Eastern Canada, New England, and New York State

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Message from WRJ Northeast District President Sharon Sobel

Celebrating Our Stories - Our WRJ Northeast Journey


We take pride in our ability to live the life we imagined for ourselves, to fulfill the plans we may have first dreamt about as children. And while some of those dreams might have been dashed by disappointments, we can cite only a few instances in our collective history when nearly all of us have been confronted with one unexpected event challenging nearly all our plans. Whatever filled our glasses at midnight on December 31, 2019, splashed back on us a couple of months later. But it awakened us to a new reality, still bubbling with possibility.

I’m proud to serve as your president of Women of Reform Judaism–Northeast District in such times, but even more honored to be numbered among the women who have committed so much of themselves to the story we have been celebrating for over a hundred years.

Our resolve has been strong and is a testament to our enduring mission. This is not the first pandemic to threaten us, and for a century WRJ has fought for women’s rights, the survival of the Jewish people, and against injustice throughout the world. We have given voice to those who could not tell their own story, and to those whose story becomes our story, as we amplify it a million times over, demanding to be heard.

Our reason for being goes beyond hosting membership dinners, running Judaica shops, and selling mahjong cards, as has been amply demonstrated over these many years. Those things and more give us pleasure, but the mission of Women of Reform Judaism gives us purpose. The events we’ve held this year, unlike all others, have clarified that for us and may very well impact our programming for years to come, even while we long to reconvene in a hotel, share Shabbat dinner with friends and sisters, and worship together in one room.

We are all, together, writing our narrative but it is only one chapter in a long and celebrated history. It takes place in all our sisterhoods and women’s groups, in each of our towns and cities in New England, New York, Eastern Canada, and extends to every place where there is work to be done and friends to be made. It is crafted by our Executive Committee, board members, sisterhood presidents, presenters, clergy, and all of you who choose to share your time and talents with us.

And it’s a good story, deserving to be celebrated because all of us will contribute to it with pages we may not yet imagine, and chapters not yet dreamt. As is true of many engaging tales, our narrative has been filled with challenges and disappointments, especially over the past year, but we are steadfast in our mission. Our voices are stronger together and we are resolved to accomplish great things.

You can make a difference!

Sharon Sobel
President, Northeast District

Click here to read a welcome message from Northeast District's Immediate Past President, Trina Novak.

YES Fund Honor Roll header

Kudos to YES Fund Honor Roll Recipients in the Northeast District

Roll of Chai Honor
Temple B'nai Torah Sisterhood - Wantagh, NY
Temple Concord Sisterhood - Binghamton, NY

Roll of Special Merit
Beth El Temple Center Sisterhood - Belmont, MA
Central Synagogue-Beth Emeth Sisterhood - Rockville Centre, NY
Congregation Beth Emeth Sisterhood - Albany, NY
Congregation Beth Israel Sisterhood - West Hartford, CT
Sisterhood of The Community Synagogue - Port Washington, NY
Women of Am Echad - Lynbrook, NY

Roll of Honor
Free Synagogue of Flushing Sisterhood - Flushing, NY
Temple B'nai Chaim Sisterhood - Georgetown, CT
Temple Emanuel Sisterhood - Andover, MA
Temple Shalom of Newton Sisterhood - Newton, MA
Women's Leadership Council of Temple Israel - New York, NY
WRJ of Rockland County - Nyack, NY
WRJ/Sisterhood of Community Synagogue of Rye - Rye, NY

Thank you for making WRJ stronger!

See the complete YES Fund Honor Roll


WRJ Blog Posts by Members of the Northeast District

Parashah B'reishit

October 1, 2021
Being an orderly person, I am drawn to Genesis, Chapter 1. God eliminates chaos, provides separation to make space and maximize potential and begins the creation process. Each day brings something new, each with its own unique value to sustain life.

Get Involved in Advocacy

September 24, 2021
Are you interested in Advocacy but uncertain how to proceed? Are you overwhelmed by the number and frequency of advocacy requests? Do you feel like you do not have enough time or can’t afford to be involved? Many women have these concerns. Read about how you can fit advocacy into your life and your sisterhood.

Parashah Vayeilech

September 10, 2021
When are we given time to pause, to be in a space that is between an ending and a beginning? For most of us, we are so busy with our daily lives, responsibilities, and schedules that there never seems to be an end to anything, and yet we are always starting something new. This week, literally the days between Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur, the Torah portion, Vayeilech, though the shortest parashah, gives us that time to pause and reflect.

Congratulations to the Or Ami Winners in the Northeast District

Gold Award Winner

The Community Synagogue Sisterhood, Port Washington, NY
Sisterhood and Teenage Youth Group Tikkun Olam Project

The Community Synagogue Sisterhood worked with over 100 teenagers from their youth group, teaching about the mitzvah of comforting the ill. The teens made heart-shaped pillows and supportive cards for cancer patients. The pillows provide underarm cushion for patients who have had lymph nodes removed and protect chest chemotherapy ports from seat belts.

Silver Award Winner

B'nai Israel Sisterhood, Southbury, CT
Sisterhood's Bat Mitzvah – 13 Events for 13 Years

In recognition of B’nai Israel’s sisterhood's creation in February 2006 and their thirteen-year affiliation with WRJ, they developed thirteen inclusive programs culminating in a bat mitzvah celebration. Participation in their Friday evening and Shabbat morning services represented multiple generations and their diverse community.

Honorable Mentions

Beth El Temple Center Sisterhood, Belmont, MA
BETC Reads, A Social Justice Book Group

Temple Beth Zion Sisterhood, Amherst, NY
Intergenerational Women's Seder

Temple Isaiah Sisterhood, Lexington, MA
Yom HaShoah Education and Observance for Children, Families, and Community

Women's Leadership Council of Temple Israel, New York, NY
Women’s Seder

WRJ Northeast District
Comfort Blankets for Cancer Patients

Partners of Reform Judaism located in the Northeast District

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Find a sisterhood in the Northeast District