Rabbi Seymour Rosenbloom is the Distinguished Service Rabbi, an honorific title accorded to him upon his retirement on June 30, 2014, after thirty-six years as the congregation’s spiritual leader. Rabbi Rosenbloom is only the third rabbi to have served the congregation in more than a century. His predecessors were Rabbi Max D. Klein (1910-1960) and Rabbi Yaakov G. Rosenberg (1960-1978).
A 1966 graduate of the University of Rochester, Rabbi Rosenbloom received his degree in philosophy, magna cum laude, and was elected to Phi Beta Kappa. In 1964-1965 he studied in Israel through the American Friends of the Hebrew University. He was ordained from the Jewish Theological Seminary of America in 1972, and was awarded prizes in Bible, Talmud and homiletics. He was the recipient of the Federation of Jewish Women's Organizations Prize which is awarded to the outstanding graduating student in the Rabbinical School. Rabbi Rosenbloom was designated by his classmates to speak on their behalf at the service of ordination. In 1997 he received an honorary doctorate from JTS.
Upon graduation, Rabbi Rosenbloom was named Assistant Rabbi of Adat Shalom Synagogue in Farmington Hills, Michigan, a suburb of Detroit, serving together with Rabbi Jacob E. Segal, of blessed memory. In 1974, Rabbi Rosenbloom was named Associate Rabbi. In 1975, he succeeded Rabbi Segal as spiritual leader of the congregation.
Adath Jeshurun is noted for its unique liturgy, expressed through the Seder Avodah prayer books, originally edited by Rabbi Klein. One volume is for the Sabbath, weekdays, and Festivals, and the other is a Mahzor for the High Holy Days. Rabbi Rosenbloom has extensively edited and revised both volumes for the congregation. The Mahzor was re-issued in 2004, and the Sabbath, weekdays, and Yom Tov edition was inaugurated in 2008 as part of the congregation’s 150th anniversary celebration. In the fall of 2013, a new volume, Seder Avodah for a House of Shiva, was introduced. Rabbi Rosenbloom’s interest in liturgy has led to the preparation of other unique volumes for use in the congregation for special occasions.
In 2015, Rabbi Rosenbloom was elected president of JSPAN, the Jewish Social Policy Action Network. He is a member of of the newly formed (2012) Cheltenham Township Commission on Human Relations, and was honored by the Cheltenham NAACP at it’s annual dinner in June 2011, receiving an award for religious leadership. He is a member of the Steering Committee of Cheltenham Academics which organizes tutors for students at Cedarbrook Middle School.
Rabbi Rosenbloom is active on the Old York Road Community Organization, and was one of the original conveners of the community-wide effort in which the seven synagogues in the Old York Road Corridor have joined together to improve the community and prepare for its future.
Rabbi Rosenbloom has led many congregational and community groups to Israel and Eastern Europe. Most recently, in 2011, he led a group to Prague and Israel, following the footsteps of Jewish history in recent times from the depths of the Holocaust to the glory of the rebirth of Israel.
He has developed a special sister relationship between Adath Jeshurun and Congregation Hod VeHadar in Kfar Saba, Israel, and inspired many members of AJ to be generous supporters of this sister congregation.
In 1982 he participated in a Federation mission to Israel and Lebanon immediately following the Lebanese war, and in 1987 visited the Soviet Union where he met with refuseniks and helped prepare a young man for his Bar Mitzvah, and officiated at a Jewish wedding ceremony for a couple. He was a leader of the community’s Mission 1000 in the late 1980's.
In 1991, on the eve of the Gulf War, he led a mission of over forty people to Israel along with AJ President Stephen D. Rudman and Rabbi Charles S. Sherman of Syracuse, NY. The mission was called "If Not Now, When?" They were the only Jewish group traveling in Israel at the time due to the heightened tension and the immanent outbreak of hostilities.
Rabbi Rosenbloom has a special interest in "Jewish men's issues," and has lectured and taught on the subject using Jewish Biblical materials and the modern texts of Robert Bly among others. Rabbi Rosenbloom has been the featured speaker at programs on men's issues at the biennial conventions of the Federation of Jewish Men's Clubs, the international organization of men's clubs affiliated with the Conservative movement, in 1993, 1997, and 1999. For many years he wrote a column called "Anshay Emet" for the Torchlight, and his articles on men's issues have appeared in various periodicals.
Rabbi Rosenbloom is a member of the Rabbinical Assembly, the world-wide professional organization of Conservative Rabbis, and has served the organization in many capacities on a national and local level. He is a past president of the Philadelphia and Michigan-Ohio branches of the Assembly, and was a member of the Joint Retirement Board and Committee on Jewish Law and Standards.
During the tenure of Dr. Ismar Schorsch as Chancellor of the Jewish Theological Seminary of America, Rabbi Rosenbloom a member of the Chancellor’s Rabbinic Cabinet which provided the Chancellor with advice and guidance on matters pertaining to Conservative Judaism.
Rabbi Rosenbloom was active in the Jewish Community Centers of Greater Philadelphia. In 1980 he was elected to the JCCs Board. In 1992, he was elected an Honorary Vice President for life in recognition of his completion of six years as a Vice President of the JCCs. During his time of involvement, he chaired the Budget and Finance Committee, the Administrative and Personnel Committee, and the Israel Program Center.
Rabbi Rosenbloom has served on the Board of Trustees of the Jewish Federation of Greater Philadelphia, and was a member of numerous committees. He has led missions to Israel and Eastern Europe, and was the recipient of the Meyer and Rosaline Feinstein Young Leadership Award in 1984.
In April of 1992, Rabbi Rosenbloom was honored by the Middle Atlantic Region of the Federation of Jewish Men's Clubs with the award of the Golden Yarmalka Youth Campaign "for his continued support of youth and Camp Ramah."
Rabbi Rosenbloom and his wife Cindy were married on January 3, 1999. Rabbi Rosenbloom has three sons, Joshua, born in August 1978, Daniel, born in June 1981, and Adam, born in October 1986. Cindy is the mother of two children, Joshua, born in November 1981, and Stefanie, born in December 1984. Rabbi Rosenbloom is the son of the late Max and Ruth Rosenbloom of Rochester, New York.
July 1, 2014