Orthodox Rabbi Takes Job at LGBT Synagogue – Discuss

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    divri hayamim

    Takes2-2tango, akuperma, It is Time for Truth, refoelzeev

    1. please tell me the shul that gives honor to rapists, thieves without at least pretending they believe they are innocent.
    2. please tell me the shul that gives honor to rapists, thieves UNDER THE BANNER of being rapists, thieves.
    3. by definition anyone who identifies their basic Identity as a sin is lehachis. (identifying oneself as part of they gay community is lehachis)
    4. a shul that calls itself the thieves shul, is assur. In Europe they had shuls for different professions. Would it have been muter to set up the thieves shul for kiruv??????????????????????
    5. akuperma, In our shuls provided they were litayavon, however here moskowitz is setting up shop in a GAY temple, that is called the gay temple, thus it is clearly lihachis ulimihachis.

    divri hayamim


    here are 3 basic reasons
    1. I doubt most shul give aliyas to KNOWN rapists, when it happened it’s usually because the shul thinks or at least pretends they are innocent, here no one questions that they are guilty
    2. when the rapist is asked “what are you?” do they identify themselves by their sin.
    3. please show me the rapists shul? I would like to take a picture of everyone in the shul so I can know who is evil. Torah jews don’t devote shuls to avaras.

    Ps if you can’t find the rapist or ganev shul (that advertises under that name) when you got to beth simcha “tora (ox)” please take a picture and post it publicly so everyone can know if there are any other toavanicks disguising themselves as Orthodox Jews



    @divri hayamim source? You don’t know their intentions. As I said, maybe they’ve rationalized to themselves it’s muttar. I know of one famous “Orthodox Gay Rabbi” where he was megaleh panim batorah shelo kahalacha and explained the pesukim in vayikra in a way which permitted his lifestyle. I’m not confining this, just giving an example where people can rationalize their behavior without intent lehachis…or they just gave up on that one mitzvah in an extreme way (adopting it as a lifestyle), I don’t see why that’s not leteiavon.

    Neville ChaimBerlin

    Just stop it. There is no shul anywhere (with the possible exception of a prison minyan) where rapists and molesters are given aliyahs.


    Surely virtually every individual who receives Capital Punishment of any sort in any country will explain how their case really should be different..
    including molestors ,serial murderers,idol worshippers
    Everyone can rationalize themselves . much easier on the psyche
    A murderous mafia guy who lying in his blood after getting shot told those around him that he” had never hurt a fly”.
    Ok, they’re right,too??So now what?!


    Yes, everyone can rationalize what they’re doing. You’re proving my point that your statement that they’re lehachis is presumptuous.


    You can have a Rabbi in a non-Orthodox synagogue who is personally Orthodox. But, by definition, anyone who is a Rabbi in a non-Orthodox synagogue is not an Orthodox Rabbi.


    So a chasdideshe rav who has a shtella in a litvish shul is now a litvish rav?

    catch yourself

    It is wrong to be דן לכף זכות in this case. He has said and done things that are plainly אסור. Our fixation with דן לכף זכות has led to a situation where, like שאול המלך, we are מרחם במקום שצריך להתאכזר all too often, at the expense of כבוד שמים.

    This is a repulsive call-to-arms against the Torah, and we should not allow ourselves to be lured into complacency by specious arguments. Of course, nobody is perfect. Even the most egregious Ba’alei Aveira should be encouraged to do Teshuva. This, however, is no mere individual sinner. It is a communal statement of ideology in conflict with the Torah, and must be condemned in the strongest terms.

    ע’ משך חכמה על הפסוק לא אוכל עון ועצרה (כמדומני בהפטרת חזון) משכתב בענין זה


    Takes2, zdad,etc.,

    One who makes sarcasms here falls within the rubric of Rabbenu Yonah Shaar Gimmel ‘s Leitzonim
    amongst the worst of groupings

    Having fun fiddling, while Jerusalem burns..


    Keep trying?Rationalizing your tolerance?
    The definition of L’taavon is expressing guilt and some regret. Do any L#@* express guilt and regret? On The Contrary..


    Neville ChaimBerlinParticipant
    Just stop it. There is no shul anywhere (with the possible exception of a prison minyan) where rapists and molesters are given aliyahs.
    Its great to see that people have no issues denying fact.


    Im not sure if shuls give aliyahs to rapists and molestors, but the most certainly give them to convicted white collar felons


    Takes 2,

    It depends on the situation. Those aren’t different denominations (i.e. Chasidus does not view Litvishness as apikorsus) and nowadays few congregations are specifically one over the other. However, if a chasidish Rav takes a shteller in KAJ or in Brisk, then he is not a Chasidish Rav anymore, he is a Yekkie or Litvish Rav who happens to personally be Chasidish.


    I really think there are multiple parts to this entire thing.
    First, should someone take such a job. I’m reminded of something I’d heard about a shul in Denver. There was a shul there which was the last OU shul without a mechitzah (it was grandfathered in under their old rules, before they required one). A YU musmach was offered the position of Rabbi there. He asked R’ Herschel Schachter about taking the job, as he was hesitant due to the mechitzah issue. R’ Schachter told him to take the job, to try and encourage the membership to install the mechitzah. However, he told him that if he wasn’t successful within a few years (I don’t remember the exact number), then he must leave. That was what happened – they still refused, and the guy left the job. When they tried to get another YU Rabbi, they couldn’t. R’ Schachter had instructed his students not to go there. The shul ended up hiring a YCT musmach. So we see that it can be allowed to go to a shul with big problems, but with strict guidelines, and with the right intentions. I don’t know what the intentions of this Rabbi are, so I can’t really judge.
    This leads to my second point, which is the treatment of this community by the Jewish world. I think that the mindset does have to change in some ways. Many Jews look at these people as disgusting, and completely cut them off. I think we need to stop doing that. These are people who have a terrible nisayon, probably one of the most difficult anyone can have. They have urges to do things which are completely forbidden by the Torah. If they want to live frum lives, they are doomed to never marry, never have children, and be alone for their entire adult lives. This guy is correct when he states that they often have no spiritual guidance. Why should that be? We all do things wrong. We all speak lashon harah at times. Was anyone here never jealous of someone? We all do things wrong. Who is to say what aveiros are worse than others? You can argue that lashon harah can be worse, because it’s bein adam l’chaveiro. These people need someone to guide them so they can live a religious life, where they can be accepted. We obviously can’t tell them that their actions are ok, but there are lots of other mitzvos they need help with. Why should they be denied that?
    Again, it all boils down to the intentions of this Rabbi. We can hope he has the proper mindset.


    @its time for truth, again please provide a source for your definition as I find it grossly mistaken.

    A conan doyle

    Everybody please do your homework on this man. He is NOT your typical Lakewood person. He has written vicious articles against the Lakewood community in national papers. And BTW the nice description of him with his nice beard and frock is invalid. He has cut it all off and wears modern dress etc. Nothing wrong with modern dress , but when this rabbi suddenly chops it all off it says something.


    I’m not tolerating any aveiros but I can’t accept someone’s claim that anyone who is under the control of their yetzer and rationalized their aveiros to the point where they don’t feel guilty for what they do (shana bah hutar lo) is called lehachis. The word literally means to spite or anger Hashem, and no one here is as far as I know doing that. Only someone irrational would. It’s not irrational to follow your yetzer hara, just a bad decision.

    catch yourself


    It is true that “these people” have a terrible Nisayon. It is true that they require sensitive guidance. It is true that the individual should not be chased away from our community, provided that he has committed to maintaining the standards of Torah. It is true that everybody has difficulty living up to the Torah’s demands, one way or another (more often, it’s actually one way and another). These truths were recognized and discussed by no less “Chareidi” a Rabbi than Rav Elya Svei, approximately twenty years ago.

    It is not true that a group of people wishing to whitewash their inability to overcome a terrible test have license to usurp the institutions of the Torah in order to gut the Torah itself of any meaning. It is not true that an apparently observant man can assume the title of Rabbi in order to sanction the systematic disposal of Torah values.

    The assertion that, “Since I – who am admittedly prone to doing Aveiros – received an Aliya in Shul last week, it is acceptable to support an anti-Shul whose mission statement is the emasculation of the Torah,” is an outrageous perversion of the Torah.

    These distinctions are voiced most cogently by Rav Shamshon Raphael Hirsch ZT”L in his essay “Outrage in Hamburg” (Collected Writings volume IX).

    The notion that it would be acceptable for purposes of Kiruv to take this position would be laughable if it wasn’t so appallingly contrary to the Halacha. Normative Halacha prohibits even inviting irreligious Jews to a Shabbos meal if their attendance would require Chillul Shabbos; how, then, can we condone taking this position, whose raison d’etre is לטהר את השרץ?


    Anyone dealing with an At Risk comnunity is going to have to deal with difficult things, I suspect thats why its not done in certain communities

    A simple example is someone comes to a kiruv event with his non-jewish wife and kids. While some here are going to say the kiruv professional needs to tell the man to divorce his wife, thats likely not going to work (Especially if they have been married for a while and there are kids)


    Normative Halacha prohibits even inviting irreligious Jews to a Shabbos meal if their attendance would require Chillul Shabbos; how, then, can we condone taking this position, whose raison d’etre is לטהר את השרץ?

    Chabad does this all the time, At many Chabad houses most if not all the people drive to it and the Rabbis knows it (They ask where you live and when its a 30 min drive, he knows you drove there even if you didnt tell him)


    Zdad, refoelz,

    Banging away variations of same lie like Goebbels makes something more okay?!

    “Anyone dealing with an At Risk comnunity is going to have to deal with difficult things”
    Discussed already .Enjoy being irrelevant?
    Nice though for a foil
    Kiruv is for Tinokos She’nishba who aren’t flaunting their identity ,and in cahoots with others promoting their sinful choices
    NO one who chooses to call themselves Orthodox *&^*” are Tinokos she’nishba!!

    divri hayamim

    “Yes, everyone can rationalize what they’re doing. You’re proving my point that your statement that they’re lehachis is presumptuous”

    if attending a homosexual “shull” is not lihaches
    than we should add a mumer lihaches to the list of things in sanhedrin that are lo haya vi lo yiheye.


    Rav Shlomo Wolbe was very into kiruv .
    A fella once accosted Rav Shlomo Wolbe and said he is willing to be observe everything else with the exception of .. Rav pointed his finger up to a tall roof and told him unhesitatingly ” jump off”!

    jew boy2



    @its time for truth, what lie are you accusing me of? You still haven’t provided a source.

    @divri hayamim that’s quite the jump. It’s one thing to say it’s not so common and quite a different thing to say it never happened. It’s quite clear from our history that there were those who were mumarim lehachis. Read the Chumash. I don’t see how these individuals are lehachis, unless you redefine it the way It’ss time for truth has, which essentially makes most avaryonim lehachis, when they are clearly mumarim leteiavon.


    Mike Moskowitz did not grow up frum. He is simply one of those misguided baalei tshuva that went on to become a rav and promote his misguided school of thought. His honhogos are no less a buzayon than that Kohen who the bag on the plane.



    There are plenty of people who jumped OTD or who are teetering on that level (Nothing to do with “Lifestyle”) and KIruv people have to deal with them too. Sometimes they will agree to go to a Shabbos Meal on the condition they drive, many times Kiruv people will agree to this because they know a spark is needed

    And while Im sure Rav Wolbe said this, but thats not always the best approach,


    catch yourself: You misunderstood the point of my post.
    I did not say that they have license to take a shul to twist the words of the Torah – God forbid to say such a thing! I said that if a Rabbi took a job there, it may have been with the intentions of trying to gently guide them onto the proper path. I also said I don’t know enough about this man to say either way what he plans on doing. I definitely would not condone any acceptance by him of forbidden acts by the membership of his shul.


    It all depends on what LGBT stands for. if it’s a bunch of
    Galitzianers &
    Balei Teshusha

    it is not so unusual and not so bad


    Truly terrible. Not one person has elicited even a single word for the cannibals of New Guinea. Where is everybody? They are true mumrei l’ta’avon and tinokos shenishba.

    So unfair.


    L.et’s just file a religious chap.11 already!

    One who makes sarcasms here falls within the rubric of Rabbenu Yonah Shaar Gimmel ‘s Leitzonim
    amongst the worst of groupings


    @its time for truth you’re lumping together mitzvos sichlios like murder with chukim like arayos. It’s not normal to have taavos to kill, so there’s no excuse. It’s normal to have taavos for many of the arayos, and contrary to what you believe for some reason a miut hamatzui have taavos for the same gender.


    Regardless, you have failed to show how any of these aveiros, no matter how repulsive they are, are lehachis. You’re basically saying any aveira that offends you is lehachis, which is ridiculous.


    The Chazon Ish said ,that only an proactive balance of active vociferous unbridled hate of practitioners of evil & their apologists, in tandem with Ahava for the good, unflinching righteous people will bring an end to this exile and the redemption ,finally.


    Refoelz, The Gemara in Chelek clearly states Arayos L’hachas
    Furthermore, in another Gemara says, if one buys intentionally treifa meat in a place where kosher meat is equally available that is L’chachas.surely if he flaunts it!

    divri hayamim


    under your definition there has never been a mumer lihachis
    zimri wanted kosbi, korach wanted the kehuna, dasan ve aviram wanted leadership.

    the egel was fun they had dancing just like a pride parade, and remember there was a a yeter harah for avodah zarah then.

    If I march in the jewish pork eaters parade, and went to the pork eating temple would you say I’m a mumer litayavon also?
    How about if i reinterpreted the torah to make eating pork a mitzva?

    I repeat according to your interpretation there has never been a mumer lihachis in the history of the world.

    divri hayamim

    homosexuality is considered by every single rishon who discusses what is a mitzva sichliyus, to be a mitzva sichliyus.

    Even those rishonim who consider arayus to be a chok, consider homosexuality to be a mitzva sichlyus.


    A chotei l’hach’is is someone who acknowledges the Creator,
    acknowledges that his own actions are against the will of the
    Creator, and is doing those actions for that reason.

    Does anyone here disagree?


    Benignuman, “Orthodox rabbi” means a rabbi who is Orthodox, not a rabbi of an Orthodox
    community (although such a community would of course have an Orthodox rabbi).


    I definitely would not condone any acceptance by him
    of forbidden acts by the membership of his shul.

    Do you not think that is inherent in taking such a position?


    Regardless of the question of whether an Orthodox rabbi should take such a position,
    this rabbi’s position on some relevant issues does not seem to be an Orthodox one.


    ‘“Orthodox rabbi” means a rabbi who is Orthodox, not a rabbi of an Orthodox
    community ‘
    So anyone is entitled to dub themselves with any term they choose, even when their Actions and Platform are in flagrant opposition to what the said Term inherently stands for?!

    Try that in any other religion! Try that in any other aspect of Life!
    That is called a
    2)fifth columnist
    3) spy infiltrated

    jew boy2

    ad kan


    Uh, yes. Under the laws of most countries, you can generally say whatever you want.


    In no way does my following statement condone what he has done
    Never the less, this guy has had a difficult life and the choices he has made is somewhat understandable when viewed through his personal trajedy
    As ZD has alluded to, His wife embraced the lifestyle, got custody of the kids and has since transitioned one of his children into a transgender.
    Think about the tragedy, the shock. You think you have a good marriage suddenly your wife tells you its all over and there is nothing you can do about it. You think you might have yiddisha nachas from your children, but your ex shmads them in the worst way. You have a choice; write them off and start from scratch, or try to find some sort of connection. Apparently his attempt to keep a connection went way too far.
    He needs to do tshuva, but man he has had a difficult challenge.



    I disagree, Orthodox Rabbi is a title that implies that the bearer of that title acts in the capacity of an Orthodox Rabbi. If someone is a Rabbi of a Conservative synagogue, he is a Conservative Rabbi, even if he is a complete maiman and a shomer Torah u’mitzvos.

    I also disagree with your definition of a chotei l’hachis. I don’t think it requires an acknowledgment that there is a Creator. If someone is an atheist and wants to show his rebellion against the Torah and Yiddishkeit, so he eats pork on Yom Kippur, that is a chotei l’hachis. The point is that he is doing the aveira as act of rebellion and not out of tayvah or ignorance.


    The destruction of first Beis HaMikdash ,First Temple for the YCT oriented commenters ,and harsh judgement meted out for the many righteous and prophets in the generation, was because there was Too much tolerance and acceptance of evil /evildoers and desecration of the 3 Chamuros
    cf. Kovetz Ma’amarim


    To “It is Time for Truth”- I think it is time for a chill pill. I am sorry if I offended you and made light of the matter. In most coffee rooms I know the participants can take a joke.
    The question you need to ask yourself is do you think that any of your fire and brimstone attitudes will make anyone in the LGBT community rethink their way of life? Really. It’s time to wake up and realize how to fight the war. These are people who have a taivah that most of us can not relate to and it unfortunately now has a stamp of approval from the world at large. Coming at them with a Bible in hand and comparing them to the cannibals in New Guinea will not accomplish a lick of good. How would approach a kleptomaniac?
    I am not advocating what this Rabbi did and I am sure that he probably could accomplish what he says he wants to accomplish without taking on the position in an official manner. Yes, it is similar to the dozens of Orthodox Rabbis 50 years ago that took positions in Conservative synagogues (with good intentions). Either way, I still think you need to tone down the rhetoric

    Non Political

    @ IITFT
    “Kiruv is for Tinokos She’nishba…”

    This is the second time you said this in this post. Just stop. This is just plain wrong. Have a look at the work being done today by kiruv professionals (and addiction recovery professionals such as Amudim) . A huge amount of work is being done (and more needs to be done) reaching out to people who come from frum backgrounds. You, who are zealously protesting the perversion of the Torah, what do you think you are doing? Do you have any Halachic basis for your assertion? I know that you do not.

    That said, I do want to be clear that nothing in this post should be construed as support for an Orthodox Rabbi taking a position in a LGBT temple. Especially given the current cultural climate, I don’t know how anyone can possibly support such a position. A quick google search brought me to (Rabbi) Mike Moskowitz’s website which says:

    “Rabbi Moskowitz explored academic Talmud at Yale and at Jewish Theological Seminary, where he is currently completing a Doctorate in Hebrew Literature”

    I am unaware of any Orthodox Rabbi who is affiliated with JTS

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