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Rabbi Steve Greenberg

 

Rabbi Steven Greenberg received his B.A. in philosophy from Yeshiva University and his rabbinical ordination from Rabbi Isaac Elchanan Theological Seminary. He is a Senior Teaching Fellow at CLAL (National Jewish Center for Learning and Leadership), a think tank, leadership training institute and resource center in New York City.

Steve is an openly gay Orthodox rabbi and a founder of the Jerusalem Open House, the Holy City's LGBT community center and home to World Pride 2006. After coming out publicly, Rabbi Greenberg appeared in the film Trembling Before G-d, a documentary about gay and lesbian Orthodox Jews. Following the film's release in October 2001, Steve joined the filmmaker, Sandi Simcha DuBowski, in an outreach project carrying the film across the globe as a tool for spiritual renewal, social change and community dialogue.    

Recently, Rabbi Greenberg finished a book, the product of his ten-year struggle to reconcile his two "wrestling" identities, entitled Wrestling with God and Men: Homosexuality in the Jewish Tradition (University of Wisconsin Press, February 2004). In this book, Greenberg presents readers with surprising biblical interpretations of the creation story, the love of David and Jonathan, the destruction of Sodom, and the condemnatory verses of Leviticus. Drawing on a wide array of religious texts, Greenberg introduces readers to occasions of same-sex love in Talmudic narratives, medieval Jewish poetry and prose, and traditional Jewish case law literature. Ultimately, Greenberg argues that the historical record is more diverse and the law is more open to reconsideration than has ever been admitted and that spiritual and moral integrity of religions, not to mention the well-being and often the very lives of gay people are all at stake.