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Our Rabbis

Our rabbis “Do Jewish Differently”

  • They believe that to be Jewish is to be an heir to Jewish tradition, not a museum curator. To inherit this tradition means that it is ours to choose from, adapt, and use consistent with our own values and beliefs. 
  • Humanistic rabbis are guides and authorities without being authoritarian, presenting options for Jewish life and becoming a better person rather than commandments.
  • Our rabbis have always been happy to officiate intercultural marriages, co-officiate with other clergy, conduct wedding ceremonies anytime on Saturdays, and create personalized ceremonies for the wedding couple.

 

Rabbi Adam Chalom

 

Rabbi Adam Chalom is a dynamic and illuminating speaker, a clear and inspiring teacher, a warm and welcoming presence at Kol Hadash, and a leading voice in the movement of Humanistic Judaism. Rabbi Chalom has served as the rabbi of Kol Hadash Humanistic Congregation since 2004.

Rabbi Chalom earned a B.A. in Judaic Studies from Yale University; a Master’s Degree in Hebrew and Jewish Cultural Studies at the University of Michigan; his rabbinic ordination from the International Institute for Secular Humanistic Judaism (IISHJ), and his PhD at the University of Michigan. He is also Dean for North America of the IISHJ, the leadership and rabbinical training institution of the worldwide movement of Secular Humanistic Judaism; serves on the Executive Committee of the Association of Humanistic Rabbis; and is on the editorial board of the quarterly magazine Humanistic Judaism.

Rabbi Chalom and his wife A. J. were both raised as Humanistic Jews. Together, they expect Humanistic Judaism and Kol Hadash Humanistic Congregation to grow as more people connect with its powerful message of personal dignity, integrity, self-reliance and mutual support. To learn more about Rabbi Chalom’s views  on Humanistic Judaism, visit his blogpodcastYouTube channel, publications, and Shofar columns.

 

 

 

Life Cycle Events

Rabbi Chalom is available to officiate at weddings, baby-namings, and funerals/memorial services for members and non-members. Contact RabbiChalom at 847-383-5184, rabbi@KolHadash.com.

 

Rabbi Daniel Friedman

Rabbi Emeritus Daniel Friedman was the rabbi at Congregation Beth Or in Deerfield, Illinois, for 35 years until his retirement in 2000.  When Rabbi Friedman arrived at Beth Or, it was a Reform temple which he eventually “converted” to Humanistic Judaism, making it the first humanistic Jewish congregation in Illinois.  He was a founding member of the Society for Humanistic Judaism, and for many years he wrote articles for its journal on the nature of Jewish identity and the philosophy of Humanistic Judaism. As one of the only rabbis in Chicago who would perform intermarriages in the 1970s and 1980s, Rabbi Friedman helped thousands of families stay connected with the Jewish people; over his rabbinic career, he performed over 3,500 wedding ceremonies.

Rabbi Friedman earned his B.A. degree at Brandeis University in 1957 and his Masters of Hebrew Letters and  rabbinic ordination at the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion in 1962. He holds an honorary doctorate from the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion. Rabbi Friedman’s book, Jews Without Judaism:  Conversations With an Unconventional Rabbi, was published in 2002.

Tue, October 26 2021 20 Cheshvan 5782