How to deliver sermons and roll out educational and social programs, and the question of whether rabbis can offer similar support to their congregants as do social workers, were some of the lively topics addressed at this year’s Rabbinical Council of Victoria (RCV) conference.
The July 23-24 conference held in Geelong, welcomed South Africa’s Rabbi Yossy Goldman as special guest and key note speaker. Rabbi Goldman who is president of the South African Rabbinical Association and rabbi at Sydenham Highlands North Hebrew Congregation in Johannesburg, took part in workshops, sharing his pulpit experience with the almost 40 Victorian Orthodox rabbis who attended the event.
Meanwhile Rebbetzins attended a separate seminar ahead of the conference to learn from the experiences of Rebbetzin Rochel Goldman.
The conference was an opportunity for the rabbis to explore halachic and social issues and update their training in the area of child safety and mandatory reporting among numerous prevalent subjects.
Every attending rabbi also had the chance to share their experiences, ideas, thoughts and area of knowledge on crucial community issues.
There where sessions on dealing with rabbinic dilemmas, the challenges of tomorrow, sexuality and inclusion, helping couples on their journey to parenthood – and a keynote session by Rabbi Goldman on mistakes a rabbi can make.
RCV president Rabbi Philip Heilbrunn OAM said afterwards, “With a very full and wide ranging stimulating agenda, the pleasing revelation was of our newest generation of rabbonim. Energized and enthused, they reveal that their erudition, talents and skills augur well for our community’s future.”
Rabbi Daniel Rabin, co-conference organizer said, “It was inspiring to see the empathy, warmth and care that the rabbis of the Melbourne Jewish community employ when considering how to best conduct themselves upon giving advice or guidance to their congregants on a range of sensitive and often controversial matters.”
Rabbi Yossy Goldman also addressed a public lecture attended by over 200 community members, on the Sunday prior to the conference, hosted at South Caulfield Hebrew Congregation on the issue of anti-semitism.