Monday, January 08, 2007

Scandal in the Reform Movement - Jaffa, Israel

Scandal in the Reform Movement
Manager of Reform Movement's military preparatory program ousted after befriending course participant, 17 years his junior
By Chaim Levinson
YNet News
January 1, 2006

The manager of the Reform Movement's military preparatory course was ousted from his post after he became overly friendly with a female participant of the course who happens to be the daughter of one of the movement's leaders. She is also 17 years his junior.

The Reform Movement in Israel runs a military preparatory course for leadership in Jaffa, in which a small number of top students are enrolled, who take on a wide-range of social activity and learning before the army.

However, under the serene cover of the course, a drama of soap-opera proportions unfolded. The manager of the course, a man in his 30s, initiated a forbidden romance with one of the female students, who just happened to be the daughter of a prominent, outspoken leader of the Reform Movement.

The relationship was recently revealed, provoking anger among Reform Movement rabbis and the girl's mother.

There are two different versions about the nature and intensity of the relationship, but the bottom line is clear. In an unprecedented move, the manager was removed from his position and his rabbinical studies at Hebrew Union College were ceased.

The former manager responded, "I didn't have an affair with the student. An incorrect impression was formed on all accounts of what took place between me and her. An injustice has been done to me."

The Reform Movement responded, "The Movement has no comment on the issues due to the right of privacy, and they are not of public interest."


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