What Moved Me in the New Year

I hope your Jewish holidays this year were good. Despite all of the bad news in the world, my holidays were excellent. They ended with the first grade consecration of my oldest grandchild on erev Simchat Torah at Temple Sinai in Brookline, Massachusetts. The rabbi had all of the children present at the service sit […]

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Is the Jewish Community a Mean Girl?

“The organized Jewish community is nothing more than the mean girls from high school.” What?! I think I literally stopped breathing for a moment. Could it be true? I knew this lovely person across from me believed what she was saying. So I wondered, “Could this community that brings me so much joy and comfort […]

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Positive Outlooks Greet the New Year

This post originally appeared on www.edumundcase.com and is reprinted with permission. The discussion about Conservative rabbis officiating for interfaith couples has quieted, other than a terrible piece by one of the Cohen Center’s own researchers, that I blogged about separately. I’d rather focus on the positive responses to intermarriage as the High Holidays approach, and fortunately […]

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Objective Social Science?

This post originally appeared on www.edumundcase.com and is reprinted with permission. Michelle Shain, a researcher at the Cohen Center at Brandeis, has written a very damaging article about the Cohen Center’s game-changing study, Under the Chuppah: Rabbinic Officiation and Intermarriage, about which I’ve said, “The many rabbis who don’t officiate at weddings of interfaith couples because they think […]

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Chicago, My Home

My name is Rabbi Reni Dickman, and I am very excited to be the new IFF/Chicago director. In the past month, I have already met incredibly thoughtful people. I have also begun to expand my knowledge of the Chicago Jewish Community. I am very proud of this community. I grew up here and I am […]

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Resolutions Your Synagogue Can Make This Rosh Hashanah

By Rabbi Robyn Frisch and Rabbi Malka Packer Just like the approach of the secular new year, the approach of Rosh Hashanah, the Jewish new year, is a great time to reflect on the past year and to make resolutions about how you can be better in the year ahead. (Click here to read how Jewish […]

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#WelcomeWaffleWednesday

For the past couple months, as I’ve settled into our office space at the San Francisco Federation building on Steuart Street, I’ve been surprised by how few Federation employees knew where we were. Since InterfaithFamily is an organization of welcoming and love, I decided this needed to change. We began by re-envisioning our space. Where […]

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Seven Top Rosh Hashanah Song Parodies

If you like cute videos parodying pop songs for the Jewish holidays like I do, then you’ll be happy to learn that they’ve been made not just for Hanukkah and Passover (see my favorites here and here), but for Rosh Hashanah too. So, as we approach the Jewish New Year, here’s a countdown of my seven […]

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The Weight of Our Words

In seventh grade, I was so excited when this boy from school asked me out. I asked my mother if she could drop me off at the movie theater, not yet able to go anywhere on my own, and was surprised by the questions she asked. I don’t remember exactly what was said at the […]

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The Conservative Officiation Debate Continues

This post originally appeared on www.edumundcase.com and is reprinted with permission. The media buzz about Conservative rabbis and officiation at weddings of interfaith couples has slowed, but there has been important commentary in the past three weeks. The rabbis of the Jewish Emergent Network – certainly among the most progressive younger rabbis in the country – expressed solidarity with Rabbi Amichai […]

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