Category Archives: Sermons

Extremists for Love – Yom Kippur 2017

In June 1963, Martin Luther King, Jr. spoke before a large crowd in Detroit. In his speech, King argued that, despite the dangers of nonviolent resistance, “there are some things so dear, some things so precious, some things so eternally … Continue reading

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Three Essentials to Pack for Your Journey – Kol Nidrei 2017

“Birth is a beginning/ and death a destination./ And life is a journey.” The notion that our lives are a journey, and that we, in our fallibility, might have gone off course, haunts us each Yom Kippur. On eight separate … Continue reading

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After Charlottesville, Be a Light – Rosh Hashanah 2017

JJ Grey, a contemporary rock and blues singer, once recalled a lesson his grandmother taught him: “you can’t fight darkness, so be a light.” Last month, darkness came to Virginia: An unholy alliance of white supremacists marched on Charlottesville. Just … Continue reading

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Here’s the Advice I Would Give to New Rabbis…

…and, for that matter, all young leaders. Along with a diverse group of rabbis, I recently completed a two-year fellowship in a program called the Clergy Leadership Incubator.  The Clergy Leadership Incubator (CLI) trains early-career rabbis in organizational leadership, change … Continue reading

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Do You control Your Monuments, or Do They Control You? – Shavuot 2017

Recently, the City of New Orleans removed its Confederate monuments, prompting both celebrations and protests. The actions and their aftermath reverberated across the country and, not surprisingly, into Virginia. Protests and counter-protests erupted – violently – in Charlottesville a couple … Continue reading

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One Community, One Campus: Rosh Hashanah Day 1, 5777

Of all the enemies our ancestors faced in antiquity, perhaps none were more fearsome than the Assyrians. Around 900 BCE, Assyria began to conquer much of what was at the time the known world. The empire Assyria built stretched from … Continue reading

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Baccalaureate Address for Maggie Walker Governor’s School, Class of 2016

I want to begin by expressing my gratitude for having been invited here this evening. It is such an honor to be with you, to celebrate this extraordinary milestone with you and your families. I want to share a story … Continue reading

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