Breaking Bread on Broad

June 14, 2017

Have you ever seen the hashtag #firstworldproblems? A simple google search brings up some great ones like:

The struggle of finding storage for 20 bottles of champagne #firstworldproblems

I got really tan this weekend and now my concealer is too light!!!

My dog won’t eat that chip I dropped, so now I have to pick it up.

When it takes 6 weeks for the new iphone to come in #firstworldproblems

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Loving the stranger: My trip to Abu Dhabi

May 7, 2017

Have you ever gotten one of those emails that said something like, “A Nigerian prince wants to send you $10,000 dollars; just send your bank account information and social security number…”

About 6 weeks ago, we got a call to the office here at RS that Sheikh Abdullah bin Bayyah of Abu Dhabi wanted to invite one of our clergy to be his guest in the United Arab Emirates and we had until the end of the day to let him know! We were sure it was a scam… But just in case it wasn’t, I did a little research, followed up, and made a few calls.  As you might have seen from my Facebook updates, it definitely was not a scam and with the unwavering support of our clergy and most importantly Laurel, I agreed to go. At around 2pm this afternoon, I returned from three of the most profoundly transformative days of my life. I want to share with you tonight of few of the powerful lessons that I learned. But first, a little background:

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This Is Hunger

March 8, 2017

More than 1 in 8 Americans struggles with hunger; and many in our own neighborhood. I recently heard a story from Principal Laureal Robinson at Spring Garden Elementary about a student who was putting some of her free school breakfasts and lunches in her backpack to take home because her family did not have enough money to buy groceries last month. The faces of hunger in America are both familiar and hidden from view, yet they are all too real and far too many.

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Reform Zionism: Shaping a Zionism That Reflects Who We Are

February 26, 2017

Maybe you’ve heard this one:

The Chief Rabbi of Israel and the Pope are in a meeting in Rome. The Rabbi notices an unusually fancy phone in the Pope’s private chambers.”What is that phone for?” he asks the pontiff. “It’s my direct line to God!” The Holy Father insists that the Rabbi try it out, and, indeed, he is connected to God and has a conversation with her. After hanging up the Rabbi says. “Thank you! Please let me reimburse you for my phone charges.” The Pope, of course refuses, but the Rabbi is steadfast and finally, the pontiff gives in. “All right! The charges were 100,000 Lira.” The Chief Rabbi gladly hands over a packet of bills. A few months later, the Pope is in Israel and in the Chief Rabbi’s chambers he sees a phone identical to his, and learns it also is a direct line to God. The Pope remembers he has an urgent matter that requires divine consultation, and asks if he can use the Rabbi’s phone. The Rabbi gladly agrees, hands him the phone, and the Pope chats away. After hanging up, the Pope offers to pay for the phone charges. The Rabbi says: “1 Shekel!” The Pope looks surprised: “Why so cheap!?” The Rabbi smiles: “Local call.” Read the rest of this entry »


Jewish Disability Awareness and Inclusion Month

February 21, 2017

It was a few days before our Berman Mercaz Limud model seder. As I was heading home for the day, I said to Rabbi Maderer in passing, “I’m off to boil six dozen eggs or so.” She looked at me incredulously, “Why exactly are you boiling all those eggs?” I explained that we had done a sign-up for our model seder and most of the items on the list had been covered but not enough families signed up for the hard boiled eggs and I was just going to do it myself.

Rabbi Maderer, an amazing mentor, then gave me some great advice that will always stay with me; she said, “You did not become a rabbi to boil six dozen eggs, you became a rabbi to empower others to boil eggs!”

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Shabbat With Noah Aronson

November 30, 2016

Shabbat with Renowned Composer & Musician, Noah Aronson, on Friday, December 2 @ 6pm
Sponsored by the Miles Jellinek Memorial Fund

“Noah Aronson performs with joy, passion and a rich musicality that connects with audiences, heart-to-heart and soul-to-soul”(Anita Diamant)
We are priviledged to have the extrememly talented composer and vocalist, Noah Aronson, join us for a Shabbat Service.   He will enhance our service by collaborating with Makheilah: The RS Choir and our Youth Choir, and by sharing his music.

Join us for a community dinner following the service (RSVP) and a cafe style concert with Noah Aronson.

Listen to Noah’s beautiful “Eileh Chambdah Libi

 


Sermon for Erev Rosh HaShanah 5777 – Hakarat HaTov (Remembering the Good)

October 5, 2016

I’m sick and tired of all this sin and repentance stuff! I know, it’s only Erev Rosh Hashanah, we haven’t even gotten to Yom Kippur yet. But every year, it’s the same thing:

Al chet shechatanu lifanecha…

For the sins I committed against you…

Ashamnu, bagadnu, gazalnu…

We betray, we steal, we scorn…

Enough already; enough beating ourselves up. We literally pound on our chests as we say these words, flagellating ourselves on the inside and out. I’m done.

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