Culture in brief: Abby Stein, transgendered women, to speak at Montclair’s Bnai Keshet
Abby Stein will speak about her journey from the Hasidic rabbinate to her life as a trans-woman at Bnai Keshet’s first Kaplan Minyan of the New Year on Saturday morning, Oct. 14. The Kaplan Minyan, which meets in the Red Gables historic house across the parking lot from the synagogue’s main building, begins at 10:30 a.m. with selected songs and readings. Bnai Keshet, a Reconstructionist synagogue, is at 99 South Fullerton Ave.
Abby Stein is a Jewish educator, writer, speaker, and activist. She was born and raised in a Hasidic family in Williamsburg, Brooklyn, and is a descendant of Rabbi Baal Shem Tov, the founder of Hasidic Judaism.
Stein attended Yeshiva and became a rabbi in 2011. She left the Hasidic world the following year, and came out as a trans-woman in 2015. Since then, Stein has been working to raise support and awareness for trans rights and those leaving Ultra-Orthodoxy.
Her story has been covered in publications such as the New York Times, New York Post, WSJ, New York Magazine, Jewish Daily Forward, Daily Mail, The Daily Dot, Haaretz and Refinery29. She also appeared on NBC, Fox News, CNN, Huffington Post Live, ShowTime, and more.In 2016 Stein was named by The Jewish Week as one of its “36 Under 36” emerging Jewish leaders. She is currently studying gender studies and political science at Columbia University.
The Bnai Keshet Kaplan Minyans are named for Reconstructionist Judaism founder Mordecai Kaplan, who sought to create a Jewish framework for discussions of ethics, culture, history and current events. For more information, visit bnaikeshet.org/event/kaplanminyans.