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We are a vibrant and urban Jewish community dedicated to supporting one another in holy ways, pursuing justice and lifelong learning, and providing a shelter of peace.

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CRC represents the coming together of diverse and inclusive individuals who accept the responsibility of maintaining a community of respect and friendship.
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Shabbat Shalom! ❤️☮️✡️

Landon says hello to Rabbi Randy

Shabbat Shalom.

New Volunteer Opportunity!
Randi (our awesome new Administrative Assistant) has organized the Tikkun Closet and needs a small group of dedicated volunteers to help maintain it! She is looking for 5-10 people who can spend 1-2 hours per week during office hours sorting and hanging clothes, and stocking the food shelves. If you are interested, please reach out to Randi at 314-361-3919 or randismith@centralreform.org.
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Thank you our CRC president Amy Gage and Rabbi Karen Kriger Bogard for representing CRC at the URJ Biennial in Chicago to receive the Fain Social Justice award.

The award recognizes CRC’s work on the Mitzvah Farm. Nearly a ton of fresh produce was planted, harvested and donated to the Trinity Food Pantry. Special shout out to Karen Flotte and Wendy Bell for their leadership and dedication to the project.
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Thank you our CRC president Amy Gage and Rabbi Karen Kriger Bogard for representing CRC at the URJ Biennial in Chicago to receive the Fain Social Justice award. 
The award recognizes CRC’s work on the Mitzvah Farm. Nearly a ton of fresh produce was planted, harvested and donated to the Trinity Food Pantry. Special shout out to Karen Flotte and Wendy Bell for their leadership and dedication to the project.Image attachment

We are saddened and shocked by the violent rampage in Jersey City, NJ, which took place yesterday at a kosher market and near a synagogue. Six innocent people, including a police officer and two members of the Hasidic community were murdered. Each mass killing incident is horrific, frightening, and mournful-and this one again strikes close to home for us as it was Jewish individuals that were apparently targeted. We send our sympathy and prayers to all those who knew and loved the victims and we remain resolved to be part of the solution to create a more peaceful and tolerant society.

The alleged shooter is being described in the media as a “Black Hebrew” with ties to a group labeled as “Black Hebrew Israelites.” There are many organizations that describe themselves in this way, connected to each other by a belief that religious practices flowing from the Torah were among the many indigenous spiritualities of Africans that were stripped away from people when they were captured, transported and sold as slaves in the United States. The Black Hebrew philosophy is one that reclaims an African-fused Judaism for African-Americans. There are many different groups in this mold, and unfortunately some of them, such as the one the alleged killer apparently belonged to, are hate groups and actively preach that they are the “original Jews” and they often speak out aggressively against “white Jews.”

We want to make clear that our friends, the African Hebrew Israelites of Dimona, the largest “Black Hebrew” organization, totally disavows hatred or prejudice, and they are not at all the same group that is now tragically all over the news. The African Hebrew Israelites are largely located in Dimona, Israel (they have a moshav there, in the heart of the Negev Desert), and their community members have become an important part of Israeli society, serving in the army and representing Israel in many international efforts. A woman who grew up at CRC, Khaya Mass, with her husband and three sons, has long lived in Dimona with the community there. There are also African Hebrew Israelite communities affiliated with the Dimona group in the United States. CRC has become close with the St. Louis branch-for over 15 years, we have co-hosted a Racial Diversity seder with them, and their African drumming youth corps has raised our spirits at many CRC events. There are families who belong to both the African Hebrew Israelite community and CRC. I have never heard a single word of racial hatred ideology come from any of our African Hebrew Israelite friends; to me, though we have some important differences as it pertains to religious practice and some values, they feel like long-lost members of my extended family. Each of the three CRC trips I have led to Israel has included a visit with the African Hebrew Israelite community in Dimona, and we are always treated with the most awesome hospitality (and an incredibly delicious vegan feast!).

We hope that as we all mourn another hate crime tragedy, the public does not stereotype all Black Hebrews as being hateful. We are also worried about the possibility that Jews of Color, including CRC members, will be, because of prejudice and ignorance, looked at suspiciously in the aftermath of this awful incident and we want that community to know that we love and support them. Finally, we pray that the memories of those senselessly killed in New Jersey will be for a blessing and that the words of our song ‘Olam Chesed Yibaneh-We will build this world from love’ will someday soon come to pass.


With love and sadness,
Rabbi Randy
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Randy, thank you for these words. Our hearts break over and over. So grateful that you clarified the fact that these hate groups are in no way affiliated with our beautiful gentle friends here in St. Louis and other groups connected with Dimona.

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Upcoming Events

December 9, 2019 - December 15, 2019

Torah Study - 12/14/2019 at 8:45 am - 9:45 am | iCal | 0
Family Service - 12/14/2019 at 9:30 am - 10:00 am | iCal | 0
Shabbat School - 12/14/2019 at 10:00 am - 12:00 pm | iCal | 0
Shabbat Service - 12/14/2019 at 10:00 am - 12:00 pm | iCal | 0
Grief Support Group - 12/14/2019 at 12:30 pm - 2:00 pm | iCal | 0

December 16, 2019 - December 22, 2019

Intermediate Hebrew - 12/16/2019 at 10:00 am - 11:00 am | iCal | 0
Advanced Hebrew - 12/16/2019 at 11:30 am - 12:30 pm | iCal | 0
Talmud Study - 12/17/2019 at 5:30 pm - 6:45 pm | iCal | 0
Latkes and Dreidels and Donuts! - 12/18/2019 at 5:30 pm - 7:00 pm | iCal | 0
Inner Judaism: Stories, Song, Practices with Rabbi Jim - 12/18/2019 at 6:15 pm - 7:45 pm | iCal | 0