Brit Olam: A Covenant With Our World

Rabbi Eli Freedman delivered this sermon during the Yom Kippur morning services. According to the Torah, who were the first Jews? I heard some Adam and Eves, I heard some Abraham and Sarahs, I think I heard someone say “my grandmother!” The correct answer is Abraham and Sarah, but it...

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Letting Go

Delivered by Rabbi Jill Maderer, Kol Nidre 5780 Simon Wiesenthal, the Holocaust survivor and Nazi hunter, would tell this story. Shortly after Wiesenthal is liberated, a man asks if he can borrow $10.  Week after week, the man comes to say he cannot pay it back. Excuse after excuse. Weeks...

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Tikkun Middot: AKA, What I Learned at Camp

Erev Rosh Hashanahsermon delivered by Rabbi Eli Freedman In his new Netflix movie, Between Two Ferns, Zach Galifianakis asks Paul Rudd if he is a ‘practicing Jew.’ Without missing a beat, Rudd responds, “I’m not a practicing Jew… I perfected it!” Funny, but not true. None of us have perfected...

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We Value Multiple Perspectives on Israel

We all know the old expression, “Two Jews, three opinions!” A cute, funny line, but rooted in a fundamental philosophy that is paramount to our tradition. From our very beginnings, Judaism has been a religion that encourages dialogue and debates l’shem shamayim(for the sake of heaven).Jacob wrestled with a divine...

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Shoftim – Bal Tashchit by Rabbi Eli Freedman

Rabbi Eli Freedman’s sermon from Friday, September 6 Tzedek, Tzedek, Tirdof– Justice, Justice, You Shall Pursue. This week’s Torah portion, Shoftim, literally meaning “judges” is filled with talk of justice. Justice in our judicial system. We read in our Torah, “You shall not judge unfairly: you shall show no partiality;...

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What Does Judaism Say About Reproductive Rights?

By Rabbi Eli Freedman In the spirit of lifting up women’s voices, I want to begin with the words of Rabbi Elaine Zecher of Temple Israel in Boston. She writes, “Women have been wronged.Children have been wronged as well. No one is left untouched in the destructive legislation concerning abortions—especially,...

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Clergy Leadership Beyond Our Walls

by Rabbi Jill Maderer I am so grateful to serve a congregation that cares not only about its immediate needs, but also about the broader Jewish community. All of our clergy work on initiatives beyond our walls. Such work nourishes us in our professional growth, contributes to the greater good...

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