Optimism

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 »

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 »

A History of Temple Beth-El

Posted on March 7, 2018

Before Temple Beth-El Simon Weil was the first Jew in Somerville, arriving in 1864. In 1892, Weil and others organized the Anshe Chesed Cemetery Association which, in 1907, became Congregation Anshe Chesed, an Orthodox synagogue with some 40 members. Between the two World Wars, many Jews focused their activities on Jewish communal organizations outside the Continue Reading »

Seeking Higher Purpose in the New Year

Posted on January 5, 2018

A new secular year has dawned, and, as with all things new, it brings the opportunity to greet it with optimism and thoughtfulness for its possibilities. For some of us, the possibility exists of choosing to do something truly different with our lives in this new year. Most of us, however, will find ourselves carrying Continue Reading »

Sisterhood of Salaam Shalom

Posted on September 1, 2017

Beth Borrus has a bold vision for the future: Jews and Muslims learning about and respecting one another’s cultures, breaking down walls of misinformation and mistrust, building lasting friendships and living in harmony. Promoting such an interfaith concept truly spoke to Beth as she began to learn more about Sisterhood of Salaam Shalom (SoSS), a Continue Reading »

Seeing the Possibilities

Posted on November 1, 2016

It was wonderful to see you during the Holy Days. Many people told me the words I shared on Yom Kippur were inspiring. My remarks are excerpted below. I wish you all a wonderful couple of months with much to be grateful for on Thanksgiving, a bright and joyous Chanukah and a happy and healthy Continue Reading »

What Judaism Means to Me

Posted on November 1, 2016

Every day, my day starts and ends with the words, “Only to do justice, and to love mercy and to walk humbly with your God.” Those are the words on a plaque next to my sink. The plaque was presented to my father Dr. Murray Goldberg, in 1984 by the UJAFederation, and they are the Continue Reading »