Tag Archives: culture

A New Prayer for the United States of America

Our God and God of our ancestors, bless and protect the United States of America and secure, strengthen, and advance the ideals and institutions that are its pride and its glory. Guide our leaders and officials to see Your image … Continue reading

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Justice Demands RISC

On June 15, 2020, I was asked to give closing remarks at the (virtual) annual gathering for RISC — Richmonders Involved to Strengthen Our Communities — an organization of congregations from throughout the Richmond region working to solve critical community … Continue reading

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Richmond’s Wailing Wall

The recent wave of anti-racism protests have produced at least one tangible outcome: Sometime soon, Richmond’s Confederate monuments will be removed. As I have argued before, this move is both welcome and long overdue.  However, as plans are drawn for … Continue reading

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A Statement on George Floyd’s Murder and Systemic Racial Injustice

Like many of you, I have been heartbroken and angry since George Floyd’s murder on May 25. Central to Jewish tradition is the notion that every human being is created in God’s image, that we are all equal in value … Continue reading

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‘We can be so much more when we live in love’: Two area faith leaders share thoughts of hope, help during COVID pandemic

The following are thoughts that David Dwight, Lead Pastor of Hope Church in Richmond, and I shared with the Richmond Times-Dispatch on helping people through the difficulties of life in COVID-19. (The questions and responses have been edited for length … Continue reading

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Justice, Truth, and Peace: How to Keep Our Republic

The following was a keynote address at the Religious Freedom Day celebration at Richmond, Virginia’s “First Freedom Center,” January 16, 2020. Good morning. It is an honor to be with you today for this celebration of our most cherished freedoms.  I … Continue reading

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Celebrating Jewish Culture in Troubled Times

Keynote address at University of Mary Washington’s Jewish Cultural Celebration (November 6, 2019) Good evening. It is such an honor and a joy to be with you this evening for this celebration of Jewish Culture. It is especially meaningful to … Continue reading

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Nature Abhors a Vacuum. But Antisemitism Loves One.

Sermon from Yom Kippur — October 9, 2019 In late April of 1913, a night watchman at an Atlanta pencil factory discovered the bruised and bloody corpse of a 13 year-old employee named Mary Phagan in the factory’s cellar. As news … Continue reading

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The Promises of Israel

  Sermon from Kol Nidrei — October 8, 2019 It is striking that we initiate Yom Kippur with Kol Nidrei, a liturgical poem that both highlights the promises we make and alludes to the fact that we have an unfortunate … Continue reading

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Where the Oppressed Shed Tears

Sermon for Day 1 of Rosh Hashanah 5780 — September 30, 2019 According to tradition, the powerful, piercing cry of the Shofar on Rosh Hashanah is meant to awaken us from our spiritual and moral slumber, the mindless and purposeless … Continue reading

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