January 7, 2021
Dear WRT Family,

It is written in Pirkei Avot:

רַבָּן שִׁמְעוֹן בֶּן גַּמְלִיאֵל אוֹמֵר, עַל שְׁלשָׁה דְבָרִים הָעוֹלָם עוֹמֵד, עַל הַדִּין וְעַל הָאֱמֶת וְעַל הַשָּׁלוֹם, שֶׁנֶּאֱמַר (זכריה ח) אֱמֶת וּמִשְׁפַּט שָׁלוֹם שִׁפְטוּ בְּשַׁעֲרֵיכֶם

Rabban Shimon ben Gamaliel used to say: on three things does the world stand: "On justice, on truth and on peace, as it is said: 'Execute the judgment of truth and peace in your gates' (Zechariah 8:16)."

As I compose this message at 3:00 PM on Wednesday, I, like many of you, are watching, with alarm, the scene unfolding in our nation's capital. Let us here affirm our Jewish tradition's wisdom: Rabban Gamaliel understood that civil society must rest on shared, civic commitments to Justice, Truth, and Peace. Without these, the world as we know it cannot stand.

I join you in anxiously watching this precarious situation unfold, and we will continue to monitor these disconcerting developments. As we do, let us draw strength and solidarity from the knowledge that, no matter our political party or preferences, we all care deeply about our country. Let us draw confidence from the knowledge that, no matter how we, as Reform Jews, individually understand and practice our faith, we all can draw strength, solace, and unity from the wellspring of timeless Jewish values. 

To that end, WRT will continue to provide a strong, Jewish, moral voice advocating unceasingly for the preservation of Justice, Truth, and Peace in our venerable and cherished American republic. Even as I write to you during the first days of my winter study sabbatical, please know that my colleagues, the rabbis and cantors of our WRT clergy team, remain on call to offer pastoral care and wisdom to guide us. We hope you will join our online Shabbat worship tomorrow evening at 6:15 pm where our prayers for justice, truth, and peace will be amplified, providing us with a common source of guidance in these uncertain times.

L'Shalom - with my personal prayers for peace,
Worship
Shabbat Evening Service
Friday, January 8 at 6:15 pm

Our evening Kabbalat Shabbat worship takes place every Friday at 6:15 pm. Participate alongside fellow congregants via Zoom (passcode: Shabbat). Or join us on any of our live-streaming platforms: Facebook, YouTube, or StreamSpot
Upcoming at WRT
Great Israeli Poets with Professor Rachel Korazim, Ph.D.
Thursdays, January 7 and 14 at 2:00 pm (via Zoom)
Tuesday, January 12 at 2:00 pm


Renowned Professor of Israeli Literature, Dr. Rachel Korazim, presents the great Israeli poets. Class is taught in English, over Zoom, featuring performances by Israeli musicians. Join an international audience for any/all of these fascinating sessions. Dr. Korazim appeared at WRT, to much acclaim, as Scholar-in-Residence in 2016. Program is scheduled for every Tuesday and Thursday. Watch the eblast and calendar for dates.
Torah Study
Saturdays, January 9, 16 and 23 at 9:00 am
(via Zoom)

Each Shabbat morning we gather informally to read and discuss the week’s Torah portion. The group is led by volunteers, with clergy participation. The morning begins with a brief Shabbat service at which mourners who wish to say Kaddish are warmly welcomed. No prior experience with Torah is necessary; just come as you are, with an open mind!
torah-reading.jpg
Yoga @WRT: Movement, Music and Meditation
Saturday, January 9 at 9:00 am (via Zoom)
Meeting ID: 834 5846 1368 Passcode: yoga
 
Congregant and certified yoga teacher Stephanie Simon’s Shabbat Yoga class is infused with Jewish spirituality. Join us virtually for these monthly sessions of movement, music and meditation. All are welcome, so invite a friend to join us in this experience! (Please have a yoga mat/towel and blanket for practice.) For questions and to RSVP, please contact Stephanie at sbsnamaste@gmail.com. 
Rosh Chodesh 5781
Led by Cantor Amanda Kleinman
Tuesday, January 12 at 11:30 am (via Zoom)
 
We will be reading and discussing The Color of Love: A Story of a Mixed-Race Jewish Girl, by Marra Gad. A memoir about Gad’s experience as a Jewish woman of color, and about how she navigated experiences of racism in her community and in her own family. This year will provide us an opportunity to discuss issues of diversity and race within the Jewish community through the lens of the experiences of women. Click here for login information. 
Living with Divorce Support Group
Tuesday, January 12 at 7:00 pm (via Zoom)
 
WRT is committed to embracing and supporting people as they live through divorce and single parenting, and find their new family rituals in the face of that change. Rabbi Levy and Jane Slevin, LMFT (Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist) from Westchester Jewish Community Service, lead our monthly support group. Wherever you are in the journey of Divorce or Single Parenting we welcome you. RSVP to Suzanne.saperstein@wrtemple.org.
Bereavement Support Group
Wednesday, January 13 at 6:00 pm (via Zoom)
 
A monthly support and discussion group led by Jane Slevin, LMFT (Licensed Marriage and Family Therapist), and Cantor Laura Stein, LMSW. Jane is our skilled and caring partner from Westchester Jewish Community Services, and Cantor Laura Stein is a social worker who specializes in spiritual care. Find comfort in community and caring discussion, and process feelings of loss in a sacred Jewish context. Please RSVP to Suzanne.Saperstein@wrtemple.org. 
Rachel Feinstein: Maiden, Mother, Crone
Thursday, January 14 at 11:00 am (via Zoom)

Tour three decades of artist Rachel Feinstein’s work currently on exhibit at The Jewish Museum in NYC. From Feinstein’s earliest to her most recent works, female figures and protagonists dominate — a distinguishing feature of both the artist’s practice and this exhibition. Feinstein probes how notions of “the feminine” manifest in the popular imagination, an investigation that pulses through and binds together Maiden, Mother, Crone. There is no charge for the program, but you do need to register here. Sponsored by WRJ.
And She Said: Women’s Commentaries on the Bible
Led by Ariel Milan-Polisar, WRT Rabbinic Intern
Friday, January 15 at 11:00 am (via Zoom)
 
This class will use The Torah: A Women’s Commentary, Nehama Leibowitz’s interpretations, and Judith Plaskow’s philosophy to understand important Biblical passages from the feminine and feminist perspectives. This class is for everyone—those new to Torah study and those more experienced with it. This program is open to the community, however we do require everyone to register in advance to receive login information. Click here for login information. 
Stephen Wilkes Photography Tour
Tuesday, January 19 at 12:00 noon (via Zoom)

Join Cantor Rodnizki and the FreeBirds for an exciting tour of a Chelsea art gallery led by Art on the Edge, featuring work by Stephen Wilkes. Presented by the FreeBirds. A portion of the fee will be donated to the WRT Hungry and Homeless Fund. $54 per Zoom link. Click here to register.
Evening Book Group
Tuesday, January 19 at 7:30 pm (via Zoom)
 
This month's book is “The Paris Architect" by Charles Belfoure. Interested in joining the evening book group? Once a month (usually Tuesdays) the group meets for review and discussion on the month’s selected title. For more login information, please contact Lenore Rosenbaum at papoobeads@optonline.net.  
Jews and Blacks in the Civil Rights Era and Now:
Midrash and Fact 
Thursday, January 21 at 7:00 pm (via Zoom)

Join Rabbi Levy and the FreeBirds for a discussion led by Billy Planer, from Etgar 36, about racism and interracial relationships. Explore the reality of the relationship between the Jewish and Black communities during the Civil Rights era. Presented by the FreeBirds. A portion of the fee will be donated to the WRT Hungry and Homeless Fund. $54 per Zoom link. Click here to register.
WRJ's Mussar Meditation
led by Sasha Baken, rabbinical student
Friday, January 22 at 12:00 pm (via Zoom)
 
In this class, we will explore Mussar as a spiritual perspective as well as a discipline of transformative practices. Mussar asks that we engage in thoughtful interaction with our soul traits (middot). These include qualities such as humility, generosity, trust and many others. We will examine lessons from Jewish scripture and apply techniques like journaling, chanting and meditating as methods to balance our middot. Sponsored by WRJ. Open to the community. Please click here to register.  
Shabbat New Baby Blessing
Friday, January 22 at 6:15 pm

Every January, we take the opportunity to bless all the new babies who were born in the past year. While we cannot conduct this service in person, we invite you to be part of a Virtual WRT Friday Night Shabbat Service. This is a milestone in your family’s life and we want to connect with you and welcome your new addition into the world and into the WRT community. Please RSVP here, so we can anticipate how many families will join us for our Shabbat service that evening. We look forward to blessing all of our newest additions.
Racial Justice Working Group -- reading group discussion
Monday, January 25 at 7:30 pm (via Zoom)
Meeting ID: 966 7641 3087 Passcode: a8Dud6
 
Join WRT's Racial Justice Working Group for conversation about the books and articles that members of the group have been reading together. Please contact Rabbi Daniel Reiser at rabbi.reiser@wrtemple.org for more information.
G’milut Chasadim (Acts of Kindness)
Cooking4HOPE
Our volunteers who pack, bake, drive and contribute have shown care by providing 12,000 lunch and snack bags and 800 hot meals to our neighbors in four Westchester communities this past year. If you can volunteer, please contact yoel.magid@gmail.com. Remember The Hungry and Homeless Fund, our fund allows us to provide to those in need of hope.


Clothing Donations are needed for Community Center of Northern Westchester; outerwear, sweaters, hoodies, scarves, gloves for children and adults. Deliver donations on Sunday, January 10 to (NOT AT WRT) 65 Hutchinson Blvd, Scarsdale. We will also accept diapers, canned fruit, vegetables, soups, tuna, chicken and rice, no glass containers please.
Jewish Learning Lab and Early Childhood Center
Pre-Shabbat Song Session for Grades K-2 and families!
Friday, January 8 at 4:00 pm
All our K-2nd Grade learners and their friends are invited to join with Cantor Kleinman, Cantorial Intern Isaac Sonett-Assor and Song Leader Kayla Gitlin to bring in Shabbat each week. Join the zoom meeting here:
·        Join Zoom Meeting
·        Meeting ID: 938 7063 8534  Passcode: 5vhXD6
You can also join on Facebook Live or WRT's YouTube Channel.
ECC registration for the 2021-2022 year is ongoing
Limited space available. Please email Ellen.rosenberg@wrtemple.org for further registration information. Contact Sue Tolchin, ECC Director at sue.tolchin@wrtemple.org or Rebecca Roseman, ECC Assistant Director at rebecca.roseman@wrtemple.org, for any additional questions 
child-finger-painting.jpg
For WRT members: If you would like to receive notifications of birth announcements and deaths within the WRT community, please email receptionist@wrtemple.org with your full name and email address. Please specify if you would like to be added to one or both of these notification lists. 

Online Learning
Looking for other ways to connect with and learn from your clergy? We are happy to share recordings of our adult education classes and other engaging experiences on WRT's very own YouTube Channel - please click here.
Westchester Reform Temple is committed to the value of inclusion, and strives to make worship and programming fully accessible. Our building and bima are wheelchair accessible, and the sanctuary is equipped with assistive listening devices and large-print prayer books. ASL interpretation is available for any worship service upon request, and remote viewing of most services is available via webcasting from our website. If you need any additional accommodations to participate in a temple program, please contact Cantor Amanda Kleinman.
WJCS [Westchester Jewish Community Services]: Through the Partners in Caring Program, WRT is able to offer the support of an onsite Social Worker from WJCS, as well as offer social services to congregants in need.
UJA-Federation of NY: We are grateful for a special grant to enable and empower WRT to be the most inclusive congregation we can be. UJA-Federation also facilitates our partnership with the Jewish Deaf Resource Center, to provide ASL interpretation on demand at services and WRT programs.
URJ [Union for Reform Judaism]: Our Reform Movement's synagogue arm; WRT is a proud member of the URJ and celebrates the leadership of URJ President, WRT Rabbi Emeritus Rick Jacobs.

HUC-JIR [Hebrew Union College - Jewish Institute of Religion]: WRT supports the HUC-JIR, the official training ground for Reform Jewish professionals.
URJ North East Camps: Join us at Crane Lake Camp, Eisner Camp or 6 Points Sci-Tech for an unforgettable summer of discovery and fun. Become a better athlete, artist or scientist while making lifelong friends. Be part of a community of kindness where self-esteem blossoms and Jewish life is truly joyous.