Blog

Jewels of Elul — #15: “What If?”

Posted on August 26, 2018

What If? by Rabbi David Wolpe Life is composed of finite facts and infinite possibilities. Part of the art of living is to take the possibilities and elevate those which enhance our lives, improve our world and grow our souls…. In the Talmud, one Rabbi has a dream about an upside-down world. By stretching our Continue Reading »

Israel @ 70 – A Dream in Progress

Posted on May 7, 2018

“When God returns the exiles to Zion, we will be like dreamers.” – Psalm 126 The State of Israel is the fulfillment of a dream. As we sing in Hatikvah, the modern return to Zion was a hope — a dream of 2,000 years! Today, on Israel’s 70th birthday, it still seems like a miracle Continue Reading »

The Future’s So Bright, We’ve Got to Wear Shades

Posted on May 7, 2018

Years ago, when Pam and I first joined a Reform congregation, I noticed that the walls of the synagogue were adorned with pictures of young women and men in robes, usually accompanied by the rabbi and cantor. A small engraved plaque identified each photograph as the “Confirmation Class” of some year. The photos stretched back Continue Reading »

Shavuot: Celebrating the Gift of Torah

Posted on May 4, 2018

First, a little Hebrew. The three root letters of shavu’ot are shin-bet-ayin — the same root that yields the word sheva’, “seven, sevenfold, seven times.” (In the language of the Bible, sheva’ can also mean the less specific “many times.”) Sheva’ appears frequently in Jewish tradition. The sheva b’rachot, “seven blessings,” are recited at a Continue Reading »

Teen Activists of TBE

Posted on May 2, 2018

Every movement has a flashpoint that helps create a new generation of activists. Count TBE’s Erica Milgram, 18, and Mitchell Friedman, 17, among the young people across New Jersey and the country who say  they will no longer stay silent on issues impacting their generation and the world. Both say they were called to action Continue Reading »

Meet the Steinfelds

Posted on May 1, 2018

If you attended Temple Beth-El’s recent 65th anniversary gala, you may have sampled the delicious tray of chocolate 65s that added an extra note of sweetness to the festivities. Those tasty morsels were compliments of Susan Steinfeld, who, with her husband Ed, is one of our newest congregants. Susan and Ed moved to Somerset Run Continue Reading »

A Letter to My Grandchildren

Posted on May 1, 2018

To my future grandchildren, I don’t know you yet. You haven’t been born or conceived; your mothers aren’t even in serious relationships! Yet I think of you. I wonder what you will know of me, whether we will share our holidays, whether you will think of yourself as Jewish. I deeply hope so. There’s a Continue Reading »

Making Strides for Religious Understanding in the Holy Land

Posted on March 12, 2018

Pastor Todd Buurstra, religious leader of the North Branch Reformed Church, and I have been making strides together for some time now. Some have been in the area of advocacy, where we have been strident in our call for justice and compassion for the weak and vulnerable among us: the stranger, our neighbors who are Continue Reading »

Welcoming Elijah

Posted on March 7, 2018

As we all know, no Seder is complete without a communal expression of our hope for a visit from Elijah the prophet, who signals the time when “the hearts of parents will be turned towards their children, and the hearts of children will be turned towards their parents” (Micah 3:24). Elijah heralds the coming of Continue Reading »

65 Years of Excellence

Posted on March 7, 2018

The year 1953 was an interesting and historic year. In Washington, Dwight D. Eisenhower was inaugurated as president, and Earl Warren was sworn in as chief justice of the Supreme Court. The Korean conflict came to an end. The first Chevrolet Corvette rolled off the assembly line and the first issue of Playboy hit the Continue Reading »