[This is a work of fiction and is presented with great respect for all the streams within Judaism. Ed.] The Jewish Telegraphic Agency reported today that leaders from the Jewish Reconstructionist Federation and Chabad Lubavitch will be announcing the merger of their movements in a press conference scheduled for this Sunday, March 4, the 15th of Adar.
Sources close to the negotiations were amazed by the exuberance, nay euphoria, expressed by professionals and lay people of the two organizations.
"No one is going to believe this!" giggled JRF's Executive Vice President Dr. Carl Sheingold. Negotiators from Chabad's international headquarters reportedly led all the negotiators in raucous song and dance. One said, "To bring liberal Jews under the wings of halacha (Jewish law) is definite proof that the Moshiach (messiah) is coming soon!"
Apparently some of the details are still being worked out, but here is what JTA reporters have found out so far.
Concessions made by the Reconstructionists:
Concessions made by Chabad:
Reports from insiders to the negotiations explained some of the complexities of the negotiations and the interesting compromises. For example, one source reported there are some significant advocates within the Reconstructionist movement that already were pushing for re-embracing traditional Jewish liturgy. The sources explained that these Reconstructionists understand messiah in its mytho-poetic sense. Mytho-poetic sensibilities are rising in post-modern thought and it makes it easier for Reconstructionists to speak the language of moshiach.
In fact, there might be a written piece in the agreement, asked for by the Reconstructionists, that expresses that Judaism does not have dogma, that beliefs are up to the individual. The Reconstructionists emphasized that they would not make their commitments to halacha without absolute clarity from the Chabad side that acknowledged that Judaism does not mandate beliefs.
Rabbi Dan Ehrenkrantz, President of the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College could not be reached for comment.
Insiders also report that there were texts found buried within Chabad headquarters that prophecy about a full acceptance of women and gays. Reportedly these texts will be presented to the public as having ancient origins.
As with any negotiation each side was trumpeting its successes. The Reconstructionists claimed victory at expanding the meaning of inclusion within Judaism and Chabad touted the greatest success ever in bringing liberal Jews under the wings of Jewish law.
Some gay Reconstructionist rabbis were contacted and asked their reactions. Rabbi J. Sung Cline said, "I always wanted to be part of a halachic movement. But I couldn't be a part of a movement and deny who I was at the same time. Now I can have both. I'm thrilled. Maybe the messiah really is coming!"