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Leadership Message
Curious about what's going on at Reconstructionist Rabbinical College and Jewish Reconstructionist Communities? Seth Rosen, chair of RRC/JRC's board of governors, discusses how we are poised and prepared to take a great step forward in the development of the Reconstructionist movement. Read his message here
From the Podcast Studio
Hashivenu: Jewish Teachings on Resilience - Episode 5 is live

Hashivenu is a podcast about Jewish teachings and practice around resilience. Cultivating resilience, both individually and collectively, is an essential path to personal and communal renewal.

About Episode 5

The story of Hanukkah invites us to kindle lights in the darkness and to overcome despair with hope and action. In this spirit, Rabbi Sharon Kleinbaum reflects on the extraordinary work of her community and the way it embodies the fundamental connection between spiritual life and social activism. Click here to listen.

If you missed the previous episodes, click here to listen to Episode 1: Shabbat, Episode 2: Teshuvah and ForgivenessEpisode 3: Humor and Episode 4: Chanting

#Trending Jewish: A Jewish Podcast about Everything – Episode 5 is live!

How does Judaism intersect with contemporary culture and illuminate how people live their lives? Hosts Rachael Burgess and Bryan Schwartzman don’t profess to have answers, just a host of questions – some profound, some rather goofy.

About Episode 5

In this episode, Bryan and Rachael record a podcast about a podcast with Emily Cohen, a rabbinical student and creator of Jew Too? Tales of the Mixed Multitude. They discuss the podcast medium, the profound role that non-Jewish families have played in Jewish lives, and the influence of Star Wars in Bryan’s moral development.

Click here to listen to Episode 5.

On the Horizon

Dive deeper into Israel

We are thrilled to announce the Reconstructionist movement’s upcoming Israel trip from March 7-15, 2018! This isn’t your typical “Israel 101” trip. We will focus on art, music and politics, delving deep into the complexity of the Israel-Palestinian conflict.

Click here to learn more and to register for the trip.

Be You, Boldly

Camp Havaya (Pennsylvania) is an incredibly diverse and welcoming community where we encourage kids to discover what being Jewish means to them—no matter who they are or where they come from. It's why so many campers call it home! Camp Havaya will start on June 24, 2018. 

Watch the video, then find out more and register at

Be You, Creatively

Havaya Arts (California) is a high-quality arts and summer-camp experience for kids. We are a joyful, welcoming and progressive Jewish community where campers grow as intentional artists and amazing human beings. Havaya Arts will start on June 18, 2018. 

Watch the video, then find out more and register at

Tivnu social-justice gap year in Portland, Oregon

Tivnu Gap Year participants, ages 17 to 20, connect Jewish life and social justice through internships at grassroots organizations. Apply by Jan. 1 for a $4,000 discount. To learn more, check out the video or visit

Reconstructionist Voices

"Making Intentional Artists and Good Human Beings" at Havaya Arts

Havaya Arts, the brand-new Reconstructionist summer camp in Southern California, focuses on self-discovery through the prism of the arts. Rabbi Isaac Saposnik, RRC '08, executive director of Camp Havaya and Havaya Arts, and Reuben Posner, camp director of Havaya Arts, discussed Havaya Arts' unique position as a Jewish arts summer camp.

Click here to read the article

‘Quirky,’ inclusive temple reaches the century mark

Temple B'nai Abraham, now celebrating its 100th anniversary, has a long and fascinating history. From an innovative solution for burying interfaith couples to finding ways to include adults with developmental disabilities in services, B'nai Abraham has led the way in creating a welcoming community. 

Click here to read the article in the New Jersey Jewish News.

Innovation and Impact

Register now for new 2018 Reconstructionist Learning Networks

Explore the crucial questions of Jewish life that just can’t be Googled. Networks starting in January include:

Discover more and register here. For more details, contact Cyd Weissman or Shosh Lovett-Graff, or call 215.576.0800 x124.

Ultra-Busy Leader Stops to Gain Perspective

Avi Deutsch, co-founder and CEO of LAVAN, a growing community of impact investors who use Jewish learning as a guide to effecting social and environmental change, discussed the importance of professional and personal reflection in an interview with Cyd Weissman, Assistant Vice President of Innovation and Impact at RRC/JRC.

Read the article here. For more updates on Jewish entrepreneurs, visit or subscribe to Cyd Weissman's brand-new EdgeBlog.

Ritual Guides
While I've always been a huge fan of Ritualwell, I'm SO excited about the next steps you're taking with it – the offer to support others in creating their own rituals through the Ritual Guide service, the thematic calls for submission, the themes you are exploring, etc. Huge kudos for making an incredible resource even stronger. 

– Heather Paul, ALEPH rabbinical student and blogger

Are you planning your wedding? Did you recently bring home a new baby? Ever thought about how to mark a milestone anniversary? Let our Ritual Guides assist you in creating a meaningful ritual that will create memories for decades to come.

An Uplifting Name Change Ritual

Rabbah Rona Matlow created a powerful name change ceremony that builds from Jewish texts to affirm a transgender person's life and celebrate their future. Click here to read the ritual and the story behind it

El Maley Rakhamim for Victims of Gun Violence

At Ritualwell, we strive to have rituals, poems and ceremonies that are relevant to the issues of our day. Here is a new piece by Hannah Spiro, RRC '17, for communities mourning lives lost to gun violence. Click here to read the prayer

Want to sell your products in the Ritualwell Store?

We welcome proposals from artists and merchants to sell their products in the online Ritualwell Store. Products should be aligned with the Ritualwell mission to enhance people’s experience of Jewish ritual. Please contact Ritualwell ( to discuss your product(s). Include a description of the product(s) you might want to sell and images or a link to view the product(s). We will let you know if we think your product would be a good fit for our store. We look forward to hearing from you!

Statements from the Movement

In addition to endorsing and co-sponsoring numerous petitions, public letters and statements from aligned organizations, RRC/Jewish Reconstructionist Communities issues its own public statements on several issues, either alone or jointly with the Reconstructionist Rabbinical Association:

Statement on Use of Force Against Reform Leaders at the Kotel

For our previous statements, go to our Public Statements page on

Upcoming Events

Reconstructionist Weekend
Jan. 19–21, 2018
Or Shalom Jewish Community
625 Brotherhood Way
San Francisco

Rabbi Deborah Waxman, president of Reconstructionist Rabbinical College and Jewish Reconstructionist Communities, will speak about "Reconstructionism and Resilience" at an evening reception at Or Shalom. The weekend will also feature Friday night services, the second San Francisco Women's March, and a discussion about current events. For more information or to RSVP, contact Lillian Markind at

LGBT Spirituality & Spiritual Violence Mini-Series
Feb. 5, 2018, 7 p.m.
Bradbury-Sullivan LGBT Community Center
522 W. Maple St.
Allentown, Pa.

The Bradbury-Sullivan LGBT Community Center's LGBT Spirituality & Spiritual Violence Mini-Series will begin with a presentation by Rabbi Deborah Waxman. The mini-series is moderated by Rev. Beth Goudy and funded by E. Rhodes & Leona B. Carpenter Foundation. Click here to RSVP.

Reconstructionist Convention
Nov. 15-18, 2018

This year's convention, titled "Rooted and Relevant: A 2018 Reconstructionist Conversation," will feature learning, singing, dancing, eating and praying. Stay tuned for more information and click here to add the event to your calendar. 

Reconstructionists in the News

Synagogue’s Mix of Arts and Religion Helps Shape Jewish Life in Washington (New York Times): Rabbi Shira Stutman, RRC '07, creates a thriving Jewish community through an innovative synagogue model at Sixth and I in Washington, D.C.

Welcome the Stranger Both Within and Outside Ourselves (Jewish Exponent): Rabbi Sheila Peltz Weinberg, RRC '86, explores the path of loving-kindness in Judaism through biblical stories about offering hospitality to strangers. 

Remember the Outsider When Pondering Thanksgiving’s Meaning (Jewish Exponent): Rabbi Joshua Waxman, RRC '03, compares the story of Jacob to the experiences of immigrants to the United States.

Join members of other Reconstructionist congregations on Facebook, Twitter and Instagram for wisdom, news and special announcements.

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The Jewish Reconstructionist Communities in association with the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College (RRC) provides services for more than 100 congregations and havurot where members help create the Judaism they want to live. RRC is a progressive rabbinical school­­ where people of all backgrounds engage intensively with Jewish texts, thought and practice. As a combined organization, RRC / Jewish Reconstructionist Communities make up a unique entity in the contemporary Jewish landscape.
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