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

  • If They Could See Us Now August 6, 2020
    What would your ancestors who lived a hundred years ago think of you today? We like to think that they would be proud of us, that the hard work they put into making a better life for us has paid off. On the other hand, would they be disappointed? Have we truly lived up to […]
  • Plausible Hatred July 30, 2020
    Today, July 30th, is the Jewish commemoration of Tisha B’Av, the 9th day of the Hebrew month of Av. It is the saddest day on the Jewish calendar, when we remember the destruction of both temples in Jerusalem, by the Babylonians and the Romans, and many other terrible events such as the expulsion from Spain. […]
  • Plenty of Fight Left Over July 23, 2020
    After many long months without professional sports in America, Major League Baseball, the National Basketball Association, and the National Hockey League are all set to start, or restart, their seasons in the next few weeks. I am looking forward to watching my beloved San Antonio Spurs once again, even if they have little to no […]
  • Disease and Culture July 16, 2020
    Jewish customs and traditions have been especially challenged during the coronavirus pandemic. We are used to gathering in groups, hugging and kissing at services, weddings and funerals. Our traditional methods for combatting illness – communal prayer and visiting the sick – are not only unwise; they could actively lead to an increase of cases. As […]
  • The Arch Revisited July 9, 2020
    A few weeks ago I wrote about some Jewish perspectives on the efforts to remove the statues of Confederate generals and others from public squares, arguing that we as Jews should try to see the situation from the perspective of people of color rather than expect them to adopt our position. I also tried to […]
  • Priorities July 2, 2020
    One of the great challenges of leadership is deciding what is important. You might have a great idea or policy for a particular problem, but if it is not a high priority for the people you lead, it may cause you to ignore the pressing issues of the day. A leader cannot do everything – […]
  • When Quarantine is Not Isolation June 18, 2020
    When does COVID-induced quarantine become a moment to transcend the feeling of isolation? When that quarantine actually brings you out of the confining societal silos that keep people apart. In many countries, one of the strategies to fight the coronavirus pandemic has been to place infected people with mild or no symptoms in hotels while […]
  • In Another’s Shoes June 11, 2020
    It is human nature to see events through the lens of our own personal experience and history. That is how we make meaning of the things we witness: by relating our knowledge and feelings to what we see. Sometimes, this instinct is positive – it allows us to understand how others are thinking and feeling. […]
  • Justice Truth and Peace June 4, 2020
    In Pirkei Avot, the ethical teaching of our rabbinic sages, there are two descriptions of three things that sustain the world, from two different authorities. Shimon the Righteous says that “the world stands upon three things: the Torah, the Temple service, and the practice of acts of piety” (Mishnah Avot 1:2). Later in the same […]
  • Make it Dairy May 28, 2020
    Shavuot, which begins tonight, is the holiday of dairy food. Why? No one really knows, although many reasons have been offered. Perhaps it has to do with the fact that Shavuot marks the time the Jews were camped out on Mount Sinai waiting to get the kosher laws. Since the rules on proper animal slaughter […]