This Rosh Hashanah we decided to go live from the Bimah. For the first time we could immerse the congregation in the High Holiday atmosphere with streaming services directly from our Sanctuary.
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As often as politely possible, I hide from this piece. I find as many excuses as I can to say “no thanks” to the Rabbi’s kind and humbling yearly request to sing it – not enough prep time, too much else going on, someone else can do it better (this last one is always true), etc. This year, however, I said yes.
Note: jLab is for blog posts about creative, fun, or interesting Jewish or congregation-related topics. To submit a post, you must be a member of our congregation, and the topic must be Jew-ish, related to our congregation or the wider Jewish community. If you have something to share, please submit it here. Of Task Force […]
Every two years, thousands of Reform Jews from all corners of the world gather at the Union for Reform Judaism’s (URJ) Biennial. Last year between 5,000 to 7,000 people attended the Biennial at the McCormick Place Conference Center in Chicago. If you’ve never been at a meeting with this many Jewish people of all ages, then this is the event to look out for. For me this was a first, and this is my personal lookback report of a few highlights on jLab.
Most portrayals of Jews in fiction are weak. It doesn’t matter if they’re on television, the stage or in print, Jewish characters seem to fall into a few broad classes. Token Jews show up for ethnic diversity. Sometimes, nothing about them seems Jewish other than the mention that they are. Sometimes, they drip Yiddishisms and Jewish steriotypes, but their purpose is to be Jewish, not to convey anything about Jews other than the fact that they’re different.
I went to see Gusti today. The hospice people told Gusti’s daughter “final days.” Gusti looked comfortable when I saw her, quiet and small and breathing well. No IV, no tubes, no oxygen. Just her face, soft and old, and her skin, thin and crinkly. She looked like she could open her eyes at any moment and smile, but she could not hear us and seemed to be starting a trip, an inward trip across an ocean.