About OHALAH and RPA
THE NEW OHALAH
OHALAH is a non-profit tax-exempt corporation. Our governing documents are available to our members and supporters, and to the public on this page. View and/or contact a member of the OHALAH board of directors and committee chairs here.
THE OHALAH NAME
OHALAH is an acronym for the Hebrew Agudat Harabbanim l’Hithadshut Hayahadut, or in English, Association of Rabbis for Jewish Renewal. It is also an acronym for the Hebrew Agudat Hahazzanim l’Hithadshut Hayahadut, or in English, Association of Cantors for Jewish Renewal.
THE RPA BRANCH
The Rabbinic Pastors Association–RPA for short–is a branch of OHALAH. We invite you to visit the Rabbinic Pastors Association page by clicking here. You find a list of RPA board members and contact information here.
OUR STATEMENT OF PRINCIPLES
The ALEPH Statement of Principles describes in esoteric terms the spiritual and religious underpinnings of ALEPH, OHALAH and the RPA. A description of our spiritual and religious understandings and aspirations are contained in the statement on the home page of this website.
Click here to access the ALEPH Statement of Principle: PDF Text
OUR SISTER ORGANIZATION
ALEPH: Alliance for Jewish Renewal is an umbrella organization of the Jewish Renewal Movement. To learn more about ALEPH, visit the ALEPH website.
A DESCRIPTION OF OUR ORGANIZATION AND OUR CHEVREH
Members of OHALAH and the RPA form a congregation of clergy who meet in virtual time throughout the year via our email discussion list and periodic emails to all members from our respective Presidents. We celebrate one another’s joys and accomplishments and pray for one another in times of suffering and despair. We share with one another from the teachings of Torah shebichtav and Torah sheb’alpeh. We bear witness to one another’s realizations of faith and understanding. We reach out to one another’s congregant’s, students and other constituents when they visit our area and we officiate for them when they have a need for someone to officiate at a wedding; to bring an infant into the covenant through brit milah, brit bat or naming; or to lay a loved one to rest.
We share prayers and poetry that we have written or that inspire us; we share ideas for divrei torah, hespedim, sermons and talks. We provide support, inspiration and consolation to one another in times of illness, suffering and loss; and we pray together in virtual time for one another, and for the communities of the Jewish people and all of God’s creation when they are suffering the devastations of natural and human disasters.
We challenge one another’s ideas and views, we make room for ideas and views diametrically opposed to our own, and we push one another to our limits of thought, heart and confidence, as did the sages of old.
Any congregation or other institution wishing to hire a Jewish clergy person or student is welcome to submit an announcement to any member of OHALAH or the RPA for posting on our confidential email discussion list. If you do not know a member of OHALAH personally and have job posting, please use the information on our contact page.
Please check out the educational articles, innovative rituals and other spiritual and religious resources available on our website.
Once a year, we hold a conference open to all rabbis, cantors and rabbinic pastors regardless of whether they qualify for membership in OHALAH or the RPA, and provided that they are not subject to an ethics proceeding that would prevent their attendance. Our conference is also open to qualified chaplains and qualified rabbinic, cantorial, rabbinic pastor and chaplaincy students, provided that they are not subject to an ethics proceeding that prevents their attendance.
Our annual conference is preceded by an annual pre-conference Shabbaton that includes Shabbat worship led by clergy students. Each year, one Shabbat service during our Shabbaton is free and open to the public. If you wish to attend the service, please use the contact page to contact the OHALAH office.
Beginning in January 2013, OHALAH will host a Saturday evening concert or other performance that will be open to the public and subject to an entrance fee. Please check our conference page for details.
During the Shabbaton or the conference, there will also be a Shuk (bazaar) open to the public featuring religious and spiritual books, music, arts and crafts that are for sale. Attandence at the Shuk is free and open to the public, but all items on display will be for sale. Please check our conference page for these details as well.
Thank you for visiting our website.
May you be richly blessed!