When confronted with the first of many “shelter at home” quarantine orders, many houses of worship struggled with a perplexing dilemma: Who are we if we couldn’t be together? The story of one synagogue’s journey to answer that question illustrates the power of perspective and the potential of pushing through uncertainty into the unknown.
Responding to a Disruptive Marketplace for synagogues: The choice is pretty clear: Kehillat Netflix or Beit Blockbuster. Which one will your synagogue become? Kehillat Netflix takes its name from a company that openly and confidently takes chances, risks failure, goes up against conventional wisdom, constantly pivots strategically, and thus has so far ensured both its survival and its success. Beit Blockbuster closed down.
In a speech at Hebrew Union-College-Jewish Institute of Religion, Or Ami congregant Seth Front kvells about the positive impact that Congregation Or Ami interns and rabbis have had on their daughter Amanda.
A year after the Borderline shooting and the SoCal fires, we reflect on the first person experiences, and explore Torah's insistence that we take action in the face of danger, including mass shootings and changes in climate.
Where do I find a minyan in Disneyland when I need to say Kaddish for my father? Outside It’s a Small World, after all! There, my students ensured I had a community for Kaddish.
A video that explores what it feels like to be a mourner, featuring my poem - The Secret Life of a Mourner.
A video that explores what to say to a mourner. Of particular significance for me since my father Ken Kipnes died.
Imagine having to make this decision: to fly home to hold your wife’s hand as she buries her mom on the West Coast or to remain on the East Coast to oversee the diagnosis and care of your mother who just had a major stroke. What would you do?
Be a Mensch, that's what Or Ami's innovative parenting and pre-K to 6th grade learning program is all about. Mensch-ify my Kid, Mensch-ify my Home, Mensch-ify my Playground.
How might synagogues and Jewish communities respond to the needs of teens to express their inner turmoil and to learn new techniques for managing stress and emotional exhaustion?
Rabbinic Student Elana Nemintoff reflects on the role of the rabbi during the immediate responses by Congregation Or Ami, Calabasas, to the Woolsey fire.
When the fires hit in southern california, we took 10 Community-Restoring Actions that helped our congregants, community and ourselves.
Facing the trauma after the fires. If it can happen to the rabbi, it can happen to you too...
In the aftermath of the shooting in Thousand Oaks, Congregation Or Ami sent these resources - for solace, support, action and talking to kids - to all our congregants.
The rabbis and cantor of Congregation Or Ami sent this letter about sexual violence to our adult congregants, our 9th-12th graders, recent high school graduates (18-22 year olds), and our faculty. We also sent a note to parents of 7th-12th graders with suggestions on conversations with their children.