What is Jewish Universalism and Why Does it Matter?

Rabbi Blane writes: To answer those questions, I need to revisit a bit of personal history. “When I first conceived of Jewish Universalism, it was during a transitional period when I declined my synagogue’s offer of a contract renewal in January, and I had to remain in my position until July. For Rabbis and Cantors, those months are a time of soul searching- and job searching. We tend to just “walk through the motions” and show up and perform our duties but often devoid of Continue reading →

Jewish Spiritual Leaders Institute Ordains 6 New Rabbis Trained Untraditionally Online.,

JSLI – Jewish Spiritual Leaders Institute, the Online Rabbinical and Cantorial School of Sim Shalom, celebrated freedom in diversity and flexibility on July 4th weekend at the 13th Class Ordination weekend. The six (6) new Rabbis, from a range of backgrounds, four (4) from the United States and two (2) from Canada shared a classroom on the internet and a passion for Jewish Religious studies. They completed traditional Rabbinic studies with a focus on contemporary Jewish issues and problems that a 21st Century Jew faces. Continue reading →

Nashville Rabbi Brings Country Warmth to Global Online Sim Shalom Ma’ariv Summer Services

UJUC Rabbi, Nancy Tunick, will affirm her spiritual voice to bring the world-wide community a little closer in joyous song, prayers for healing, in honoring a Yahrzeit or mourn the loss of a loved one, on Wednesday evenings at 7:00pm EST. Just a click away join her and other Sim Shalom Rabbis for summer Ma’ariv services. As one of four Sim Shalom Rabbis offering Ma ‘ariv week night services, Rabbi Nancy’s cantorial sound provides a joyful vehicle to connect congregants in beautiful Judaic rituals while Continue reading →

A Rabbi of Color Builds Bridges with Global Summer Ma’ariv Service

As a scientist, educator, and one of seven children raised in a close African American Jewish family in upstate New York, Rabbi Deborah fulfills her childhood dream to become a spiritual leader, and shepherds summer Ma’ariv Monday services for Sim Shalom the online synagogue, to refresh spirituality each week. Rabbi Deborah is one of six Sim Shalom Rabbis that offer Ma ‘ariv week night services Monday – Thursday at 7:00pm EST throughout the summer. Shabbat services are offered every Friday at 7:00pm EST and some Continue reading →

At Shavuot Jews by Choice Update 3,000 Years of Tradition with Sim Shalom Online Conversion

On May 30th, several Sim Shalom Jews by Choice will celebrate Shavuot as the “newest” members of the tribe. Their conversion takes on special meaning for the Shavuot holiday which commemorates the giving of the Torah at Mt Sinai and rebirth. Drawn to Judaism for a variety of reasons the new faithful worked with Sim Shalom virtual Synagogue online conversion to fulfill their spiritual quest. Like Ruth, the Book of Ruth is read on Shavuot, they too chose to become a Jew, albeit their journey Continue reading →

A New Jewish Movement Emerges – Announcing the Union of Jewish Universalist Communities (UJUC)

In response to the evolving needs of Jews, a new paradigm for worship comes forth. The Union of Jewish Universalist Communities (UJUC) is a new Jewish movement- one that embraces the diversity of the Jewish world without judgment, conditions or requirements and asserts that all paths to the divine are equally holy. The Union of Jewish Universalist Communities (UJUC.org) is an organization that provides resources and connection to Jewish Universalist communities. These communities are trans-denominational, meaning that all Jewish denominations can be a part of Continue reading →

Sim Shalom Online Synagogue Serves Up A Plethora of Purim Tastes, Virtually,

Beginning Monday March 6th, Sim Shalom Online Synagogue will offer a week of flavorful festivities from sunny Florida, served on Facebook live to the global community. The offerings will include the pursuit of the most scrumptious hamantashen, joyful music and a Purim Shabbat complete with groggers. The hamantashen contest will be judged for creativity and fruitfulness, in a region where discerning critics from bubbes to grandchildren hold the pastries in high regard. Purim celebrates the Jewish victory over the plot to annihilate Jews by a Continue reading →

Steven Blane, Rabbi Cantor Singer-Songwriter, Goes to Confession on New Album

On December 11th, Sim Shalom Rabbi Steven Blane, will release his Nashville recorded album “I Confess.” The original lyrics reflect Blane’s musings on relationships, love and fantasy. Blane explores the struggle between faith and doubt. The music lands solidly in the Americana/Folk/Rock genres, with songwriting and production kudos to such artists as Bob Dylan, Roy Orbison, and Willie Nelson. Blane summons the same soulful spirituality he brings to the pulpit. In another twist of unorthodoxy, the album was produced by famed Christian, Country, and Rock Continue reading →

All Creatures Welcomed At Sim Shalom’s Online Blessing Of The Animals

On Friday, November 4, affiliated and unaffiliated congregants from around the globe can celebrate their beloved animal companions, small and large, with an interactive blessing service assembled by Sim Shalom, the world’s only E- Synagogue. The Blessing of the Animals fosters the loving relationship between all G–d’s creatures. To partake in the free prayer and joyous music ceremony participants can simply click on http://www.simshalom.com at 7:00pm EST on November 4th. For those that would like to have their pet’s name read during the blessing the Continue reading →