The Forward: Meet the synagogue leader Joe Biden calls ‘my rabbi’

August 20, 2020

By Aiden Pink

Many friends and associates of former Vice President Joe Biden are scheduled to share video testimonials about him on Thursday, the final day of the Democratic National Convention. Among them will be Rabbi Michael Beals of Congregation Beth Shalom, a Conservative synagogue in Wilmington, Delaware, Biden’s hometown.

Lots of Delawareans have stories about how they met their longtime senator, but Beals’ is unique: He met him at a shiva call.

The Forward spoke to Beals in March for an article about Biden’s long history with the local and national Jewish community. Beals recounted his memories meeting Biden at the shiva — which he later also shared as part of a campaign ad for the Jewish Democratic Council of America.