Founded in 1984, Congregation Kol Ami was formerly a Reconstructionist havurah known as the Northshore Jewish Community.
For almost a decade, a core group of individuals kept the Jewish spirit alive on the Eastside, meeting in family homes. By the late 1990’s, the tiny community took the next step and rented meeting space. In June of 1999, Congregation Kol Ami was accepted into the UAHC (now the URJ). In 2000, as new residents in our current Bear Creek/Cottage Lake home, Kol Ami hired Drorah Setel, the community’s first part-time rabbi.
We were then fortunate to learn and grow with Rabbi Laurie Rice for several years. In 2005, we were equally blessed to enjoy the scholarly teachings and spiritual leadership of Mark Glickman. In July of 2014, we eagerly embraced our current rabbi Yohanna Kinberg.
Our congregation has grown since the new millennium. Our school has flourished and we have witnessed the coming of age of many bright and beautiful B’nai Mitzvah students—they honor and inspire us all.
While our community continues to change and grow, a significant constant in our lives is the value we place on relationships with each other and collectively, our Kehilah Kedoshah, our Sacred Community.
Throughout history, Jews have remained firmly rooted in Jewish tradition, even as we learned much from our encounters with other cultures. Nevertheless, since its earliest days, Reform Judaism has asserted that a Judaism frozen in time is an heirloom, not a living fountain. The great contribution of Reform Judaism is that it has enabled the Jewish people to introduce innovation and modernity while preserving tradition, to embrace diversity while asserting commonality, to affirm beliefs without rejecting those who doubt and to bring faith to sacred texts without sacrificing critical scholarship.
The positions of the Reform Movement are based primarily in two sources: Resolutions adopted by the Union for Reform Judaism, and resolutions adopted by the Central Conference of American Rabbis.