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Pilgrim Rest Baptist Church, Arizona’s largest African-American Baptist church, located in downtown Phoenix, will be opening its doors to members of Paradise Valley’s Congregation Beth Israel for its High Holiday services. The large, airy 2,500-seat church easily can accommodate the synagogu…

Beth Ami Temple of Paradise Valley is expected to reopen for the High Holidays in September after months of virtual services during the pandemic. Leadership labored over the decision given that the congregation is mostly geared towards seniors.

Stacy Rosenthal, Congregation Beth Israel’s senior director of education and youth engagement, has been working in Jewish education for nearly two decades and has held about every position there is. Now, she is one of several educators at the start of something new for Reform teens in Greate…

"Bet El synagogue Casablanca -torah scrolls" by dlisbona is licensed under CC BY 2.0

Before the COVID-19 pandemic, Rabbi Minna Bromberg’s work addressing weight stigma in Jewish communal spaces took her to a lot of synagogues. She was often bewildered when organizers provided her a chair that was too small. Getting people to acknowledge her body and their discomfort with it …

Emily Schwartz, a Temple Emanuel of Tempe board member, recently found herself on the verge of complaining about the customer service of a local eatery. Her “hangry, frustrated self” got online to issue a complaint on a restaurant’s website.

Rabbi Jeremy Schneider alerted Temple Kol Ami members on June 13, that there would be a change of plans. Cantor Rita Glassman, who was hired as interim cantor in mid-April, would not be coming after all.

As Rabbi Tracee Rosen was unloading boxes after arriving in Arizona in 2010, her new neighbor informed her that a local Reform congregation, Temple Gan Elohim, was looking for a rabbi. She and her family had relocated to Greater Phoenix to be closer to her mother-in-law, moving from Salt Lak…

Clockwise from top left: Rabbi Andy Green and his family, Rabbi Cookie Lea Olshein and Rabbi Jeffrey Lipschultz

The world looks different now than in 2019 — the year Arizona State University published the first study of the local Jewish community since 2002. Still, its findings have major implications for Jewish organizations and synagogues looking to engage more of the community.

B’nai mitzvah ceremonies have transformed during the COVID-19 pandemic from crowded affairs to limited gatherings of friends and family. Over the past year people have become used to watching a Haftorah reading via Zoom instead of inside a sanctuary.

In the last 12 months, the American Jewish community has faced rising anti-Semitism and two synagogue shootings — one of which left one person dead and the other 11. 

As the High Holiday sermons approach, congregations prepare for a large influx of attendants of all levels of observance. But sadly, not everyone is physically capable of attending those services. 

The High Holidays are an especially busy time for a rabbi, and it makes the preparation a high-pressure endeavor. Some rabbis prepares for Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur for several months, if not a year, in advance. But for the five new rabbis who made Phoenix their home this summer, there we…

Rabbi Ephraim Weiss’ passion as a rabbi is Jewish education. He believes that Jewish learning doesn’t and shouldn’t stop after Sunday school, but is something that continues every day. 

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