The U.S. Supreme Court's decision on gay marriage breaks down the walls to an institution that is the ultimate symbol of acceptance.
Rabbi Elianna Yolkut
Elianna Yolkut is a Rabbi Without Borders who strives through challenging questions, innovative study and meaningful connections to help Jews at all life stages reach toward a deep understanding of and connection to Judaism. Raised with three brothers in her native St. Louis, where as a toddler she would often lose herself in the folds of her father's tallit, Elianna is a thinker, writer and educator who seeks innovative models for religious community-building and dynamic ways to teach Torah. Ordained in 2006 by the Ziegler School of Rabbinic Studies at the American Jewish University in Los Angeles, she was later an adjunct faculty member there while serving as assistant rabbi at the Conservative synagogue Adat Ari El in nearby Valley Village. Elly, who holds a BA in Near Eastern and Judaic Studies and Sociology from Brandeis University, now lives with her partner and their young twins in Washington D.C. Learn more at www.rabbielianna.com
Jewish tradition encourages us to strive for compassion and forgiveness, but in some cases, we're allowed to shove that all aside.
Mired in scandal and increasingly growing out of touch with their communities, Jewish clergy needs a disruptive new vision.
Tension mounts when Orthodox and Conservative Jews want to pray together – but can't agree on how.
So long as synagogues fail to adapt to changing times - and young Jewish adults' search for spiritual meaning - they will continue to be irrelevant as venues for creating community.
Proponents of 'fun funerals’ would rather focus on the joys in one's life than the sadness in their death. Jewish law, however, sees death differently.
Many of us have ignored the real message of the call to action, 'never forget.'
It’s one thing to say gender roles are natural. It’s another thing to deny women access to leadership and marital freedom.
Could it sometimes be necessary for states to impose restrictions on religious freedom for the sake of other human rights?
In blaming women for the Jewish community’s demographic woes, the famous American talk-show host did nothing to advance the roles Jewish women really need to fill.
It wasn’t surprising when a Modern Orthodox yeshiva was lambasted for inviting non-Orthodox rabbis to a round-table discussion. What hurt was the response of one of the yeshiva’s students.
Synagogues give a bounty of gifts to their congregation. But how can we reach out to Jews put off by the cost of attending?
When we focus on creating meaning through ostentatious celebration, we forget what bar mitzvahs are really about: responsibility and ownership.
As we approach Rosh Hashanah, the question of ‘teshuva’ (repentance) is key.
Judaism’s approach to mourning shares wisdom with Leonard Cohen’s lyrics, 'There’s a crack, a crack in everything, that’s how the light gets in.’
'Do not stand idly by the blood of your fellow,’ the Torah teaches. Gay Pride Month is an opportunity to reach out to youths who face challenges because of their sexual identity.
The significance of Matan Torah is difficult to grasp in the modern day. Celebrating that ongoing relationship with God makes it accessible.
I, a Women of the Wall sympathizer, am not trying to 'liberate' you as an Orthodox Jew, but raise my status from second class to equal.
Whether in the boardroom or on the 'bima,’ the Jewish concept of 'brit’ demands we provide women equal opportunities to men.
We rabbis have the responsibility to stand up for what is right when no one else does.
How Sad the Western Wall Has Fallen Hostage to the ultra-Orthodox Autocracy Over Jewish Life in Israel
Treating Women of the Wall like suspected criminals is no way for a Jewish democracy to operate.
The halakhic case for Jewish women in leadership roles: a response to Rabbi Shlomo Aviner.
Anat Hoffman, arrested last week for praying aloud at the Western Wall in Jerusalem, represents all those who want Israel to live up to its democratic ideals.
By choosing life, with its impermanence and imperfection, we relish in all of it.
While we are charged during Elul with relentless self-examination, it occurs within a relationship that is thoroughly grounded in compassion.
A reflection in the midst of ‘Bein Hametzarim’ on loss, renewal and the creation of a Torah of hesed.