Kol Ami — The Northern Virginia Reconstructionist Community
“For the Love of Music at Kol Ami” Kol Ami is blessed with a deep bench of professional and spiritually-gifted musicians of all ages. This Washington Jewish Week article (3/31/2022) takes a closer look at how Kol Ami continued to weave music throughout its services during the pandemic.
“At Kol Ami, MLK Day and Tu B’Shevat coincide” A piece in the Washington Jewish Week (1/12/22) about Kol Ami’s activities for Shabbat Shirah and Tu B’Shevat.
“Reconstructionist Communities Prove More Vital and Adaptive Than Ever” An inspiring piece about congregations adapting during the pandemic to serve their communities. Scroll down to read congregant perspectives on Kol Ami’s expanded Minyanim, Pizza and Talmud & Tot Shabbat offerings during the pandemic.
Jewish Federation’s 2020 Community Report on “Resilience and Compassion” spotlights Kol Ami’s Colors of Gratitude The Jewish Federation of Greater Washington’s Annual Report details vast and essential actions Jewish organizations have taken to respond to unprecedented needs during the COVD-19 pandemic. Kol Ami’s “Colors of Gratitude” program is among those listed, page 10. (Jewish Federation of Greater Washington 2020 Annual Report, released 10/14/2020)
Rosh Hashanah is usually when Jews gather in synagogue. This year, they’re mostly online Kol Ami’s Rabbi Gilah Langner expresses her optimism about services over the holidays and notes that Kol Ami has ramped up its offerings during the pandemic with five religious services each week. (Washington Post, 9/17/2020)
Rabbi Gilah touches on her Racial Injustice in her High Holiday 2020 sermon During these days of awe, Rabbi Gilah will lead the congregation with an exploration of founding fathers, whether it’s Abraham or Thomas Jefferson, and coming to terms with their misdeeds. On the night of Kol Nidre, Langner plans to talk about teshuvah (repentance) and reparations for the African-American community.
Kol Ami Gets a Lesson in Artful Gratitude (Washington Jewish Week, July 2020) Kol Ami begins an artful tradition of gratitude during the COVID pandemic. Partnering with acclaimed illustrator and spiritualist Joanne Fink, Kol Ami offers a program to hand color and distribute thank you cards to first responders, frontline workers and all the people we want to acknowledge in our lives and in the wider world. This program is offered in partnership with international non-profits, local and national Jewish and interfaith organizations.
It’s on us – the Role of Jews in the George Floyd Protests Rabbi Gilah Langner is featured among 24 Rabbis who offered insights, The Forward, Jun 7 2020. She says, “The bills for America’s continuing, noxious racial injustice are way past due. And we Jews should know better: nothing is as fundamental to Jewish teaching as ensuring justice. Let’s remind ourselves of that, admit that we let it slip, and ask the African-American community how we can help them build a fully just society.”
Will Jewish Denominations Survive the Pandemic? Rabbi Gilah Langner is featured among 30 Rabbis. She weighs in with thoughts of resilience, “as a progressive Jewish American community, we are finding our way to shared new practices – spiritually engaged, more silence and more music, intellectually open and serious.” (The Forward, May 2020)
Radical Inclusion at Kol Ami Seminar delivered to the Chesapeake Region of Reconstructing Judaism, May 17, 2020 about Kol Ami’s commitment to fully including all its members, Jewish and non-Jewish.
Let the Depth of Emotion Evoked by Psalm 88 Help You Find Meaning… Kol Ami’s Rabbi Gilah Langner is featured Scribe in The Forward’s Scribe, April 29, 2020.
Introducing the Junior Kol Amites When elementary and middle school musicians at Kol Ami wanted to share their talents, Kol Ami music director Jason Wright signed on as their conductor. The Junior Kol Amites now add joyful music to holidays throughout the year. (Washington Jewish Week, January 2020)
At Kol Ami, non-Jews now Participate Fully Recognizing the pain of exclusion interfaith families often find, Kol Ami voted unanimously to become a radically welcoming congregation, allowing all members of the congregation to participate fully in prayer services and all the rituals of those services. (Washington Jewish Week, June 2018)