Beth Emet - The Free Synagogue

Beth Emet is a diverse, multigenerational Reform community with a dynamic approach to Judaism. Our congregation seeks to create a spiritually vibrant, socially conscious, intellectually challenging, and deeply caring environment firmly rooted in Jewish tradition and values.

Rabbi Memis Foler

Rabbi Amy L. Memis-Foler became a rabbi because of her love of Judaism and desire to teach others, share in their spiritual journey and make the world a better place than we found it. 

She joined Beth Emet in the fall of 2018 along with the many families of Temple Judea Mizpah, where she has served as Senior/Solo Rabbi for over a decade. She finds great joy in participating in all aspects of the congregation from leading services and conducting lifecycle events, teaching high school students, leading worship for middle and elementary school students, guiding individuals looking to convert to Judaism and working with all the temple’s commissions, to leading trips to Israel and more. At her first pulpit as Assistant/Associate Rabbi at Congregation BJBE in Glenview, Rabbi Memis-Foler spent much of her rabbinate focused on working with the youth of the congregation. She then served as Associate Rabbi at Temple Sholom of Chicago, a highlight of which included her helping to start the congregation’s Monday Meal (soup kitchen).

In the broader Jewish community, Rabbi Memis-Foler currently serves as Co-President of the Women’s Rabbinic Network, a constituent group of the Central Conference of American Rabbis (CCAR) supporting women rabbis in North America, Israel and across the globe. In this capacity she co-created and led morning worship featuring Lesley Sachs and Anat Hoffman of the Women of the Wall at the Union for Reform Judaism (URJ) Biennial in Boston. Other proud moments in the WRN include co-chairing the WRN Convention in Baltimore in 2017 and in Chicago in 2007 with Rabbi London. She currently sits on the Leadership Council of the Association of Reform Zionists of America (ARZA) and worked on the CCAR Israel Convention Committee in 2016.  She has served on the Rabbinic, Educational and Cantorial Advisory Committee for Olin-Sang Ruby Union Institute (OSRUI) and in various Board positions for the Chicago Association of Reform Rabbis (CARR).

A passion of Rabbi Memis-Foler’s includes building bridges with others and celebrating diversity, which has grown out of her work as a Commissioner on the Village of Skokie Human Relations Commission, where she currently serves as liaison to the Coming Together initiative for the Skokie and Niles Township board. For Coming Together’s 2018 program featuring American Muslim Cultures, Rabbi Memis-Foler hosted, moderated, and sat on the panel of “Cousins in Faith,” a program which a rabbi, imam, and Christian pastor shared commonalities. In the spring of 2018, she completed a nine-month seminar of the National SEED (Seeking Educational Equity and Diversity) Project. At the Skokie Public Library, she moderated a diverse religious panel on Exploring Human Origins, an exhibit from the Smithsonian which she helped bring to the library in September 2016. 

Rabbi Memis-Foler served on the task force that published The Sacred Calling: Four Decades of Women in the Rabbinate. Her essays have been published in a variety of journals and books including Beginning the Journey: A Women’s Commentary on Torah and Reform Jewish Ethics and the Halakhah. Rabbi Memis-Foler is featured in the exhibit Bat Mitzvah Comes of Age, which toured the country in the Spring of 2012.

After earning a B.A. degree in Sociology at Brandeis University, Rabbi Memis-Foler attended the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion in Israel and New York. Ordained from the HUC-JIR’s New York campus in 1993, she also received her Doctor of Divinity degree, honoris causa in May 2018.

Rabbi Memis-Foler has donated 88 inches of her hair to make wigs for people who lose their hair due to medical conditions. She lives in Skokie with her family.  

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  • Lunch, Learn, Love
    A Social Action Committee Program for Kids (kindergarten to grade five)

    Sunday, January 20 | 12:00 p.m. – 2:00 p.m.
    Following Beit Sefer, join friends for an afternoon of lunch, learning, and volunteering together...

 

Beth Emet is a diverse, multigenerational Reform community with a dynamic approach to Judaism. Our congregation seeks to create a spiritually vibrant, socially conscious, intellectually challenging, and deeply caring environment firmly rooted in Jewish tradition and values.

  • Beth Emet Blood Drive

    Sunday, January 27 | 8:30-2:30 p.m. in the Crown Room.

    Do a mitzvah and save a life!

    Participating donors will receive a pair of Vitalant socks and a coupon for a cupcake and 10% off any order at North Shore Kos...

  • Toy and Book Collection for Rohingya Cultural Center

    Sunday, January 13 - Sunday, February 10

    The Beth Emet Social Action Committee together with Beit Sefer is planning a collection of gently used (or new) toys and books for the Rohingya children who live in Rogers...

  • Lunch, Learn, Love
    A Social Action Committee Program for Kids (kindergarten to grade five)

    Sunday, January 20 | 12:00 p.m. – 2:00 p.m.
    Following Beit Sefer, join friends for an afternoon of lunch, learning, and volunteering together...

  • Young Family Chicken Soup Shabbat Dinner

    Friday, February 1 at 5:30 p.m.

    RSVP now or call 847-869-4230 ext 308.

  • Understanding Domestic Abuse in the Jewish Community and Beyond

    with Anita Pildes, Community Education and Outreach Coordinator of Shalva
    Tuesday, February 5 at 7:30 p.m.

    One in four women will experience domestic ...

  • Sommelier Soiree

    Saturday, February 2, 2019 | 7:30 p.m. - 9:30 p.m. (*please note new date!)
    at the home of Neal Moglin and Mark Tendam

    Spend a relaxing evening with Beth Emet friends tasting and learning more about wines with an ex...

  • A Close Look at Torah

    with Rabbi Andrea London
    Fridays through June 7 (No class November 23, December 7, 21 and 28; January 4 and 25, April 19 and 26)
    9:30 a.m. - 10:35 a.m.
    There are many ways to interpret Torah and the nuances of meaning that are...

  • Thursdays, Wednesday, December 5; Thursday, January 10; Wednesday, February 6; Thursdays, March 7, April 4, and May 2
    7:30 p.m. - 9:00 p.m.

    Participants study as a small group of adults studies to become b’nei mitzvah togethe...

  • With Rabbi Andrea London

    Shabbat, December 15, January 19, February 9, March 9, April 6, May 11, and June 1
    3:30–5:30 pm This class meets at Rabbi London's home.

    Once a month on Shabbat afternoon at Rabbi London's home, expl...

  • Current Politics

    with David Zarefsky
    Tuesday, January 8; Monday, March 11; Tuesday, June 4 | 7:30 p.m. - 9:00 p.m.
    Sessions will focus on the place of the United States in the world, including relationships with Israel, the nature of the soci...

  • Drumming for Self-Renewal

    with Linda Schneider
    Monday, December 10; and Wednesday, February 13; 7:30 – 9:00 p.m.

    Percussion offers hands-on, non-verbal access to the spiritual and emotional while connecting with others. Treat your mind, body, and sp...

  • Hebrew 1

    with Nancy Fink

    Sundays, September 30 - May 12 (No class October 28; November 25; December 23 and 30; January 6; February 17; April 21)
    11:00 a.m. - 12:00 noon
    Master the Hebrew alphabet and learn how to sound out printed He...

  • Hebrew 2

    with Bluma Stoller
    Sundays, September 30 - May 12 (No class October 28; November 25; December 23 and 30; January 6; February 17; April 21)
    10:30 a.m. -11:50 p.m.

    For learners already able to sound out Hebrew words. Improve y...

  • Hebrew 3

    with Dorit Flatt
    Sundays, September 30 - May 12 (No class October 28; November 25; December 23 and 30; January 6; February 17; April 21)
    11:00 a.m.-12:00 noon
    For learners who have completed Hebrew 2 or an equivalent, includin...

  • with Rabbi Allan Kensky
    Fridays, February 1 and 8, 10:45 a.m. – 12:15 p.m.
    Is there one Jewish path to spirituality or are there many pathways to God? What is the function of Jewish prayer? What are some of the pitfalls in trad...

  • Shabbat, February 2 at 9:30 a.m.

    Interested in the worship experience? Feel overwhelmed by the Hebrew or the choreography? Wish you understood more of what it is all about? On this Shabbat morning, we will explore the struct...

  • Mindful Torah: Engaging with Middot

    facilitated by Marci Dickman
    Monthly,  November 19, December 17, January 14, February 4, March 4, April 1, and May 13, 7:00 – 9:00 p.m.
    This Torah study program will guide us to realize our best selves in everyday life. Par...

  • with David Shyovitz
    Fridays, February 22 and March 1, 10:45 a.m. – 12:15 p.m.
    Repentance (t’shuvah) is a central theme of biblical and rabbinic tradition—but its meaning has not remained static over the course of Jewish history...

  • with Rabbi Peter Knobel

    Fridays October 5 - June 28 | 8:00 – 9:00 a.m (No class, November 23, December 21 and December 28, January 4, April 19 and 26)

    Meeting in person in October, and through Zoom online thereafter, we wil...

  • with Rabbi David Rosenberg
    Friday, February 15, 10:45 a.m. – 12:15 p.m.
    The b’rachah (blessing) is one of the great literary achievements of the rabbinic tradition. HaMotzi, Shehecheyanu, and other blessings have a broad appeal...

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