Friday, April 04, 2008

Gay Gezinteh Hait

My friend and minyan buddy Yitzchak is always trying to teach me Yiddish words and phrases . Last week I learned the difference between "zei guzent" - be healthy, be well - and "gay gezinteh hait" (sometimes shortened to just "gay guzent") - go in health. Zei guzent is a way of warmly wishing someone well, often used when saying goodbye. Gay guzent is a sarcastic phrase, the Yiddish version of "go, have a good time, don't let the door hit you on the way out." I don't remember how we got on to this, but I knew it would be a phrase I would be using--I just didn't realize how soon.

This week's Canadian Jewish News posted an article on synagogues affiliated with United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism who are now planning to leave the organization.
From the article:

Rabbi Steven Saltzman, spiritual leader of Adath Israel Congregation, said last week that his shul’s board of directors has voted “overwhelmingly to leave USCJ, effective immediately, because they feel it has not met even the bare minimum needs of our community here.”

Ideologically, he said, “we find the chasm between Conservative Judaism in the United States and Conservative Judaism here to be growing larger and wider.”

Canadians, he said, are much more traditional than communities across the border, and the egalitarian movement in the United States includes women being part of the services, the ordination of gay and lesbian rabbis, and patrilineal descent. “Frankly, [USCJ] no longer represents what and who we are.”

If these congregations can't stand to be associated with a group that supports egalitarianism and equality within the framework of our rituals, I say "Gay Gezinteh Hait!"

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