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HOT TOPIC: Should Jewish rituals be adapted to modernity?

February 26, 2013
by

Cheryl Weiner

CREATIVE LIFE CYCLE RITUALS FOR THE TWENTY FIRST CENTURY

What do we need to consider in teaching Jewish life cycle rituals when current demographics don’t reflect traditional Jewish communal norms?

In a renewal community religious school, I was asked to teach life cycle rituals to fifth graders and their families. As I kept stumbling over sensitivities, I realized that educators and publishers need to reflect current demographics and sensibilities rather than traditional renditions of rituals and those expressed in school texts. We need to revise what we teach to deal with issues of inclusion and belonging.

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