Mindfulness and Spirituality: Join Us for Selichot

September 18, 2014
This Saturday we welcome a powerful guest speaker and teacher of spirituality to help us kick-off the High Holy Days with Selichot.
“Going Long, Going Deep: Delving into Our Souls as We Delve into a New High Holy Day Prayerbook” with Rabbi Rex Perlmeter on Saturday, September 20, 2014 at 8pm
We will explore passages from the new High Holy Day prayerbook of the Reform Movement, Mishkan HaNefesh, with Rabbi Rex Perlmeter who serves on the  High Holy Day Prayer Book Advisory Board and is a Founding Director of the Jewish Wellness Center.
8:00pm: Grand Dessert Buffet  
8:15pm:  Study Session
9:30pm: Selichot Service

Family Friendly High Holy Day Services at RS

September 17, 2014

Open your heart, deepen your soul and celebrate…Please join us for a meaningful High Holy Day season!

Contemporary Multi-generational Morning Services– Rosh Hashanah: Thursday, September 25, 8:30 am; Yom Kippur: Saturday, October 4, 8:30 am A full service for adults; yet a family-friendly atmosphere with children of all ages. Gender-inclusive language, Hebrew transliteration, participation in singing and prayer. Informal, comfortable setting for families with young children and activities for children during the sermon. Requires a “pass”; please contact Catherine Fischer cfischer@rodephshalom.org to become a member or prospective member and get a pass.

Tashlich Service at Fairmount Waterworks
Thursday, September 25, 1:30pm, 640 Water Works Drive
Cast away your sins with breadcrumbs!  Open to all.

Afternoon Mini-Service for Families– Rosh Hashanah: Thursday, September 25, 3:00 pm; Yom Kippur: Saturday, October 4, 1:30 pm  A very brief service for families of very young (non-reading) children and their parents and grandparents. Open to the community; no charge, please just bring photo ID for security.


Sharing the Raincloud: The Power of Empathy

September 13, 2014

In an animated short film called, The Power of Empathy, Dr Brene Brown illustrates how empathy is different from sympathy.   Read the rest of this entry »


Memorial Service for Lee Stanley

September 12, 2014

Please join us as we share memories of our beloved Lee Stanley at a Memorial Service on Sunday, September 14 at 2pm in our Sanctuary

Lee webOur community mourns the passing of Lee Stanley, a man who was better than almost anyone I know at finding and expressing joy. The music of RS, and his father Cantor Harry Stanley’s legacy, meant so much to him, he could hardly contain himself when he heard a piece he loved or when he heard children singing. He constantly reminded me to be free with my own joy, to let it show, because the joy of people like Lee bring warmth into the world.
Lee also taught everyone around him to access their deepest compassion. When the vidui, the confession, comes on Yom Kippur, I will confess to the times when I have not been as compassionate as I should have been, and I will vow to do better. Lee’s memory will always remind me of that.
Cantor Erin Frankel


The Aisles Are Open: Spiritual Release

September 4, 2014
Last month, a rabbi visiting Camp Harlam Overnight Camp scowled when in the dining hall, he saw the campers banging on tables to the beat of Birkat Hamazon, Grace After Meals.   He missed it.  This rabbi missed the whole point.  He missed the fact that hundreds of campers knew all the words to a very long Hebrew blessing.  He missed the fact that in that moment they were absolutely aware of the connection between eating and gratitude.  He missed the Jewish pride in their eyes as they felt that knowing Hebrew and connecting Jewishly, is cool.  And he missed the spiritual release that was happening for our campers in that dining hall, during Birkat Hamazon and song session.

Read the rest of this entry »


Looking Back on Last Week’s Israel Conversation

September 2, 2014

Thank you to the many congregants who participated in last week’s “Israel: It’s Time for a Conversation.”  Your open minds, listening ears and compassion hearts enabled the clergy to share our perspectives with full trust, and allowed so many of you to engage in a thoughtful and thought-provoking discussion. Please continue to engage in Israel through our course this fall, ReadRS book discussions, the Tel Aviv to Ramallah Hip-Hop concert and our trip to Israel this spring.

On Wednesday, we opened the conversation with the words of Psalm 122:6-9: Read the rest of this entry »


Letting Go This Elul

August 27, 2014

Re-eh: see, the opening word of this week’s Torah portion.  See, I set before you blessing and curse.  Look hard. Sometimes it’s hard to see what is blessing and what is curse.  What is right and what’s not right.  Or what’s no longer right.

Now on the cusp of Elul, the Hebrew month that begins Wednesday and prepares us for the teshuvah–repentance– of the High Holy Day season, we look hard so that we can tell the difference between the blessing and the curse, the good and the bad.  We look hard at our choices, our priorities, our relationship with God, our relationships with other people.  We examine the conflicts in our lives and devote ourselves to improvement, change, growth.

For this week’s summer crowdsourcing sermon, your clergy posed the question: “Have you ever carried around a grudge or a feeling that did not allow you to move forward completely?  Have you ever let go of such a feeling?” Read the rest of this entry »


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