Ariana Katz is an educator, activist, spiritual leader living in Philadelphia. She is a 3rd year student at the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College, rabbinic intern and Torah School Director at Kol Tzedek Synagogue in West Philly.

Ariana is honored to plan and facilitate your life cycle rituals! Send her an email, katz.ariana@gmail.com.

Ariana is a volunteer chaplain at Planned Parenthood of Southeastern Pennsylvania and member of the Jewish Voice for Peace Rabbinical Council. Before starting at RRC, she lived in Boston, Massachusetts, where she studied Sociology, Women’s Gender and Sexuality Studies, and Hebrew at Boston University. She served as Technology Coordinator at a local synagogue where she coordinated the congregation’s technology and PR taught for many years at the religious school.

Ariana creates textiles, collects radical children’s books, loves klezmer music and marching bands, and really really good midrash.

About the Blog

Vildah Chaya, is a Jewish Feminist commentary on Torah, politics, and culture. Vildah Chaya considers parshat hashavuah and Jewish education, written to a soundtrack of modern Klezmer and Le Tigre, and grapple with the challenges of living a modern life while being inspired by an ancient tradition.

The title of this blog, Vildah Chaya, Yiddish for “wild animal,” primarily has personal significance. My mother’s mother, Claire/Chaya, was called “vildah chaya” by her father. A loving, somewhat critical, nickname. As I continue to reinterpret and reimagine what it means to be a modern Jew, I am inspired by the wildness.

A wild animal considers what it means to be a Feminist and a Jew equally, and to study the progression of queers, women, girls, converts, non-Ashkenazi Jews, interfaith couples, in a tradition that did not at first welcome inclusion. The vildah chaya is an insurrectionist, a troublemaking child whistling in the back of the synagogue on Yom Kippur because he can’t read Hebrew and he needs to talk to God, an Atheist Jew who demands to be included in the community.