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News from Reconstructing Judaism and our Affiliates

 

You can find a list of our public positions and endorsements here.

Reconstructionist News

 

News from Reconstructing Judaism and our Affiliates

 

You can find a list of our public positions and endorsements here.

Reconstructionist News - Shavuot
May 28, 2020

The Reconstructionist movement’s Shavuot All Night Learning is a Tikkun Leyl Shavuot (an all-night study of Torah in its broadest sense.) It will bring together teachers, performers, learners, students, creatives and seekers across the globe into each other’s homes to celebrate the holiday.

Reconstructionist News
May 21, 2020

Recontructing Judaism and the Reconstructionist Rabbinical Association are signatories to the following appeal from J-Link, an international network of progressive Jewish organizations from
Israel, the United States, Canada, Europe, Latin America, South Africa, and Australia.

Reconstructionist News - Ethics and Values
May 21, 2020

The Center for Jewish Ethics, affiliated with the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College, sponsors an annual essay contest to encourage innovative thinking on contemporary Jewish ethics. This year's Whizin Prize has been awarded to an essay by Daniel Mackler, titled “Phenomenology of Hiyuv Out of the Sources of Ethics: Joseph Soloveitchik and Mara Benjamin." The essay is a scholarly exploration of the religious experience of obligation, bringing together a traditional and a feminist perspective.  

Reconstructionist News - Values-Based Decision Making
May 7, 2020

In its unsigned editorial on May 5, "The False Choice Between Safety and the Economy", The New York Jewish Week points to the "Reopening Our Institutions" document produced by Reconstructing Judaism and the Reconstructionist Rabbinical Association. The editorial highlights the Reconstructionist movement's values-based approach to questions pertaining to reopening religious institutions, and championed our movement's focus on pikuakh nefesh (saving lives) above all other concerns.

Reconstructionist News - Spirituality
March 13, 2020

In this time of mounting uncertainty, in which the COVID-19 coronavirus is disrupting normal life and bringing it to a near-standstill,  we offer you a Virtual Shabbat Box. This Shabbat Box doesn’t contain challah or candles, but rather essays, meditations and other resources for your senses that you can download and digest for Shabbat.

Reconstructionist News - Israel
February 21, 2020

Rabbi Donna Kirshbaum has never been one to shy away from a challenge. She has operated a dairy farm in the Missouri Ozarks, eked out a living as a classical cellist, enrolled in the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College in her 50s and started a new life in Israel in her 60s. Now a member of Israel’s largest grassroots movement, she is pursuing a goal that’s eluded the world for a century: a negotiated political settlement between the Israelis and Palestinians.

Reconstructionist News - Pursuing Justice
February 20, 2020

Reconstructing Judaism's 2020 New York Day of Learning: Jewish Response to Homelessness, combined deep learning and practical action to help those among us who are homeless.

Reconstructionist News
February 10, 2020

The newest Reconstructionist community in Europe is Jüdische Gemeinde Michelsberg (Jewish Community of Michelsberg). It is located in Wiesbaden, the capital city of the State of Hesse, Germany. Expect to hear more about Jüdische Gemeinde Michelsberg and our other new communities in the coming months.

Reconstructionist News - Inclusion
January 28, 2020

The Jewish Women’s Archive (JWA) this month expanded its online exhibit “Women Rabbis,” which highlights nearly a dozen Reconstructionist clergy as well as the history of the movement. 

Reconstructionist News - Environment
January 27, 2020

Tara Saltzman, director of lifelong learning at Congregation Beth Evergreen in Denver, reflects on the ups and downs her congregation has experienced on the road to becoming more environmentally friendly.

Reconstructionist News - Movement Activities
January 27, 2020

Judaism teaches that seven years is a full cycle, and the current status of Reconstructing Judaism bears this out. Over the last seven years since the merger, and in the six years of my presidency, we have been transformed and are acting more and more every day as an integrated organization whose staff members work collaboratively towards shared goals.

Reconstructionist News - Movement Activities
December 3, 2019

We’re beyond excited to share with you that our new home for Havaya Arts is Scripps College in Claremont, Calif.!

Reconstructionist News - Movement Activities
October 29, 2019

Shalom Bayit of Bend Oregon is a new affiliate of Reconstructing Judaism. Their story is one of an eclectic, big-tent congregation with a spiritual and informal approach. Members have built a meaningful Jewish community in a city with virtually no history of Jewish life and where nearly everyone is a transplant.

Reconstructionist News
October 28, 2019

Reconstructionist Congregation Dor Hadash has responded to the antisemitic, anti-immigrant attack last year by doubling down on its commitment to help refugees, immigrants and asylum seekers. “We who are still alive have an obligation to honor the memory of those who are no longer with us by doing acts of loving kindness, doing socially conscious things to make the world a better place. That’s how Dor Hadash operates,” said Dan Leger, the Dor Hadash member injured in the shooting. “We pray with our feet, we pray with our votes,” he continued. “We might open a prayer book once in a while — some of us might do it more often than others — but we are an acutely socially responsible group of people who feels that the way we honor being Jewish and being connected with the Divine is by actively trying to make the world a safer, better, more wholesome place to live in.”

Reconstructionist News
October 23, 2019

This 13-minute piece from 60 Minutes is among the most moving and informative pieces of journalism on the horrific Pittsburgh shooting. It captures the scope of the human tragedy, as well as the inspirational manner in which the greater Pittsburgh community and people of other faiths have rallied behind the city's Jewish community. It also explores the nuanced debate over how best to respond to the attack, and heavily features members of the Reconstructionist affiliate, Congregation Dor Hadash.

Reconstructionist News - Music
October 7, 2019

Reconstructionist Jews are creating beautiful music. In this video, watch and listen to some of the musical highlights from our 2018 Convention and learn about Kolot Zimrah, a new online community where Reconstructionist musicians share their latest creations with the world.

Reconstructionist News - Movement Activities
September 3, 2019

Reconstructing Judaism's support of entrepreneurship gives rabbinical students and recent graduates the funding, supervision and mentorship to turn ideas into reality. “For me, the big story is that Jews remain seekers of meaning and community. What our Auerbach grants do is create new portals for Jewish community and meaning,” said Cyd Weissman, Reconstructing Judaism’s vice president for Innovation and Impact.

Reconstructionist News - Reconstructionism
July 31, 2019

A Year With Mordecai Kaplan: Wisdom on the Weekly Torah Portion by Rabbi Steven Carr Reuben, Ph.D. is a deeply rooted and boldly relevant Torah commentary. For each week's reading, Rabbi Reuben weaves together traditional commentary, a nugget of Mordecai Kaplan's thought, and a vivid personal insight that illuminates the connection between the two. This powerful and accessible work invites us to engage with Torah, Kaplan and contemporary human experience in ways that are nourishing, optimistic and inspiring.

Reconstructionist News - Israel
July 26, 2019

These demagogues sow fear and stoke racial tension. They promote an exclusivist, chauvinist white nationalism. But they will not win. Jewish history teaches us that tyranny cannot sustain itself. From Pharaoh to the Roman Emperors to the monarchs who expelled us from multiple parts of Europe, Jews have outlasted the tyrants who have sought our destruction. And we American Jews know that the only way for the Israel-America friendship to survive — and not be tossed out along with these demagogues — is to center our democratic values.

Reconstructionist News - Pursuing Justice
July 15, 2019

Rooted in the Jewish textual tradition and lived experience, Reconstructionist communities are aiding immigrants, refugees and asylum seekers through direct service, education and advocacy.

Reconstructionist News - Israel
June 24, 2019

Today, ten leading organizations representing Americans who are committed to pursuing democracy, equality and peace in Israel announced the launch of the Progressive Israel Network. The new coalition will provide a strong, unified voice in support of its members’ common goals: democracy and equal rights, religious freedom and pluralism, and a two-state solution that would secure a peaceful future for Israel and end the 52-year-long occupation.

Reconstructionist News - Ethics and Values
June 20, 2019

In its annual content, the Center for Jewish Ethics has recognized two essays that together demonstrate the vitality and breadth of the field of Jewish ethics: one on sexual ethics, the other on Kant's influence on modern Jewish ethical thought.

Reconstructionist News - Pursuing Justice
April 25, 2019

Rabbi Elliott Tepperman's vision of a synagogue: a community that sustains itself through prayer and Torah, while also "trying to be a powerful force for making change in the world.”

Reconstructionist News - Ethics and Values
April 2, 2019

The Center for Jewish Ethics' conference in March 2019  highlighted voices from across the Jewish world, yet the proceedings embodied the Reconstructionist approach to conversation. Presenters and attendees examined issues from many sides, exchanging perspectives with deep respect for one another and Jewish tradition.

Reconstructionist News
March 5, 2019

Rabbi Sandra Lawson, ’18, who serves as associate chaplain for Jewish life and Jewish educator at Elon University in North Carolina, was recently featured in an in-depth video segment produced by Elon News Network, the university’s student-run organization.

Reconstructionist News - Ethics and Values
February 1, 2019

What are the key ethical questions facing Jews and Jewish communities today? How can scholars, rabbis and communal leaders discuss ethics in a way that impacts how people behave in the real world?  “Jewish Values & the Ethical Now: A Conference in Celebration of Rabbi David A. Teutsch, Ph.D” will explore these questions on March 10-11, 2019 in Philadelphia.

Reconstructionist News
February 1, 2019

Through Evolve, we we provide deep, thoughtful, challenging materials to rabbis, professionals and educated laypeople, and provide forums for discussing and reflecting on these materials with respect.

Reconstructionist News - Movement Activities
November 20, 2018

Several dispatches from the November 2018 Reconstructing Judaism conference: prayer, learning, and action.

Reconstructionist News
November 7, 2018

Reconstructionist congregation Dor Hadash was one of the groups in the crosshairs of the horrific Pittsburgh shooting attack. We recount the unique qualities of this vibrant community, the trauma they've undergone, and the values they continue to uphold.  

Reconstructionist News
November 7, 2018

A selection of articles, essays and statements on the tragic events in Pittsburgh. 

Reconstructionist News
October 26, 2018

What ideas are Jewish communities exploring to reach unengaged and under-engaged populations in new ways and spaces? What conversations are taking place about how to fund such ideas? How can communities gain the confidence to try, and possibly fail, in order to implement the next idea? These questions will be front-and-center during the closing program of “Rooted and Relevant: Reconstructing Judaism in 2018,” the Reconstructionist movement’s first convention in nearly a decade.

Reconstructionist News
September 26, 2018

Rabbi Sandy Eisenberg Sasso, RRC ’74, knows what it means to make history. Her newest children’s book, Regina Persisted: An Untold Story, reclaims a story lost to history. The book also provides adults and children a portrait of a strong woman driven by her love of Judaism.

Reconstructionist News - Reconstructionism
September 4, 2018

Reconstructing Judaism has just rolled out Evolve: Groundbreaking Jewish Conversations with the intention of hosting difficult, groundbreaking conversations that are nevertheless mutually respectful and supportive. We invite you to visit Evolve and to join the conversations!

Reconstructionist News - Ethics and Values
August 6, 2018

As we continue to develop new ways to build community across time and distance, we must also continue to find ways to “be there” for one another.

Reconstructionist News - Pursuing Justice
July 2, 2018

The RRA recently became a partner of the Poor People’s Campaign (PPC). In the last two weeks the PPC has coordinated rallies and acts of civil disobedience in over 30 state capitals, including the participation of over 15 RRA members. 

Reconstructionist News - Movement Activities
July 2, 2018

Belonging connects us to something larger than our own individual experience. I belong to the Jewish people because claiming this connection enters me into a millennia-old conversation and joins me into community both vertical—all those who came before me and all those who follow—and horizontal—the Jews of today, in all our diversity.

Reconstructionist News - Disabilities and Inclusion
June 28, 2018

With a welcoming ethos and a drive to break down barriers, Reconstructionist congregations and havurot have been part of a revolution that’s taken place in the public awareness of the importance of disability inclusion and related services.

Reconstructionist News - Movement Activities
June 1, 2018

The Aviv Revolving Loan Fund is one way that Reconstructing Judaism is marshaling its resources to strengthen affiliated communities and foster innovation.

Reconstructionist News - Israel
April 23, 2018

When we began our Israel journey together in Tel Aviv on March 7th, we were 25 people representing 11 Reconstructionist communities who travelled there on the promise to go places and meet people that even veteran Israel travelers hadn’t visited or met. And on that promise, the Reconstructing Judaism Israel Mission Trip delivered.

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