Council of Christians and Jews: Religious Forum on Same Sex Marriage

Council of Christians and Jews (Victoria) presents

Religious Forum on Same Sex Marriage

Six representatives from a variety of religious streams will discuss their various theological points of view on same sex marriage.

Rabbi Adam Stein: Kehilat Nitzan Conservative Congregation
Rev Dr Lorraine Parkinson: Uniting Church Minister (Retired)
Rabbi Fred Morgan: Senior Rabbi, Temple Beth Israel
David Schütz: Exec. Officer, Ecumenical and Interfaith Commission
Rabbi Shamir Caplan: School Chaplain, Mt Scopus Memorial College, Rabbi Beit Aharon Congregation.
Pastor Mark Tuffin: School Pastor, Luther College



Sunday, 21 October 2012, at 2.00pm

Lecture Room, TD 121 Building, Swinburne University

on the ground floor of the TD building on the corner of

John Street and Park Street Hawthorn

Admission $10.00

We cordially invite you to attend, and if possible please advise the CCJ office.

Tel: 9429 5212 or email:



Rabbi Caplan is School Chaplain at Mount Scopus Memorial College, where he coordinates the Talmud program, and serves as Rabbi of the Beit Aharon Congregation. He is on the board of the Jewish Christian Muslim Association and on the steering committee of Mitzvah Day, a Jewish Day of Service and Social Justice. He is married to Tania and they have three young children.

Rabbi Fred Morgan studied the religions of India and taught Religious Studies in the Department of Theology, University of Bristol, U.K. before entering Leo Baeck College to train as a rabbi. He lectured at Leo Baeck College for 10 years and was made an Honorary Fellow in recognition of his contribution to the College. In 1997 he came to Melbourne with his family to take up the position of Senior Rabbi at Temple Beth Israel. His involvement with interfaith work goes back to the beginning of his rabbinate. He was and remains an active member of the CCJ, and has addressed many interfaith conferences, published widely on the subject, and has led synagogue tours to India and Europe. His wife Sue is a Pastoral Care Coordinator; they have three adult children.

Lorraine Parkinson is an ordained Minister of the Uniting Church in Australia. She has been a parish minister (now retired) and continues to conduct worship in various congregations. Lorraine also conducts seminars Australia-wide on the Teachings of Jesus, the Problem of Evil (in a world created by a good God), and Christian-Jewish relations. She is chair of the Uniting Church Synod of Victoria and Tasmania’s Working Group on Christian-Jewish relations and for 10 years was a member of the national dialogue between the Uniting Church and the Executive Council of Australian Jewry. For the past five years Lorraine has been married to the Rev Dr John Bodycomb (both having been widowed) and between them they have six children and sixteen grandchildren.

David Schütz has fulfilled the role of Executive Officer for the Ecumenical and Interfaith Commission of the Catholic Archdiocese of Melbourne since 2002. Previous to his reception into full communion with the Catholic Church, he was a Lutheran pastor for nine years. In his “spare” time, he conducts adult faith formation classes for Anima Education, cantors in the Cathedral and his parish in Blackburn North, and blogs at He is married to Cathy Beaton, and has two daughters, Maddy and Mia.

Adam Stein is the rabbi of Kehilat Nitzan, Melbourne’s only Masorti/Conservative community and synagogue. He received a BA in Judaic Studies from the University of California, San Diego, with minors in Theatre and Philosophy. Adam spent a year studying at the Hebrew University, and another, after completing his undergraduate degree, at the Pardes Institute in Jerusalem. He subsequently received Rabbinic ordination and a Master’s degree in Education from American Jewish University in Los Angeles. He and his wife Tamar moved to Melbourne in August 2011 after he had served as a rabbi for two years in Kansas City.

Mark Tuffin is an ordained minister of the Lutheran Church of Australia. He is currently serving as chaplain at Luther College in Croydon, Victoria. Mark has an undergraduate degree in Human Movement Studies with a diploma in teaching from the University of Queensland, and a Master’s degree from Bethany Lutheran Theological Seminary in Minnesota, USA. He was ordained in 1993 and has served congregations in Brisbane and South Australia before taking up chaplaincy work in Victoria three years ago. He is married with four children.

‘Israel’s not Disneyland’ | AJN

5 Oct 2012
The Australian Jewish News Melbourne edition

‘Israel’s not Disneyland’

Hagai El-Ad
Hagai El-Ad

ONE of Israel’s top civil rights campaigners will arrive in Australia this week to speak to audiences in Sydney and Melbourne. Hagai El-Ad (pictured), the executive director of the Association for Civil Rights in Israel (ACRI), said he is excited to meet with Australians and discuss their views on the Jewish State.

“This will be my first time in Australia and I am very much looking forward to meeting openminded people that are curious about the real Israel,” said El-Ad, who is being brought to Australia by New Israel Fund Australia.

“I want to open people to a real relationship with Israeli society because Israel is not always the Disneyland image that some people think.”

El-Ad, who completed an astrophysics degree at university, became an activist for the lesbian, gay, bisexual and transgender community in his youth. “One thing just led to another and gradually my eyes were opened to the broader reality of some of the discrimination in Israel.”

He said the biggest challenges in Israeli society now are the occupation of the West Bank, which he claimed is the cause of countless human rights violations, as well as the fight for complete and full equality for Israeli citizens and the need for social justice reforms.

“Israel has become one of the less equal countries in the West in the context of economic disparity and a lot of work needs to be done to reduce the disparity in society.”

He reflected on the recent spate of public rallies in support of social and economic reform.

“People think in the beginning that it’s about the lack of rent control in Tel Aviv and the lack of affordable houses when they protest, but the conversation continues and it gets to planning policies in the Arab sector, the unrecognised Arab and Bedouin villages and other forms of inequality.

“It doesn’t matter what door they go through to talk about human rights and equality, it is good that people are discussing it.”

For information on El-ad’s speaking dates go to

Author Blog: October Mourning and Tikkun Olam | The Arty Semite –

Author Blog: October Mourning and Tikkun Olam | The Arty Semite –