Rabbi Benjamin Adler

Contact Rabbi Adler rabbiadler@adathisraelnj.org

Rabbi Benjamin Adler has been the spiritual leader of Adath Israel Congregation since 2014. He 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 president of the Board of Rabbis of Princeton Mercer Bucks, vice president of the New Jersey Rabbinical Assembly, on the board of trustees of the Gottesman RTW Academy, and on the Religious Pluralism committee of the Jewish Federation of Greater MetroWest New Jersey. Rabbi Adler co-founded the Rockaway Interfaith Community, worked with the New Jersey Muslim-Jewish Solidarity Committee and Clergy of Lawrence Township, 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, fixing things around the house, or on the slopes in the winter. He is married to Lisa Adler and they have three children: Ronen, Jonah, and Miya.

Photo credit: Mike Schwartz

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

  • Safe Haven June 14, 2024
    If one were to take bets 10 years ago which North American nation would elect its first Jewish head of government, the safe wager would be on the United States or maybe Canada. Life has a funny way of upending expectations as Mexico will soon have the distinction of being the first country in this […]
  • They Saved the World June 6, 2024
    Today marks the 80th anniversary of the Allied invasion of northern Europe during World War II, otherwise known as D-Day. The youngest veterans of that battle are 98 years old, some of whom made their way to France for the celebration. This moment is an opportunity to contemplate what the war means today, 8 decades […]
  • To Return Or Not To Return May 24, 2024
    During my time in rabbinical school, we had short seminars called “minimesters” that gave us an opportunity to grapple with issue in depth that could not be covered during our regular curriculum. For a week or two during semester breaks we would learn about clergy boundaries or couples’ therapy. One minimester dealt with ethical issues […]
  • Exclusion May 16, 2024
    I once served on a jury decades ago when I lived in New York City. I was working at the time and hadn’t yet entered rabbinical school. During jury selection I was given a questionnaire which asked whether I was willing to vote for conviction on the basis of only one witness. The reason for […]
  • Sing Loud and Proud May 10, 2024
    There is much that Americans don’t understand about Israelis. These two peoples live in different parts of the world with different cultural perspectives and understandings of the world. Sometimes we are baffled by each other and the things we hold dear. I’m talking of course about … Israel’s odd obsession with the Eurovision Song Contest. […]
  • Leave the Camp May 2, 2024
    The situation on college campuses has deteriorated significantly since my message last week. Columbia once again called in police after pro-Palestinian protestors occupied a building. At the University of California Los Angeles, counter protesters violently attacked the pro-Palestinian encampment on that campus followed by the clearing of the site by authorities the next day. Where […]
  • Pulled by the Extremes April 26, 2024
    Every college has its campus lore, the stories it tells about itself. At Columbia University, one of the important narratives is the tale of the 1968 student strike that shut down the university and did immense harm to the school’s reputation. Students were protesting the Vietnam War and a planned gym that would have separate […]
  • Feast of Freedom April 18, 2024
    Each year at Passover, we celebrate our redemption from slavery to freedom. It is a moment of triumph for our people, but how do you observe a holiday like that when you don’t feel a sense of victory? How can you say “we were slaves, but now we are free” when hostages sit in captivity? […]
  • Leverage April 5, 2024
    A few weeks ago, Senator Charles Schumer, the majority leader, made a speech on the Senator floor accusing Israel’s prime minister of being an obstacle to peace and calling for new elections. Many were outraged that Schumer would call for a change in government of an American ally. Others felt that he spoke hard truths […]
  • My Shabbat with Joe Lieberman March 28, 2024
    The news that Joseph Lieberman died this week reminded me of the time twenty years ago that my family and I spent a Shabbat with the senator and his wife in Safed. We were living in Israel during my rabbinical studies and liked to travel around the country as much as possible. One weekend we […]