It’s happening. After the wild popularity of Mishkan T’Filah in the American Reform movement, the Central Conference of American Rabbis announced in April that they will produce a new machzor, to replace Gates of Repentance. This machzor will be modeled after Mishkan T’filah and is intended as a companion volume.
It will be called Mishkan T’shuvah.
Until recently, I had low hopes for this volume. I was imagining scores of committees being convened, leading to a camel (horse created by committee) volume just as muddled as Mishkan T’filah.
But I have good news. I have learned the identity of the four editors of the new machzor.
First, let’s digest the number of editors. Four. Theoretically, MT’f had one editor, Rabbi Elyse D. Frishman. In reality, it was created by committee, after committee, draft after draft. The CCAR spent the better part of my lifetime on it and managed to bankrupt itself in the process (see this for real insight on the CCAR’s financial situation). But with only four editors, I’m far more hopeful for this machzor.
Janet Marder is a former president of the CCAR. Sheldon Marder is a former dean of HUC LA and Goldberg is at Temple Judea in Coral Gables, Florida. The choice of Leon Morris is a real surprise here. Leon is a different kind of Reform Jew altogether, thinking always in terms of mitzvot and obligation.
Watching this machzor develop will be interesting, to say the least.