Meet Rebekah Goldman: SWLA's first rabbinic candidate - KPLC 7 News, Lake Charles, Louisiana

Meet Rebekah Goldman: SWLA's first rabbinic candidate

Goldman leads services at Temple Sinai in Lake Charles. Goldman leads services at Temple Sinai in Lake Charles.
LAKE CHARLES, LA (KPLC) -

She might look like your typical 20-something-year-old, but Southwest Louisiana native Rebekah Goldman is doing something few young people do these days.

Goldman is pursuing her longtime dream of becoming a rabbi.

"There's been a lot of things that have lead me down this path," explains Goldman. "My parents making sure that we were involved in Jewish life…them sending us to camp was a huge part of it."

While most rabbis are still men, Goldman says things are quickly changing.

"Two-thirds of my class is female, so there are more and more of us," said Goldman.

But that's not what makes Goldman's story so special.

She's just made history for Temple Sinai, the only Jewish congregation in the area.

By attending Hebrew College in Boston, she has become Southwest Louisiana's first ever rabbinic candidate, a task more than 100 years in the making.

But Goldman is quick to caution.

"I'm not successful yet. I've just made it to school," she says. "Plenty of people make it to school. I've got to succeed now."

If her past is any indication, succeeding shouldn't be a problem for Goldman.

She graduated from LSU with a degree in Philosophy and Religious Studies in 2007. She's also worked at a number of Judaism camps and has even taught high school in Israel.

Now when she's able, she returns home to lead services at Temple Sinai in Lake Charles.

"It's so overwhelming to have this support from this community. I always knew that I would have their support because they've seen me grow up," said Goldman. "They've raised me here. So I've always knew that they would stand behind me no matter what I did, but it feels really wonderful to be able to come back here and use them as my test congregation."

Goldman said the best advice she has ever received was actually not to be a rabbi.

"Because it's emotionally taxing to constantly be providing support for other people," said Goldman. "Unfortunately, I couldn't be anything else. This is always what I've wanted to be."

Goldman expects to complete her studies at Hebrew College in five years.

She says no matter where life takes her, Southwest Louisiana will always be home.

"No matter where I move in the world, this is where I'm from and this is where my heart will always be," said Goldman.

Copyright 2011 KPLC. All rights reserved.

  • More Local NewsNewsMore>>

  • LSU AgCenter could face budget cuts

    LSU AgCenter could face budget cuts

    Monday, May 21 2018 11:31 PM EDT2018-05-22 03:31:39 GMT
    (Source: Maranda Whittington/KPLC)(Source: Maranda Whittington/KPLC)
    (Source: Maranda Whittington/KPLC)(Source: Maranda Whittington/KPLC)

    It's crunch time for Louisiana lawmakers.  Tuesday they begin a second special session to figure out the state's budget mess. The end of some temporary taxes means the state will face an estimated $650 million deficit when the new fiscal year begins July 1st.  During the regular session lawmakers could only make cuts to balance the budget, but in the special session tax hikes are back in play.  Governor John Bel Edwards wants increased sales taxes to bridge the budge...

    More >>

    It's crunch time for Louisiana lawmakers.  Tuesday they begin a second special session to figure out the state's budget mess. The end of some temporary taxes means the state will face an estimated $650 million deficit when the new fiscal year begins July 1st.  During the regular session lawmakers could only make cuts to balance the budget, but in the special session tax hikes are back in play.  Governor John Bel Edwards wants increased sales taxes to bridge the budge...

    More >>
  • Alert postal carrier and neighbor rescue elderly woman on floor for days

    Alert postal carrier and neighbor rescue elderly woman on floor for days

    Monday, May 21 2018 11:13 PM EDT2018-05-22 03:13:33 GMT

    Imagine lying helplessly on the floor in your home for days, waiting and hoping that someone will find you before it's too late. It happened to 80 year old Maggie Arcement who will never forget the ones who came to her rescue. Arcement sits on the side of the bed a few minutes after waking up in the morning. "Saying my prayers and my meditation and then I stand up and go on my way.  I do this so I don't get dizzy," she explains.  But last Monday her le...

    More >>

    Imagine lying helplessly on the floor in your home for days, waiting and hoping that someone will find you before it's too late. It happened to 80 year old Maggie Arcement who will never forget the ones who came to her rescue. Arcement sits on the side of the bed a few minutes after waking up in the morning. "Saying my prayers and my meditation and then I stand up and go on my way.  I do this so I don't get dizzy," she explains.  But last Monday her le...

    More >>
  • LCPD looking for suspect in 12th Street shooting

    LCPD looking for suspect in 12th Street shooting

    Monday, May 21 2018 9:02 PM EDT2018-05-22 01:02:18 GMT
    (Source: Lake Charles Police Department)(Source: Lake Charles Police Department)
    (Source: Lake Charles Police Department)(Source: Lake Charles Police Department)

    A shooting on 12th Street leaves a victim with multiple gunshot wounds, according to Lt. Richard Harrell, Lake Charles Police Department spokesman. A victim was shot multiple times but doesn't have any injuries, said Harrell. The suspect has not been apprehended, according to Harrell. KPLC will continue to update this story as we receive more information. Copyright 2018 KPLC. All rights reserved.

    More >>

    A shooting on 12th Street leaves a victim with multiple gunshot wounds, according to Lt. Richard Harrell, Lake Charles Police Department spokesman. A victim was shot multiple times but doesn't have any injuries, said Harrell. The suspect has not been apprehended, according to Harrell. KPLC will continue to update this story as we receive more information. Copyright 2018 KPLC. All rights reserved.

    More >>
Powered by Frankly