Rabbi Howard Kosovske is one of a handful of rabbis in the world today who has led congregations on three continents. He comes to Temple Beth Am directly from Congregation Tifereth Israel, of Peabody, Massachusetts, his Sephardic congregation where he serves as a very active Rabbi Emerius. We are indeed grateful to his Peabody congregation for granting him leave to be with us as our interim rabbi.
Rabbi Kosovske brings a veritable wealth of rabbinic experiences to Temple Beth Am, his third interim rabbinic position. His has been a truly illustrious rabbinic career that has carried him far and wide. Among his exciting pulpit opportunities, he served as rabbi of the Frankfurt American Jewish Community in Frankfurt, Germany, during the time of his US Army chaplaincy; Temple Beth Israel in Sharon, Pennsylvania; Temple Beth Elohimin Wellesley, Massachusetts; Tree of Life Congregation in Columbia, South Carolina; Temple Sinai in Sharon, Massachusetts; United Jewish Congregation of Hong Kong; Temple Beth Shalom of Peabody, Massachusetts; Temple Sinai of Albuquerque, New Mexico; and, just this past spring as scholar/rabbi-in-residence, Dublin Jewish Progressive Congregation in Dublin, Ireland. He also currently is deeply involved with a vast community of unaffiliated Jews on Boston's North Shore, where he leads the Institute for Jewish Living, an organization he founded and leads as an outreach to the large number of Jews who do not belong to synagogues.
Rabbi Kosovske's focus is on people, and people describe him as extremely caring. In the course of his rabbinate, he has touched the lives literally of thousands of individuals, each of whom is extremely important to him. He is equally at home interacting as rabbi with someone on the street or in a living room as he is speaking from the pulpit. While he has served as advisor to governors, mayors and corporate presidents, he is most comfortable and fulfilled interacting with people as they walk through the journey of life, whether that be in times happy or sad.
He is extremely eclectic in his own Jewishness, and it is hard to label where Rabbi Kosovske is coming from, harder still to pin him down. A scholar extremely knowledgeable in all aspects of the Jewish tradition, he brings elements from the far reaches of Judaism to his own observance. Probably the best word to describe his religious style is "heimish," or homey, with a very Jewish flavor. And his worship services are always as involving and participatory and they are spiritually stirring.
An ordainee of the Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion in Cincinnati, Rabbi Kosovske was awarded by the seminary of Doctor of Divinity degree, honoris causa, after twenty-five years of distinguished service as a rabbi to the Jewish People. He is the father of Riqi, the rabbi of Congregation Beit Ahavah in Northampton, Massachusetts; and of Yonit Lea, a performing harpsichordist who teaches at the University of Limerick, Ireland. Finally, he has four wonderful grandchildren, and he kvells over them non-stop.
Cantor Inna Serebro-Litvak
In 1997 after graduation from the Musical Academy in Tel Aviv, Cantor Serebro-Litvak came to the United States. She continued her studies for a Masters degree from the Miller Cantorial School at the Jewish Theological Seminary and was the first woman from the former Soviet Union to graduate from JTS. Cantor Inna Serebro-Litvak performed at concerts in various Temples in the New York and New Jersey area, and led High Holiday services at Anshei Emeth in Chicago with Cantor Alberto Mizrahi. In addition, she participated in the recordings of the Milken Archive of Jewish Music, and her solo can be heard on one of the CDs from that collection.
From July 2002 through June 2005, Inna Serebro-Litvak served as cantor at Temple B’nai Or in Morristown New Jersey. She is married to Anatoly (Tony) Litvak, who works as a project manager at KPMJ and they have two young daughters named Emily and Abigail. In July 2005, “Cantor Inna” as she likes to be called, joined the professional staff at Temple Beth Am.
Cantor Inna has released two CDs. Once is High Holy Day Music and the other the Sounds of Prayer. For more information or to order click here.