Stamford shul forms LGBTQIA group

Temple Beth El in Stamford has announced the formation of a new group focused on the Jewish LGBTQIA community located in Fairfield and neighboring Westchester Counties.

According to a press release, the group’s goal is to create a welcoming environment in which the Jewish LGBTQIA community can socialize, celebrate Jewish life, learn together and share experiences. Synagogue membership is not required and the group is open to people of all ages.

“Inclusivity has always been a hallmark of Temple Beth El,” said Rabbi Joshua Hammerman, spiritual leader of the Conservative congregation. “We want to remove the sense of alienation that Jews in the LGBTQIA community have experienced in many synagogues when seeking acceptance and a spiritual home.”

According to the rabbi, this is the first formal LGBTQIA group started by a synagogue in the area.

“My partner Christopher and I recently joined Temple Beth El for many reasons,” said Richard Heimler. “One of them was the sincere welcome and inclusiveness we immediately felt from Rabbi Hammerman and the congregation.”

The abbreviation LGBTQIA represents several sexual orientation and gender identities: lesbian, gay, bisexual, transgender, questioning or queer, intersex, and asexual. The use of the abbreviation has gained traction, particularly on college campuses.

For more information, contact Richard Heimler at richadam1@hotmail.com.

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