A Part of Something Greater Than Ourselves

November 21, 2019

Rabbi Jill Maderer wrote this article for the December Bulletin.

I can picture, as a young child, sitting at my family’s Shabbat table on an evening when our Rabbi was there as our guest. I remember he and my parents were engaged in a conversation about the importance of the Reform Movement. Rabbi Kroloff spoke about the Movement’s thought leadership and resources such as the youth movement and summer camps. He spoke about the social justice voice of about 1,000 North American congregations and the network of leaders who support each other. He spoke about responsibility to the whole— to think not only of our own Jewish lives and synagogues but about the Jewish people. And most of all, Rabbi Kroloff spoke about how powerful it is to be a part of something greater than ourselves.

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Reform Zionism: Rooted in Caring for Ourselves & Caring for the Other

November 14, 2019

Rabbi Jill Maderer wrote this article for the November RS Bulletin.

I recently had the joy of co-leading a discussion in our 6th grade, along with Rabbi Freedman, during Berkman Mercaz Limud. Our topic was theology and the students raised a common question: is God good? I was struck by the nuance of the conversation that followed. The students opined that God could not be good because what’s good to one person or side, is not good to the next person or side. Inherent in their understanding of God’s role in our lives was the notion that our lives are different. Our perspectives are different.

I left that conversation with faith that the world will be a better place because these kids are in it and that they have much to teach us all. Read the rest of this entry »