A Rabbi's World

10/21/2015 - 20:00 | | Jewish Week Online Columnist | A Rabbi's World

Barely two weeks after attending Pope Francis’ Interfaith Service at Ground Zero, I had another, even more surreal experience last night involving the Catholic Church.

09/30/2015 - 20:00 | | Jewish Week Online Columnist | A Rabbi's World

One of my very favorite things about the pulpit rabbinate is that no two days are the same. Unlike the iconic 9-5 job, with well-defined hours and expectations, the rabbinate is more “free-form,” with hours that are, in theory and often in practice, 24/7. You’re always on call, because the kinds of needs that rabbis are expected to meet are not restricted to any one time of day.

09/16/2015 - 20:00 | | Jewish Week Online Columnist | A Rabbi's World

When it comes to talking about God, the Bible and Jewish liturgy almost invariably resorts to anthropomorphism and metaphor. The reason is simple. Even the most gifted liturgists and spiritualists among us are lacking the spiritual vocabulary adequate to do anything other.

09/09/2015 - 20:00 | | Jewish Week Online Columnist | A Rabbi's World

The most ubiquitous and traditional Rosh Hashanah greeting is known to almost all Jews: L’Shanah Tovah Tikateivu V’Teichateimu; may you been inscribed and sealed (in the Book of Life) for a good year. In its few words, it alludes to the central metaphor of the High Holidays. The verdict of our divine judgment is to be recorded upon its completion, and our most fervent prayer is that it be recorded in the Book of Life, and not, God forbid, that other book…

09/03/2015 - 20:00 | | Jewish Week Online Columnist | A Rabbi's World

Psychiatrists and therapists are known to commonly vacation in August, making it a notoriously bad time to have an emotional crisis. Most rabbis vacation in July, because once August comes, the gravitational pull of the High Holidays begins to assert itself, and virtually the entire synagogue world goes into pre-crisis mode. It seems to many of my colleagues to be “too close” to the holidays to leave town, even though there are at least four weeks before Rosh Hashanah.

08/13/2015 - 20:00 | | Jewish Week Online Columnist | A Rabbi's World

Quietly but inexorably, the month of Elul is creeping up on us. When we celebrate its beginning this coming week, there is no avoiding the fact that we are but one Jewish calendar month away from Rosh Hashanah, and the High Holiday season. Summer is drawing to a close, as it must, and fall is approaching.