… can now boast that he is a doctor
LIONEL BLUE, the first openly gay rabbi in the UK, is now a Doctor of Divinity after receiving an honorary degree from Durham University. The award is for his scholarly and liturgical contribution to the Reform Jewish tradition and his work as a communicator of religious ideas and values to modern secular society.
Rabbi Blue, who turns 77 in February, tells People: “I was amazed to receive a degree, as I have been unable to visit Durham for a couple of years now.” He explained how “visiting Durham has given [me] a second chance, having had a breakdown studying for my first degree at Oxford in the 1950s”.
Rabbi Blue, known for his Thought for the Day on BBC Radio 4’s Today Programme, has lectured on a diverse range of topics, including changing attitude’s towards homosexuality, laughter as a form of medical therapy, and the media and religion.