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Relational Judaism

Written by Dr. Deborah Fernandez-Turner, Temple President on Friday, 12 July 2013. Posted in Relational Judaism

Dear Friends,

It has been a busy summer! Starting with our last board meeting, the board has begun to read the book Relational Judaism: Using the Power of Relationships to Transform the Jewish Community, by Dr. Ron Wolfson. Dr. Wolfson also wrote The Spirituality of Welcoming.

In the book Relational Judaism, Dr. Wolfson proposes a new approach to synagogue life and involvement, where individual relationships are the core and programs are based around the growth of those relationships. He proposes the need for a paradigm shift to "people over programs."

The Board is just beginning a discussion about our synagogue and new ways to look at how we do what we do. We would like your thoughts and input as well. If you are interested in reading the book, it is available on amazon.com as well as on e-readers. I will be posting a quote monthly on the website under "Community/Member Info/Congregational Conversations" and ask for your feedback about that quote. I hope to begin a dialogue between us all.

On a personal note, it has been a very exciting summer for my family! Eva is learning song leading at Kutz URJ Teen Leadership camp in New York from truly inspirational song leaders in our Reform movement: Dan Nichols, Josh Nelson and Alan Goodis so far. Nikki is also at summer camp at the Wilshire Boulevard Temple Camp, Gindling Hilltop Camp and will be called to the Torah as a Bat Mitzvah on August 31, 2013! To hear more about the summer camp experiences of all of our wonderful kids, come to the Camp Rock Shabbat on August 30!

I hope to hear about your summer travels as well. If you experienced "Jewish Travel" this summer, go to our facebook page and share where you have been, tell us the Jewish connection or story and even send a picture! We will choose a few and share them in the weekly Temple email and here on our website! If you don't have access to Facebook, please This email address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it. the Temple.

Hope you are having a great summer!

All the Best,


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About the Author

Dr. Deborah Fernandez-Turner, Temple President

Deborah Fernandez-TurnerPresident Deborah Fernandez-Turner, DO, was born in Staten Island, New York.  She did her undergraduate work at New York University.  She attended medical school at Nova Southeastern University College of Osteopathic Medicine in Fort Lauderdale.  Deb did her residency in general psychiatry at Long Island Jewish Medical Center in New York, which is where she married her husband, Carey.  She did her fellowship in child and adolescent psychiatry at the University of Arizona.  Deborah has a private practice in child, adolescent, and adult psychiatry located near Sabino Canyon.  She and Carey have two beautiful daughters, Eva Rose and Nicole Victoria.  Deborah is a graduate of the Hadassah Leadership Academy and in 2005 she became an adult Bat Mitzvah.

Comments (1)

  • Ron Wolfson

    Ron Wolfson

    30 August 2013 at 14:25 |
    Thanks for reading the book, Deborah! Please keep me posted on how your congregation moves forward with the ideas!
    Shana tova!


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