CJC Blog

Jewish Perspective on Being Transgender

by Rabbi Sonya Starr Over a year ago, Columbia Jewish Congregation began its in-depth discussion about gender identities, and soon after I was asked to prepare a talk about the Jewish perspective on being transgender and gender non-binary. As I was reading through all this material, there were three personal memories that kept coming back Continue Reading »


Exodus Chapters 35-37:16 Anna Rubin   As I write this blog, I am, like everyone else, reeling from the turmoil caused by the coronavirus.  Thankfully, neither I nor my loved ones, friends and acquaintances are suffering from it but of course it is both humbling and terrifying to witness the toll the disease is taking Continue Reading »


What if you thought of it as the Jews consider the Sabbath— the most sacred of times? Cease from travel. Cease from buying and selling. Give up, just for now, on trying to make the world different than it is. Sing. Pray. Touch only those to whom you commit your life. Center down.   And Continue Reading »

Membership Pledging Open

CORONAVIRUS UPDATE In accordance with the CDC Guidelines, clergy and staff are working remotely during this time of “social distancing”. The CJC office is currently closed. Shabbat services and some adult ed programs and classes are being held virtually, through Zoom and Facebook Live. Please refer to our online calendar (link above) for schedules and Continue Reading »

Street Roots: A Newsworthy Cause

Written by Aliza Saunders, Tivnu Gap Year Participant 2018-2019. As a receipt of the Lester Robert Morss Scholarship from Columbia Jewish Congregation, Aliza was able to put this scholarship towards the tuition of this transformative gap year program. Similar to Lester Morss’ spirit of Tikkun Olam, Aliza truly lived this motto by interning at three Continue Reading »

Chanukah Candle, Gelt and Gift Sale

Please place your order online http://tinyurl.com/candlegelt by Wednesday, November 27. Blue and White Candles These beautiful Chanukah candles are handmade in Israel by Safed Candles. Box of 45 Candles. $12.00 per box. Multicolored Candles These beautiful Chanukah candles are handmade in Israel by Safed Candles. Box of 45 Candles. $12.00 per box. Basic Chanukah Candles Continue Reading »


The Mishnah records four new years every year. Each one takes on a special character. Elul is the New Year for animal tithes. Rosh Hashanah is the New Year for the creation of the world. Tu B’Shevat is the New Year for the trees. And the first of Nisan, (the month in which Passover occurs) Continue Reading »


by Fred Thomsen The recent Torah portion, Terumah, is the first of seven devoted to the building of the mishkan, the portable sanctuary where the Israelites could experience the presence of G-d. It seems particularly fitting to discuss this now, as we have begun this year’s membership pledge drive. Terumah means “gift” or “offering”. In Continue Reading »

Teshuvah/Repentence — in February?

by Rabbi Sonya Starr Lately I have been thinking about teshuvah, repentance. I know what you are thinking, it is February not August or September. when we are supposed to get sermons about teshuvah. Some of you might know that I love magical thinking. One of my favorite comments from our Sunday school students is Continue Reading »

To Sustain

From Fred Thomsen CJC Co-President In the middle of the second year of CJC’s implementation of a “sustainability dues model” I want to reflect on where we are as a congregation. And, as we are still in a post-Thanksgiving glow, I want to express my gratitude. First, I am thankful for the all the support Continue Reading »