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  1. The Role of Text Study in Congregational Values-Based Decision Making

    In order to develop values-based policies and procedures for our communities, we need to take a few steps back from the more practical concerns and examine our communal principles and Jewish ethical values and teachings. We must first clarify our terms, examine our preexisting attitudes, and understand how our experiences impact the decisions we make in community.

    https://archive.reconstructingjudaism.org/article/role-text-study-congregational-values-based-decision-making

    Posted on: 2016/04/25 - 4:52pm

  2. A Jewish Approach to Discipline

    We've all been students in classrooms where a teacher makes remarks like the following:.

    “Somebody must have gotten up on the wrong side of the bed this morning” or “I'm not surprised you forgot your homework. You'd probably forget your head if it wasn't attached to your shoulders” or “You have the lowest score in the class!” We cringe because we can imagine the hurt and embarrassment the remarks have caused. We may even be pained that in the past we said something similar to our students.

    https://archive.reconstructingjudaism.org/article/jewish-approach-discipline

    Posted on: 2016/04/25 - 4:45pm

  3. Next Year in Jerusalem?

    Different Meanings

    Each year, around seder tables throughout the world, Jews and our guests end the haggadah with the phrase, “L'shanah haba'ah biyerushalayim — Next Year in Jerusalem.” Like the four children who appear earlier in the haggadah text as paradigms for the ways Jews approach the historical narrative, those who say or hear “Next Year in Jerusalem” do so with many different degrees of self-knowledge or awareness in relationship to the phrase.

    https://archive.reconstructingjudaism.org/article/next-year-jerusalem

    Posted on: 2016/04/25 - 2:47pm

  4. The Binding Of Isaac: What Is the Nature Of the Test?

    Torah Text:

    And it came to pass after these things (lit. words), that God tested Abraham and said, “Abraham.” And he said, “Here I am.” And He said, “Take your son, your only son, the one you love, Isaac, and go into the land of Moriah and offer him there for a burnt offering upon one of the mountains which I will show you.” (Genesis 22:1-2)

     

    Commentary:

    Rashi explains “these words” as a conversation God had with Satan:

    https://archive.reconstructingjudaism.org/article/binding-isaac-what-nature-test

    Posted on: 2016/04/25 - 2:37pm

  5. How to Make Yom Kippur Meaningful for Our Children

    Helping religious school students experience the richness of the Jewish holiday cycle is one of the great joys of Jewish education. Yom Kippur, however, is probably the most challenging holiday to explain meaningfully on a child's level. Void of an historical/political backdrop, Yom Kippur is a day full of abstractions which often elude adult understanding. What does it really mean for us to create a state of “purity?” What are the ways we need to work on our social relationships and the ways we need to clarify our relationship with God?

    https://archive.reconstructingjudaism.org/article/how-make-yom-kippur-meaningful-our-children

    Posted on: 2016/04/21 - 12:20pm

  6. The Wealth Gap: How We Chose This Issue

    Our Tikkun Olam Commission developed a set of criteria to guide its social justice recommendations for the movement. Every couple of years, the Commission will advise that the Reconstructionist movement concentrate on a new issue which, on balance, best meets these criteria.

    Here’s how the wealth gap meets the criteria we’ve set for a movement-wide focus:

    https://archive.reconstructingjudaism.org/article/wealth-gap-how-we-chose-issue

    Posted on: 2016/04/19 - 2:34pm

  7. Guide to Talking about Israel in your Congregation

  8. Understanding Transgender Issues in Jewish Ethics

    The dominant approach to gender in Western society has its origin in Christian thought that understands both sex and gender as binary. In that understanding, everyone is either male or female, and gender and sex are identical. While Jews gradually absorbed that perspective, classical rabbinic Judaism had a much more sophisticated understanding.

    https://archive.reconstructingjudaism.org/article/understanding-transgender-issues-jewish-ethics

    Posted on: 2016/04/18 - 3:48pm

  9. Take Your Judaism For A Walk

    My dictionary defines ecology as “the relationship of organisms to their environment.” The root, eco, is from the Greek word oikos, meaning house, the space we inhabit. When we speak of ecology today, however, we generally mean making the world a better place to live in by cleaning it up. I would like to present two approaches to this subject—first, that of two experts in the field, and second, an idea that I had.

    https://archive.reconstructingjudaism.org/article/take-your-judaism-walk

    Posted on: 2016/04/15 - 12:09pm

  10. Prayer for AIDS Awareness Shabbat

    Before Lighting the Shabbat Candles:

    Tonight, on AIDS Awareness Shabbat, we kindle these lights. Not only do these lights signify the beginning of Shabbat they symbolize much more. Tonight these lights represent the memories that continue to shine of those whom we have lost to the AIDS epidemic. Tonight these lights illuminate the path to wholeness and healing for all of us who are affected and infected by HIV/AIDS. Tonight these lights ignite the sparks within that call us to action. Tonight these lights are beacons of hope for an AIDS-free world.

    https://archive.reconstructingjudaism.org/article/prayer-aids-awareness-shabbat

    Posted on: 2016/04/15 - 11:49am

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