Israel Conversations: Reflect on the Discussion and Add Your Voice Here

February 28, 2011

This past Friday at “Israel Conversations,”  each table at Shabbat dinner engaged with a leader about a different Israel-related topic.  Reflect on the discussion and, whether or not you attended, engage in the conversation here.  Comment on your general perspectives about Israel or go to one of the following links for material that was discussed about specific areas of focus.

Does Israel Still Have a Pioneering Spirit?

Reform Judaism and Pluralism in Israel

Israel’s History

Zionism Then and Now

The Declaration of Independence

Israel Conversations: The Declaration of Independence

February 28, 2011

At Israel Conversations last Shabbat, I sat at one of the tables and studied the text of Israel’s Declaration of Independence.  We were focused on it’s emphasis on Jewish history, it’s dedication to the dignity of other people’s, and the name it chooses when referring to God: Rock of Israel.  Review the text and add your thoughts.

Israel Conversations: Reform Judaism and Pluralism in Israel

February 28, 2011

At Israel Conversations last Shabbat, Marji Rosenbluth Philips discussed Reform Judaism and Pluralism in Israel, and referenced the Israel Religious Action Center (IRAC).  The conversation focused on the historic development of the separation of civil and political institutions in Israel that resulted in the orthodox rabbinate having control over civil issues such as marriage, bar/bat mitzvah and death.  Read the rest of this entry »

Israel Conversations: Does Israel Still Have a Pioneering Spirit?

February 28, 2011

At Israel Conversations last Shabbat, our congregation’s president Fred Strober discussed Israel’s pioneering spirit, and referenced the book, Start- Up Nation, by Dan Senor and Saul Singer .  His group explored whether Israel still has the pioneering spirit we associate with the days following the creation of the State.  They talked about what comprises a pioneering spirit and concluded that it involves risk taking, entering unchartered territories or initiatives and did not penalize failure.  They thought that these were the characteristics that allowed Israel, for example, to create a great 20th century agricultural economy.  They then asked ourselves whether, given all the strife regarding the territories and the prevalence of a “me culture” generally, the pioneering spirit is still alive.  They theorized that it must be for the Israeli economy to have taken off with so much technological achievement the past 20 or so years.  Read the rest of this entry »

Israel Conversations: Israel’s History

February 28, 2011

At Israel Conversations last Shabbat, RS Rabbi Emeritus Alan Fuchs discussed Israel’s History.  Take a look at this timeline as a refresher, and comment with your thoughts. Read the rest of this entry »

Israel Conversations: Zionism Then and Now

February 28, 2011

At Israel Conversations last Shabbat, Rabbi Howard Bogot lead the discussion, “Zionism Then and Now.”  The group discussed many different definitions of Zionism and found the following statements most resonated with their own feelings.  Have a look and then comment or share your own statement about Zionism. Read the rest of this entry »

Visioning Initiative

February 15, 2011

By Fred Strober, RS President

The weekend of March 4th through 6th is an important one for Rodeph Shalom.  It represents a critical point in the “Visioning Initiative” that your clergy and Board of Trustees initiated last fall to help determine—with your meaningful involvement—the future direction of our congregation.  Our “guide” for the weekend will be Rabbi Larry Hoffman, a leading intellectual force behind many of the changes over the past decade which have kept the Reform movement relevant.

Read the rest of this entry »

RS Visioning Initiative Weekend with Rabbi Lawrence Hoffman, March 4-6

February 14, 2011

Please learn about our Visioning Initiative, and join us for the visioning weekend opportunities with Rabbi Hoffman, listed below!

RS 2020: Creating Our Vision Together
6:00pm Shabbat Service, 7:00pm Dinner & Discussion 
RSVP for Dinner to Marcia Biggs at 215-627-6747 x12 or Cost for dinner is $20 per person.

Torah Study with Rabbi Lawrence Hoffman
Saturday, March 5, 2011 at 9:15am

RS 2020: Why the Next Generation Will Be Jewish
Sunday, March 6 at 10:30 AM

Please read more here for full descriptions of these conversations. Read the rest of this entry »

Confirmation Academy’s You Be the Judge Project

February 10, 2011

The confirmation academy has been working on a project over the past few weeks to come up with real-life dilemmas and the Jewish answers to these questions.  Please have a look below at the wonderful creations of our student!

Apollo 13B

You and your friend are astronauts on a malfunctioning spaceship. There is only one working escape pod left, and only one person can fit in the space pod to get back to earth. Your friend has left the decision to you, and will not be offended by your choice.

Do you take the pod home yourself or let your friend go home? You be the judge.

Read the rest of this entry »

RS Visioning Initiative

February 6, 2011

The leadership of Rodeph Shalom, along with the assistance of synagogue transformation expert Rabbi Larry Hoffman, has been engaged in conversations about what we envision for our congregation in the future.  We would like for every RS individual to participate in this initiative to ensure that our process is inclusive and reflects the perspectives of our membership.  Please read here to learn about two ways you can participate.

What is this Visioning Initiative?