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Elizabeth Leff

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Pile of  red, white, and blue buttons that say VOTE.

Reform Jews have the power to shape their Jewish community and world beyond because Reform Judaism empowers those who claim it as their own to take part in appraising its past and building its future. If that doesn’t sound like democracy, I don’t know what does. Reform Judaism calls upon us to be civically engaged, making a direct call to action to involve ourselves in shaping our institutions to propel our world toward justice. The Pittsburgh Platform, the 1885 document that outlines the shift in the United States toward today’s Reform Jewish practice, states:

In full accordance...

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A pile of voter signs in red white and blue with small American flags sprinkled atop them

In college, I was told a story that highlights the uniqueness of the Reform Jewish Movement. The story as I heard goes: a rabbi and her son were at a service in a synagogue that was not their own. The boy looked up at the rabbi leading the community. He then looked at the people in the seats surrounding him, he looked to his mother beside him, and back at the rabbi on the bimah. “Mom,” he whispered, eyes fixed on the rabbi in front of the congregation, “I didn’t know that men could be rabbis too.”

Reform Jewish women have the power to shape their Jewish community and beyond...

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Womans hands with red painted fingernails holding a small globe replica

Across North America and around the world, vulnerable populations face profound challenges. To better equip our congregations to take action on issues affecting their communities, the RAC created the Brit Olam, which translates to a “covenant with our world.”

Since its launch in April 2017, the Brit Olam has offered congregations a mechanism to re-commit to engaging in deep and meaningful social justice work, as well as access to a growing network of nearly 200 congregations and communities acting powerfully and together to bring about the world we want – a world of wholeness,...

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This post originally ran as a Women of Reform Judaism Strategies for Sisterhood Success newsletter item. 

In college, I was told a story that highlights the uniqueness of the Reform Jewish Movement. The story as I heard goes: a rabbi and her son were at a service in a synagogue that was not their own. The boy looked up at the rabbi leading the community. He then looked at the people in the seats surrounding him, he looked to his mother beside him, and back at the rabbi on the bimah. “Mom,” he whispered, eyes fixed on the rabbi in front of the congregation, “I didn’t know that men...

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Rabbi David Saperstein visits a refugee camp in Bangladesh

Since August 2017, nearly 700,000 Rohingya refugees have fled violence and ethnic cleansing in the Rakhine State, a region on the western border of Burma. The survivors have made their way to Bangladesh where refugee camps hold new humanitarian and bureaucratic challenges. The Rohingya are an ethnic Muslim minority in Burma who have historically faced persecution in the region and have more recently become targets of extreme violence and ethnic cleansing that began to escalate in late 2017. These practices include the burning of villages and mass murders of entire communities are carried...

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