Rabbi Carl M. Perkins

Rabbi Perkins

Rabbi Carl M. Perkins has been the spiritual leader of Temple Aliyah since 1991. Born and raised in Philadelphia, PA, Rabbi Perkins earned his A.B., summa cum laude, at Haverford College. He taught for several years at the Commonwealth School in Boston as a Woodrow Wilson Teaching Fellow. Before pursuing the rabbinate, he earned his J.D., cum laude, at Harvard Law School, and practiced law for several years in Boston. Rabbi Perkins was awarded a Wexner Fellowship to pursue rabbinical studies at the Jewish Theological Seminary of America in New York, where he was ordained and awarded a masters degree in Talmud and Rabbinics.

In 2003, Rabbi Perkins received the CJP Rabbinic Award at the General Assembly of the United Jewish Communities in Jerusalem. Subsequently, he participated in a three-year program of study at the Shalom Hartman Institute, at the conclusion of which he was named a Senior Rabbinic Fellow at the Institute. In 2009, and then again in 2015, he participated in leading trips to Israel sponsored by the Jewish Community Relations Council (JCRC) for Christian clergy from the Boston area.

Rabbi Perkins’ academic and professional interests include Talmud and Midrash, Jewish education, and keruv (outreach to interfaith families). He has taught and lectured widely in the Boston area and is currently an Adjunct Instructor at Hebrew College Rabbinical School and at Boston College Law School.

Rabbi Perkins has published articles in Conservative Judaism, Judaism, The American Rabbi, InterfaithFamily.comSh’ma, and Jewish Values Online. He is the author of the revised edition of Embracing Judaism, an introduction to Judaism for prospective Jews by Choice, originally written by his late father-in-law, Rabbi Simcha Kling.  His most recent article is: “Serendipity and Pedagogy:  Presenting the Weekly Parashah Through Rabbinic Eyes,” in Turn It and Turn It Again: Studies in the Teaching and Learning of Classical Jewish Texts, edited by Jon A. Levisohn and Susan P. Fendrick (Academic Studies Press: 2013).

The Rabbi is also actively involved with many community-wide organizations. He has served on the Keruv and Publications committees of the Rabbinical Assembly, and on the Boards of Trustees of the Leventhal-Sidman Jewish Community Center, the Solomon Schechter Day School of Greater Boston,  and Mayyim Hayyim Living Waters Community Mikveh and Education Center. He is a past president of the Needham Clergy Association and a past vice president of the New England Rabbinical Assembly, and is currently a member of the board of the JCRC.

Rabbi Perkins was recently appointed a Rabbi Samuel T. Lachs Fellow in the 2015 cohort of LEAP, a joint program of the Herbert D. Katz Center for Advanced Judaic Studies at the University of Pennsylvania, and Clal-The National Jewish Center for Learning and Leadership. He and his wife, Elana Kling Perkins, are the parents of Leora and Jeremy.

To contact Rabbi Perkins, please call the synagogue office (781-444-8522) or send an e-mail message. 

For additional writings from Rabbi Perkins, please click on the links below, or on the menu links to the left:

High Holiday Sermons

Recent Sermons (2013-19)

Archived Sermons (1992-2010)

Jewish Values Online  



Temple Aliyah Welcomes You!

Temple Aliyah is an egalitarian Conservative congregation in Needham, Massachusetts, with a warm and inviting atmosphere. We are a dynamic and diverse community that embraces people of all ages, backgrounds and lifestyles. With the guidance of Rabbi Carl Perkins, we encourage our members to enrich their Jewish lives, to enhance their Jewish identities, and to engage in lifelong learning.

Join us for Shabbat services and schmooze during kiddush following services. Check out the exciting Temple Tots programming for our youngest members. Attend the Rabbi's Adult Education classes. Participate in one of our many Social Action projects. Become a member of our Sisterhood or Men's Club.    

Not a member? We invite your family to join our family!

Join Us

Did you know...?

Did you know that Temple Aliyah is a member of Mayyim Hayyim, a beautiful mikveh in Newton? Did you know this entitles a limited number of congregants to a free immersion gift certificate? To learn more about the benefits and reasons behind an immersion, please visit the Mayyim Hayyim website. To schedule an immersion 1) request your immersion appointment online  2) wait 24 hours for a response, 3) show up at the designated time, and 4) let them know you are a member of Temple Aliyah.

Want to learn more fun facts about Aliyah? Click here!

Shabbat and Weekday Services


Shabbat Morning Services  9:15 am
Sunday Morning Minyan* 9:00 am
Monday Morning Minyan   7:00 am
Weekday Evening Minyan 7:30 pm

* During the summer, minyan meets on Monday morning and on Tuesday and Thursday evenings.


Under the direction of our Adult Education Committee and as part of our commitment to lifelong learning, Temple Aliyah offers a wide range of opportunities for our members and others to enrich their Jewish lives throughout education.  Click here to see all of our current Adult Education offerings.

Sisterhood welcomes all women of our community, sharing our passion for Judaism, our families and ourselves. We invite you to learn more about becoming part of our amazing community. Whether you're looking for camaraderie, spiritual connection, social action, or the opportunity to get involved, Sisterhood is here for you.