National Council of Jewish Women (NCJW) has been working to protect the rights of women, children, and families for more than a century, and fighting for abortion, health, rights, and justice for decades. We’ve been advocating on the federal and state level, engaging and mobilizing our network of over 200,000 advocates.
Last year, we launched Repro Shabbat to both have a time to learn what our tradition teaches about reproductive freedom, and to come together as a community to talk about these issues. It seemed only natural that it would take place on Parshat Mishpatim, as this was when we read the verses that undergird Judaism’s approach to abortion — permitted and sometimes even required, if the life of the pregnant person is in danger.
This year, we welcomed Repro Shabbat just after the 49th anniversary of the landmark case Roe v. Wade. With the future of Roe hanging in the balance, it was no wonder that we saw even more of the Jewish community participate in this year’s Repro Shabbat. Communities and individuals nationwide took Repro Shabbat to explore the Jewish understanding of abortion. As Rabbi Danya Ruttenberg is quoted in Alma, “It feels like people have been waiting for the chance to do this work for a Jewish lens, in a Jewish space — not just to do it and be Jewish, but to do it as a Jew.”
Repro Shabbat gave us the Jewish time we needed to recommit ourselves as a Jewish community to reproductive health, rights, and justice. Now we continue to build our Jewish movement. Take action now to urge the Senate to pass the Women’s Health Protection Act. Join the 73Forward campaign to stay with us as we continue to create the next chapter in abortion access. And if you know any Jewish clergy who hasn’t joined our 1700-strong Rabbis for Repro network, this is a great time. And save the date for next year’s Repro Shabbat: February 17-18, 2023.
Read More Press
Jewish Telegraphic Agency | Jewish women are leaders on abortion rights. But they can’t do it alone.
Cleveland Jewish News | NCJW virtual Repro Shabbat lunch, learn features Lithwick, Hill
Pittsburgh Jewish Chronicle | NCJW to sponsor forums on abortion rights