Rabbi Alex Weissman aims to train, teach and mentor leaders to deepen their own spiritual paths. His spiritual life, worldview, and love of Jewish texts and traditions were deeply shaped by RRC. Joining the faculty and academic administration was, for him, a dream come true.
As director of the mekhinah (preparation) program, Alex will mentor emerging religious leaders who may be lacking advanced Hebrew skills and Judaic knowledge. By immersing in Hebrew language, Jewish liturgy, texts and practice, students will gain the foundation of knowledge needed to thrive in rabbinic school and beyond. Alex, who completed the mekhinah program himself, brings a patient and relational approach, knowing how challenging and rewarding the material can be.
In his dual role as director of cultural and spiritual life, Alex works with college leadership, faculty and students to reimagine the RRC’s communal experience in the wake of disruptions brought about by COVID-19, with students learning in-person and remotely at various times. More than just a perk, RRC’s rich and nurturing community has longed proved an integral part of rabbinic formation, modeling the kind of community that rabbis can help strengthen and create.
Prior to joining RRC, he served as spiritual leader of Congregation Agudas Achim in Attleboro, Mass.; and director of organizing for T’ruah: The Rabbinic Call for Human Rights. Prior to that, Alex served as the senior Jewish educator at Brown RISD Hillel for three years. He currently serves on the Ethics Committee of the Reconstructionist Rabbinical Association and on the advisory boards of Evolve: Groundbreaking Jewish Conversations, and the Inside Out Wisdom and Action Project.
He was ordained by the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College (RRC) in 2017, where he fell in love with Talmud study and served a range of communities, including Congregation Beit Simchat Torah in New York City; Temple Shalom of Newton, Mass; Avodah; and Jewish Family & Children’s Services of Greater Philadelphia as a hospice chaplain. He completed a unit of Clinical Pastoral Education at Hebrew SeniorLife. During his time at RRC, he received a Tikkun Olam award; the Ann W. Pinkenson Prize in Rabbinic Literature and Civilization; and the Lillian Fern Award for service to the community for his work as the president of the Reconstructionist Student Association.
Prior to rabbinical school, he worked as a community organizer.
Selected Courses Taught:
Mekhinah Mishnah and Siddur: An introduction to rabbinic Hebrew and two of its textual genres.
Queer Delicacy: An Ancient Approach to Halakhah, Evolve: Groundbreaking Jewish Conversations
Halleluyah, Evolve: Groundbreaking Jewish Conversations
“It Is Not Good for the Human to Be Alone”: Community Organizing as Spiritual Practice, Evolve: Groundbreaking Jewish Conversations
“Torah Joe’s: A Different Kind of Relationship,” eJewishPhilanthropy
Grieving Our Losses—and Envisioning the Next Chapter of Jewish Life, The Jewish Voice
Lessons on Gender Acceptance from the Talmud and Torah, The Jewish Voice
God Is the Space Between Us, Evolve: Groundbreaking Jewish Conversations
Selected Talks and Podcasts
Hashivenu, a podcast about Jewish teachings on resilience
“Ba’asher Hu Sham: No Day But Today,” High Holiday Video Teaching for the Reconstructionist Movement