In 1937, Rabbi Joshua Haberman was enrolled in the University of Vienna and The Jewish Theological Seminary, where he was studying for the rabbinate. Then came the Anschluss – the annexation of Austria to Nazi Germany – and quickly the Nazi’s presence reached new and threatening levels in Europe.
Rabbi Haberman, along with other students and esteemed scholars, were rescued from Europe, through the efforts of Rabbi Julian Morgenstern, then President of Hebrew Union College (1938). As Rabbi Haberman's son Michael shared, this was a “most timely act of humanity that Rabbi Morgenstern showed our father and others at that dark point in history.” Rabbi Haberman continued his rabbinical studies in Cincinnati and was ordained in 1945. He also earned a bachelor’s degree from the University of Cincinnati that year and went on to earn two doctorates.
Rabbi Haberman achieved a fulfilling and notable career as a rabbi for 72 years. He served as clergy in several Reform synagogues before becoming the senior rabbi at the Washington Hebrew Congregation in 1969. He retired in 1986, becoming rabbi emeritus. During his retirement, Rabbi Haberman remained active in Washington Hebrew Congregation, taught as an adjunct professor at both secular institutions of higher learning and seminaries, served as a past president of the National Association of Retired Reform Rabbis, volunteered on boards, and authored several books.
After he retired, Rabbi Haberman contacted Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion about establishing a charitable gift annuity at HUC-JIR. A charitable gift annuity is a contractual arrangement that provides a donor with a fixed income stream for life in exchange for a donation to a charity such as HUC-JIR. When the annuitant passes away, HUC-JIR receives a sizeable donation. Through his thoughtful planning and generosity, Rabbi Haberman’s gratitude for his alma mater, Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion, continues. We are honored to be a part of his legacy.
For information on the many ways you can help ensure a strong Jewish future, contact Susan G. Kulick, J.D., L.L. M., National Director of Gift Planning, HUC-JIR at 513-487-3227, 800-488-8720, ext.3227, or email@example.com.