Rabbi Marcia Prager is a vibrant Jewish renewal prayer-leader, teacher, maggid, artist and therapist living and working in the Mt. Airy community of Philadelphia. A graduate of the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College, she also holds the personal smicha/rabbinic ordination of Rabbi Zalman Schachter-Shalomi, z”l,the visionary “zayde” of the Jewish Renewal Movement, with whom she continued to work closely until his death in 2014.
Shes serves as rabbi of the Philadelphia P’nai Or Jewish Renewal Community, the innovative Jewish community founded by Rabbi Schachter-Shalomi in 1973. Rabbi Marcia was chosen as part of the Sisterhood 50: America’s Influential Women Rabbis.
She is Director and Dean of the ALEPH Ordination Programs, designing programs of study leading to rabbinic, rabbinic pastor and cantorial ordinations for ALEPH: Alliance for Jewish Renewal, the national organization which advances vital Judaism as an ethical and spiritual path. She teaches widely in many different Jewish and interfaith settings – offering the wisdom of Jewish tradition as a path of personal growth and world healing.
She is the author of The Path of Blessing (Bell Tower, 1998; Jewish Lights, 2003) an exploration of the spiritual wisdom that lies in the Jewish practice of blessing, which was praised as “one of the best introductions to the Jewish Renewal movement and its approach to Jewish learning and practice.” (Reform Judaism, Fall, 1999 )
She is the author of the P’nai Or Siddurim for Shabbat, and many other creative liturgies for holidays and home. Her work as a teacher of Jewish spiritual practice includes developing and co-directing DLTI, the Davvenen Leadership Training Institute at Isabella Freedman Jewish Retreat Center, and teaching widely in Jewish and interfaith settings.
Her newest project involves creating innovative tools for exploring Jewish prayer and spiritual practice. The Weekday Amidah in Guided Imagery is a deck of 20 exquisitely hand-illustrated cards which use guided meditations to lead you through the transformative blessings of this ancient prayer practice.
Rabbi Prager holds a BA in cultural anthropology, and an MFA from Pratt Institute, New York, in photography and drawing. She taught for five years as a member of the faculty of The International Center of Photography in New York City. She and her husband, Hazzan Jack Kessler, a traditionally trained cantor and director of two Jewish music ensembles, ATZILUT: Concerts for Peace and Klingon Klez, often lead Shabbat retreats and workshops together.
You can read an article about Rabbi Marcia at http://forward.com/articles/111994.
Email Rabbi Marcia Prager at firstname.lastname@example.org or phone her at 215-849-9227.
“There is something so special about the way Rabbi Prager is able to look at each person as she leads the service. It creates such a warm, intimate bond, as the music and prayers carry us ever upward.”Gloria Hoffman