“It is a Tree of Life (Eitz Chayim) to those who hold it fast, and all who cling to it find happiness. Its ways are ways of pleasantness, and all its paths are peace.”
– Proverbs 3:17-18
Lifelong Jewish learning is the best way of applying the Jewish values in our lives. Learning is about the knowledge we gain and how it guides our actions. Study enables us to think and to act in larger and deeper ways.
Scientists in Synagogues 2016-17
We are very excited to be one of ten congregations nationwide to have been selected as the first cohort to bring ‘Scientists in Synagogues’ to our community. Scientists in Synagogues is a grass-roots program to offer Jews opportunities to explore the most interesting and pressing questions surrounding Judaism and science. Its aim is to share how some of the most thoughtful Jewish scientists integrate their Judaism and their scientific work so that they can be role models and ambassadors for productive conversations surrounding Judaism and science. A team of our members with professional lives in the fields of science, medicine, and technology, helped to create our grant proposal and our chosen theme for 2016-17. We decided to focus on technological change, and how it is reshaping community, communication, and redefining the human experience.
Updates on this program will be posted here. Currently, we are in the planning phase. If you are interested in joining a team to help on one component of the activities and programs we will be creating in the coming year, please contact Rabbi Gurevitz.
Torah and Tefilah
Every Shabbat morning 8-9:30 am
All are welcome to join us for our weekly Torah study discussion group. Beginning the first Shabbat after Simchat Torah we will begin a new cycle of study, reading the weekly haftarot that draw from the books of prophets. All texts are studied in English. This study group takes the text as its starting point, but much of our conversation focuses on making connections to lived experiences and current affairs. We open with the opening blessings of a morning service to help foster and attitude of gratitude, and close with a prayer for healing and mourner’s kaddish.
Spiritual Journey Group and En-CHANT-ment
These two offerings meet monthly on a Tuesday evening. Spiritual Journey Group is led by Rabbi Gurevitz and usually meets on the second Tuesday of the month (but check the Temple calendar as there are variations to the schedule). It is a discussion-based Mussar study group. Mussar is the Jewish practice of character-trait refinement through focused examination and reflection on individual traits (e.g. anger, patience, equanimity, gratitude). En-CHANT-ment usually meets on the last Tuesday of each month. Led by Eva Friedner, who has trained in Hebrew chant meditation practice with Rabbi Shefa Gold, the focus is on the use of short, mantra-like melodic chanting to deepen spiritual awareness in a meditative mode. To receive email reminders of upcoming Spiritual Journey Group sessions, contact Rabbi Gurevitz. To receive email reminders of upcoming En-CHANT-ment sessions, contact Eva Friedner.
Lunch and Learn
Rabbi Gurevitz leads these learning sessions four times a year at The Willows on Lyman Street in a program that is open to all in the congregation and wider community to attend. The programs run from 12-1.30 pm and you are encouraged to bring a brown bag lunch. Tea, coffee, soft drinks, and cookies are provided by The Willow. In many of these sessions, Rabbi Gurevitz partners with a local clergy person in town to present an interfaith comparative study of a shared topic. Previous topics have included life after death, the meaning of the Passover Seder, women clergy, the meaning of Salvation, and what books are in our holy canons.
2016-17 Lunch and Learn dates: November 17, February 9, April 6, June 8.
Adult B’nai Mitzvah
What is an adult bar or bat mitzvah? It is an opportunity to mark a commitment to learn something new and develop your Jewish literacy as an adult. It is especially for those who never had an opportunity to be called to the Torah at the age of 13. You will learn more about the structure and content of a prayer service, learn how to make meaning from Torah and use commentaries, and other ways to make more meaning out of your participation in Jewish life and practice.
This opportunity will next be offered in 2018. Contact Rabbi Gurevitz at firstname.lastname@example.org if you have any questions.