Posts Tagged: Biennial 2009

Since Last Biennial



by Rabbi Daniel Freelander Since we last gathered for a Biennial convention two years ago in Toronto, the Union for Reform Judaism has been hard at work strengthening Reform Judaism in North America. We have had two interesting years of growth, of challenges and excitement with an eye to the future.

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A New Movement for Child Nutrition and Healthy Eating



In the twentieth and twenty-first centuries, it’s been common practice for the First Lady to champion a cause: Lady Bird Johnson was a staunch environmentalist. Barbara Bush was a strong advocate for family literacy. Current Secretary of State Hillary Clinton took on health care while her husband was in Office. Today, Michelle Obama unveiled her […]

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Food Trends vs. Food Culture



by dcc Chow, a magazine of Food, Drink and Fun, published a list of major food trends that were taking place in 1999 and those that are taking place today. Granted I was not such an independent foodie at the time: I never really dug Asian fusion, but I did have my fair share of […]

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Food, Ethical Food!



by Rachel CohenLegislative Assistant, RAC(Originally published on The Jew and the Carrot) As Jews, we have always cared about the food that we eat. Some of us choose to embrace traditional notions of kashrut – and many of us do not – but we can all agree that our food, and how we get it, […]

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Here, O Israel, We Take Our Stand – or Don’t We?



by Larry Kaufman As always at Biennial, Shabbat worship was exuberant and inspiring. The most startling event of the services came when Rabbi David Stern, who led our worship on Shabbat morning, asked the congregation to be seated after the Barchu, and then discussed the long-standing Reform practice of standing for the Shma – a […]

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Biennial Photo Contest: Congratulations to the Winners!



Our contest yielded some fantastic entries: photos that truly captured the spirit and excitement of the Biennial and the beautiful city of Toronto.  After sorting through over 400 entries, our web team and staff from URJ Books & Music voted… and here are the winners! A big THANK YOU to everyone who participated and shared their images. Grand […]

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Reflections on a Very Green Biennial



by Isaac NuellConference Planner, RAC Wow – it’s hard to believe Biennial is already over! After all the planning, conference calls, and traveling, we spent an incredible weekend singing, praying, learning and growing with more than 3,000 other leaders of the Reform Movement. There were so many things we will remember from Biennial – the […]

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The Power of Collective Effervescence at the URJ Biennial



by Sam LehmanLegislative Assistant, RAC Last week, a truly incredible and significant segment of the American Reform Jewish people – more than 3,500 rabbis, lay leaders, administrators, staff, and volunteers – converged on Toronto for the 2009 Union for Reform Judaism Biennial. Speaking as a Reform Jew who grew up in near-ignorance that my community […]

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Where’s the Beef? Not in the URJ’s New Ethical Eating Initiative



Barbara Lerman-Golomb is the Director of Education and Outreach for Hazon and an author, environmental activist and experiential educator. This post originally appeared at The Jew and the Carrot. In his Shabbat morning sermon to 3,500+ members of Reform congregations at the  URJ’s 70th Biennial Convention in Toronto, Rabbi Eric Yoffie, president of the Union for […]

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Faith Line Challenge at the URJ Biennial



This post is reprinted with permission from Heebonics, a division of The Canadian Jewish News (CJN). It was the first time in 30 years the Union of Reform Judaism (URJ) Biennial was held here in Toronto, and Heebonics, as well as The CJN, was there. On Thursday, November 5th, one of the keynote speakers of […]

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Biennial Redux: Make New Friends But Keep the Old



by JanetheWriter(Also published on JanetheWriter Writes) Rather than bore you with details about food and beverage fiascos at the Union’s recent Biennial convention in Toronto, let me tell you about the other side — the hugs, the smiles, the reconnects and the new friends who previously existed only on Facebook and in cyberspace. A few […]

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Honoring Harold Grinspoon & Jewish Camping



If you or your children have ever attended one of the Union for Reform Judaism’s 12 camps (13 this summer, with the opening of 6 Points Sports Academy!), you probably owe a debt of gratitude to philanthropist and real estate entrepreneur Harold Grinspoon, whose support for Jewish education has had a profound impact on countless Jews. […]

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Dr. Ruth’s Sex Ed Homework to Biennial Attendees



by Kate BigamPress Secretary, RAC At her Shabbat study luncheon at last week URJ Biennial in Toronto, noted sex therapist Dr. Ruth Westheimer closed by telling attendees, “Now I want all of you in relationships – don’t pick up someone in the hallway, I’m very old-fashioned – to go to your hotel rooms tonight and […]

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Expanding the Use of Social Media: URJ’s Eric Yoffie Sermonizes on Technology (and food)



by Rabbi Paul Kipnes(Originally posted on Or Am I?) Rabbi Eric Yoffie, President of the Union for Reform Judaism, gave his Shabbat morning sermon at the URJ’s 70th Biennial Convention in Toronto. Read the full text. Just after he delivered it in Toronto, I read the text of his sermon in West Hills, CA (isn’t […]

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