In honor of the California Supreme Court decision on marriage equality, here’s an excerpt from my interview with a Rabbi from the Reconstructionist tradition:

“I guess I haven’t really found an issue that I believe I couldn’t change if I found like minded people and worked with them,” says Rabbi Erin Hirsh, who describes herself as “profoundly optimistic.” She notes that her own relatively small branch of Judaism has had helped to change the norms of Judaism as a whole. “Within the Jewish community, Reconstructionists created the Bat Mitzvah ceremony, and now our girls take it for granted,” she notes . “We ordained the first woman. We allowed gays and lesbians into the seminary from the day it opened, and then we ordained gay and lesbian rabbis. So I think about those generational changes and how the other movements are following. The reform movement certainly has women and has gay and lesbian rabbis. And now you can officiate at commitment ceremonies for gays and lesbians in either movement. And now the conservative movement is moving in the same direction. That’s a very recent, very dramatic development. That kind of change within the Jewish community is monumental to me,” she adds, “I’m pretty young to get to see something so dramatic unfold right through my lifetime.”