Rabbinical Council of America: Homosexuality Is Still A Shanda

Orthodox Jewish views on homosexuality have become a topic of discussion in the media lately. So the Rabbinical Council of America, the largest clerical group within the denomination (Judaism’s smallest), issued some “clarifications” on the subject.

In addition to reaffirming that the Torah prohibits the practice of homosexuality and bans same-sex unions (yeah, yeah), the Council’s statement said “individuals with homosexual inclinations should be treated with the care and concern appropriate to all human beings” and urged Jews with homosexual tendencies to seek counsel from their Rabbis. “Equally, we urge all Rabbis to show compassion to all those who approach them.”

When it comes to reparative therapy, the Council says “we can neither endorse nor reject any therapy or method that is intended to assist those who are struggling with same-sex attraction.”

So homosexuality is a sin and if you think you’re gay, go to your rabbi—who won’t have any constructive suggestions on how to get rid of your feelings. But he’ll have compassion for you.

Jeez, maybe the Fundamentalist Christians are better—at least they pretend you can pray the gay away.


Images via Eyes Wide Shut/Peccadillo Pictures


Get Queerty Daily

Subscribe to Queerty for a daily dose of #gayjews #orthodoxjudaism #relgion stories and more


  • AxelDC

    I’m just curious. When Judaism is the only major religion in the U.S. where the majority endorses gay relationships, for instance both the Reform and Conservative sections endorse gay rights and support gay marriage. Those two groups make up about 94% of all Jews and yet Queerty keeps running stories making it seem as if Jews hate gays.

    Why is that?

  • Ronbo

    Jewish persons don’t hate teh gays. They just hate what the gays do with each other and base their hate on the Torah – the cornerstone of their faith.

    They don’t hate the person, they hate what the person does. See? Love the person, not what they do. See? It’s not at all like the condemnation you see from the fundamentalist Christians. Or…. is it?

  • Miss Understood

    @AxelDC: If you are going to come in with that argument
    then offer us some less vague statistics. Who cares is 94% of Jews are Reform and
    Conservative if only “sections” endorse gay rights? What sections? What percent of
    the 94% are we talking about here?

  • LandStander

    @AxelDC: Because obviously there is a difference between the official stand of a small group of the Jewish religion, and what different Jewish people themselves think. Nobody said Jewish people hate the gays. They just informed us about the reaffirmation of the RCA’s policies on homosexuality.

    Like when the pope went out and said that condoms are bad. Did you comment on that post “Why does queerty keep making it seem like Catholics hate latex!?”

    They do not. The pope just said something stupid again, that’s all.

  • the crustybastard

    More religious condemnation, pretending to be “compassion.”

    It reminds me of the compassion Christians once demonstrated the heathen Jews — “the Bible says you are doing evil, so we’re going to help you change your mind.”

    Fortunately, modernity’s secular society is now able to curb religion’s more savage impulses — which is why fundamentalists loathe it.

  • Robert in NYC

    Who really gives a damn about what orthodox jews, or any religious extremists think? I mean really. Who do they think they are passing judgment on us based on a book that was written by and for men anyway? They’re living in the middle ages. If anything is a “shanda” its them. They’re such phony’s and hypocrites. If pork and shellfish were the only food available, nobody can convince me they wouldn’t eat it to survive and don’t get met started with the ones who cheat on their wives on the downlow with men.

  • Robert in NYC

    @Ronbo @Ronbo: So why is it they never condemn and judge heterosexuals who commit adultery, or bear false witness against gay people by spreading lies and supporting discrimination against us? Who are they to judge? They totally ignore “judge not lest ye shall be judged”? They’re all hypocrites. Supporting a ban on same-sex marriage is nothing more than hate. They even playdown the fact that 15,000 or more gay men were sent to the nazi death camps and were murdered in the gas ovens along side them, some are even outraged that we bring it up. Don’t tell me that many of them hate us. All that nonsense about loving the sinner but not the sin is just a front to get them off the hook.

  • Jon

    compared to evangelicals this was pretty low key. Pointing out that 1) as rabbis they don’t feel qualified to comment on the effectiveness of therapy, 2)that people should seek licensed therapists only and 3) nobody should be coerced into therapy is, overall, quite a bit better than you can get from the Bachmanns of the world.

  • Cam

    @Miss Understood: said… “What percent of
    the 94% are we talking about here?”

    Axes is right, The Reform and Conservative Jews make up 90-95 percent of all Jews, and both those official branches support gay rights and gay marriages. They have gay rabbis and perform gay ceremonies.

Comments are closed.