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In My Own Words: Freedom to, freedom from

By Rabbi Rachel Esserman

“Congress shall make no law respecting an establishment of religion, or prohibiting the free exercise thereof; or abridging the freedom of speech, or of the press; or the right of the people peaceably to assemble, and to petition the Government for a redress of gr…

From the Desk of the Federation Executive Director: With Gratitude 8/26/22

By Shelley Hubal

Wikipedia includes in its description of upstate New York the following: “A cheeky joke among Manhattanites is that anything north of 14th Street is ‘Upstate.’” I would also say that most people from New York City believe there are few Jews living upstate.

Last we…

In My Own Words: American history

By Rabbi Rachel Esserman

When I was in college during the 1970s, a non-Jewish friend worked as an intern for a non-profit organization in Washington, DC. During one of my visits, we decided to do some sightseeing. Since it wasn’t far from where she worked, we went to the offices of B’na…

From the Desk of the Federation Executive Director: With Gratitude 7/29/22

By Shelley Hubal

“Power comes from above and legitimacy comes from below.” – Frederick M. Lawrence 

I recently attended the Anti-Defamation League’s annual Supreme Court Review. During his opening statement, Frederick M. Lawrence shared the above concept about power and legitimac…

In My Own Words: “God loves me”

By Rabbi Rachel Esserman

“God loves you. I want to hear you say, ‘God loves me.’ Yes, out loud. ‘God loves me.’” I’ve only said this to one person, someone I felt needed to hear it. Those words were said in the context of the chaplaincy work I do with individuals who have dev…