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Meet Our Rabbi

Meet Our Rabbi

Meet Or Ha Lev’s Rabbi

Rabbi Debra Smith (“Rabbi Deb”) has received Rabbinic Ordination through the ALEPH Jewish Renewal Rabbinical Seminary. She is the founder and spiritual leader of Or Ha Lev Jewish Renewal Congregation in Morris County, New Jersey. In 2018, Rabbi Deb was ordained as Maggidah (Jewish Transformational Storyteller) to enhance her rabbinic work. She is also a Clinical Social Worker and Multicultural Family Therapist.

A major focus of Rabbi Deb’s work is Deep Ecumenism and multi-faith dialogue. She currently serves as co-chair of the NJ Muslim-Jewish Solidarity Committee and is a co-chair of the Morris County NJ chapter of the Sisterhood of Salaam-Shalom.

Rabbi Deb has served as Scholar in Residence at several local churches where she has taught classes on a variety of topics in Judaism. She also co-facilitates Jewish-Christian dialogue sessions and Jewish-Muslim dialogues with local pastors and imams.

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Until years ago, I had not belonged to any congregation. Then, I discovered Or Ha Lev. Thanks to Rabbi Deb's services and special events, notably our Sunday morning adult education and discussion groups, this community has become the center of my life. Or Ha Lev has enabled me to rediscover my Jewish heritage. And what I have learned - and continue to learn - now guide all aspects of my life. For all this, I am immensely grateful.
D.B., Flanders. NJ

From the time I have joined Or Ha Lev, I have become a member of a close family. Learning with Rabbi Deb on Sunday mornings, there is always a take away because of the sharing we do. Having never gone to Hebrew School, learning with our Adult Education group has taught me so much more than I have ever known about the meaning of being a Jew.  I am now studying for my Bat Mitzvah with Rabbi Deb. At the age of 75 this is quite an occasion!  All this is because our small congregation Or ha Lev is loving and kind and dedicated to each other. 
S.S., Mt. Arlington, NJ

The Or Ha Lev community, led by our Rabbi, Rabbi Deb Smith, is one of friends, devoted to learning together and enriching one another by sharing openly in truth about one’s life, experiences, and vulnerabilities, without judgement. Thus, binding us together as One.
G.G., Rockaway, NJ


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