Inclusion at PAS


Our mission is to ensure that every individual and family in the PAS community has the opportunity to participate fully in all aspects of synagogue life.

Inclusion Programming
Leadership and Getting Involved

Inclusion Goals

The Inclusion Committee's goals are to:
• Enable all PAS members to participate in existing programming, worship, education, and social events
• Create new programs and networks that address the specific needs of individuals, their families, and their caregivers and to expand the opportunities for engagement and accessibility
• Ensure all our facilities and rituals are accessible to all
• Raise awareness of inclusion challenges in the entire PAS community (clergy, lay leaders, congregants, and staff)
• Foster collaboration in addressing the issues of inclusion, growing  sensitivity and establishing open lines of communication

Inclusion Programming

What We Currently Offer

Current inclusion efforts that address the needs of our congregation include:
• Educational and social supports in the Penn Family Early Childhood Center, Congregational School and Rabbi Judah Nadich High School
• Accessible entrances, seating, and hearing and vision enhancement in our Sanctuary and classrooms
• Alternative spaces and programming to enable participation at synagogue-wide events like the Purim Carnival, Simhat Torah Evening Celebration, and Mitzvah Day
• Programming during JDAIM, Jewish Disability Awareness and Inclusion Month (annually in February) highlighting issues that affect PAS members

Looking Ahead

We hope to implement additional inclusion programming in 2019—2020:
• Supported work environments for young adults with learning and other developmental disabilities
• Peer-to-peer efforts that enable the wider PAS community to meet and support one another, e.g.,  enhanced usher/greeter training, Food Pantry PALs, and the development of PALs programming in the YFE, Penn Family ECC, and Congregational School
• Website links to community resources, articles and events that emphasize inclusion
• Professionally facilitated training and support for clergy, board, and staff 


Visit this page periodically to view additional links to sermons, lectures, podcasts, blogs and other information.

Debra Lehrman: Walk in Her Shoes
February 2019
Watch the video.

Sharon Thomas: Why Inclusion Matters
February 2019
View the video.

Nina Mogilnik: God Can See My Son, Can You?
February 2019
View the video

"8 Jews with Disabilities Explain How Communities Fall Short on Inclusion"
The Jewish Week
February 2019
Read the article

Rabbi Charlie Savenor: "Love Bundles"
Times of Israel
September 2018
Read the article.

Rabbi Brad Artson: My House Shall Be a House for All People: Building a Truly Inclusive Community
February 2018
Listen to the podcast episode.

Dr. Dan Gottlieb: An Essential Conversation: Fear, Faith, Compassion
February 2017
Listen to the podcast episode.

Rabbi Elliot Cosgrove: A House of Prayer for All People
High Holidays, 2015
Read the sermon.

How You Can Get Involved

The Inclusion Committee welcomes your ideas and participation. Contact them at

Co-chairs: Suzanne Aisenberg and Marissa Zackowitz
Clergy Liaisons: Rabbi Zuckerman and Rabbi Savenor

Should you or someone you know require specific accommodations for synagogue events or programming, please contact Rachel Zorbaron, Director of Membership, at

If you would like to support inclusion efforts at PAS, your contribution to the Inclusion Fund would be greatly appreciated.