Ancient Reform Judaism | Parashat Emor

The congregation where I grew up was the oldest congregation in the State of Illinois – yet steeped in 1960’s style social justice activism. I…

Read More

[US] Beth Am Trivia Night Fundraiser Connects California, Poltava and Buenos Aires

Cherie and Fred Half, lay leaders of the World Union’s North American Advisory Board, and members of Congregation Beth Am, Los Altos Hills, California, reported on a very successful fundraising event at the end of February. Congregation Beth Am has for about 20 years been underwriting our twin congregation in Poltava, Ukraine. Our committee has […]

Read More

Shana Tova from the UJR-AmLat to our Global Jewish Family

Enjoy this video from the Union del Judaísmo Reformista (UJR-AmLat), for Reform and Progressive congregations across Latin America, celebrating our activities worldwide and their recent biennial in Recife, Brazil. Shana tova to all our global family!

Read More

[BRAZIL] Tamar Tikkun Olam Seminar Revisits Rio Doce Community and Extends its Impact for the Third Year in a Row

“Glad you’re here. We thought the world had forgotten us,” said Cacique José Barcelos, from the Botocudos tribe, in Vila do Areal, Espírito Santo. Cacique’s village was others destroyed in the environmental disaster which hit the entire Rio Doce in 2015. He tells the group of young adults who have come to restore and repair […]

Read More

[Argentina] A Journey Back Home… A New Story to Tell

On May 25, 1908, the Opera House in Buenos Aires, “Teatro Colon,” opened its doors in its current location. This monumental and majestic theater required three different architects and the most refined woods, marble, tile, etc. from Spain, France, and Italy, as well as other countries, for its construction. Luciano Pavarotti would say about the […]

Read More

Chesed v´Emet: Love and Truth – Parashat Vayigash

The reconciliation between Yosef and his brothers is one of the most eloquent scenes, not just of the Bible, but of all World literature.

Let’s review the facts.  After having children with Leah and the 2 concubines, Yaakov finally has a son with his beloved Rachel, who he obviously spoils and overprotects above his brothers.  Young Yosef begins to have dreams of greatness, which he tells to his brothers, and as such he wins their hatred.

One day Yaakov sends Yosef to look for his brothers who were delayed.  Upon seeing him, they throw him in a well and want to kill him, but in the end they decide not to spill his blood themselves and instead sell him as a slave.  They take the special coat that Yaakov had given only to him, stain it with blood, and go and tell Yaakov that Yosef was killed by a beast. 

Imagine the pain of the old patriarch!

Read More

When Dreams Become Reality: Comunidad B’nei Israel Costa Rica Celebrates 30 Years

In 1984, two kindergarteners from Country Day School in San Jose, Costa Rica (Saul Herckis and Alberto Bonilla) discovered they were Jewish. Their parents, who did not belong to the Centro Israelita, the only synagogue in the country at that time, because they were not Orthodox in their believes or practices, began to meet weekly to celebrate Shabbat. They were soon joined by other families who sought communal prayer and celebration in a more spiritual, and less rigorous, Jewish framework. 

And in those first gatherings, Communidad B’nei Israel of Costa Rica was born.

Read More