Shir Hadash names Steinger as new rabbi


Rabbi Lane Steinger has been selected by Shir Hadash Reconstructionist Community to be the congregation’s new rabbi.

“We are especially excited about having this particular rabbi,” Sue Fischlowitz said. She and her husband, David Roberts, are co-presidents of the congregation. “He has an incredibly keen intellect, a wealth of experience on the pulpit, and a depth and breadth of understanding of local, national and international Jewish communities.”


Rabbi Steinger grew up in St. Louis, receiving his confirmation at Temple Israel, where he was also an active member of the T.I. youth group. He graduated from Ladue Horton Watkins High School and Washington and Lee University in Virginia before receiving his rabbinic ordination from Hebrew Union College – Jewish Institute of Religion in Cincinnati. He has served as a pulpit rabbi, hospital chaplain, been on the faculty of Olin Sang Ruby Union Camp Institute and been part of many boards and committees.

In 1996, Rabbi Steinger returned to St. Louis to become the Midwest Council Regional Director of Union for Reform Judaism. The region he covered encompassed all or part of 12 states. He is looking forward to the “wonderful opportunity” to return to directly serving one congregation and being home.

“I spent 12 to 14 days a month away from home,” Steinger said. He and his wife Linda have three grown children and three grandchildren. “That’s a heck of a lot of time on the road.”

Shir Hadash Reconstructionist Community is beginning its fifth year. The congregation uses the facilities at St. Louis Hillel to hold meetings, services and programs. Members also meet in people’s homes and alternative locations, such as coffee houses. Part of their mission is to offer serious engagement of lifelong learning for all ages.

“Rabbi Steinger is committed to helping us be what we want to be as a community and as individuals,” Fischlowitz said.

Both the rabbi and Fischlowitz do not feel there will be any problems with a Reform rabbi leading a Reconstructionist congregation.

“We are a very diverse congregation with members from all walks of Judaism,” Fischlowitz said. “We are excited about Rabbi Steinger’s openness to engage our community in ways we value and travel with us on this Jewish journey.”

Steinger feels Reconstructionist Judaism adds a unique perspective and outlook to the Jewish communal conversation.

“There is a tremendous emphasis at Shir Hadash on Jewish growth and learning,” Steinger said. “They offer another possibility and choice for individuals and families looking for a connection and involvement in Jewish life.”

Members have already started to expand their outlook and engage the community in new ways. They had several Torah studies with their new rabbi during the summer. Fischlowitz said he is a “very exciting, very engaging teacher for learners of all knowledge.” The congregation’s website has been upgraded due to the time, effort and energy of member Dave Zuckerman.

“We are looking forward to having the Rabbi grow with us and learn with us,” Fischlowitz said.

Steinger is also excited and looking forward to expanding the congregational community and including the broader St. Louis Jewish community.

“I am delighted and honored to be working with this congregation, sharing in its life and contributing to its growth,” he said.

For more information about Shir Hadash Reconstructionist Community call David Roberts at 314-775-7780 or visit