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The Itinerant Rabbi

From: Philip Graitcer
Length: 05:40

An Itinerant Rabbi ministers to congregations in small Southern towns

Kassoff_small Deborah Kassoff works for the Institute of Southern Jewish Life and every Friday she packs her car and drives to towns like Natchez, Meridian, Clarksdale, and New Iberia. Kassoff is a traveling rabbi, and she provides religious services to congregations too small to have a rabbi of their own. Although she always thought she?d take a more traditional pulpit, but during an assignment as a student rabbi in Greenville, Mississippi, she fell in love with the South. She was drawn to the challenge to serve communities that are outside the Jewish mainstream and to way that intensity of Southerners? religious beliefs.

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Piece Description

Deborah Kassoff works for the Institute of Southern Jewish Life and every Friday she packs her car and drives to towns like Natchez, Meridian, Clarksdale, and New Iberia. Kassoff is a traveling rabbi, and she provides religious services to congregations too small to have a rabbi of their own. Although she always thought she?d take a more traditional pulpit, but during an assignment as a student rabbi in Greenville, Mississippi, she fell in love with the South. She was drawn to the challenge to serve communities that are outside the Jewish mainstream and to way that intensity of Southerners? religious beliefs.

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Review of The Itinerant Rabbi

This piece is lovely and delicate. The title is misleading. This is less a story of a wandering Jew than an intimate portrait of a community ending, with all the tragedy and pathos that brings with it. For such a short piece, Philip Graitcer manages to take his time. Although, for such a short piece, it strangely takes 2 minutes before we actually hear the rabbi herself interviewed. Nevertheless this is nicely done and an excellent addition to any weekend magazine program.

Broadcast History

Weekend America, June 10, 2006

Transcript

SUGGESTED INTRO: Here?s a weekend job.

Deborah Kassoff works for the Institute of Southern Jewish Life and every Friday she packs her car and drives to towns like Natchez, Meridian, Clarksdale, and New Iberia. Kassoff is a traveling rabbi, and she provides religious services to congregations too small to have a rabbi of their own.

Although she always thought she?d take a more traditional pulpit, but during an assignment as a student rabbi in Greenville, Mississippi, she fell in love with the South. She was drawn to the challenge to serve communities that are outside the Jewish mainstream and to way that intensity of Southerners? religious beliefs.

Independent producer Philip Graitcer recently caught up with her in Helena, Arkansas.

/Open with singing??/bed

PG: Rabbi Kassoff is leading the final service at Temple Beth El. She has been visiting this Mississippi Delta tow...
Read the full transcript

Timing and Cues

TRT 5:39
VO 5:37

SUGGESTED INTRO:
Here?s a weekend job.
Deborah Kassoff works for the Institute of Southern Jewish Life and every Friday she packs her car and drives to towns like Natchez, Meridian, Clarksdale, and New Iberia. Kassoff is a traveling rabbi, and she provides religious services to congregations too small to have a rabbi of their own.

Although she always thought she?d take a more traditional pulpit, but during an assignment as a student rabbi in Greenville, Mississippi, she fell in love with the South. She was drawn to the challenge to serve communities that are outside the Jewish mainstream and to way that intensity of Southerners? religious beliefs.

Independent producer Philip Graitcer recently caught up with her in Helena, Arkansas.

Additional Files

Related Website

http://www.isjl.org