Monthly Archives: February 2020

Have a Say

ARZA logo

If you wish to have a say in how Progressive Jews are recognized and treated in Israel, please ensure you are a member of ARZA which will represent the Australian Progressive Movement in Israel at this year’s World Zionist Congress in October.

You can join ARZA when renewing your Synagogue membership or join on line by clicking the button below.

The greater the membership of the Australian Reform/Progressive Zionist Association, the more delegates Australia can send to Israel representing the Australian Progressive Movement and its egalitarian and pluralist beliefs and views.

The World Zionist Congress is only held in Israel every five years, so now is the time to have your Progressive views heard in our Jewish Homeland.

ARZA President, Helen Shardey

ARZA President, Helen Shardey

2021-03-01T20:24:00+11:00February 28th, 2020|News|

One Movement – One Voice

Union for Progressive Judaism

The Union for Progressive Judaism held its planning weekend in Sydney recently on 14-16 February, 2020.

The planning weekend was attended by the full executive of the UPJ, led by Co-Presidents David Knoll and Brian Samuel, ARZA Australia President Helen Shardey, who is also Vice-President of the UPJ, and Rabbi David Kunin, the Chair of the Assembly of Rabbis and Cantors of Australia New Zealand and Asia (ARC, formerly known as the “Moetzah”).

An in-depth discussion was followed by an agreement that, moving forward, the UPJ, ARZA Australia and ARC will endeavor to work together in mutual cooperation and communication. This will be done to ensure that the Australian Progressive Movement, as much as is possible, speaks in unison with one voice in support of our Jewish Homeland, Israel.

With the World Zionist Congress being held in October this year, the Australian Progressive Movement hopes to maximize its voice in Israel in support of pluralism and equality in the Jewish democratic state.

To this end, the Australian Progressive Movement encourages all Progressive Jews to ensure they are members of ARZA Australia, either through their synagogue subscription or by joining ARZA through its website:

Brian Samuel and David Knoll, UPJ Co-Presidents

Brian Samuel and David Knoll, UPJ Co-Presidents

ARZA President, Helen Shardey

ARZA President, Vice-President of the UPJ, Helen Shardey

Rabbi David Kunin

Rabbi David Kunin, Chair, Assembly of Rabbis and Cantors of Australia, New Zealand and Asia

2021-03-01T20:24:40+11:00February 28th, 2020|News|

Tu BiShvat

As we celebrate the Jewish holiday of Tu BiSh’vat or the New Year of Trees, we think of new beginnings, strong growth and the fruit of our labors being our reward.

The sense of new beginnings does remind me of the emergence of the State of Israel from its ancient history with Judaism at its core. As Alex Ryvchin said in writing about Zionism (it) achieved the unprecedented return of an ancient, persecuted, scattered people to the land of their forebears and the restoration of their political independence.

So this was to be the fruit born out the ideal of Zionism and has proved to be the catalyst to bringing the Jewish people in Israel and across the Diaspora together.

However, the challenges to Zionism and the Jewish people continue with the regretful emergence of heightened levels of anti-Semitism and the distortion of the meaning and attacks on the word Zionism. As Ryvchin further wrote Support for Israel and sympathy for Zionism in the West is largely attributable to the ability of Jewish leaders to articulate the justness and necessity of Zionism and communal unity on this issue.

And so, I sincerely hope we all wish to be part of the new beginnings and the strong growth of ARZA Australia, so that the fruit of our labors will be a safe and strong Israel, a pluralistic Israel and an egalitarian Israel where there is equality of religious practice and belief for all.

ARZA President, Helen Shardey

ARZA President, Helen Shardey

2021-03-01T20:25:14+11:00February 11th, 2020|News|
Go to Top