Month: May 2017

But from My Students More Than from Them All

R. Chanina said: I have learned much from my teachers, and from my colleagues more than from my teachers, but from my students more than from them all. (Talmud Taanit 7b) This year I have had the privilege of being the Education Fellow at Temple Sholom in Cincinnati, Ohio. Under the leadership of Rabbi Miriam Terlinchamp, this congregation is forging…

Making Education a Spiritual Journey

I have found that as I continue down my rabbinical path, the idea of bringing spirituality and Judaism into the lives of my students is more and more important. I have served at Miami University Hillel in Oxford, Ohio and found that Hillel is often one of the only opportunities for students to express their Judaism openly and honestly, in…

What Makes Service Sacred?

I walked into the large meeting tent on the first day of Camp @ the J and was greeted by sea of eager faces. I saw the faces of campers from five years old to fifteen who were excited to start their summer, the faces of high school and college students who were ready for the long and rewarding days…

The Need for the Synagogue Model

We as Reform Jews have for generations called our synagogues “Temples.” This is an ideological statement that confirms our existence as Jews in the modern world — that we are not a community in exile, but that we, the Jewish people, can exist wholly within and as an active part of the larger society which exists today. As Reform Jews,…

We Need Nothing Less Than Passion

Lately, I have been thinking a lot about what should be the single most important attribute in the way we approach our rabbinate. Every time I contemplate this, I come to the same answer: passion. My fellowship with Kulanu, the Reform Community High School, just confirmed the paramount importance of this attribute. During my past year as a fellow, I…

Do Not Throw Me Away in My Old Age

My twelfth-grade English teacher, Mrs. Gazzola, asked my class: “Have you ever looked closely at the hands of the elderly? Have you ever stopped and noticed every line — every mark — every wrinkle?” Think about the ocean of experience the elderly have to share. Think about the diverse array of individuals they have met — the lessons they have…