Religious Life

Recent Sermons

Protecting Our Planet – A Weekly Letter From Rabbi Davis – June 1, 2018

Shalom Chaverim, As summer approaches and as I look forward to spending more time in the garden and in nature, I am brought to reflect on the writings of AD Gordon.*  It also inspires a short talk I will be giving next Monday at a rally at the capital. Best know as a Labor Zionist, AD Gordon was also particularly attuned to the place of...

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Phillip Roth Z”L – A Weekly Letter From Rabbi Davis – May 25, 2018

Shalom Chaverim, I have not read a lot of Phillip Roth. Sadly, I rarely have time to read novels. But Roth’s short story, The Conversion of the Jew, is a favorite of mine. This week, Roth died at 85. I honor him with this short reflection. Set in the 1950s and included in Goodbye Columbus which won the National Book Award in 1960, The Conversion...

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Standing at Sinai – A Weekly Letter From Rabbi Davis – May 18, 2018

Shalom Chaverim, In the Charleston synagogue, Kahal Kadosh Beth Elohim, we toured the sanctuary. We sat in the family pews of America’s fourth oldest Jewish congregation, admired the stained glass and woodwork and learned about the organ which was the impetus for a split between the reformers and the Sephardic founders. The story of the beautiful ark (pictured) was particularly interesting. Following the Reform custom...

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Monuments, Memory and Meaning

Monuments, Memory and Meaning 27 Iyar 5778 | May 12, 2018 Rabbi Alexander Davis Repeat after me: Bde Maka Ska. As many of you know, this is the Native American name for what most of us call Lake Calhoun. I remember hearing that Lake Calhoun’s name was officially changed last January. But I have to admit that I didn’t pay too close attention to it....

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Savannah’s Hope – A Weekly Letter From Rabbi Davis – May 11, 2018

Shalom Chaverim Walking around Savannah, GA, our Beth El tour group eventually came to the synagogue. Our tour guide started talking about the history and the congregation. But people stopped her saying, “where is it? I don’t see it.” “It’s right there,” she said pointing. Still, people didn’t see it. That’s because the Temple looks so much like a church they couldn’t believe that it...

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Welcome to the South – A Weekly Letter From Rabbi Davis – May 4, 2018

Shalom Chaverim, I have enjoyed a wonderful week traveling with folks from Beth El. We traveled from Charleston down to Savannah and traveled back through history as we explored Jewish life in the south. There are far too many stories and pictures to share in this letter. But here’s one that sticks with me. Fast forward from the Revolutionary War, the Civil War and civil...

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