Save the Dates: “Reclaiming and Renewing Our (Reform Jewish) Heritage”

Please join us for this year’s March conference on the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion‘s Cincinnati campus.  The Society and the College are celebrating our fourth year of partnership

A Purim Reading: Celebrating the Triumph of Good over Evil

This month we celebrate Purim, a holiday that commemorates the deliverance of the Jewish people from the tyrant Haman in ancient Persia.  Haman, a high-ranking official in King Ahasuerus’ court,

Abraham Lincoln, a “Jewish Saint”

One of the most critically acclaimed movies of the year is Lincoln.  It has been nominated for 12 academy awards, including nominations of Daniel Day Lewis for best actor, Tony Kushner for

Is it “kosher” to put Chanukah lights up on our house?

This is a blog written by Rabbi Howard Berman on My husband comes from a Christian family, but we’ve decided to raise our family Jewish. With Chanukah coming up,

Reflections for Thanksgiving Day 2012

  One of the most important aspects of the shared observance of Thanksgiving Day in our nation is the fact that Americans from many different religious traditions and cultural backgrounds

The High Holy Day Experience From the Perspective of Classical Reform Judaism

One of the most distinctive dimensions of the High Holy Days in our tradition is that among the major observances of the Jewish calendar, Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur are

Announcing the Publication of the Union Prayer book

We are proud to announce the publication of a new revision of this important work – a true Union Prayer Book for the twenty-first century, prepared by Chicago Sinai Congregation

The Kippah and Reform Judaism | Guest Blog by Kyle Stidham

In Reform Judaism, both men and women can choose to wear or not to wear a kippah (or yarmulke). Our personal choice depends on the meaning each of us attaches to this familiar custom. One of our contributors, Kyle Stidham, writes a very thoughtful and thought-provoking piece about why he stopped wearing a kippah. He looks into Classical Reform history, Jewish ethnicity, his own reasoning, and into his soul tomake his decision. We hope you enjoy this excellent piece on the subject.

The Kippah (and why it’s staying off)

by Kyle Stidham

I post regularly on a Facebook forum dedicated to the discussion of issues relevant to the Society for Classical Reform Judaism. If you don’t already know about the Society, in short, it’s an organization aiming to not just preserve the best that Classical Reform Jewish heritage has to offer, but also to revive those aspects of Classical Reform that many in our larger community have let fall by the wayside.

In late March, I made a post about my struggle with outward expressions of Jewish identity – specifically, my struggle with the timeless Reform question: to Kippah, or not to Kippah? …as I study and involve myself more with our Classical Reform heritage, I find that I have a deeper connection to my Judaism, and to God.

For the last year, I’ve worn a kippah regularly, inside the temple and out. But as I develop more of a relationship with the minhag that I have embraced, I find that my wearing of the kippah has less to do with my faith, and more to do with my culture and ethnicity. But even this isn’t a very clear-cut factor….

SCRJ to Release New CD for the High Holy Days

Building on the success of our first compact disc, “Come O Sabbath Day” , the Society for Classical Reform Judaism is about to release our second recording – “Open the Gates Unto Us: Music for the High Holy Days in the Tradition of Classical Reform Judaism.” Our SCRJ Board member, Cantor Aaron Kaplan of Boynton Beach, Florida, compiled this great program from live recordings of Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur Services at Chicago Sinai Congregation, Temple Sinai of New Orleans, and Temple Emanu-El, New York . Read More…

AN EXPANDING VISION The SCRJ Launches Historic Outreach in Israel

The Society held its First Annual Institute on Classical Reform Judaism at the Jerusalem campus of the Hebrew Union College – Jewish Institute of Religion on March 19-24, 2012. This