Beth El Antiracism Working Group: 2021 in Review




  • Workshop for Board of Directors on becoming an antiracist congregation
  • Discussion of The Vanishing Half by Brit Bennett



  • Participation in Reform Jewish Movement’s inaugural Racial Justice Initiative
  • Discussion of The New Jim Crow by Michelle Alexander


  • Community conversation on housing justice for Shavuot in partnership with Jewish Alliance for Law and Social Action
  • Participation in the Reform movement’s Racial Justice Initiative sessions
  • Fundraising campaign to purchase culturally appropriate books for predominantly Black and Latinx sickle-cell disease pediatric patients
  • Discussion of I’m Still Here by Austin Channing Brown


  • Meeting with Roxbury United Neighborhoods to identify opportunities to become “co-conspirators”


  • Bystander intervention training workshop
  • State-level advocacy for prison construction moratorium and antiracism, equity and justice in education


  • Placed 4×8 foot banner outside Beth El with the message “We Stand for Racial Justice: Justice, Justice Shall You Pursue.” Banner sourced from Black-owned business.
  • Met with Roxbury United Neighborhoods
  • Community conversation on “Being White and Being Jewish for Elul”
  • Discussion of So You Want To Talk About Race by Ijeoma Oluo
  • Creation of Antiracist Greeter Guidelines for ushers at Shabbat and High Holidays
  • Development of inclusion and belonging language for Beth El website’s “About Us” page


  • Inaugural “Pursuing Justice Series” panel presentation: “Bending the Criminal (In)justice System Toward Justice” featuring Stacey Borden, founder and executive director of New Beginnings Re-Entry Services in Roxbury; Latanya Henderson, founder and executive director of All Things Art in Roxbury; State Rep. Carmine Gentile and State Sen. Jamie Eldridge
  • Stand out and state-level advocacy in support of moratorium on prison construction


  • Participation in Reform Jewish Movement’s National Call-in Campaign for Voting Rights
  • Discussion of Invisible Man by Ralph Ellison
  • Participation in USCJ-sponsored “Race Consciousness Training” series led by Heather Miller and Eitan Dantzig