Synagogues/Temples

Content type
Collection
Statue of Maimonides in Córdoba, Spain

Jewishness Itself is a Home

Isadora Kianovsky

Over the course of my semester abroad, I realized that, even though I wasn’t at home, I wasn’t without a home, either.

Berlin "Stumbling Stone" to commemorate Holocaust victim with rose and sign reading "never again" placed on top

I Visited Six European Jewish Communities to Explore My Own Identity

Zia Saylor

My travels in Europe helped me reconcile some of the tensions in my Jewish identity.

Two women on the bima at synagogue

Learning to Find My Own Path, Like My Great-Grandfather and Avraham Before Me

Davi Cheng

When my great-grandfather embarked on his journey, he couldn’t have known he would one day inspire his great-granddaughter to become a Jew.

Episode 74: A Half-Century of Women Rabbis

Fifty years ago, Rabbi Sally Priesand made history by becoming the first woman rabbi in America. In this episode of Can We Talk?, women rabbis from three Jewish denominations reflect on the milestone. We speak with Rabbi Dianne Cohler-Esses, Rabba Sara Hurwitz, and Rabbi Sandra Lawson about the challenges they’ve faced, and about how their presence in the rabbinate is shaping the Jewish community. This is the final episode in our three-part anniversary series.

Episode 72: Ezrat Nashim Confronts the Rabbis

Fifty years ago, a group of young Jewish women piled into two cars and drove to upstate New York to crash the annual meeting of the all-male Rabbinical Assembly of the Conservative movement. They called themselves Ezrat Nashim and they had a set of demands that included the right to be counted in a minyan, lead religious services, and attend rabbinical school. Their brief but brave action had ripple effects across American Jewish communities.

Collage of Outlined Abstract Images: Face with Tear Drop, Candlesticks, Challah

Grief Made Me an Outsider, but Shabbat Drew Me In: How Judaism Helps Me Make Sense of Loss

Amelia Posner-Hess

Shabbat at synagogue was the one place where my grief belonged, where I belonged, after my my dad died. 

Episode 71: Bat Mitzvah at 100

On March 18, 1922, Judith Kaplan made history when she stood in front of her Manhattan congregation and had America's first bat mitzvah ceremony. Judith's bat mitzvah was groundbreaking at the time, but it didn't look like most bat mitzvahs today. In this episode of Can We Talk?, producer Jen Richler talks with Professor Carole Balin about how the bat mitzvah has evolved over the past century, and how girls and their parents have pushed for that evolution. Carole is working on a book based on interviews with dozens of women, representing many decades of bat mitzvah history.

Collage of Images From Georgia Fried's Bat Mitzvah

Fighting to Include the Imahot at My B'nai Mitzvah

Georgia Fried

I decided that I, a thirteen year old, would convince the rabbi of my synagogue to change a rule no one else had successfully challenged.

The Intimacy Experiment Book Cover (cropped)

Finally, a Positive, Feminist Jewish Take on Sex

Zia Saylor

This new book offers a sex-positive perspective often lacking in Jewish spaces.

Neo-Nazis holding Vax the Jews banner in Austin

When Those Charged with Protecting Us from Bigotry Are Racist

Emily-Rose Baker

Structural racism in the US military and police has undermined the fight against antisemitism.

Episode 68: Beyond the Count: Talking to Jews of Color

"What would it be like if we could daven and engage in Jewish life without having to endure racism?" says Ilana Kaufman, Executive Director of the Jews of Color Initiative. In a recent survey of Jews of Color by Ilana's organization, most respondents report facing racism and discrimination in majority white Jewish communal settings, and they don't think Jewish leadership is doing enough about it.

Collage of Zoom Youth Phone-Banking Call Screenshot and Shabbat Candles, Pomegranate Symbol

The Power of Jewish Community: From Synagogue Services to Zoom Phone-Banking

Maddie Feldman

To this day, I’m astounded by congregants’ enthusiasm as they hopped on weekly—and eventually daily—Zoom voter phone-banking sessions.

Episode 65: Regendering the Torah (Transcript)

Episode 65: Regendering the Torah (Transcript)

Young Women Praying at the Wall

Create a Space for Women to Pray in Our Synagogues

Rena Kosowsky

As a Modern Orthodox Jew, prayer spaces for women (or lack thereof) in synagogues I've attended have made me feel like an outsider in my own religious space.

Partnership Minyan

The Partnership Minyan is an Orthodox feminist prayer service that seeks to maximize women’s involvement in prayers while adhering to Jewish law, or halakha, by placing the bima (podium) in the middle and allowing women to lead select sections, although women do not count as part of the quorum of ten men. There are currently over 80 Partnership Minyanim around the world.

Sarah Rodrigues Brandon

Sarah Rodrigues Brandon (1798-1828) was born poor, enslaved, and Christian on the island of Barbados. By the time of her death thirty years later she was one of the wealthiest Jews in New York and her family were leaders in Congregation Shearith Israel. This entry explains Sarah’s life journey and highlights how her story relates to that of other women of mixed African and Jewish ancestry in early America.

Small Shabbat candles

Grounding in Ritual: Shabbat During Coronavirus

Isabel Hoffman

Even after the hardest, most boring, or most heart-wrenching weeks, Shabbat is calmly awaiting me at the end.

Rising Voices Fellow Mica Maltzman with Her Temple Youth Group

My Place at the Synagogue Board's Table

Mica Maltzman

As president of the youth group, I was a full-fledged member of my synagogue’s board. The chair had no power to evict me from the room.

"Untitled" by Sonia Delaunay, 1917

Each Time I Enter the Synagogue: A Teen on Antisemitic Gun Violence

Madeline Canfield

My reaction to antisemitic gun violence is not one of fear, but of alertness to a threat far more normalized for me than for my elders.

Donate

Help us elevate the voices of Jewish women.

donate now

Get JWA in your inbox