated 70 years of Progressive Judaism in Cape Town. The beautiful venue and Spring weather ensured that all who attended were able to kick off their shoes, relax and enjoy the wonderful food and drink on offer. With entertainment provided by Gabriel Shai as well as a musical interlude from our newly formed Shira Chadasha choir, a dâ€™var torah from Rabbi Greg and a speech marking the congregationâ€™s achievements by our President Roy Fine, the afternoon was brought to a close by the drawing of the prizes in our raffle drawby Rabbi Malcolm. Mazel tov to all the prize winners and a huge thank you to all who contributed to the success of the day.
PROGRESSIVE JUDAISM IN THE NEWS
New Era Begins: SAUPJ Gathers in Cape Town for Biennial Conference
The SAUPJ(South African Union for Progressive Judaism) biennial conference, which took place at Cape Town’s Temple Israel from June 6-8, 2014, heralded a new era for the community. The gathering marked the end of Steve Lurie’s 10-year tenure as SAUPJ Chair. In his place, the Conference selected Alvin Kushner as SAUPJ’s new Chair. Kushner is a member of Temple Israel and has served in numerous positions, both in the Temple and on the SAUPJ national board.
The WUPJ’s Vice President for International Development Rabbi Joel Oseran noted, “The SAUPJ and the WUPJ have been blessed to have had the caliber of leadership provided by Steve Lurie during his long and distinguished service to Progressive Judaism nationally and internationally. We owe him and Rahle, who has been at his side always, our profound gratitude.”
The Conference program was chock full of sessions aimed at developing Jewish education and strengthening Jewish commitment so as to support democracy, freedom, tolerance and compassion.
The ‘Biblical References to the Importance of Unity in Diversity’ was a Conference highlight, as was the ‘What do we Want from the Future SAUPJ in an Ideal World’ round table group and plenary session.
Rabbi Oseran led sessions on Israel and World Jewry while Director of JHub and former head of the Reform Movement in the UK Rabbi Shoshana Boyd Gelfand served as scholar in residence for the Conference and gave sessions on leadership and group dynamics.
Parsha Noah by Rabbi Margolis