The Rabbi's Blog

September 2014

Saturday, September 6, 2014
Posted By: Jennifer Gordon

Dear Friends, As we prepare for the High Holidays, I want to share with you a thought-provoking teaching from the Talmud I learned from my friend and teacher Rabbi Mishael Zion. In the school of Rabbi Ishmael it was taught: It can be likened to a shopkeeper selling [foul smelling] kerosene oil and [wonderfully aromatic] […]

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August 2014

Wednesday, July 30, 2014
Posted By: Jennifer Gordon

In trying to think how to talk about the conflict in Israel and Gaza with you, I read a beautiful dvar Torah written by my friend Rabbi Emma Kippley-Ogman.  I thank her for her insights and invitation to compassion, which influence all I share here. Dear Friends, In Jewish ritual time, we find ourselves in […]

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July 2014

Wednesday, July 2, 2014
Posted By: Jennifer Gordon

The Power of Our Words This week is the one-year anniversary of my marriage to Jeremy and, besides counting my blessings, the occasion has gotten me to think once again about the place of vows and commitments within Judaism. While there’s a great deal to the subject, one generalization is that our tradition has always […]

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June 2014

Posted By: Jennifer Gordon

Let Them Eat Cake. Cheesecake, That Is…. Friends, This week, Jews around the world celebrate the holiday of Shavuot, which marks the giving of the Torah at Mt. Sinai. Although the giving of the Torah is supposed to have happened 3300 years ago, our tradition invites us to imagine that we receive Torah again each […]

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May 2014

Monday, May 12, 2014
Posted By: Jennifer Gordon

Poetry for Spring Dear Friends, Spring has finally sprung, and with the buds, my love for poetry is again sprouting forth. Looking out at my window at a warm and sunny morning, I want to share a poem with you about a day like today, and then invite some reflection on it. The poem comes […]

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April 2014

Monday, April 7, 2014
Posted By: Jennifer Gordon

A Passover Story: Shmerl the Tailor Dear Friends, Passover is approaching, and with it comes a Jewish season of storytelling. On Passover, we are invited to retell the ancient story of the Israelites Exodus from Egypt, and also to tell stories of struggle and liberation in our own lives and world. This month, I want […]

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March 2014

Monday, March 10, 2014
Posted By: Jennifer Gordon

In Jewish time, we are headed for Purim, the celebration of the Jews’ triumph more than twenty-three hundred years ago over the king of Persia’s genocidal decree. Purim invites us to focus on identity. In the story, we read of Queen Vashti’s refusal to dance naked before the King and his friends, asserting her identity […]

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February 2014

Sunday, February 2, 2014
Posted By: Jennifer Gordon

This is an updated version of my previous newsletter article.  I realized that I did not give enough credit for these ideas to my teacher and rabbi Shai Held, who continues to inspire me with his wisdom and Torah.   Dear friends, This past weekend, I celebrated Martin Luther King Day, and read the inspired […]

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January 2014

Saturday, January 4, 2014
Posted By: Jennifer Gordon

This New Year’s coincides with the beginning of the book of Exodus in our Torah reading cycle. In the beginning of this fast-moving book, learn of the enslavement of the Israelites to the Egyptian Pharaoh, the birth and miraculous rescue of Moses, and God’s call to Moses at the burning bush. Let’s take a minute […]

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December 2013

Wednesday, December 4, 2013
Posted By: Jennifer Gordon

How Your Chanukah Choices Can Help Save Tigers! Every year, when I ask the 7th graders what issues they are most concerned about in the world, two of the most popular answers are “caring for animals” and “saving the planet.” So, this newsletter article is dedicated to all my current and past 7th graders, who […]

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