Rabbi Greg Harris

Rabbi Greg Harris


301-652-2606 ext. 105

Being a rabbi is one of the most challenging and rewarding experiences I could ever imagine. I am continually blessed to be able to discover and share the incredible insights of our Jewish tradition with people. People frequently ask me, in one way or another, is Judaism relevant in this modern, complex, pressured time? My answer is that through conversations, study, community encounters, culture, and other modes, Judaism’s message is as relevant in our time as every earlier period.

I invite you into our community to live Judaism’s important message of hope and compassion with an orientation to fulfilling our partnership with God to perfect God’s Creation: our world. You can contact me at 301-301-652-2606, ext. 105 or gharris@bethelmc.org.


Rabbi Greg Harris is Senior Rabbi at Congregation Beth El of Montgomery County.  He has a passion for social justice and interfaith activities. Beyond his many responsibilities at the congregation, Rabbi Harris is a Past President of the Washington Board of Rabbis, Founding Chair of the Pastoral Care Committee at the Hebrew Home of Greater Washington, Board member for Camp Ramah in New England, served on the Community & Global Impact Committee of the Jewish Federation of Greater Washington (JFGW), and has served on the Board of Interfaith Works, a non-profit organization working with at-risk families in Montgomery County.

Rabbi Harris was ordained at the Jewish Theological Seminary in 2002 where he was the recipient of the Dr. Michael Higger Prize in Talmud.  He received his Bachelor’s Degree in Political Science from The American University in Washington, D.C. and later a certificate degree in Nonprofit Management from the American Jewish University in Los Angeles.  He is the founding chairperson of the Tomorrow Fellowship Jewish Communal Leadership Program. He is a past recipient of the Matthew H. Simon Rabbinic Leadership Award from JFGW.

Rabbi Harris has been a guest lecturer at the Washington College of Law, the National Defense University and the National Guard Bureau as well as a guest on The Kojo Nnambi Show and other press outlets.  In his free time, he is learning to play guitar.  He was raised in the San Francisco Bay Area.  He is a proud dad to Benjamin, Maayan and Shoshana.

Blog Posts

Inequalities! Inequalities?

June 5, 2020

“What will you take with you to the other side of Covid?”  That was the prompt an interviewer asked me for an on-line magazine this week.  It is an important …

How Do We Think About Reopening?

May 28, 2020

This is the fourth week of the month. For Reflections Off the Bimah, the fourth week features thought leaders from throughout the Jewish world and beyond. These special posts give …

A Focus on Mental Health – Shmirat HaGuf

May 7, 2020

Since 1949, May has been National Mental Health Awareness month. I have never felt the need to focus on mental health as intensely as now.  From children to senior citizens, …

How Do We Tell Israel’s Story?

April 24, 2020

Today is Rosh Chodesh Iyar, the month in which Israel’s Independence falls – the 5th of Iyar corresponding to April 29, 2020. As this is also the fourth week of …

Pesach in the Time of COVID

April 3, 2020

              It is paradoxical to discuss Passover during an ‘unprecedented’ time of disease.  Plagues are a center piece of the Passover narrative.  We recognize …


Rosh Hashanah 5781

September 22, 2020

How to Respond – Erev Rosh Hashanah 5780

November 22, 2019

I do a lot of thinking about how people respond to bad situations.  As a rabbi, I see many different ‘bad situations’ – illnesses, crimes, professional transitions, personal transitions, arguments …

Do Something Great – Kol Nidre 5780

November 22, 2019

My sermon this year is not clever or complicated.  My message is not hidden or esoteric.  It does not come from the depths of mysticism or academia’s ivory towers. Today …

Learning to Mourn – Yizkor 5780

November 22, 2019

I wonder how we learn things. When I was a kid, learning was what happened in classrooms… and I was not overly interested.  I had no problem learning more generally …