About the Author
For twenty-four years Samuel E. Karff was Senior Rabbi of Beth Israel, the oldest Jewish congregation in Texas. He received his AB degree from Harvard magna cum laude and was ordained and earned his doctoral degree from Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion. When he retired in 1999 after forty years as a congregational rabbi, he joined the faculty of the University of Texas Medical School, where he created and taught courses on the non-biomedical or spiritual dimension of being a healing physician. He is the author of three books and contributed the chapters on Judaism to Religions of the World, a text used in over 200 campuses in this country and abroad. For twenty-two years, Rabbi Karff taught in the religious studies department of Rice University and is a past president of the Central Conference of American Rabbis. In “retirement,” he partners with Reverend William “Bill” Lawson and Archbishop Joseph A. Fiorenza on issues of criminal justice reform. He and his wife, Joan, live in Houston. They have three daughters and seven grandchildren.