The Evolution of a Maverick Reform Rabbi

John Moscowitz started out as a New Left activist, then turned to Judaism, then broke with the orthodoxies of his own liberal movement. In a new book, he takes stock.

From the cover of The Evolution of an Unorthodox Rabbi by John Moscowitz.

From the cover of The Evolution of an Unorthodox Rabbi by John Moscowitz.

Observation
April 7 2016
About the author

Martin Krossel, who specializes in international politics and Jewish affairs, is a Canadian journalist based in the New York area.


It’s no easy chore to find Reform rabbis who deviate from their movement’s liberal orientation on matters ranging from the revelation at Sinai to the Israel-Palestinian “peace process,” and who are unafraid to say so in public. One of them is John Moscowitz, who throughout his adult life has been out of step with friends and colleagues politically, intellectually, and theologically. His fascinating journey, from radical left-wing activist to outspoken spiritual leader of a 6,000-member congregation in Toronto, Canada, is on display in a recently published collection of his sermons, speeches, and writings entitled Evolution of an Unorthodox Rabbi.

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More about: American Jewry, Israel & Zionism, Reform Judaism, Religion & Holidays