Closeup of people playing guitars

At Hava Nashira, you’ll learn from and collaborate with many of the same experts who led, taught, and brought you the Biennial worship, as well as so many other music and worship leaders from across our Movement.

Cantor Barbara Ostfeld smiles on stage as she accepts her award

Editor's note: The text that follows was presented before a live audience at the 2019 URJ Biennial on Wednesday, Dec. 11 as Cantor Barbara Ostfeld, the first woman to be ordained as a cantor, was presented with the 2019 Debbie Friedman Award for Contributions to Jewish Music. 

Rosh HaShanah flatlay with honey and pomegranates and apples

Typically, at some point in my work on this project, my wife will lean over my shoulder and ask me, in her own style, “So. How are the Jews this year?” Some years that is a difficult question to answer. This year the answer is clear: The Jews are afraid.

Mark J. Pelavin
Group of songleaders sitting outdoors at a summer camp holding guitars and wearing all white as if on Shabbat

With this in mind, here are the voices of two of our campers – both going on the Harlam in Israel trip this summer – on what the culture of camp has done for them. They are our songleaders and our youth group and confirmation class leaders, and they inspire our kids in so many ways.

Rabbi Yair Robinson
Rabbi Rick Jacobs on stage with the Torah during Shabbat morning services at the URJ Biennial

This d'var Torah for Parashah Vayeishev was presented before the 74th Union for Reform Judaism Biennial convention on Saturday, December 9. 

Rabbi Rick Jacobs
Red and white striped sneakers and jean-clad legs at the starting line as seen from overhead

As I chronicle my journey from Orthodox feminist to Reform rabbi, I would like to explore what it means to be a Jewish woman, and what it means to be a human being.

Elana Sztokman
White heart-shaped flowers hanging from a stem

Selichot is the overture for our High Holidays, a chance to focus on meaning, tradition, faith, and striving to reach that spot in the heart where no one else can go.

Rabbi Stacy Offner
Butcher paper that reveals words through a tear: What's your story?

Inviting people to share memories of interesting, meaningful experiences in their lives – especially on Yom Kippur – always proves to inspire others.

Rabbi Stephen Lewis Fuchs
Man and woman playing guitars and singing while leading worship services

Once the High Holidays are over, I’m often left wondering what we can we do to get people back into the sanctuary before the next Rosh HaShanah rolls around.

Cantor Lizzie Weiss
Cantorial Soloist Tara Abrams and Rabbi Benjie Gruber on the pulpit

Learn what happened when a Canadian congregation hired an Israeli rabbi to fill in when their own rabbi took a sabbatical.

Rabbi Benjie Gruber and Tara Abrams