Rabbi Julie Zupan

Rabbi Julie Zupan (she/her) is the Director of Jewish Engagement and Learning for Congregational Engagement and Leadership Experiences at the Union for Reform Judaism, where her work focuses on supporting newcomers to Judaism and Jewish community. She was ordained by the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion and is a member of Temple Sinai of Sharon, MA.

Lessons from Charoset During a Year of Pandemic

Rabbi Julie Zupan
March 10, 2021
As we enjoy this year’s sweet charoset, let us cherish and express our gratitude for the essential workers, medical professionals, everyday heroes, and others who provided the sweetness that helped temper the bitters we tasted this year.

What is the Jewish expression to refer to someone who has died?

Rabbi Julie Zupan
In Judaism, when someone has died, it is customary to add the expression, “May their memory be for a blessing” after mentioning the deceased by name. In Hebrew, the expression is “zichrona livracha” (feminine), “zichrono livracha” (masculine), or “zichronam livracha” (plural or gender-neutral) and is typically abbreviated as z”l when...

What is the Jewish symbolism of the pomegranate?

Rabbi Julie Zupan
The pomegranate is one of the Seven Species mentioned in the Hebrew Bible as being native to the Land of Israel. The seeds of the pomegranate symbolize the 613 mitzvot (sacred obligations) attributed to the Torah (the first five books of the Hebrew Bible), which form the foundation of traditional...