Blog

Parashat B'reishit

Sally Frank
October 21, 2022
Wow!  We are back to Parashat B’reishit, back to the beginning.  We have just celebrated Rosh HaShanah, Yom Kippur, Sukkot, and finally Simchat Torah. The holidays have given us a chance to renew ourselves and commit to changes in our lives.  Restarting our Torah reading allows us to come to the text with new eyes and perhaps a new commitment.

Parashat Chol HaMo-eid Sukkot

fredi Bleeker Franks
October 14, 2022
I love the rituals and prayers of Shabbat – the Shabbat candles, the smell of challah baking that permeates my house, closing my eyes and imagining the words of the Shema swirling around me like a giant tallit. Why does the Hashkiveinu appeal to me so much? On Sunday night, after Erev Rosh Hashana services, I took my glass of wine outside and looked up at the stars, determined to find an answer to my question. As I gazed at that beautiful blanket of stars, I understood why that prayer is so meaningful to me. 

The Leo Baeck Education Center: A WRJ YES Fund Story

October 14, 2022
The children went to typical summer camp activities like movement workshops, clowning, capoeira, ball games, crafts, etc., as well as special events, included a “Joker Day” in the circus, a day of culture through music and food, a day of challenges in Acco Park, a bilingual performance at the Acco Theater, and a movie at Movieland Haifa. Through all of this and more, 99 Arab and Jewish children we able to put down shared roots, create friendships, and build tolerance that will change how Arabs and Jews see and understand one another for generations to come.

Parashat Haazinu

Linda C. Kramer
October 6, 2022
Parents provide lessons for their children and for good or bad, we are role models for our children.  It behooves us to remember that our relationships are what’s most important. The memories we leave for our loved ones allow us to live on and not be forgotten. But how is it that we want to be remembered? At the end of life, we must continue to create joy in the moment and to find ways to enjoy what we now have. Moses’ words illustrate that we need a meaningful relationship with our loved ones, even though we know that relationship must end with death. 

Parashat Haazinu

Jane Karlin, WRJ North American Board Member & Chair of the YES Fund Grant Allocations Committee
October 6, 2022
For thirty-one chapters in Deuteronomy, Moses has told the Israelites how to act. He has explained what God wants and has guided the Israelites, so their lives may be blessed. But now Moses is preparing to say goodbye. God told Moses to ascend Mount Nebo, where he would see the Promised Land and die. After 120 years, how will Moses – Moshe Rabbeinu – our greatest teacher, our revered prophet, address the Israelites?

Parashat Vayeilech

Lisa Schwartz, Ph.D. LMFT
September 30, 2022
The phrase, “Be Strong and Resolute,” is found in v. 6 and v.23. This dictum is a powerful one and sometimes hard to maintain. I have found this especially true when it seems that almost every day, there is an assault on who I am as a Jewish woman, as well as my professional role as a sexuality educator and therapist. For over 35 years, my life’s work has been devoted to helping people understand the complexity of sexuality. My goal is to help people heal and, in so doing, contribute to repairing the world.

Madelyn Davidson: A WRJ Leadership Spotlight

Madelyn Davidson
September 30, 2022
"I have to say the thing I love most about WRJ is the deep and lasting friendships I have made. It was wonderful to be in a room of women with whom I instantly “clicked” on many levels. Some of the acquaintances became friends, and some of those friends became best friends."

Parashat Nitzavim

Blair C. Marks
September 23, 2022
My congregation’s women’s group recently held our annual “Sisterhood Shabbat,” celebrating the women of our congregation and installing our new board. Services were preceded by a yummy potluck dinner that attracted a fair crowd. As dinner was getting underway in our social hall, one of our congregants spotted a couple of millennial women in the lobby who had arrived early for services….and invited them to join the dinner.

A High Holiday Message from Sara B. Charney

Sara B. Charney
September 23, 2022
In preparation for the High Holy Days, during the month of Elul, we take stock, reflect, and engage in an accounting of the soul, cheshbon hanefesh. Other customs during Elul include the daily recitation of Psalm 27, making amends with others, the sounding of the shofar, and giving tzedakah...Inspired by the clarion call of the shofar, WRJ empowers women around the globe to stand up for justice, take on increased leadership roles, and use their platforms and voices to make a difference. There is so much going on, and you always have a home with your WRJ sisters.

WRJ Ventures “Off the Beaten Path” in Israel

Ellen Miller
September 16, 2022
Shabbat Shalom! This Shabbat, we have some exciting news to share. We’ve all been hearing about a potential WRJ Israel trip in 2023 for over a year, and now, it’s happening! Many WRJ members have visited Israel on their own, with friends or families, and/or with WRJ. We’ve experienced the sights, sounds, and delicacies of this beautiful country, either as first-timers or repeat visitors. Every trip to Israel is different from the others (though the food is remarkable whenever we visit!), and this one will be the most exciting yet.