RJ Blog

L’hitraot, for Now...

After four years of bringing you a new episode nearly every week, this podcast is taking a little break. Listen to this episode to learn more about our hiatus and where to find us in the meantime.

The Antidote to Kvetching

Most of us today aren’t tasked with wandering through the desert, like the ancient Israelites were... but we still find plenty to kvetch about! What if, instead of focusing on small annoyances, we turned to community-building and togetherness? This episode first aired in May 2018.

URJ Youth

“A Jar in a Museum”

“A Jar in a Museum”

D'Var Torah By: Jonathan K. Crane

jemerman January 24, 2023
While the Israelites continued their meandering through the Sinai wilderness, they grumbled to Moses and Aaron about the lack of tasty and nutritious food. God promised to provide them with heavenly fare-pheasant and manna-that they could consume until sated.

Giving What’s Due

Giving What’s Due

D'Var Torah By: Jonathan K. Crane

jemerman January 17, 2023
Belinda Sutton stood before the court while her petition was read aloud. It described how she had been violently removed from her home, taken on a harrowing journey across land and sea, and forced to work in deplorable circumstances for nearly 50 years. However novel Belinda's effort may have been at the time, the call to be given what she was due was not new. Consider this week's parashah.

On the Other Hand

Reform Jewish Leaders Respond to Israel’s Proposed Judicial Reforms

The Union for Reform Judaism condemns the recent judicial reforms proposed by Justice Minister Yariv Levin.

Reform Movement Leaders Celebrate Passage of the Respect for Marriage Act

"We celebrate the bipartisan Senate passage of the Respect for Marriage Act, a historic bill that protects marriage equality for same-sex and interracial couples."

RJ Blog Social Justice

Remembrance and Beyond: International Holocaust Remembrance Day

Remembrance and Beyond: International Holocaust Remembrance Day rj-admin-new January 27, 2023

What does it mean to remember? It is to live in more than one world, to prevent the past from fading, and to call upon the future to illuminate it.

Thinking Outside the (Tzedek) Boxes

Thinking Outside the (Tzedek) Boxes jemerman January 26, 2023

A camel carrying a load. A golden pair of balanced scales. An open heart and an open mind. These are three of more than two dozen artists' visions of justice and righteousness featured in the invitational exhibition, "Tzedek Boxes: Justice Shall You Pursue."

RJ Blog Jewish Life

D.C. Day of Action

D.C. Day of Action

The D.C. Day of Action is a peak moment in the Reform Movement’s 2023 Justice Campaign. This campaign aims to build power in solidarity while creating a world of peace and wholeness (shalom), justice and equity (tzedek), and belonging and joy (shayachut and simcha). We will gather in Washington, D.C. for two days to hear from keynote speakers including elected officials and leaders from partner organizations. We will also spend time in smaller cohorts, building community across our networks. The Day of Action will culminate in lobby meetings on Capitol Hill, during which we will advocate for vital policy change.
sdolgov January 5, 2023

Supporting Survivors of Domestic Violence in the Jewish Community

Supporting Survivors of Domestic Violence in the Jewish Community jemerman October 28, 2022

October is Domestic Violence Awareness Month (DVAM) in the U.S. This year, the National Network to End Domestic Violence (NNEDV) chose the theme of #Every1KnowsSome1 to highlight how common domestic violence is. Each of us may (or likely) knows someone, either in our Jewish community or our secular communities, who has been impacted by or is a survivor of domestic violence.

RJ Blog Practice

Take a Tour of the Torah!

Take a Tour of the Torah! jemerman October 4, 2022

Torah usually refers to the Pentateuch, the first five books of the Hebrew Bible - Genesis, Exodus, Leviticus, Numbers, and Deuteronomy. Running through these stories is the unique lens through which the Jewish people would come to view their world and their God.

Weaving Together Formal and Lived Jewish Education

Weaving Together Formal and Lived Jewish Education jemerman August 16, 2022

I'm a self-proclaimed book worm. Since I could read, my default setting has been to research anything new at the library before implementing it. However, adulthood has taught me that some of the best lessons are learned after acting and truly living, which is why Rabbi Yanklowitz's perspective so resonates with me. Even so, I always start new adventures by studying.

RJ Blog Learning

Tu BiShvat - Nature’s Invitation to Grow

Tu BiShvat - Nature’s Invitation to Grow jemerman January 25, 2023

Tu BiShvat, the Jewish New Year of the Trees, is upon us. While it may not be the most celebrated new year in the Jewish tradition, there is a simple power to the holiday - the call for us to become attuned to nature and learn what it can teach us about personal growth.

New Year, Same Me: Finding the Diamond Within

New Year, Same Me: Finding the Diamond Within jemerman December 15, 2022

As Jews, we have the opportunity to celebrate the New Year not once, but several times. The Jewish year has four different New Year celebrations: Rosh HaShanah, Passover, Tu BiShvat, and Elul. Many Jews also celebrate the Gregorian New Year in January. That means we get five opportunities every year to do an accounting of our soul (cheshbon hanefesh) and make resolutions for growth and betterment.

RJ Blog Jewish Holidays

Seeking Jewish Values Amidst Broken Glass

Seeking Jewish Values Amidst Broken Glass jemerman January 18, 2023

Nearly two months ago, our Just Zionism group landed in Israel as the election to cement a far-right government in the Knesset was taking effect. When we landed, I had a surface-level understanding of Israeli politics but was about to get a crash course on the election's implications for the activists who were heartbroken by the results.

Israel is Messy and I Love It

Israel is Messy and I Love It jemerman December 20, 2022

On November 2, 2022, I landed at Ben Gurion Airport for the first time. Filled with many emotions, this being my first trip to Israel, I decided to keep an open mind as I joined twelve young adult leaders on a journey to learn more about Israel, Zionism, and why Jews in the Diaspora, especially in the United States, should be engaged.

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