Rabbi Renee Edelman became the Rabbi of Temple Sha'arey Shalom on July 1, 2015 and feels blessed to call this warm, welcoming, spirited community, home. Born in Massachusetts, Rabbi Renee credits her the synagogue of her youth and parents, dedicated to living a Jewish life for her love for Judaism. She graduated from Brandeis University with a major in English literature and a minor in Hebrew literature. Her love for the written word led to further study in Journalism while teaching 7th grade at almost every Reform synagogue in the Boston area. Realizing that one could write, teach and live one's passion, Rabbi Edelman attended both the Jerusalem and the New York City campuses of Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion (HUC-JIR). In 1997, Rabbi Renee was ordained as a Rabbi and served as the Associate Rabbi of Temple Emanu-El of Westfield for many years. She continued to serve congregations in Port Washington, NY, Bloomfield, NJ and as an interim Reconstruction Rabbi in Montclair, NJ.
Passionate about social action, education, spiritual living, youth engagement and creating new modes of prayer, Rabbi Edelman brings her unique ideas to our programming, classes and community involvement.
As the Rabbi of Temple Sha'arey Shalom, Renee Edelman believes that her role is to create a communal atmosphere that acknowledges the Tzelem Eloheim (image of God) inherent in every individual and to help each of us build meaningful connections to God, living Jewish tradition and to each other.
Rabbi Renee is able to reach people where they are and connect those of every age and stage of life to Judaism. She is open, caring and believes in creating relationships with each and every soul she encounters. Her openness has allowed her to establish long friendships and connections with former congregants.
For many years, she left the congregational Rabbinate to stay home with her three children as a full time Mommy. Rabbi Renee has served on both sides of the parenting spectrum: as a full time working mother and as a full time mother.
When not at the synagogue, Rabbi Edelman can be found with her husband Shane and their three children Bailey, Jackson and Sophie, doing Yoga, running, dancing, playing tennis and trying to cook.
You can reach Rabbi Renee at 973-379-5387 or RabbiRenee@shaarey.org . Her door is always open!!!
Following are Rabbi Renee's 5776 High Holiday Sermons:
- Rosh HaShannah Evening: Angels Among Us
- Rosh HaShannah Day 1: Henaini
- Rosh HaShannah Day 2: Are We Really a Family?
- Kol Nidrei: Brokeness
- Yom Kippur Morning: My Dream.
Cantor & Director of Education
Cantor Amy Daniels has served as Cantor of Temple Sha'arey Shalom in Springfield NJ since 1988. She was invested as a Cantor from the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion School of Sacred Music in 1985, at which time there were less than thirty-five women cantors in the Reform Movement nationwide. Previous to her cantorial studies, Cantor Daniels received a Bachelor of Music and Bachelor of Arts Degree from Case Western Reserve University and the Cleveland Institute of Music where she studied modern dance and music education. In April of 2010 Cantor Daniels was awarded an Honorary Doctorate from the Hebrew Union College in recognition of twenty-five years of service to the Jewish people as a gifted cantor.
Amy Eisenstein Daniels grew up in Cleveland Ohio, where she credits her family's pastime of singing Hebrew songs around the dinner table with planting her love of Jewish music. She is married to Scott Daniels and they have two sons, Jacob and Gabriel.
Cantor Daniels leads the Temple's active Adult and Junior choirs, prepares students for Bar and Bat Mitzvah, teaches adult education and leads all musical aspects of the synagogue worship. Since 1997, Cantor Daniels has also served as the Director of Education for Temple Sha'arey Shalom Religious School.
Cantor Daniels has performed in numerous concerts of Jewish and cantorial music with the New Jersey Cantors' Concert Ensemble, a group that promotes appreciation of Jewish music and raises money for scholarships for the training of future cantors. Cantor Daniels is an active member of the American Conference of Cantors and recently served on its Executive Board.
"As the Cantor and the Director of Education I am in a unique position to integrate music and a natural and meaningful worship and prayer experience into the lives of our students and their families. I continue to explore ways that our rich Jewish musical and cultural heritage can create community and enhance our experience of spirituality.
I also try to instill a love of Israel in our members through Israeli songs, Hebrew language, learning about Israel and its issues, and encouraging travel to Israel. A frequent traveler to Israel myself, one of my greatest experiences was completing a "Sea to Sea" hike across northern Israel (61 kilometers in five days). With the support of the Temple Sha'arey Shalom community we raised over $6,000 for One Family Fund which supports the needs of victims of terror in Israel."
Rabbi Joshua Goldstein served a Temple Sha'arey Shalom's leader for 30 years, retiring on June 30, 2012. In July, 2012, he became our Rabbi Emeritus.
Rabbi Goldstein has been active in a number of local and national organizations. Included among these are his positions on the Rabbinic Cabinet of the Association of Reform Zionists of America (ARZA), on the Rabbinic Advisory Committee of Camp Harlam, and on the Board of Friends of the Israel Defense Forces (IDF). He is a Past President of the Springfield Clergy Association.
He received his undergraduate degree from Temple University, and his rabbinical degree from Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion. In 2000, he was awarded the Honorary Doctor of Divinity Degree. He had served congregations in Geneva, New York and Springfield, Illinois before coming to Temple Sha'arey Shalom in 1982.
Rabbi Goldstein is a native of Princeton, New Jersey. He is married to Sally Reiter Goldstein. They have two sons-- Dov and his wife Stacey, and two granddaughters, Rose and Abby, and son Zachary.
A selection of Rabbi Goldstein's articles and sermons was published in 2007, under the title "Standing on the Shoulders." In 2012, a more recent selection of his writings was compiled, entitled "Jewish Passions, Realities. and Visions."
Nancy Kovacs is Director of our Preschool.
It is my pleasure to be a member of the Temple Sha'arey Shalom "family" as the Preschool Director! I bring to our community a wealth of expertise from my many years of experience as a Pre-Kindergarten teacher, and various early childhood management and leadership positions. Additionally, I was a member of the corps of Validators for accreditation with a nationally recognized organization that supports early childhood programs. I hold a Bachelor's Degree in Education with a specialization in Early Childhood Education from the University of Cincinnati.
Over the course of my career, I continue to relish in the joy of bonding with families and am forever fascinated as children grow and flourish. Coaching and mentoring teaching staff and new managers also contribute to my ongoing love of what I do each and every day.
My memories of growing up in a Reform Jewish congregation in a suburb of Cleveland, Ohio are sweet and lasting. I began my Jewish journey as a child attending the Preschool at my Temple, and I remained a student of the religious education program for many years. Upon returning home following college graduation, I joined the team of teachers at my Temple's weekend religious school where I had the pleasure of sharing wonderful Jewish experiences with children in Kindergarten through second grade.
Lisa Sibelman is our Temple Administrator.
Lisa Sibelman was born & raised in Brooklyn, New York and attended Brooklyn College majoring in Biology & Chemistry.
She was the Administrator at Congregation Beth Ohr, a Conservative Synagogue in Old Bridge, New Jersey for 17 years. Lisa's goals at Temple Sha'arey Shalom are to meet the needs of the Congregation, Temple Board, Temple President and Clergy. She plans to put her diverse experience to use by meeting challenges, raising revenue, increasing membership while bringing a warm and friendly atmosphere to the Temple Office.
She is looking forward to meeting and getting to know all of the Congregants of Temple Sha'arey Shalom. Lisa lives in Morris County and has two adult children.
Sandy Corritore is the Secretary for our Temple Office.