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Showing posts from February, 2015

"Circle of Peace" by Michael Melchior (Feb. 22, 2015)

Circle of Peace
Michael Melchior
February 22, 2015 As Shabbat ended yesterday evening, all us attending synagogue in Oslo that day had a very moving experience. A group of eight Muslim teenagers decided to ignore their fears, to show contempt for prejudice, to put aside all the pressures and previous notions they may have held and to take action following the terror attack in Copenhagen.The young Muslims encircled the synagogue, in which we were praying with a human chain in order to convey the message to terrorists that if they want to harm the Jewish community in Oslo, they would have to go through them first. These young people created a Facebook group entitled, "Circle of Peace" in which they invited Muslims to join the initiative. Contrary to the expectations of all the skeptics and people "in the know", their Facebook call was shared by hundreds of Muslims, and as I left the house and was walking to evening prayers at the synagogue, some 1,400 Muslims, mostly…

Leadership: Always for and Sometimes Within (cross-post on HuffPost)

Leadership: Always for and Sometimes Within (cross-post on HuffPost) Rabbi Menachem Creditor Varying modes of leadership are important to identify, especially in moments of emerging need. For a community, these transitions can include urgent financial decisions, membership growth/shrinkage, strategic professional transitions, etc. For a nation, they can include popular revolution, dramatic economic shift, international relations, and more. But in any and every setting in which a specific leadership-style is healthy and effective, it is perhaps only so in that specific moment and circumstance. The very same approach might be unhealthy in another time, another place and, in fact, many factors determine whether or not a certain leadership methodology is appropriate. We read in the Book of Exodus of the clothing for the High Priest. Aaron was the very first in this line, his clothing both fabulous and compli…

my theology in 99 words

my theology in 99 words
© Rabbi Menachem Creditor
God is the collective potential of the human imagination. Every good thing every person has ever yearned for and will ever yearn for is what I mean by the word "God." My God doesn't send cancer or hurricanes or people to hurt others. When a person dies a fragment of divine potential is lost. When I ask God to embrace my lost loved one, I cry to my community that every life matters. “I love you” means that I am not alone and that I am here so that you need not be either. That, for me, is God.