If you want to get black Jews, Mizrahi Jews and a Palestinian-American Muslim to burst into tears at the same time, invite Yavilah McCoy to talk about hair.
Speaking at the opening plenary of the Jews of Color National Convening, which took place May 1–3 in Manhattan, McCoy gestured at the woman beside her, a fellow black Jewish leader named April Baskin. “I was there one night when she was just a girl and she was crying with joy on the shoulder of another black woman, because that was the first time she’d worn her hair in a...Read More
As our world commemorates Yom HaShoah (Holocaust Remembrance Day) each year, we remember one of the darkest moments in human history: when hate triumphed, leading to the slaughter of six million Jews. The codification of the Nazi ideology of hate first took the form of discrimination laws during the 1930s, which then led to systematic genocide against our people.
A less well-known part of this dark period is that the Nazis also rounded up gays and lesbians, forcing them to wear pink triangles on their clothes so...Read More
On June 2, the Reform Jewish Movement will join millions of people across North America in observance of the second annual National Gun Violence Awareness Day, also known as Wear Orange Day. The Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism and NFTY are again joining forces with Everytown for Gun Safety and dozens of other organizations to educate, raise awareness, and take concrete action to prevent gun violence.
On January 21, 2013, Hadiya Pendleton – a...Read More
As a former rabbi for the Hillel at the University of Florida in Gainesville, I know firsthand that Jewish students are always touched by emails, bulletins, seasonal packages, and personal contact from their home congregations. If your synagogue is situated near a university, you can do even more to help students feel connected to their community and heritage. Here are five tips:1. Encourage Jewish students at the nearby campus to attend Shabbat and... Read More
I truly believe in the joy of Judaism. I love Jewish holidays (with Shabbat, Sukkot, and Purim at the top of the list), Jewish humor, and Jewish culture. I also find it joyful to teach Hebrew, cook and eat Jewish food, and do mitzvah projects.
But of course there are more somber parts of Judaism, notably Yom HaShoah,...Read More
Inside Leadership, the blog at URJ.org, is a source for Reform Jewish leaders to get the latest news and though-provoking articles about Jewish communal life.