Reflections on Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr.

As we prepared for Shabbat at Temple Kol Emeth on Friday morning, our Director of Member Engagement, Cindy Livingston, polished up my monthly reflection with a beautiful banner and a new-and-improved title: Reflections from Rabbi Gottfried: The Power of Rereading I never used to reread books. And I didn’t understand why some people advocated for … Read more

Four Rivers

Visiting friends in Philadelphia last month, I had occasion to drive across the Delaware River and was reminded of a relaxing afternoon I spent in an inner tube in this river nearly two years ago.  I wrote about the experience in my 5782 Rosh Hashanah Message in the Atlanta Jewish Times: “Riding the gentle rapids … Read more

RFRA Redux Part 2

My Remarks (more or less) at the Georgia State Capitol on February 22, 2023 – Rosh Hodesh Adar 5783: I have stood here before, with colleagues and friends; it is a privilege to stand here again and teach a central principle of my faith, a core Jewish value, rooted in the Hebrew Bible and known … Read more

Who’s In & Who’s Out?

“The only really interesting questions are the unanswerable ones.” —Jacob Needleman I’m not sure why I’ve been vexed lately by the question of why human beings seem so invested in deciding who is in our group and who is the “other.”  Maybe it’s the seemingly endless rounds of voting to choose the Speaker of the … Read more

Bringing Forth the Light

One Hebrew expression for the publication of a book is l’hotzee l’or, literally, “to bring it to light,” although most speakers of modern Hebrew would use the word l’farsem. This Hebrew word also means to publicize, and it may have come into modern Hebrew by way of the Aramaic expression pirsuma neisa, to publicize the … Read more