Prayer

Content type
Collection

Elaine Zecher

Rabbi Elaine Zecher uses her own experiences of illness and struggle to counsel congregants and craft prayers for Mishkan T’fillah and Mishkan HaNefesh, the prayer books of the Reform Movement.

Dalia Marx

In teaching liturgy to rabbinical students from around the world, Rabbi Dalia Marx is shaping how the next generation of rabbis interprets the tradition.

Joy Levitt

Rabbi Joy Levitt helped shape the Reconstructionist movement as the first female head of the Reconstructionist Rabbinical Association (RRA).
Sunrise over a Lake

The Power of My Daily Renewal

Hannah Himmelgreen

After long afternoons turn into endless evenings and restless nights, I still wake up in the morning feeling wholly replenished. With the ring of my alarm clock comes the thought that I can take on the day, no matter how tired I am. 

"Shelo Asani Isha" Blessing

The Oxymoron of Jewish Feminism

Abigail Fisher

I had fallen so deeply in love with Jewish text study that I neglected to see the many ways in which I was not represented in those texts. The tension became clear: How could I honor  a tradition that did not make space for me as a female? 

Henrietta Szold on Saying Kaddish

In a 1916 letter, Henrietta Szold (the founder of Hadassah) defied Jewish tradition and challenged rituals that exclude women by asserting her right to say Kaddish (the Jewish prayer for mourners).

Ray Frank's Yom Kippur Sermon, 1890

Read the 1890 Yom Kippur sermon by Ray Frank, the first Jewish woman to preach formally from a pulpit, and consider what unites and divides the Jewish people both historically and today.

Tefillin Barbie: Considering Gender and Ritual Garb

Using the provocative image of "Tefillin Barbie"—created in 2006 by soferet (ritual scribe) Jen Taylor Friedman—examine the relationship between gender, body image, and ritual garb.

Sharon Cohen Anisfeld

As dean of Hebrew College, Sharon Cohen Anisfeld has struck a rare balance between overseeing the seminary as a whole and connecting with each of her students on a personal level.

Jill Hammer

Jill Hammer co-founded the Kohenet Hebrew Priestess Institute to offer women alternative ways of connecting with Jewish tradition by focusing on the sacredness of the body and the earth.

Deborah Brin

Deborah Brin, one of the first openly gay rabbis, led the first prayer service for Women of the Wall at the Conference for the Empowerment of Jewish Women in 1988.
Marcia Falk

May You Be Blessed In All That You Are

Eliana Gayle-Schneider

Each Shabbat my parents bless me with the words, “Be who you are and may you be blessed in all that you are.” These words have been embedded in my mind as my family’s traditional blessing, signifying the start of Shabbat.  While other families bless their children saying, “May God make you like Sarah, Rebecca, Rachel, and Leah,” this alternative prayer has been our way of welcoming the Sabbath for as long as I can remember. 

Rivka Haut, 1942 - 2014

Rivka got me to other agunah rallies, including a pitiful one with five other women circling the tiny front yard of a Manhattan brownstone. It was my last agunah rally but not Rivka’s. She never gave up and never turned down a request for help. For her, it was about justice and compassion, not numbers.

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.

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.
Olivia Link's Bat Mitzvah

Discovering the Art of Prayer

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.

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