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Rabbi Liza Stern deepens spiritual life at Brandeis

Rabbi Liza Stern

Rabbi Elisabeth "Liza" Weiss Stern is the new acting director of spiritual and religious life at Brandeis as well as a Jewish chaplain, but like Brandeis students, she draws much of the inspiration for her work from extracurricular activities.

Stern has played amateur hockey (retired for now), she keeps bees, raises chickens, has raised five children and is now a proud new grandmother. She continues to serve as rabbi to Congregation Eitz Chayim in Cambridge, a diverse, socially-active congregation in Cambridge, and her husband is also a rabbi in Newton, where they live and where she grew up.

While Stern is not a Brandeisian by graduation, her ties here go back more than a decade. She served as an interim Jewish chaplain last semester, and from 1998 through 2001 she taught in the Hornstein Program of Jewish Communal Service. She was recruited to that role by Jonathan Sarna '75, MA'75, University Professor and the Joseph H. and Belle R. Braun Professor of American Jewish history. Sarna had been her teacher when she was working on her rabbinical studies at Hebrew Union College, where she graduated in 1984.

As the leader of Brandeis' Multifaith Chaplaincy, Stern says she wants to expand the chaplains' visibility among students of all - or no - faiths. One of her first initiatives is assigning a chaplain to each quad to be available to students of all faiths living in the residence halls.

Read Rabbi Stern's interview with BrandeisNOW here.

Categories: Campus News
Date: September 25, 2017