Congregation Emanu El is partnering with Congregation Beth Israel and the Houston Congregation for Reform Judaism (HCRJ) to welcome Rabbi Daniel Freelander, the new President of the World Union for Progressive Judaism (WUPJ) to Emanu El (1500 Sunset Blvd.) on Sunday, March 8 at 7 p.m.


A reception will follow the presentation by Rabbi Freelander, which is free and open to the community.


During his presentation, Rabbi Freelander will describe the role the WUPJ plays in assisting and representing Reform Jews and their congregations in 50 countries around the world.  He will discuss current major issues facing the Jews of France, Poland, Germany and the Former Soviet Union, based on his personal observations during recent visits to those areas.


Rabbi Freelander serves at the head of an organization with offices in New York and Jerusalem, heading up a coordinating body representative of over 1.8 million Jews, making up almost 1000 congregations and 7 regional bodies.


Rabbi Freelander previously served the North American Union for Reform Judaism (URJ) as a staff member since 1975. As a NFTY Director, UAHC Regional Director, North American Director of Program and URJ Senior Vice President, he provided creative vision and management to dozens of programs and projects, including URJ Biennial conferences, music and worship initiatives and publications, camping and Israel programs.


A gifted musician and keen observer of the North American Jewish scene, Freelander is well known for lecturing on trends in Reform synagogue life. Together with Cantor Jeff Klepper, he has composed dozens of popular Jewish melodies including the well-known “Shalom Rav” and “Lo Alecha.”


He is a native of Worcester, MA, and holds degrees from Trinity College, Hartford, and the Hebrew Union College—Jewish Institute of Religion in New York. He serves on the boards of the Zamir Choral Foundation and Odyssey Networks, an interfaith media group. Rabbi Freelander is married to Rabbi Elyse Frishman, editor of the Reform siddur Mishkan T’filah, and rabbi of the Barnert Temple in Franklin Lakes, NJ. They have three adult children and live in Ridgewood NJ.

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