Clergy Sermons

At Central Synagogue

Sermons from October 2016

Peter J. Rubinstein
Catching Up to Prophets (Rosh HaShanah 5777)

Peter J. Rubinstein  |  October 4, 2016

The history of humankind is littered with broken hearts and shattered hopes of people who sadly placed their confidence in a trusted savior, someone who promised that they alone held the key to our redemption and salvation, that they were the one, whether in the financial or political or religious world, who without nuance would lead us to unfettered peace, prosperity, and power.

Stephanie D. Kolin
All Hands On Deck: A Journey Toward the World as it Ought to Be (Rosh HaShanah 5777)

Stephanie D. Kolin  |  October 3, 2016

We are a community who prays together, who celebrates our greatest joys together, who grieves together, who feeds the hungry together, who studies Torah together. Imagine what could be possible as a community who acts together to address the shared challenges we face and to impact the most pressing issues of our day.

Rabbi Lisa Rubin
Welcoming the Stranger (Rosh HaShanah 5777)

Rabbi Lisa Rubin  |  October 3, 2016

Every encounter carries the potential to create a Jewish future. Of course that’s not the only reason we should be kind. We never know what effect we are having on someone in the long term. But we know what a lifeline friendliness and warmth can be in the short term. We must personify being a light unto the nations because it is commanded of us as Jews, and demanded of those of us who are Jewish professionals. It takes nothing away from us to be open and welcoming. A candle flame can light a million other candles and never itself be diminished.

Rabbi Nicole Auerbach
Stepping Back/Stepping Up (Rosh HaShanah 5777)

Rabbi Nicole Auerbach  |  October 3, 2016

If you ask many Reform Jews about the role of Jews in the civil rights movement, they will refer to the iconic photo of Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel marching with Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr., and his statement that at that moment, he felt like his feet were praying...I hate to break it to you, but it is highly unlikely that any of us is going to be the next Heschel. If we wait for the opportunity to be there at an iconic, historic, moment in history, we will miss our chance to create change. Images like that become iconic only in retrospect, and if we wait to act until we feel like we can be part of something great, we will miss out on the chance to do something good.

Angela W. Buchdahl
Chosen to Be The Other (Rosh HaShanah 5777)

Angela W. Buchdahl  |  October 2, 2016

With apologies to Rabbi Hillel, if I had to sum up the entirety of our Jewish teaching while standing on one foot, I would say: You were a Stranger, therefore love the Stranger as Yourself. All the rest is commentary. Go and learn it.

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