Raphael W. Asher

Email: rabbi.asher@tikvah.org

Rabbi Asher’s favorite mitzvah is putting up mezuzas in members’ homes. He sees you where you live, and you and your family see him as a life-size, human component of a welcoming community. Since he helped found B’nai Tikvah in 1981 the community has been blessed with solid growth and friends and many joyous occasions, and he has been blessed with wife Jennifer, 2 daughters and a sustaining and purposeful rabbinate.

Rabbi Asher prides himself on getting to know all the religious school children’s names and following their growth and Jewish development with great interest. Together with his honesty, lack of pretense and his non-judgmental respect for all expressions of the Jewish tradition, these have become part of the persona of the whole congregation.

He encourages the exploration of a variety of spiritual paths to Torah, whether through deeds of kindness, study, or prayer. He is a model of rabbinic scholarship in his own writing and study, and encourages Jewish learning at every stage of life. He is active in the Religious School, the Community Midrasha for teens, and in many forms of Adult Education including Torah Study and Adult B’nai Mitzvah. Moreover, he has a widespread reputation for Outreach to intermarried couples and families.

Over the years Rabbi Asher has established a good name and good friends throughout the Contra Costa Faith Community. He currently sits on the Board of the Interfaith Council of which he is immediate Past President, he chairs the “Health and Faith-in-Action Committee,” he sits on the Board of the new Jewish Home in Danville. His efforts have led to a greater support system for elders, a higher priority for Pastoral Care in local hospitals, and a strong advocacy for those struggling with mental illness in the community. Additionally Rabbi Asher is President of the East Bay Council of Rabbis.

B’nai Tikvah as “people of hope” always requires renewed energies to rekindle that hope at every season. Rabbi Asher has been ever-receptive to those energies from wherever they may come and has thereby been our congregation’s magnet of hope.