Northeast

The Northeast District includes Eastern Canada, New England, and New York. 

Welcome to WRJ Northeast District

Message from WRJ Northeast District President Sharon Sobel

Celebrating Our Stories - Our WRJ Northeast Journey

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We take pride in our ability to live the life we imagined for ourselves, to fulfill the plans we may have first dreamt about as children. And while some of those dreams might have been dashed by disappointments, we can cite only a few instances in our collective history when nearly all of us have been confronted with one unexpected event challenging nearly all our plans. Whatever filled our glasses at midnight on December 31, 2019, splashed back on us a couple of months later. But it awakened us to a new reality, still bubbling with possibility.

I’m proud to serve as your president of Women of Reform Judaism–Northeast District in such times, but even more honored to be numbered among the women who have committed so much of themselves to the story we have been celebrating for over a hundred years.

Our resolve has been strong and is a testament to our enduring mission. This is not the first pandemic to threaten us, and for a century WRJ has fought for women’s rights, the survival of the Jewish people, and against injustice throughout the world. We have given voice to those who could not tell their own story, and to those whose story becomes our story, as we amplify it a million times over, demanding to be heard.

Our reason for being goes beyond hosting membership dinners, running Judaica shops, and selling mahjong cards, as has been amply demonstrated over these many years. Those things and more give us pleasure, but the mission of Women of Reform Judaism gives us purpose. The events we’ve held this year, unlike all others, have clarified that for us and may very well impact our programming for years to come, even while we long to reconvene in a hotel, share Shabbat dinner with friends and sisters, and worship together in one room.

We are all, together, writing our narrative but it is only one chapter in a long and celebrated history. It takes place in all our sisterhoods and women’s groups, in each of our towns and cities in New England, New York, Eastern Canada, and extends to every place where there is work to be done and friends to be made. It is crafted by our Executive Committee, board members, sisterhood presidents, presenters, clergy, and all of you who choose to share your time and talents with us.

And it’s a good story, deserving to be celebrated because all of us will contribute to it with pages we may not yet imagine, and chapters not yet dreamt. As is true of many engaging tales, our narrative has been filled with challenges and disappointments, especially over the past year, but we are steadfast in our mission. Our voices are stronger together and we are resolved to accomplish great things.

You can make a difference!

Sharon Sobel
Northeast District President

 

Click here to read a welcome message from Northeast District's Immediate Past President, Trina Novak. 

Partners in Reform Judaism located in the Northeast District:

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Congratulations to the WRJ Or Ami Honorees in the Northeast District

Gold Award

The Community Synagogue Sisterhood, Port Washington, NY
Sisterhood and Teenage Youth Group Tikkun Olam Project

The Community Synagogue Sisterhood worked with over 100 teenagers from their youth group, teaching about the mitzvah of comforting the ill. The teens made heart-shaped pillows and supportive cards for cancer patients. The pillows provide underarm cushion for patients who have had lymph nodes removed and protect chest chemo-therapy ports from seat-belts.

Silver Award

B'nai Israel Sisterhood, Southbury, CT
Sisterhood's Bat Mitzvah – 13 Events for 13 Years

In recognition of B’nai Israel’s sisterhood's creation in February 2006 and their 13-year affiliation with WRJ, they developed 13 inclusive programs culminating in a bat mitzvah celebration. Participation in their Friday evening and Shabbat morning services represented multiple generations and their diverse community.

Honorable Mentions

Beth El Temple Center Sisterhood, Belmont, MA
- BETC Reads, A Social Justice Book Group

Temple Beth Zion Sisterhood, Amherst, NY
- Intergenerational Women's Seder

Temple Isaiah Sisterhood, Lexington, MA
- Yom HaShoah Education and Observance for Children, Families, and Community

Women's Leadership Council of Temple Israel, New York, NY
- Women’s Seder

Women of Reform Judaism Northeast District
- Comfort Blankets for Cancer Patients

Blog Posts

Parashah Vayeilech

September 10, 2021
When are we given time to pause, to be in a space that is between an ending and a beginning? For most of us, we are so busy with our daily lives, responsibilities, and schedules that there never seems to be an end to anything, and yet we are always starting something new. This week, literally the days between Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur, the Torah portion, Vayeilech, though the shortest parashah, gives us that time to pause and reflect.

WRJ Updates

Parashah Haazinu

September 17, 2021
As a high school teacher guiding my students in the art of essay writing, I often stress the importance of a strong conclusion. “You can’t just leave everyone hanging,” I tell them, “or wrap things up too quickly.

Parashah Vayeilech

September 10, 2021
When are we given time to pause, to be in a space that is between an ending and a beginning? For most of us, we are so busy with our daily lives, responsibilities, and schedules that there never seems to be an end to anything, and yet we are always starting something new. This week, literally the days between Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur, the Torah portion, Vayeilech, though the shortest parashah, gives us that time to pause and reflect.

Find a WRJ Sisterhood

Sisterhoods are dedicated to a wide variety of religious, educational, social, philanthropic, and advocacy efforts. They are also an outlet for Reform Jewish women and an integral part of any congregation. Find a sisterhood in your area today!