Rabbi Rachel Weiss, Assistant Rabbi
Rabbi Weiss joined CBST as our Assistant Rabbi in August 2010. An alumna of CBST”s Cooperberg-Rittmaster Rabbinial Internship program, she served CBST from 2006-2008. Prior to returning to CBST as Assistant Rabbi, Rabbi Weiss served as the Rabbi of Congregation Am Haskalah in Allentown, PA, the Lehigh Valley's Jewish Reconstructionist Congregation. A graduate of the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College, she is the recipient of the Aaron and Marjorie Ziegelman scholarship and the Grinnell College Lilly Endowment fellowship, and holds a certificate in Congregational Life.
Rabbi Rachel Weiss believes in sacred communities enacted through ritual, prayer, justice, and the arts. Rabbi Weiss directs CBST’s Lehrhaus Judaica Adult Education program, teaching courses and overseeing the Adult B’nai Mitzvah program, the CBST Congregational Retreat, and the Connie and Ruthie Scholar-In-Residence program. She oversees conversions at CBST, provides pastoral care, and as a member of the CBST clergy team, leads services, life cycle rituals, and gives drashot.
Rabbi Weiss directs Limmud: CBST’s Jewish Education Program for Children and their Families, leading experiential educational workshops and creative services for 0-12 year olds and their grownups, developing rituals to welcome children into all kinds of families, and expanding the boundaries of what Queer Jewish education means for our next generations. Rabbi Weiss is the author of CBST’s Limmud curriculum – a first of its kind written specifically for children of LGBTQS families – and teaches widely on how LGBTQ people create families and welcome children into Jewish community.
A native of Evanston, IL, she grew up in the Reconstructionist movement. Rabbi Weiss graduated from Grinnell College in Iowa with a B.A. in Spanish, with an interdisciplinary concentration in Gender and Women’s studies. Following her undergraduate studies, she put her academic degree into action by serving as the director of the Chicago-area Nuestro Center for Mexican immigrant families, where she created programs for children, teens, and adults, provided counseling and community resources, and advocated for immigrant rights and community services. As a rabbinical student, Rabbi Weiss worked with congregations in Evanston, Boca Raton FL, Great Barrington, MA, and CBST. She has worked as a hospital chaplain, and has developed and led programs for Kolot: The Center for Gender and Judaism at RRC. Rabbi Weiss spent summers as the Education, Faculty, and Arts Director at Camp JRF, and facilitated interfaith teen dialogues for The Interfaith Center of Greater Philadelphia, as a Walking the Walk group leader.
Blending her interest in the arts with Judaism, she enjoys English and Hebrew calligraphy, beadwork and crafts, mosaic, singing and the creation of ritual objects. A lover of languages, she communicates in Spanish, Modern Hebrew and ASL. A definite foodie, cook and baker, Rabbi Weiss can often be found in the kitchen.
While a Midwesterner at heart, she lives in Brooklyn with her partner, Julia Tauber, and their daughter Hannah.