Why I Am a Reform Jew

Daniel B. Syme, Author
Daniel B. Syme, Author Dutton Books $18.95 (221p) ISBN 978-1-55611-157-0
Reviewed on: 03/01/1990
Release date: 03/01/1990
Although Syme offers a concluding chapter on his reasons for choosing Reform Judaism over other branches and gives colorful background on the history of Reform, his earnest, plodding autobiography is essentially a fleshed-out curriculum vitae taking the reader through his boyhood, bar mitzvah, summer camp, trips to Israel, campus ferment, rabbinical training and professional career. Vice-president of the Union of American Hebrew Congregations (UAHC), he writes about his family's roots in Winnipeg and the molding influence of his father, product of an Orthodox home, who nevertheless became a Reform rabbi in New York and Detroit. Syme's bout with cancer while in college crystallized his decision to become a rabbi. He believes Reform represents the best chance for Judaism to thrive in a pluralistic society. We also learn about UAHC's educational reforms, youth program and Outreach drive targeted at persons with no religious preference. (Mar.)
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