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There has been some discussion in the blogosphere about our annual pre-High Holy Days conference call for rabbis, held last week addressing health care reform and sponsored by the Conservative, Reform, and Reconstructionist rabbinic organizations (as well as the Union for Reform Judaism). These calls typically address liturgical, theological, Jewish communal, or social justice topics of concern to our congregants and rabbis. When we address a social justice issue or public policy issue, we invite policy experts, scholars of Jewish history, tradition, law or theology, and leading preachers...

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Parshat Shoftim is among the most quoted in the entire Torah. Shoftim, which means "Judges," helps the Israelites understand what forms justice takes - and ought to take - for a righteous people. To further explain, the good folks over at asked us to help narrate this week's Torah portion. Rabbi David Saperstein, Director of the Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism, is animated - literally! - on this week, where he narrates Parshat Shoftim in a four-minute commentary...

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Judy Hellman is the Associate Director of the Jewish Community Relations Bureau/American Jewish Committee in Overland Park, Kansas, serving the state of Kansas and western Missouri. All views expressed are her own.

If you give people the information and the opportunity, the response can be amazing and gratifying. A few weeks ago, Rabbi Alan Cohen, Director of Interreligious Affairs of the Jewish Community Relations Bureau/American Jewish Committee, mentioned he had chosen to participate in...

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What were you doing last Sunday at 8:30 a.m.? That's when Rabbi Jonah Pesner, Director of the Reform Movement's Just Congregations, appeared on CNN's "Faces of Faith" segment with host TJ Holmes and guest Rev. Dr. Derrick Harkins of the 19th Street Baptist Church in DC. Together, Rabbi Pesner and Rev. Harkins presented a unified voice in support of health care reform, urging people of faith to get involved in the ongoing health care debate.

In case you weren't up that early,...

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by Marc Rosenstein(Originally published in Galilee Diary and Ten Minutes of Torah)

When in your war against a city you have to besiege it a long time in order to capture it, you must not destroy its trees, wielding the ax against them.  You may eat of them, but you must not cut them down.  Are trees of the field human to withdraw before you into the besieged city? -Deuteronomy 20:19

While we don't have a lot of time to devote to our modest yard, we do get...

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