What's New

Montclair Israeli Dance Project

The Montclair Israeli Dance Project is a coming-together of the greater Montclair community to celebrate Israeli culture, get some exercise, and enjoy each other's company (perhaps with some dessert and wine afterward). With a fabulous professional instructor, it promises to be great fun. Women, men, and teens are all encouraged to attend. The kick-off event, which is free, will be on Sunday, Oct. 21st at 7:00 pm at Bnai Keshet. Starting November 4th, the sessions will be on the first and third Sundays of the month, also at 7:00 at BK, for $10. No talent? No worry. Come anyway! It's not a performance -- it's fun and community. Give it a shot. You might surprise yourself and like it. Spread the word and bring your friends. Everyone is welcome.

Guest Speaker Sara Cullinane

Friday, September 28 at 6:30 pm

Join us for the Shabbat of Sukkot as we hear from Sara Cullinane, Esq., the director and co-founder of Make the Road New Jersey, a grassroots, membership-based organization that builds the power of immigrant and working class communities to achieve dignity and respect through community organizing, legal services, policy innovation, and transformative education.

Previously, Sara was a staff attorney and Equal Justice Works fellow at Make the Road New York. She holds a JD from NYU School of Law, where she was a Root-Tilden-Kern public service scholar and clerked on the Immigration Subcommittee of the U.S. House Judiciary Committee. Sara worked as a community and labor organizer for five years before law school. Sara is co-chair of the New Jersey Alliance for Immigrant Justice and served as co-chair for Governor Murphy's Law and Justice Transition Advisory Committee. She is an Adjunct Assistant Professor of Public Service at NYU's Robert F. Wagner Graduate School of Public Service.

A Message from Cantor Meredith Greenberg

L’Shana Tova!

The New Year has indeed arrived, and what a nourishing beginning it has been!

The days we set aside to congregate and celebrate are not frivolous and they are not extra, they are essential. Yet something fools us into believing only the solemn occasions are of real value. Nonsense! It takes real courage to smile and mean it, to embrace another person and linger in that warmth, and to look deep into our own souls and say yes to the fullness of who we are.

In fact, the Sages teach us that if we really let the Shefa / God’s loving energy flow reach into our hearts during Rosh Hashanah then we are that much more ready to do the next important step of t’shuva.

We have tasted the sweetness of the New Year. God willing, we have become so intoxicated by her abundant potential that the work of t’shuva, that of turning to the brokenness that needs repair, and to the returning to the holiness that dwells in each of us as a source of healing, is welcome to us.

It is for that reason that the entirety of this coming Shabbat, the one that bridges Rosh Hashanah to Yom Kippur, is dedicated to uncovering one’s personal practice of t’shuva.

In the introduction to the book, ‘Mindful Jewish living, Compassionate Practice’ by Rabbi Jonathan P. Slater, who was our Scholar-in-Residence this past Shavuot, he teaches on how the joining of mindfulness practice and Jewish observance of ritual and study can help us with the work of t’shuva.

"T’shuva- Return to the truth of the moment.

Our capacity to wake up again and again to the wonder of being alive is a process of t’shuva since it brings us back to an awareness of God. Our willingness to look carefully at the working of our hearts and minds, to know fully the depths of our pain or the heights of our pride, offers us the possibility of overcoming grief and seeing all others as ourselves."

Some of us get there by journaling, others by unburdening our hearts of our secret shames with another, others still through meditation, chant, prayer, and study. T’shuva begins by discovering what the right combination is for you, but no matter the vehicle once we arrive at Yom Kippur we must be ready to both ask to be forgiven and to allow our hearts to forgive others. So let’s get started this Shabbat!

The Shabbat evening service, led by Rabbi Katz and Ronni Pressman, will begin at 8:00 pm followed by a community Oneg Shabbat.

The Shabbat morning service will begin at 10:00 am and will be led by Cantor Greenberg and Rabbi Katz in a contemplative mode of chant, meditation, and Torah study. A Shabbat luncheon, sponsored by Steve Lee and Mary D’Agostino, and Torah Tish with Rabbi Katz, will immediately follow.

G'mar Chatima Tova,

Cantor Greenberg

Lunch With the Rabbi

Join with Rabbi Marc Katz on the 2nd Tuesday of each month (October through June) at the synagogue to discuss the book, “There Shall Be No Needy: Pursuing Social Justice Through Jewish Law and Tradition”, by Rabbi Jill Jacobs.

Rabbi Jill Jacobs is Executive Director of T'ruah: The Rabbinic Call for Human Rights. Widely acknowledged as one of the leading voices in Jewish social justice, Rabbi Jacobs is also the author of Where Justice Dwells: A Hands-On Guide to Doing Social Justice in Your Jewish Community. She has been voted to the Forward newspaper's list of fifty influential Jews, to Newsweek's list of the fifty most influential rabbis in America, and to the Jewish Week's list of "thirty-six under thirty-six."

Bring your own dairy or pareve lunch. Lunch will start at noon followed by a class from 12:30 to 1:30 pm. 

Registration can be done through the Member Portal. You can also email Laurie Schifano to register. Click here to purchase the book.

Wise Aging

Wise Aging is a groundbreaking program specifically designed to meet the social, spiritual and emotional needs of older members of our synagogue community. Bnai Keshet and Temple Ner Tamid are offering a daytime group, beginning in October, for members of both congregations. We are excited about this collaborative venture.

Developed by Rabbi Rachel Cowan, z”l, and Dr. Linda Thal, based on their book Wise Aging: Living with Joy, Resilience and Spirit, this eight-session series is a reflective way to contemplate aging and develop personal practices to enhance this stage of life within a small group of fellow congregants.

Tuesdays October 9 through November 27 from 10:00 am to 12 noon at Temple Ner Tamid.

Topics include:

  • becoming one’s authentic self
  • developing a positive relationship to our changing bodies
  • cultivating qualities of soul
  • practicing forgiveness
  • learning to live with loss
  • conscious dying  

Interested? Please contact Andrea Peyser at andreapeyser@gmail.com, Lauren Meyer at laurenpmeyer@gmail.com, or Rachel Hertzman at rebberach39@gmail.com.

Rhythm & Wellness Drumming & Chanting Practice

Join Cantor Greenberg and Beth Adleman for a meaningful and playful exploration of Soul Judaism. Rhythm connects us back to our bodies and to the earth, and singing opens the heart. When combined with true Kavannah / intention to live more compassionately and more honestly the results can be astounding. Each session will begin with a focus on cultivating accessible drumming patterns on your own drum while singing short, inspirational Jewish phrases. After that it's playtime! 

This practice is for anyone (and everyone). No prior drumming or chanting experience is required. You will need to bring your own drum.

Wednesday evenings from 7:30 to 9 pm on October 17, November 28, December 19, January 23, February 20, March 20, April 17, May 29.

For more information or to sign up contact Cantor Meredith Greenberg.

Congressional Candidates Forums

It’s a core American Jewish value – a civic and religious responsibility – to take part in the democratic process by educating yourself about the issues facing our country and, most importantly, by turning out to vote. Voting will help ensure that you and the Jewish community have a crucial voice in shaping national policy and determining the future of our country.

Voters are going to the polls on Tuesday, November 6 in two of the most closely watched races in the mid-term elections. Come hear where the candidates stand on issues affecting our country, our Jewish community, and the State of Israel. Be an informed voter!

7th Congressional District
Monday, October 8 at 7:30 pm
JCC of Central NJ
1391 Martine Avenue, Scotch Plains

Candidates: Congressman Leonard Lance (R); Tom Malinowski (D)

11th Congressional District

Tuesday, October 9 at 7 pm
Aidekman Jewish Community Campus
901 Route 10 East, Whippany

Candidates: Mikie Sherrill (D); Assemblyman Jay Webber (R)

Programs are free and open to the public. For more information contact Linda Scherzer at lscherzer@jfedgmw.org or (973) 929-3087.

The Florence Melton School of Adult Jewish Learning

The Florence Melton School of Adult Jewish Learning invites you to begin a journey of Jewish Self Discovery. 

  • The Curriculum - Engaging and eye-opening, the curriculum was developed and is constantly revised by a team of scholars at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. Classes integrate Jewish history, law, beliefs, practices, ideas, and terminology through the study of texts - from ancient to contemporary. Instructors are experienced educators, trained to teach adults representing all segments of the Jewish community. 
  • The Program - Classes meet once a week for 30-weeks, beginning in the fall. Each session consists of two one-hour classes, with a short break. Although there are no prerequisites, exams, or grades, participants are asked to make a serious commitment to regular study. Students register for one year at a time and those who complete the full two-year program earn a Certificate of Jewish Learning from the Hebrew University of Jerusalem. 
  • Courses - (1) Foundations: A rich learning experience for parents to help them transmit Jewish knowledge and values to their children. This class meets once a month for 10-sessions a year. Cantor Meredith Greenberg will be teaching this course at Temple Ner Tamid on Wednesday evenings from 7:30 to 9 pm beginning in October.(2) Melton Graduate School: Graduates of the two-year core curriculum are eligible to continue their studies in the Melton Graduate School, which offers a wide array of topics. Lisa Lisser and Rabbi Marc Katz will be teaching this course at Temple Ner Tamid on Wednesday mornings from 10:30 am to 12:45 pm beginning in October. (3) Core Classes: Rhythms & Purposed or Crossroads & Ethics will be taught in various locations located throughout the MetroWest area. 

For more information on any of the Melton School offerings or to register for an offering contact Rhoda Lillianthal at 973-530-3519 or rlillianthal@jccmetrowest.org.

Introduction to Judaism

Explore a modern take on Jewish life. Discover what could be meaningful to you in liberal Judaism. Explore a modern take on Jewish life. Engage with Jewish values, celebrations, spirituality, and community in an Introduction to Judaism class.

Everyone is welcome. The 18-session class is perfect for interfaith couples, those raising Jewish children, spiritual seekers, individuals considering conversion, and Jews who want a meaningful adult Jewish learning experience.

Ask your questions, engage with multiple perspectives, and explore Jewish life through a Reform lens. Reform clergy from our community, including Rabbi Marc Katz and Cantor Meredith Greenberg, will be co-teaching classes starting in November; register early to ensure a space. www.reformjudaism.org/intronj

Video from the TNT Gala on April 28

Click here to watch the video made for the Gala this past weekend. To read Rabbi Kushner's remarks from the Gala click here.

Temple Ner Tamid's Amazon Store

Shopping via Ner Tamid's Amazon store won't cost you anything, but it does allow Temple Ner Tamid to earn about 6% from most purchases. All of your Amazon shopping benefits Temple Ner Tamid. Please click here to access Amazon.com and then after shopping, proceed to the checkout. Ner Tamid's commission will be credited automatically.