During most of the month of February, I visited the amazing country of India. Thirteen modes of transportation including an elephant, a rickshaw and a sudan chair and 9 flights in 3 weeks provided a whirlwind trip of a lifetime. I also visited over a dozen different synagogues (most no longer used regularly) and even led Shabbat services at one of them in Kolkata (Calcutta). In addition to Kolkata, I spent time in Mumbai, Cochin, Jaipur, Delhi and Agra. I saw Hindu Temples including a Jain Temple, a Sikh Temple that feeds over 20,000 people each day and a 7th century Hindu Shiva Temple carved into a cave. When many people think of India, they think of filth and poverty. Yes, there is poverty and sometimes the outside is not very clean, but the culture is vibrant and everyone is happy. Everyone is content with what they have. I felt uplifted and exhilarated while I was there. We met some wonderful people and saw some awesome sites. I heard no complaining (except from people in our tour group). It was great to see people happy and it made me feel at peace. This was my second trip to India and I would highly recommend a visit. It is a magical country.
Judy was recently honored as a Home Town Hero in her hometown of Alexandria, LA. Check out this video where Judy was surprised with this honor at a recent Rotary Club meeting Home Town Hero Video
This honor is given by Fox48, Randy Wiggins Insurance and Journey Church! Congratulations Judy!
March, 2017 Wedding season is here and I have been officiating at many weddings over the last couple of years. This is always a highlight for me to craft a beautiful, meaningful ceremony for two people who are in love. I am doing Jewish weddings, interfaith weddings, non-denominational weddings with cultural customs, same sex weddings, and even destination weddings. In fact, I will be traveling to Mexico next month to officiate at a destination wedding! Please check out my Rabbi website to find out more information about this “hat” that I wear.
April, 2015 I have just returned from an incredible trip where I sailed on the very last voyage of the Celebrity Century cruise ship serving as their Rabbi on a 15 day cruise from Dubai to Singapore. This was truly a trip of a lifetime. The cruise began in Dubai (one of the seven Arab Emirates). We then traveled through India, Sri Lanka and Singapore. I encourage you to visit my Facebook page where I am adding a new travelogue page each day sharing memories from this trip with you. Judy’s Facebook Page
It has been about a year since I was ordained a rabbi – a dream I have had for a very long time. I am a rabbi without a single congregation. I have the great fortune of being able to serve whenever and wherever I am needed. I traveled to Northern California for the High Holy Days this past year. I visit congregations all over the world as a guest rabbi/cantorial soloist. I meet some wonderful people and I see some beautiful and memorable places.
I have just recently booked a cruise to serve as Rabbi for the Passover holiday. The cruise sails from Dubai to Singapore stopping in several ports in India and Sri Lanka. Excited does not even describe how I am feeling. This will certainly be a trip of a lifetime and I am looking forward to exploring, learning and sharing all along the way. I plan to keep a journal and take lots of photos when I can. I am going with a friend of mine of Lebanese heritage. She is a freelance writer and she has already warned me – this journey may become a book! Two friends from two vastly different (and often opposing) cultures traveling together. What could be better! I have much to look forward to and I am feeling very blessed.
June, 2014 I have been asked to be a part of a new book which will be published this Fall. It is an anthology on Jewish Music titled Music, The Carrier of Intention in 49 Jewish Prayers. Join Jewish Rock stars, Blues artists, Jewish Folk bands, Cantors, Rabbis and more as they explore intentionality in Jewish Liturgy and Hebrew Music. Below is a link to my preview feature page.
February, 2014 – On January 4, 2014, I was ordained a Rabbi. This has been an almost 30 year journey for me as I have read, studied, practiced and counseled. Now, I am official after completing my studies at JSLI (Jewish Spiritual Leaders Institute). I have always wanted to serve and help people and now I will continue on this journey which will always involve singing. So, if you need someone to officiate at a wedding, Bar Mitzvah, funeral or other life cycle event, keep me in mind. My specialty is putting together meaningful and personal events. I guess I can be known as the traveling, singing Rabbi!
November, 2013 – I am very busy now getting ready for the first ever in our lifetime Thanksgivukkah! Yes, for the first (and last) time ever, the first day of Chanukah falls on Thanksgiving. I have my Menurkey
and a Thanksgivukkah t-shirt to commemorate the occasion. I even wrote some special verses to some popular Chanukah songs to celebrate:
Tune: I Have a Little Dreydl
I have a new menorah
It looks like a turkey
We light our candles in it
We call it a “menurkey”
Oh, menurkey, nurkey, nurkey
You are so very quirky
Menurkey, nurkey, nurkey
A menorah like a turkey.
And to the tune of Debbie Friedman’s Thanksgiving song:
Chorus: Happy Thanksgiving, hooray, hooray, hooray
Aren’t you glad you’re Jewish on this Thanksgiving Day
Happy Thanksgiving, hooray, hooray, hooray
Aren’t you glad you’re Jewish on this Thanksgiving Day
Turkeys and latkes and lots of stuff to eat
Dreydls that spin around, a very special treat
And don’t forget to light your menurkey on this day
This special occasion will soon just go away. Oy!
Maccabees and Pilgrims, we celebrate them both
They all fought for freedom, to them we give a toast
Thanksgivvukah is special, we’ll see it only once
For our religious freedom, we thank you all a bunch. Hey!
Please enjoy this very special holiday and don’t eat too much!
Welcome to my new and improved website. I hope you like it!
Watch a 15 minute video of Judy presenting a workshop/concert at the Jubilation Foundation Retreat on Bainbridge Island, WA in Summer, 2012
July, 2013 – Welcome to my new and improved website. This is something I have been wanting to do for a long time…actually since 2005 when Hurricane Katrina hit and for the most part stalled everything in Louisiana. Thanks to my webmaster – Matt Cohen of It Won’t Byte Web Design http://www.iwbyte.com/ – I finally have a more functional website. If you are looking for someone to create or host or maintain your web site (or all of the above), I highly recommend Matt. And he is on West Coast time so I can call him late at night when I can’t sleep!
The site is easy to navigate and features information about programs I offer, music related items I have for sale, where I am traveling, lyrics to my recordings, photos from recent gigs and more! It even has a link to my newest venture – Sound Healing. As I get older, I am realizing how important complementary forms of medicine can be. I am tired of taking so many pills and the rising cost of health insurance here. Hopefully, through sound healing and the use of 100% certified pure therapeutic grade essential oils, I can help myself and others stay healthier.
Please feel free to send me a message at firstname.lastname@example.org. The internet is such a great way to stay connected. Glad you found me!