Author Archives: Rabbi Avi Friedman

About Rabbi Avi Friedman

I am the rabbi of Congregation Ohr Shalom - SJCC, a progressive Conservative and traditional congregation. I am also husband to Jodi as well as father to Gabi, Jonah, Jessica and Ilana. I have been a part of the Summit community since 2005.

L’shon Hara & #metoo

Complete the following sentence: If you don’t have something nice to say… (a) I’m not sure what you should do. (b) don’t say anything at all. (c) pull up a chair next to me. If you answered ‘a’ or ‘c’ … Continue reading

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Shivah & Festival

In general, I think that the Jewish laws of mourning make a lot of sense.  They guide us through the stages of grief and help us transition back to some sense of normalcy after a loss.  There is the initial … Continue reading

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Why March?

Even though the number ‘7’ gets all the glory in the Bible (7 days of creation, 7 years in the agricultural cycle, the 7th month has the most holidays, etc.), I’ve always been a big fan of the number ‘8.’  … Continue reading

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Is It Still Thursday?!

Twice in the last week, I’ve lost track of time. I don’t mean that I couldn’t look at a clock or that I was late for an appointment. I mean that I was completely out of sync. Last week, I … Continue reading

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Home

This past week, those of us that were hit by the Nor’easter were able to return to some semblance of routine. Those who moved out of their homes were able to return. Those who stayed in homes without power had … Continue reading

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Making Community

The name of our portion says it all. “Vayakhel – ויקהל” literally means “he made community.”  Whenever we face a weather event like the storm we saw yesterday, it causes us to create community.  We help others dig out.  We … Continue reading

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All Joking Aside

I started sending out a weekly D’var Torah by email nearly 20 years ago at my previous congregation in Pittsburgh.  Each year, during the week of Purim, I have always written some sort of spoof of the weekly Torah portion.  … Continue reading

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