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JDate’s Rabbi of the Month – Rabbi Joshua Finkelstein of Temple Emanuel in North New Jersey

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Rabbi of the Month

Submitted by JDater® Jessica Sokol

I grew up with Rabbi Finkelstein when he was the assistant Rabbi in White Plains, New York.  I remember when he was new to the synagogue and single and by the time he left, he had found his wife and had started a family.  Based on his own background, I am fully aware of Rabbi Finkelstein’s sensitivity when it comes to Jewish dating and the desire to find someone with whom to love and share a life.  

Surprisingly, this past weekend, I attended a wedding of a friend who met her husband on JDate.  I was so happy for her and am still very impressed that the site could help two people not only connect, but somehow turn that connection into love and finally, a marriage.  But, there was another wonderful part of the wedding that was more of a surprise to me. Rabbi Joshua Finkelstein, my childhood Rabbi, was the master of ceremony and married the couple under the chuppah.  

I could not believe it, but Rabbi Finkelstein did not simply brush how the couple met under the carpet; rather, he made their meeting part of his speech. Rabbi Finkelstein emphasized that it was God’s hands that assisted the two in finding each other through the modern day miracle and venue of JDate.  

I truly think, for this couple especially, that JDate was a miracle and I was so happy to dance with the bride and groom so that I could be part of their special day.  I connected not only to the couple and the rabbi at the wedding, but I also could relate and understand the power of the venue in which they met.

JDate has helped so many people and Rabbi Finkelstein so brilliantly gave credit where credit was due.  While, it is difficult to be single in the Jewish community when the Jewish culture is so very much family oriented, it is refreshing and comforting to know that there are community leaders who realize the sometimes challenging journey to finding love and acknowledge and recognize those who help along the way, including a paid Internet dating site.  

So, thank you JDate for helping my friend and her husband find each other and thank you for letting me reconnect with a Rabbi who gave me much needed guidance as a young girl.

Want to nominate your rabbi for JDate’s next Rabbi of the Month? Go here!

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2 Comments »

  • Caryn Levy says:

    Rabbi Finkelstein is indeed a very warm, caring individual. I was originally a member of one shul and he became the rabbi there after the previous rabbi left. Rabbi Finkelstein was the rabbi for my brother’s Bar Mitzvah and when it was time for Rabbi Finkelstein to move to Temple Emanuel, my family and I followed him. I was also fortunate to become friendly with his wife and three wonderful children. Their family welcomes you with open arms anytime. I wish the family all my best!

  • Sharon, Israel says:

    Thanks Jessica for this touching & insightful article. I hope you find your own beshert soon :).
    Clearly, the respectful Rabbi considers the increasing number of Jewish singles, to be a major subject that must be addressed.
    Jewish spiritual leaders, can really make a difference, just by emphesizing the importance of forming many Jewish homes, and not be afraid to use everthing this generation has to offer, to achieve this goal.
    One thing I wish more Rabbis would educate congregatios about, is the importance of good old fashioned matchmaking, which many people, especially married couples, would rather avoid.

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