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I had the honor yesterday of joining the leadership of the Central Conference of American Rabbis, led by Rabbi Denise Eger and Rabbi Steve Fox in meeting with Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu. Also in attendance were Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion President Rabbi Aaron Panken and the leadership of the Israel Movement for Progressive and Reform Judaism, Rabbi Gilad Kariv, Anat Hoffman, and Rabbi Noa Sattath.
Our Reform rabbinical leadership offered our heartfelt thanks to Prime Minister Netanyahu for his strong leadership in bringing his cabinet to affirm the creation of an egalitarian, pluralistic prayer space at the southern plaza of the Western Wall, along with an historic oversight council – composed of the Reform and Conservative Movements and the Women of the Wall – to administer the budget and set policy for this important option at one of the holiest sites in Judaism.
The prime minister has been generous with his time; in fact, I have had the opportunity to meet with him often since becoming president of the URJ.
Prime Minster Netanyahu values the role of North American Jewry in creating a vital Jewish future, and I am proud to have been able to work with him on this and other critical issues. Even when we disagree, we do so in a spirit of cooperation and mutual respect.