Posts Tagged: Shabbat

Praying To A Brand New Beat



My teenage son recently attended NFTY Convention in Los Angeles and one of his text messages home told us he wanted to re-string mom’s guitar. Looking at the video from the convention, it is evident why the music was so inspiring. Teens were playing guitar and the Dan Nichols concert looked more exciting than The […]

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What Makes for Great Prayer?



by Rabbi Dan Medwin Last week, I was given a wonderfully challenging task as the CCAR rabbinic staff member at the NFTY Convention:  Take fifty participants from the Youth Engagement Conference and a two-hour prayer lab session, and plan multiple services for about 900 NFTY Convention participants.  While seemingly impossible, I jumped at the opportunity.   […]

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One Hundred Jewish Youth Professionals Walk Into a Church…



by Barb Shimansky, MSW I knew going into the Youth Engagement Conference that our Sunday morning trip to the First African Methodist Episcopal (FAME) Church would be a highlight of the weekend. Learning how another faith organization engages their youth would surely provide some insight into how we as Jewish professionals can do the same. […]

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A Blizzard Shabbat in the Eye of the Storm



by Rabbi Jeffrey Brown Our temple, in the southern Westchester County suburbs of New York City, first began addressing the implications of the forecasted blizzard (Winter Storm Nemo) during the day on Thursday, February 7th. Our weekend schedule was to have included 8pm Erev Shabbat services on Friday night, a Shabbat morning service and b’naei […]

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Jewish Scouts: Catching the Ruach



Scouting has been in the news lately as the Boy Scouts of America reconsider a longtime ban on gay scouts and leaders. A recent New York Times article describes in detail the discussions and opinions on this decision from various national leadership, and the Huffington Post reports that Boys Scouts of America is delaying a […]

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The Total Shabbat Experience



Keeping the temple calendar up-to-date is like trying to change the tires on a moving car. On Friday, January 11, it seemed that the calendar was moving at lightning speed and running behind it with a marker trying to add more events was our temple administrator. On our calendar, Tot Shabbat is on the second […]

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Honoring the Fallen



In 1998, when my children were 11, Saving Private Ryan was released. At the time, my boys were too young to see such a difficult movie, but I watched it on video with them a few years later. I wanted to emphasize that their freedom had been bought with many lives and that each of […]

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Newtown: The Selma of Our Generation



by Harold S. Geller Just a week after the unspeakable mass shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School, I traveled to Newtown, CT, to help organize a musical evening of remembrance and healing in support of the community. This event took place at Congregation Adath Israel, Newtown’s Conservative synagogue, and featured artists and cantors from throughout […]

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Havdalah: Transition, Separation, and Memory



By Liz Piper-Goldberg Quick! It’s Tuesday! If you act now, there’s still time to participate in the beautiful ritual of Havdalah, the ceremony marking the end of Shabbat. According to Jewish tradition, the Havdalah service may be recited through the following Tuesday. Nevertheless, Havdalah is most often observed on Saturday evening, marking the end of the […]

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Shabbat is a Time to Unplug



Shabbat is a time to unplug. Otherwise, there will be no Shabbat. Many, many Reform Jews have had no Shabbat for a very long time. Even when we want to be attentive to the holy, we can’t seem to do it. In our sophisticated, highly educated community, the pace of our lives has long been […]

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Unplugging, Relaxing, and Beating Boredom



by Tanya Schevitz Observing Shabbat was not something Sabbath Manifesto creator Dan Rollman grew up with and he wasn’t really interested in doing it in his adult life – until a few years ago, when he attended a weekend retreat to talk about making Jewish traditions and rituals relevant to a new generation. As the […]

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GA Address: “We Are Not the Same, and That is Our Strength”



Editor’s note: This is the as-prepared text of Rabbi Jacobs’ closing plenary address this afternoon at Jewish Federation of North America’s General Assembly. You can also watch his address below, courtesy of JLTV.com; he starts about two thirds of the way through the video. It’s too simple to think of the world as beginning with […]

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Chance Encounters on Shabbat



Shabbat is a special time for me. It begins around 4:00 on a Friday afternoon, when I retreat to a Starbucks for an hour or two of study and Jewish writing. And then it’s off to temple for the Friday night service, and Shabbat dinner at home. On Shabbat morning, my Rabbi and I take […]

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What Are Your Favorite Shabbat Memories?



In “Shabbat Home Ritual,” originally published in Ten Minutes of Torah, rabbinical student Sarah Fishman writes of her family’s Shabbat traditions, including nerot, lighting the candles, saying kaddish, the blessing over the candles, and eating braided challah. “As life’s daily commotions permeate our homes,” Fishman writes, “home-based Shabbat rituals become increasingly valuable. This morning, we […]

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