Author Archives: Jessica K. Shimberg

Balancing Zeal and Vision in a World in Need of Healing

a d’var Torah for Parashat Pinchas by Esther Azar Zeal — In this day many of us are fired up. It is easy to see the injustice. It shouts at us every time we open our Facebook feeds, it’s red face looks … Continue reading

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Celebrating the American Ideal through the Lens of Parshat Balak

In 21st Century America, many of us are acutely aware of living at the confluence of multiple identities. We have increasing opportunities to celebrate and proclaim our overlapping identities, due, in large part, to the freedom that has always lived at the … Continue reading

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See you at Sinai …

On Shavuot (beginning, this year, Tuesday evening, May 30th and continuing through Thursday), we celebrate what the rabbis called z’man matan Torateinu ~ the time our Torah was gifted. However, the roots of Shavuot in Torah relate to agriculture, not the … Continue reading

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Lag b’Omer ~ What Is It?

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Lag b’Omer … What is it? This is a question frequently asked, even by Jews, when mentioning the Jewish holiday of Lag b’Omer. To the English speaker, the first word sounds like “log” – the wood you place on a campfire. This auditory cue … Continue reading

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Honoring the Israeli State with Remembrance and Celebration

In central Ohio, this year, the Jewish community will gather at the JCC on Sunday, April 30, at 7 p.m. for Yom HaZikaron, and on Tuesday, May 2, at 6:30 p.m. for Yom HaAtzma’ut. Members of the Little Minyan Kehilla … Continue reading

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What Does it Mean to be Free? Responsibility … for the Freedom of Others

This is a crosspost from Faith in Public Life’s 100 Days of Justice (www.justice100.org), an initiative which partners with voices from diverse religious, racial, cultural backgrounds and LGTBQ  communities to widely share resources, stories and calls to action at both the national and … Continue reading

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Preparing to Embrace Freedom … Leaving Mitzrayim … and Leaving Home to Journey Home

A Pesach love-letter and l’hitra’ot/see you soon to my dear kehilla and it’s friends, followers, visitors … As evidenced by the extreme hiatus in posts on our Little Minyan Kehilla website, I have been on a “sabbatical” as Little Minyan’s … Continue reading

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Bringing Light into Dark Times ~ Ancient Tradition AND Modern Necessity

An extraordinarily bright and hope-filled invitation from Little Minyan Kehilla member Jodi Kushins to participate in this season of light with our brothers, sisters, cousins of multiple faith traditions which bring LIGHT into darkness when daylight becomes sparse in our hemisphere. … Continue reading

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Viewing “Interfaith” Family Formation through a Progressive Jewish Lens

Our Little Minyan Kehilla has always been a welcoming home to those of us who wrestle with what it means to be Jewish in 21st Century America. Many of us have both danced intimately, lovingly with Judaism and also found … Continue reading

Posted in Calendar, Family, Hagim/Holidays, Lifecycle Ritual, Mini Minyan, Spiritual Seeking, Tikkun Olam, Torah | Leave a comment

What Being a Jew Means to Me ~ Spiritual Activism and Repose

Just as no emergency room doctor ever hopes for an accident, no clergy person ever hopes for desperate times. And … I cannot help but notice the dramatic uptick in people seeking my spiritual services (both personal and communal) in … Continue reading

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