Truths You Can Use

Evan Moffic, @chicagorabbi, is Rabbi of the historic Congregation Solel in Highland Park, Illinois. He was named to that post at age 30, becoming one of the youngest senior rabbis in the Reform movement. In addition to writing for Beliefnet, Rabbi Moffic writes a weekly note of inspiration for subscribers to his blog. He teaches several ongoing classes at the synagogue and in the community at Common Ground-Chicago. His writings have also appeared in the Forward, the New York Jewish Week, and several of the most widely-read blogs in the country. They include subjects of interfaith weddings, Jewish values, Reform Judaism and the intersection of science and religion.

Rabbi Moffic was ordained by the seminary of Reform Judaism, the Hebrew Union College in Cincinnati, in 2006. He graduated with high honors from Stanford University in 2000, where he wrote a thesis on Supreme Court Justice Louis Brandeis. An avid runner and tennis player, Rabbi Moffic is married to Rabbi Arielle Moffic, the director of Interfaithfamily/Chicago. They are the parents of two young children.

He believes that his philosophy of the life was captured best by Ralph Waldo Emerson: “To laugh often and much; To win the respect of intelligent people and the affection of children; To earn the appreciation of honest critics and endure the betrayal of false friends; To appreciate beauty, to find the best in others; To leave the world a bit better, whether by a healthy child, a garden patch, or a redeemed social condition; To know even one life has breathed easier because you have lived. This is to have succeeded.”

In late June 1997 Rabbi Cyril Harris received an important phone call. As the chief rabbi of South Africa, Harris had been an outspoken supporter of the anti-apartheid movement. The phone call was from his long-time friend, Nelson Mandela. Mandela […]

A seeming paradox defines Thanksgiving weekend. On Thursday evening we express gratitude for everything we have. The follow days we rush out to buy what we do not yet have! Be that as it may, some things we can buy can […]

Friends, I delivered the following sermon at a community interfaith Thanksgiving service. Wishing each of you a wonderful holiday, Rabbi Evan The greatest Rabbi of Jewish history was named Moses Maimonides. Maimonides wrote a classic work of Jewish philosophy known […]

Many people remember where they were 50 years ago. In Highland Park, Illinois, many came to Congregation Solel, where I am now the rabbi. In memory of our late President, I ventured into our synagogue archives, and found the following, […]

I came across a wonderful teaching from a 18th century rabbi known as the “Kotzker Rebbe.” He taught, “Some people wear their faith like an overcoat. It keeps them warm but does little for others. Others light a fire when they […]

This Veterans Day would have been a moving and important one for my grandfather. A proud veteran he served his country for six years during the Second World War and its aftermath. He made lifelong friends and gathered a treasure […]

What TV show would you rather watch? Tom and Jerry or Sponge Bob? One show is virtually silent and consists primarily of a cat chasing around a mouse. The other is fast-paced, funny and well-animated. An easy choice? Absolutely. I […]

Last week I conducted a funeral service for the matriarch of a large family. Meeting with her children and grandchildren, I learned about the immense acts of kindness she did for so many. They spoke about the hundreds of calls […]

Once upon a time, a couple came to a new town. On the road they met a man. They asked him, “How are the people in this town?” He replied, “Where are you coming from?” They told him. He then […]

It’s been a hectic few weeks for me and my family. Sometimes in the midst of these days, I dream of a quiet peaceful place, where sounds are calming and life is unhurried. We all dream of such places. But […]

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