The quest for global Jewish unity amidst the rising tide of anti-Semitism will be the topic of the Orthodox Union’s biennial convention this winter. Hundreds of Jewish lay leaders and synagogue members will gather at the Tarrytown Hilton in Tarrytown, NY, on December 26-28 for a weekend complete with shiurim and sessions given by leading Orthodox rabbis and thinkers from across the globe.
“We invite all of the members of the Orthodox Jewish community to the OU National Convention where they will be inspired by some of the great teachers and leaders of our community as we discuss the pressing issues that face us,” says Allen I. Fagin, executive vice president of the Orthodox Union. “These include the spiraling cost of yeshivah and day school tuition, our obligations to our unaffiliated brethren, focusing on the need for diversity across the spectrum of lay and communal endeavors and the unprecedented rise in anti-Semitism across the globe. During these trying times, the unity between Jews must be stronger than ever.”
Speakers include Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis, chief rabbi of the United Kingdom; Rabbi Daniel Oppenheimer, chief Ashkenazic rabbi of Buenos Aires; Rabbi Hershel Schachter, rosh yeshivah at RIETS and Malcolm Hoenlein, executive vice chairman of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations. “In light of the Gaza War, it became very clear that there has been an increase in global anti-Semitism and we wanted to get a snapshot from the chief rabbis of some of those communities,” explains Rabbi Judah Isaacs, OU director of community engagement.
There will be a plenary on day school affordability as well as a Sunday panel on bringing women to the Orthodox leadership table led by Anne Neuberger, chief risk officer at the National Security Agency and Rabbanit Chana Henkin, dean of Nishmat in Israel. Richard Joel, president of Yeshiva University; Dr. Alan Kadish, president and CEO of Touro; Rabbi Dr. Tzvi Hersh Weinreb, OU executive vice president, emeritus, and Rachel Friedman, director of Lamdeinu in Teaneck, will also be speaking. Services and songs will be led by Cantor Yaakov Lemmer, the chazzan of Lincoln Square Synagogue on the Upper West Side in New York.