25th Jewish LGBT+ World Congress

LGBT+ Jewish Congress

Shining a light on Global Jewish LGBT+ ideas, creativity, community and diversity.

Emanuel Synagogue  is the main venue for the 25th World Congress Jewish LGBT+ Conference to be held in Sydney from 21 – 24 March 2019.  This is the first time the World Congress - Keshet Ga’avah has held its Conference in Australia. As a peak body, their mission is to be the worldwide voice of Jews of diverse sexual orientations and gender identities. They recently published a book, Kol Koleinu (All Our Voices) which highlights the excellent work that they do. Delegates will be attending the conference from the United States, France, Amsterdam, Italy, Latin America, New Zealand, Israel and around the globe.

“Celebrating the Light” is the central theme woven through the program. This event transforms the festival of Purim into a festival of ideas, creativity, community and diversity. Purim is traditionally a time when people dress-up, blur the lines of gender and generally have a lot of fun! While nothing can compare the impeccable standards of Emanuel’s famous Purim Shpiel, the conference opens the following evening with “the Queerest Gender-Bending Purim Shpiel on the Planet” as well as an array of welcoming entertainment for delegates from around Australia and the world.

Light in Me: individual Perspectives

Each of us has a story to tell and this Conference is an opportunity to engage in the range of issues affecting Jewish LGBT+ communities around the globe. It also provides a platform to strengthen networks and promote solidarity – to ensure that people feel supported and inspired to participate in the ongoing conversation from a personal, communal and international perspective.

Light in Us: Our Diverse Community 

There are speakers attending from around the world bringing their wisdom, stories and insight as well as several inspiring luminaries from the Jewish LGBT+ world who will be making presentations via the internet in the newly-built state-of-the-art Synagogue. Anyone who attended Shir Madness can see the scope and vision for Emanuel Synagogue as a conference and cultural hub. While most of the Conference will take place at Emanuel Synagogue in Woollahra, the final day will be held at the Sydney Jewish Museum, close to the gay hub of Oxford St, Darlinghurst.

From the sightseeing tour of Bondi Beach and the iconic Sydney Opera House to an array of entertainment on Opening Night, there is something for everyone. Our LGBT+ inspired Kabbalat Shabbat service on the Friday Night is sure to be a moving experience, followed by a dinner focused on Building Bridges sponsored by the NSW Jewish Board of Deputies. Shabbat includes a range of workshops and presentations happening concurrently and Sunday will be based at the Sydney Jewish Museum, including a ceremony at the Gay & Lesbian Holocaust Memorial in Green Park. We are sure delegates will be satisfied and fulfilled by our extensive program.

Opera House Mardi Gras

Sharing our Light: the Power of Collaboration 

As the Conference unfolds, the focus moves to connectivity. The principles of participation, collaboration, networking and community have shaped the vision of a dedicated organising committee, who have been enthusiastically working to present a stimulating and engaging program of events.

Regardless of peoples’ engagement with both the Jewish and LGBT+ communities, there will be many opportunities to relate to similar and differing viewpoints which will provide a tapestry of possibility that can both enrich an individual sense of self, as well as inspire a deepening engagement with the communities in which we find ourselves.

Insights illuminated

The Conference will include presenters who can inspire, illuminate, and entertain from a range of perspectives. We are also delighted to bring together a  team of highly trained and engaging facilitators, who will offer creative, challenging and rewarding approaches, to drive conversations across diverse viewpoints and lived experience. And you can be sure of a few wonderful surprises along the way – watch this space!

From its inception, this Conference has been enthusiastically supported by Emanuel Synagogue, Sydney Jewish Museum and the NSW Jewish Board of Deputies. The Conference will be primarily held at Emanuel Synagogue, which has recently completed a state-of-the-art new Sanctuary, with all the technical requirements to live stream and provide coverage across the globe.

Emanuel Synagogue Members  You Can Be Involved 

Homestay Welcoming the Stranger

This is an excellent opportunity to host LGBT+ people from around the world, share stories, hospitality and create a wider bridge. Hosts need to be in the general Eastern Suburbs vicinity. Contact World Congress to offer your home or discuss further: worldcongress2019@gmail.com

Mardi Gras Parade Join in

Sydney Gay & Lesbian Mardi Gras  is not just the parade on Saturday 2 March 2019  There is a full program in the Mardi Gras Festival which kicks off 15 February 2019. Kim Gotlieb, Co-ordinator of the Conference and Dayenu “encourages Emanuel members  broaden your perspectives and learn more about LGBT+ culture, by checking out what is on offer, especially in the Queerscreen Film Festival”. They are looking for people interested to march with them this year. Perhaps you have children who are LGBT+, or you are LGBT+ parents  as well as the possibility you are someone who simply wants to walk your talk and show support. This is a “bucket list” opporutnity and spaces are very limited. [Contact details below]

Mardi Gras Festival Forum: Homophobia, Antisemitism & the Politics of Othering

World Congress joins with Sydney Jewish Museum to present this forum, whcih promises to provide an engaging and interesting evening. It’s happening on Sunday 17 February at the Sydney Jewish Museum. Check out the details and invite your friends to come along. A panel of diverse viewpoints will explore these ideas, before opening up  to an engaging facilitated discussion which is sure to be both stimulating and worthwhile for all who attend. See link below.

See the Program 

Click to Register

Information on Mardi Gras Festival Forum 

We are co-hosting a forum as part of Sydney Gay & Lesbian Mardi Gras Festival at the Sydney Jewish Museum on Sunday 14 March called: Homophobia, Antisemitism and the Politics of Othering -  for more information click here

Contact World Congress Conference: worldcongress2019@gmail.com

For the latest updates go to the Dayenu website: www.dayenu.org.au 

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Established in 1938, Emanuel Synagogue is a pluralist community affiliated with the Masorti, Progressive and Renewal movements. We offer a variety of services, programs and activities. We welcome you to join us.

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