Rabbi, Will You Do Our Wedding? New Approaches to Working With Interfaith Couples

Date: Aug 05, 2024

Time: 1:00 pm - 2:30 pm

Sponsor: Online Lecture Series

Location: Online

Category: JTS Alumni in the World

Rabbi, Will You Do Our Wedding? New Approaches to Working With Interfaith Couples

Part of our summer learning series JTS Alumni in the World: Scholarship and Impact 

Monday, August 5
1:00–2:30 p.m. ET

With Rabbi Aaron Brusso (Kekst Graduate School ’01 and Rabbinical School ’00), Rabbi of Bet Torah, Mt. Kisco, NY

In the 1970s and 80s there was a Jewish communal attempt to dissuade Jews from entering into relationships with partners from different backgrounds. These efforts played themselves out as policies, programs, and messaging. Like many organizational structures and leadership approaches of the time, the program was hierarchical and authority based. Since then, as identity formation and rabbinic authority have evolved over the past 50 years, the landscape has shifted significantly.

Together we will think about the impact and limits of such disapproval policies, the purpose and meaning of the Jewish wedding ceremony, and how to shift the conversation. We will work towards transferring responsibility from the community back to the couple, empowering them to determine their relationship to the narratives, rituals, symbols, and faith statements of Jewish tradition. 

The Zoom link for all sessions in the JTS Alumni in the World: Scholarship and Impact series will be in the confirmation email that you receive after you register. 

Aaron Brusso has been rabbi at Bet Torah in Mt Kisco, NY, for the past 15 years. He is treasurer of the Rabbinical Assembly and recently chaired a committee to evaluate the professional organization’s 50-year prohibition on officiation at interfaith weddings. He is a member of the JTS Chancellor’s Rabbinic Cabinet and a 2020 recipient of T’ruah’s Human Rights Hero award for his work on immigration. He has written for JTA, The Forward, and Slate and been featured in the Washington Post. He is a 2000 graduate of the JTS Rabbinical School and received a master’s degree in Jewish philosophy from the Kekst Graduate School. 

About the Series

Our esteemed JTS alumni are making important contributions through their work as scholars and thought leaders in their fields. Join them this summer for nine outstanding learning sessions. Through their engagement with Jewish text, history, and thought, they are enhancing the spiritual and personal lives of individuals, building more inclusive communities, and preparing the leaders of tomorrow, ensuring a stronger Jewish future.