As Hard as Splitting the Red Sea

Posted on April 21, 2022

In a d’var Torah for the 7th day of Pesach, my colleague and friend Rabbi Michael Marmur recalls a favorite midrash — one that I like to share at weddings: A wealthy Roman woman once asked R. Yosi ben Halafta, “How many days did it take God to create the world?” “Six days,” he answered. Continue Reading »

Shabbat Message: Why I am Proud to Be a Zionist

Posted on April 16, 2021

On Israel’s 73rd Birthday: Yesterday, Israel turned 73 years young. I say “young” because in the grand scheme of history, especially Jewish history, 73 years is a relatively short span. I also say “young” because I see in Israel a youthful spirit and dynamism that is vital and exciting. And I say “young” because Israel Continue Reading »

Shoah U’gevurah – Holocaust and Heroism

Posted on April 21, 2020

Today is Yom HaShoah, the day established by the Knesset in April 1951 to be the official day of Holocaust remembrance for Israel and the Jewish people. In 1953 the Knesset appropriately renamed this day yom hashoah v’hag’vura, the Day of Holocaust and Heroism. The date, the 27th of Nisan, was chosen for its proximity to the date of Continue Reading »

Rediscovering My Jewish Self In Israel

Posted on April 7, 2020

Fate has just handed you the trip of a lifetime to a place you’ve always wanted to see, but didn’t think would ever happen, and in a way that most visitors would never experience. You tell family and friends, hoping they’ll share your happiness. In most cases, they do. But then the inevitable questions come Continue Reading »

Israeli Politics: 3 Elections, 11 months

Posted on April 7, 2020

It’s a confusing time in Israeli politics. On March 2, 2020, Israel had its third election since last April. It’s especially confusing to those of us in the United States when we hear things like, “They can’t form a government!” What does that even mean?! Our American news agencies try to explain it by using Continue Reading »

The Results Are In: World Zionist Congress Elections

Posted on April 7, 2020

From January 21 through March 11, 2020, Temple Beth-El and our Reform Movement campaigned in the World Zionist Congress Election. This was the one democratic opportunity we had to have our Reform voices heard in Israel and throughout the world, and to work to implement the values we hold dear — pluralism, equality, freedom, and Continue Reading »

We Need You to Be a Shamash!

Posted on January 6, 2020

Have you ever wondered why we use a shamash to light the candles on the chanukiah? We could just as easily use the same match to light all of the lights each night, so why do we need a shamash? Just think of all the candles we could save!  We need the shamash because it Continue Reading »

The World Zionist Congress Elections 2020

Posted on January 6, 2020

When you enter the Temple Beth-El lobby, you will see a large poster that asks, “Why Vote?” You may wonder which election is approaching. The New Jersey primaries do not occur until June. The presidential election is in November. The World Zionist Congress (WZC) elections start on January 21, 2020. The WZC is a representative Continue Reading »

Why We Need to Support ARZA and Vote in the Zionist Elections

Posted on November 5, 2019

On Yom Kippur, I urged us to remember that we Jews are family. We are bound to one another by history and destiny, so what happens to any one of us should matter to each and every one of us. At the same time, we are also extremely diverse. We are Reform and Ultra-Orthodox, religious 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 »