Speak Torah to Power: "Creating New Narratives of Empathy" with Rabbi Sharon Kleinbaum: In this powerful, engaging talk, Rabbi Sharon Kleinbaum will tell the story of how it became an essential part of Muslim prayer in one community to be surrounded by the love of gay Jews, and how one straight Imam found himself as a featured speaker at New York’s GLBT Pride parade. It’s a story of being present and bearing deep witness, about knowing that we can’t always change the world, about what it takes to look empathetically into the experience of another and to show up in acts of love and solidarity. It’s about knowing that when we sit with each other in pain, we can strengthen and be strengthened, we can transform and be transformed–and we can learn how to live out our awareness that each person is created in God’s image.
About Speak Torah To Power: Prominent Jewish leaders from around the country address today’s most pressing issues in this Avodah speaker series to explore the connection between Judaism and social justice. Speak Torah to Power is proudly funded by UJA - Federation of New York,
About the Speaker: Rabbi Sharon Kleinbaum has been Senior Rabbi of New York City’s Congregation Beth Simchat Torah (CBST) since 1992. Under her leadership, CBST has become an important voice in Judaism, in the world-wide discourse on the nature of religious community, and in the movement to secure basic civil rights for gay people everywhere. Rabbi Kleinbaum’s education and experience cut across all varieties of contemporary Judaism: Orthodox, Conservative, Reform, Reconstructionist, and secular activist. She received her ordination from the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College in 1990. Raised in a family of social activists, Rabbi Kleinbaum’s own social action career began in college. She led protests against Barnard’s investments in South Africa and against the proliferation of nuclear weapons. As a human rights advocate – for blacks, women, gays, lesbians, and immigrants – she has been jailed, arrested, vilified, and lauded.