Rabbi Benjamin Adler

Contact Rabbi Adler rabbiadler@adathisraelnj.org

Rabbi Benjamin Adler, currently the spiritual leader of Adath Israel Congregation in Lawrenceville, New Jersey, is passionate about being present and guiding individuals and families through the sweetness, sorrows, challenges, and opportunities of Jewish life. Drawing on the ancient wisdom of the tradition and the progressive values of modern Judaism, he has spent years building and sustaining warm, committed, and caring communities that support each member as they find their own unique spiritual path.

A graduate of the Jewish Theological Seminary of America in New York City where he earned a master’s degree in Jewish Philosophy, Rabbi Adler also studied at the Schechter Institute of Jewish Studies in Jerusalem. Born and raised in San Antonio, Texas, he graduated cum laude from Columbia University with a BA in History.

Before entering rabbinical school, he worked for Congregation B’nai Jeshurun in New York City and spent time working in the digital media world. Rabbi Adler has served congregations in Rockaway, New Jersey, Pittsfield, Massachusetts and Greenport, New York.

He has served as vice president of the New Jersey Rabbinical Assembly, on the board of trustees of the Hebrew Academy of Morris County, and on the Religious Pluralism committee of the Jewish Federation of Greater MetroWest New Jersey. Rabbi Adler co-founded the Rockaway Interfaith Community, participates in the New Jersey Muslim-Jewish Solidarity Committee, and helped plan a conference that trained Conservative rabbis in the skills of community organizing.

When he is not teaching, preaching, and leading his congregation, Rabbi Adler can probably be found following the San Antonio Spurs, reading, watching a good movie or TV show, out on the water in his stand-up paddleboard, or on the slopes in the winter. He is married to Lisa Adler, a fellow Jewish communal professional, and they have three children: Ronen, Jonah, and Miya.

Photo credit: Johanna Resnick Rosen

RSS Click on the title of the articles below to read on Rabbi Adler’s website

  • Grand Old Flag November 26, 2021
    Recently, our sanctuary was used for a performance by an outside organization. Whenever this occurs, we have to move all of the furniture off of the bima, the raised platform. Because all of this movement can cause some logistical challenges, I was asked if we needed to put the US and Israeli flags back for […]
  • The Impossible Dream November 18, 2021
    In Billy Crystal’s 1992 movie, Mr. Saturday Night, the up-and-coming comic Buddy Young is trying to entice a young woman, who will one day become his wife, to get dinner with him. “These sandwiches are amazing,” he tells her. “Roast pork, yet they’re kosher. I don’t know how they do it!” Buddy may have been […]
  • Deep Cuts November 12, 2021
    As my children enter the college years and contemplate questions like big vs. small school, urban vs. small town environment, I have been reminded of my own thought process in making such a big decision. I wanted to be in a northeastern city with an intense intellectual environment, so I chose Columbia University. In the years since I never questioned the decision, but as […]
  • Assimilation Can Work Both Ways November 4, 2021
    A few years ago, I discovered a new Jewish holiday. The last sentence might sound odd coming from a rabbi who is supposed to be aware of all Jewish observances, but I have to admit that even I do not know everything. In looking at my Google Jewish holidays calendar, I noticed the word Sigd, […]
  • Just Deserts October 28, 2021
    The desert is hazardous to human life but advantageous in discovering the secrets of the dead. Limited water makes it very difficult for living people to survive, but that lack of moisture also helps to preserve texts, objects, and even dead bodies. In fact, the harsh conditions of the desert help preserve the past in […]
  • Jewish Past vs. Jewish Future October 21, 2021
    I always like learning new words, especially ones that denote a specific situation in a specific field. A few years ago, I was listening to a radio report that mentioned the term deaccessioning, which is the practice of an institution selling one or more of its cultural assets. The story I heard focused on opposition […]
  • Looking for Cozy Feelings October 14, 2021
    It has been one year since the Abraham Accords initiative began to establish diplomatic relations between Israel and Arab nations. So far, four countries have joined the effort: the United Arab Emirates, Bahrain, Morocco, and Sudan. Other nations like Saudi Arabia and Oman continue to maintain unofficial ties to Israel but are not yet ready […]
  • Not Ours to See October 7, 2021
    When I was a kid, the books that got me into science fiction as a literary genre were the Foundation novels by Isaac Asimov. I loved Star Wars and Star Trek, but until I read the Asimov’s books, I never considered that science fiction stories could be conveyed with words rather than images. Since, then […]
  • Is Biology Destiny? October 1, 2021
    Is our destiny found in our biology, in our environment, or in our soul? Do our lives turn out the way they do because of the genes in our cells, the things we learn from our parents and society, or some divine force driving the universe? These kinds of questions have been asked for generations […]
  • Tales from the Tomb September 23, 2021
    On the afternoon of Yom Kippur last week, we read the Book of Jonah, which tells the tale of the titular prophet who was commanded to bring a prophecy of doom against the city of Nineveh in ancient Assyria, modern day Iraq. Rabbis have puzzled over Jonah’s inclusion in the Yom Kippur service, but one […]