Prayer

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Collection

Zipporah Nunes Machado Jacobs

Zipporah Nunes Machado Jacobs escaped the horrors of the Inquisition as a conversa, using clever tricks to keep her devotion to Judaism secret from any who might betray her.

Rose Goldstein

Rose Goldstein worked to support women’s greater involvement in Jewish ritual life through her education work with United Synagogue and her essential guide to Jewish prayer, A Time to Pray: A Personal Approach to the Jewish Prayer Book.

Evelyn Garfiel

Evelyn Garfiel’s Jewish scholarship on topics like the prayer book and the Hebrew language helped make Jewish study accessible to the broader public.

Annette Daum

Annette Daum combined interfaith dialogue and feminism in the hopes of both defusing anti-Semitism in the feminist movement and finding solutions to the common problems facing women in different faiths.

Ruth F. Brin

Ruth F. Brin helped transform modern prayer with her evocative writing, translation, and poetry.

Rose Brenner

As president of the National Council of Jewish Women, Rose Brenner focused on inclusion of people who were often marginalized—the deaf, the blind, and those isolated in rural areas.

Mathilde Schechter

Mathilde Roth Schechter was both an essential support for her husband’s work as president of the Jewish Theological Seminary and a force in her own right as founder of the Women’s League.

Savina Teubal

Savina Teubal created space for Jewish women to participate in holidays and rituals, and created a powerful new tradition to recognize her own rite of passage from adult to elder.

Marge Piercy

Marge Piercy’s novels have become modern classics of feminist literature, while her poems and liturgy have transformed Jewish prayer.

Lori Lefkovitz

Lori Lefkovitz founded the first-ever women’s studies department at a rabbinical school and helped create Ritualwell.org, a communal source for inclusive, innovative Jewish ritual and prayer.

Rivka Haut

An Orthodox Jewish feminist, Rivka Haut advocated on behalf of agunot (chained wives) and wrote feminist prayers for Orthodox Jews.

Maralee Gordon

Rabbi Maralee Gordon helped found the Chutzpah Collective, a radical Jewish political collective that utilized the inclusion of women in religious rituals as a jumping-off point for making all Jews feel welcome in the Jewish community regardless of disability or sexual orientation.

Debbie Friedman

Debbie Friedman’s music transformed prayers for Jews across the movements.

Marcia Falk

Marcia Falk transformed the art of prayer with feminist blessings and modern translations of ancient writing.
Olivia Link's Bat Mitzvah

Discovering the Art of Prayer

by  Olivia Link

Adults may scoff, and my friends may hypocritically mock me, but I can never deny that I would want to stand out in a crowd. Whether a college application, a creative thesis for school, or even the food that I bring for lunch, I want to discover a personal uniqueness that I carry so I can have some special pride in my stride. Luckily for me, I can already claim an artistic and spiritual individuality that I bring to the table as a female Jew.

Topics: Feminism, Art, Dance, Prayer

Louise Azose

Born into a rabbinic Sephardic family in Bursa, Turkey, Louise Maimon followed her parents and siblings to Seattle in 1927 after her father was called to serve as a rabbi for Sehpardic Bikur Holim congregation. Married in 1929 to Jack Azose, they raised four sons and one daughter. Long active in Seattle’s Sephardic community, Louise was a living treasure of the traditions, history, recipes, faith, and folksongs of the Sephardic people she loved. Louise’s conversation and memories were filled with Ladino [Judeo-Spanish] words and phrases spoken within Spanish-Sephardic Jewish cultures.

Marge Piercy

The poems in The Art of Blessing the Day were written over a 20-year period.

Debbie Friedman

The more our voices are heard in song, the more we become our lyrics, our prayers, and our convictions.

Merle Feld

[I]t expresses the hope, the expectation even, that we will all come together to rejoice in our heritage...

Marcia Falk

I recited these blessings as though they had been written a couple of millennia ago by the rabbis, rather than the day before, by me.

Amy Eilberg

As it turned out, in the spring of 1985, I was to be the first woman so ordained.

Kim Chernin

[T]he idea of re–writing the Haggadah seemed startling and even blasphemous. Now, 30 years later, this re–writing has itself become part of an emerging Passover tradition.

E.M. Broner

This is a narrative of a community that is not in isolation but reflects the polis of the time.

Tallit at NewCAJE

Women and Tallit

by  Jordyn Rozensky

Why do some women wear Tallit? Why shouldn’t women wear Tallit? What’s the big deal?

If you’re like me, you probably haven’t spent a lot of time pondering these questions. As someone who falls somewhere outside of regular observance, a tallit, or prayer shawl, isn’t usually on the forefront of my thoughts.  (Even defining a tallit required a quick search of myjewishlearning.com.)

Last week I was lucky enough to join hundreds of Jewish educators at NewCAJE, a peer led conference that brings together educators from all walks of Jewish life. One of the highlights of my time at the conference was attending a session led by Ronni Ticker  entitled “Women of the Wall- What’s the Big Deal?”

Topics: Prayer

I Am the Egg (Wo)Man: Reflections on Rosh Chodesh Av & Tisha B'Av

by Rabbi Sari Laufer

As a Reform Jew, I have long struggled with the meaning and ritual of Tisha B’Av. I have learned and studied over the years; this week at the Hartman Institute, we wrestled with the notions of and texts on communal mourning. I do not wish to see the Temple rebuilt speedily in my day, and so what do I do with this holiday?

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