Rabbi Rachel G. Greengrass
Rachel Greengrass has been part of the Beth Am family since 2008, where she has become part of every aspect of Beth Am. Rabbi Greengrass is our Associate Rabbi and Jewish Life Coordinator. She plays a large role in the life of our congregation with a particular focus on tikkun olam as well as our families with children in utero through adulthood.
Rabbi Greengrass is passionate about education, about pursuing social justice and passionate about Judaism! As such, she creates curriculum as well as teaches in our Day School, Religious School, adult, teen and prenatal communities. Rabbi Greengrass is a sought-after speaker and has been featured at many houses of worship throughout Miami-Dade. She is the clergy advisor to the Tikkun Olam Committee, bringing social action projects to our entire congregation through monthly trips to a local food pantry, organic gardening, monthly mitzvah projects through the schools. She informs our congregation about Judaism’s take on pressing issues of the day through our Social Justice Speaker Series and engages our community through advocacy work.
Her passion for Judaism is seen from how she leads a service, how she engages adults and students alike, creating new and innovative ways for families to connect to Judaism and one another, and in leading trips from city hall to Israel. Her love also is seen in that she is always around, either leading services, teaching, writing, offering counseling or as a proud Beth Am Day School mommy.
Rabbi Greengrass has extensive training. She was ordained from Hebrew Union College–Jewish Institute of Religion in New York in 2008. She holds a Masters of Arts in Hebrew Literature (HUC), a Masters of Religious Education (HUC) and is a certified PREPARE counselor for pre-marital and marriage counseling. In 2011, she was granted the title of Reform Jewish Educator (RJE) by the Reform Jewish Educator Title Granting Commission. She serves on both the Baptist IRB and the board of the Miami Area Association of Rabbis. Her words, both spoken and written, have been published in a far range of mediums, from the Miami Herald to Time magazine. Her poetry has been published as well as featured on Jewish source websites such as ritualwell.com.
Rabbi Greengrass is a native of Fort Wayne, Indiana where she was active in her synagogue's youth group and taught in the religious school. While attending Washington University in St. Louis — where she earned a B.S.B.A. in Marketing — she continued her volunteer work in a religious school and soon discovered her calling as a rabbi.
As a student at HUC, Rabbi Greengrass served many congregations. She taught for Beth Eloheim in Brooklyn and Shaaray Tefila in Manhattan, was student rabbi for the Hillel of Greater Baltimore, performed chaplaincy work at Bellevue Hospital, taught Introduction to Judaism at the URJ, and was the intern at Temple Sinai of Roslyn Heights (NY) from 2006–2008.
Rabbi Greengrass is safe zone certified, which means she is an official advocate for the Gay, Lesbian, Bisexual and Transgender (GLBT) Community. This too is one of her passions. She also is an avid reader, plays the guitar and loves to relax through dance or yoga.
Rachel Greengrass was married in October 2007 to John Crary, who is an educator as well as an avid ultimate-Frisbee player. They are the parents of two beautiful boys, Henry and Ezekiel, who are students in our Day School.