November 2018 MESSAGE FROM RABBI ARNOW

Holidays, Late and Early Is Hanukkah late this year? Is Passover early? When is Purim? These are questions we all hear every so often, so perhaps it’d be helpful to explain a little something about the Jewish calendar. The solar calendar is about 365 days, whereas the lunar (i.e. Jewish and Muslim) calendar is 354…

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September 2018 MESSAGE FROM RABBI ARNOW

Before saying something about our High Holiday prayer options this year at Kol Rinah, I want ask something about prayer generally. Is it better to pray when you’re supposed to, or when you feel moved to? Is it better to pray the prayers that well up inside you, or the prayers other people wrote that…

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July 2018 Message from Rabbi Arnow

The Right Questions What are the right questions to ask a person you see at shul? Here are some suggestions: “How are you feeling today?” “For whom are you saying Kaddish?” “My name is ____. What’s your name?” “How can I help?” “Could I sit next to you?” or “Would you like to come sit…

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MAY 2018 MESSAGE FROM RABBI ARNOW

Blintzes, Torah and Community Shavuot has always been one of my favorite holidays, for reasons that have changed over the years. Growing up, I fastidiously observed a gastronomic Shavuot by eating mountains of cheese blintzes. My great-grandmother, who passed away in October of 2009 just a few weeks shy of age 107, was for my…

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March 2018 Message from Rabbi Arnow

A Spirituality of Fundraising I recently experienced an unexpected benefit of sharing space with the Journey. Last week, I picked up a pamphlet The Journey had extra copies of entitled “A Spirituality of Fundraising,” by 20th century Catholic theologian Henri Nouwen. Nouwen writes with Christian vocabulary, but the wisdom is universal. “Fundraising isn’t a response…

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January 2018 Message from Rabbi Arnow

I want to share with you three short reflections on the United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism’s biennial convention, this year in Atlanta, from which I recently returned. (The USCJ is the umbrella organization of Conservative synagogues.) Kol Rinah’s president, Randi Mozenter, and past president Harriet Shanas were also all there. Harriet has long been involved…

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November 2017 Message from Rabbi Arnow

Law Meets Life at Kol Rinah Part of the rabbinical school application asked applicants to read a few books from a list provided, and one of the books I read was Rereading the Rabbis: A Woman’s Voice, by Judith Hauptman. I remember being inspired by the way Dr. Hauptman, a Professor of Talmud at the…

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September 2017 Message from Rabbi Arnow

Renewing the High Holidays What is the quality you are seeking when you arrive at shul on Rosh Hashanah or Yom Kippur? And by “quality” I mean the essence, attributes, or characteristics of the experience. There are so many different things for which we yearn at High Holiday services. Is what matters to you relational—seeing,…

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May 2017 Message from Rabbi Arnow

Beginnings and Endings Kol Rinah is embarking on a major change—a change of buildings. By the time you read this, we will have already closed on the purchase of our new home at 7701 Maryland Avenue, and the sale of our current home, the former Shaare Zedek building at 829 North Hanley Road. Some of…

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July 2016 – Message From Rabbi Arnow

Attending, Officiating, Hosting? Some of the biggest issues that have faced Conservative Judaism over the past several decades have been about inclusion—of women, of LGBTQ people, and intermarried couples and families. Towards the end of May, I was at the Rabbinical Assembly’s (RA) annual convention, held this year in New York City. The Rabbinical Assembly…

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