Date(s) - 10/29/2021
6:30 pm - 8:30 pm
Welcome back to Rabbi Debra Smith!
Tonight’s topic: Chayei Sarah: Remembering Judaism’s customs on loss and mourning
Zoom meeting info will go out to members; guests, please email the office to receive it, or watch on Facebook Live – https://www.facebook.com/rabbimarc.labowitz
Rabbi Debra Smith (“Reb Deb”) is the founder and spiritual leader of Congregation Or Ha Lev, a virtual Jewish Renewal Community, formerly physically located in New Jersey. She is also a Clinical Social Worker and Multicultural Family Therapist.
Reb Deb received smicha (rabbinic ordination) from ALEPH, the Alliance for Jewish Renewal. She is also an ordained Maggidah (Jewish Storyteller). The focus of Reb Deb’s rabbinic work is Deep Ecumenism and multi-faith dialogue. As a multi-faith activist, she currently serves as co-chair of the NJ Muslim-Jewish Solidarity Committee and is co-chair of the Morris County 1 NJ chapter of the Sisterhood of Salaam-Shalom.
Reb Deb co-facilitates Jewish-Christian dialogue sessions and Jewish-Muslim dialogues with local pastors and imams. She has developed and is teaching, with a Muslim colleague, an online course in Muslim-Jewish Leadership, for ALEPH: The Alliance for Jewish Renewal.
In addition to serving as Rabbi of Congregation Or Ha Lev, Reb Deb is the Rabbi-in-Residence at the Drew University Methodist Theological Seminary in Madison, NJ. She is on the faculty of the ALEPH Ordination Program where she teaches Pastoral Counseling and Clergy Ethics.
She is the author of Every Tallit Tells a Tale, which teaches about the history and evolution of the tallit (prayer shawl) and shares 75 stories about the tallit from many contributors throughout the country and as far away as Israel. She is also the author and editor of a collection of original multi-faith prayers, poems and blessings from more than 40 contributors, Words from the Heart, released this past summer.
Reb Deb has been nationally recognized for her work as an ethicist and ethics educator in the field of social work, and is a recipient of the NASW (National Association of Social Workers) Trailblazer Award in the field of professional ethics.
She is married for more than 45 years to Neil Smith, a now retired physician and mohel, and is the mother of two married daughters, Elana and Dana. Reb Deb and Neil make their home in Parsippany, NJ and in Delray Beach.