- Gender: Female
- Personal Status: Intermarried/Interfaith Partner
- Children: 1
- Religion: Jewish - Reconstructionist, Reform
- Profession: Other, Educator
- Interests: Connection between Judaism & Buddhism, Interfaith Muslim & Jewish conversations, Referrals to interfaith officiants that honor Jewish and integration of other traditions that do not require raising children Jewish prior to marriage(for example me and others like me who craft these kind of ceremonies that are inclusive), Jewish response to health challenges acute and long term, Social activism
- Hometown: Great Neck, NY
My mother, Lila Satenstein was one of the founding members of the first Reconstructionist congregation on Long Island. Although I went kicking and screaming as a teen; our family's involvement in this congregation & with The Reconstructionist movement made a profound impact on me and still does today. However, it lay dormant for me until my son was born. I always felt awe and spiritual connection, even as a child. I identified myself as spiritual and a Jew. As an unaffiliated young adult I celebrated passover, hannukah and attended high holy day services at Hillel. As a parent, I found myself wanting my son to have a solid Jewish background in a Jewish community (few Jews where we live). As he studied for his Bar Mitzvah; I began my love affair with Torah. I became adult Bat Mitzvah one year after my son. I am still passionate about Torah and other Jewish studies; especially the integration of mindfulness meditation and mussar and Zen. This Jewish year, for those in our synagogue Torah group; we will spend about 15 minutes after services meditating and/or using guided imagery evoked from the parsha or services.
I identify myself as a Jew and a spiritual person. Beginning in 1981, I've had the honor to craft and officiate at weddings for friends, family, and friends of friends. Our Rabbi and Cantor refer interfaith couples to me that they feel would find my ceremony crafted more appropriate for a couple that is interfaith, but not committed (yet!) to making a Jewish home exclusively. Weddings also include multi-cultural ceremonies (really all marriages are multi-cultural from a family therapist perspective). I have also officiated at a baby naming, and for a living donor transplant ceremony (my husband and donor) and other pre-surgery healing ceremonies and healing circles. I have also had the honor of co-creating, crafting and officiating for a few memorial services.
I am in the process of expanding my service of ceremony crafting and officiating to the general public who want to be married--inter-faith, multi-cultural, same gender and non-religious couples. It is my intention (kavannah) to assist others with co-created, meaningful and relevant ceremonies for life's transitions.