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In My Own Words: Symbols by Rabbi Rachel Esserman

When the U.S. Veterans Affairs first received complaints about gravestones with swastikas and references to Hitler in U.S. military cemeteries, it originally refused to remove the inscriptions, which are on the gravestones of German prisoners of war. Only after it received more complaints an…

From the Desk of the Federation Executive Director: With gratitude 7/3/20

I am typically not a procrastinator. I love to make a list and dutifully check off each item after it is accomplished. I even start each day by making my bed, a quick and easy accomplishment. Check! 

So, I find myself asking: why have I been procrastinating writing this op-ed? Truth be tol…

In My Own Words: Remembering Larry by Rabbi Rachel Esserman

July 2020 marks the 10th yahrzeit (anniversary of death) of my little brother Larry. He was six-and-a-half years younger than me and a very important part of my life from the time he was born until the day he died.

Larry was born with a hole in his heart and developmental disabilities, in h…

In My Own Words: Changing the police force by Rabbi Rachel Esserman

I grew up with mixed feelings about the police. On the one hand, I was told that the police were the ones who would help me if I was lost or in danger. On the other hand, music from the Broadway show “Fiorello,” which tells the story of Fiorello La Guardia, regularly played in our househ…

From the Desk of the Federation Executive Director: With gratitude 6/12/20

Disheartened, sad, angry and scared for the next generation: these are some of the feelings my neighbor and I discussed this morning. She was out walking her dog with tears in her eyes. “The world feels heavy right now,” I said to her. She nodded her agreement. Recreation Park was destro…