WRJ's Blog

This week’s Torah portion, Parashah T’rumah, the Lord spoke to Moses saying “tell the Israelites to raise a contribution “T’rumah” for ME, from everyone whose heart prompts then to give, you shall raise a contribution “T’RUMAH” to create a Sanctuary, so I may dwell among them...and the people gave generously...and a Sanctuary was created.”

The portion goes on in detail describing the donations that the Jewish people gave towards building the portable temple in the desert. Jewelry, lavish textiles, precious metals, exotic wood as well as many other valuable items were donated. God...

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What were you doing this morning at 7:00 am? You were possibly getting up, getting ready for work, or leaving for work. You may have been heading somewhere for Shacharit services, in which case you were in luck, as today we welcomed Rosh Chodesh Adar.

Thirty-one WRJ women were very fortunate this morning to be arriving at the Kotel in Jerusalem by 7:00 am to participate in the monthly Rosh Chodesh service led by Women of the Wall. A few members of our group have participated in previous years in this special service. People always ask me if the atmosphere was tense (somewhat); did...

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The first few days of the WRJ 2020 Israel mission have been full of new and interesting visits. We spent Erev Shabbat with the community of Beit Daniel in Tel Aviv, where we were welcomed like old friends, and in fact, many of us saw old friends there. Beit Daniel is the hub of Reform Movement activity in Tel Aviv, and we were delighted to learn about their inspiring programs over Shabbat dinner with Rabbi Meir Azari and Rabbi Galia Sadan.

Shabbat morning began with a beautiful worship service led by our special guest, Rabbi Lisa Silverstein. We had a bit of time to explore the...

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Wednesday and Thursday were the last two days of the meeting of the Conference of President of Major American Jewish Organizations. The theme of this meeting is “Strength Through Unity.” Most of these talks and panels focused on internal and external threats to Israel, Iran & the Middle East, rising antisemitism, relations with Jews in the Diaspora, and the upcoming 3rd elections for a government.

In general, the panels and speakers had a good gender balance, and I was pleased to see so many influential women invited to present. Of course, we continued to hear from recognizable...

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This week’s Torah portion is Mishpatim, “These are the laws.” As a lawyer, I enjoy reading the range of statutes and ordinances covered in the parashah. The portion deals with both criminal and civil law. It does not make a distinction between religious and secular law because to the ancient Israelites, they were the same. The criminal law sets the death penalty for many offenses including for a person who strikes or insults their mother or father. The civil law is more interesting. It makes a distinction between intentional conduct and accidents. It decides who is responsible if an animal...

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