Judaism at Home

Just as our home lives and family dynamics change over time, so too our Jewish practice at home needs to evolve to keep up with us.

Watch Rabbi Ezray explain the vision behind Judaism at Home.

Starting in March, our clergy will be leading a series of “Conversations” which will cover topics suggested by the recent survey, with more to follow. These will create opportunities for congregants to deepen their Jewish practice at home. Each conversation will have four parts:

How To       Basic information for beginners or a refresher for those who’ve been “at it” for a while

In Depth     More information on history, meaning, background

Family         Participatory session for families with children or grandchildren

Join Us       Interactive session where we practice what we’ve learned together as a community

Each of the Conversations will be stand-alone. You can pick and choose which ones interest you. Each of the parts also stands alone. You can choose to do all of the How To and Join Us sessions, for example. You can attend whatever seems like it is what you need right now. There’s no homework, no quizzes, and attendance will not be taken.

Contact Deborah@bethjacobrwc.org with questions or to receive the Zoom links.

PASSOVER with Bill Futornick

Watch Bill’s intro video HERE

Tuesdays from 7:30 – 9:00pm

HOW TO PREPARE FOR PESACH: Tuesday March 2

 Let’s talk about preparing for Passover. There is a lot to do! We need to get rid of Chametz. We need to buy food that we only eat once a year. We need to adapt our recipes. We need to get the things for our Seder table- what are those things and what do they even mean? We need a good Haggadah; which one should I use? How do I even start to prepare for a Seder- I’ve never led one! Oh, and how do I get people to participate when all they want to do is get through it so they can chow down on the yummy portobello mushrooms? So many questions to answer! All this and more in our first conversation.

IN DEPTH THE SEDER – DIVING INTO THE HAGGADAH: Tuesday March 9

Can I ask more than 4 questions? Are there really 250 plagues? An orange on the seder plate, an avocado, a chicken neck, some delicious flatbread, a LOT of wine/grape juice. It’s time to dive into the seder table and the Haggadah!

IN DEPTH II – THE SEDER – MORE THOUGHTS: Tuesday March 16

Wait, there’s more! Is it the bread of poverty or the bread of freedom? Two kinds of bitter herb? Do we have to read every word? And what about Elijah. Part 2 of our in-depth conversation about Passover and the Seder. 

DOING IT:  Tuesday March 23

OK, now that we know what it’s all about, let’s do it! Four days until the real thing, so we need a dress rehearsal. Including 4 cups of your favorite beverage!

EPILOGUE: Tuesday March 30

 So how did it go? Let’s share our stories. We’ll also talk a bit about Hol Hamoed, and about the week of Passover. Finally, we’ll look to next steps. After all, Passover is the holiday of redemption, and we need to actively bring that redemption to our future.

 

FAMILY SESSION – Sunday March 21 from 10:00am to 11:15am 

PREPARING FOR AN INTERGENERATIONAL SEDER

How do we make the seder meaningful and fun, across multiple generations, and – oh yeah – this year, we are doing it over video?!  Parents and children, let’s put our heads together, and grandparents are invited to Zoom in, too, whether they are far or near.  At the end of the session, we will make charoset together – the ickiest and yummiest dish of the seder. Try to add to your shopping list that week: raisins or dried dates or dried apricots, walnuts or almonds, sweet wine or grape juice.

– Conversation led by Rabbi Ilana

Please RSVP to Rabbi Ilana’s Conversation to deborah@bethjacobrwc.org

 

FAMILY SESSION – Sunday April 18, 10:00am to 11:00am

FINDING WONDER AND GRATITUDE 

Why does life feel like such a grind sometimes?  Judaism offers a richness of perspective, helping us lift our eyes from the blah and find wonder and gratitude.  Let’s share and develop some daily practices to brighten our days.  Parents, children, and grandparents from near or far are invited to join together in this conversation.  Try to have on hand white paper, and paints, crayons or colored pencils.

– Conversation led by Rabbi Ilana

Please RSVP to Rabbi Ilana’s Conversation to deborah@bethjacobrwc.org

 

SHABBAT with Rabbi Ezray

 Tuesday evenings 7:30 – 9:00

WHY KEEP SHABBAT? – LOOKING AT THE SOURCES/RITUALS  – Tuesday April 13

What does the Torah say about Shabbat and why we should keep it?  How has our understanding of Shabbat changed over time? What do different rituals tell us about the essence of the holiday?

IN DEPTH I – IDEAS WHICH UNDERLIE SHABBAT  – Tuesday April 20

How does Shabbat cause us to reflect on what can be?  How do the variety of laws create freedom rather than oppression? 

IN DEPTH II – DIFFERENT WAYS TO KEEP SHABBAT– Tuesday April 27

How do the different movements teach about Shabbat?  What secular Shabbat practices have emerged recently?

HOW TO – SHARING OF SHABBAT EVENING RITUALS – Tuesday May 4

How can Friday night become a night of magical connection?  What are different customs and ways to interpret those customs?

JOIN TOGETHER – We will link different people together to share Shabbat evening rituals

 

FAMILY SESSION – Sunday May 2 from 10:00am to 11:00am; May 7th, 4-6pm (not continuous)

INTERGENERATIONAL SHABBAT

Why do Jews set aside one day to make it special?  What does Shabbat mean for your family?  What would you like Shabbat to be for your family?  Let’s talk, parents and children together, and grandparents from near or far are invited to join the conversation, too.  Optionally, those who are interested can join us again on Friday afternoon to make challah together.  If you plan to participate in challah baking, be sure to have on hand: 4.5 cups flour, 3 tbsp oil, 2 eggs, 1 tsp sugar,  ¼ honey, 1 tsp salt. 

– Conversation led by Rabbi Ilana

Please RSVP to Rabbi Ilana’s Conversation to deborah@bethjacobrwc.org

HAVDALAH with Cantor Barbara

Wednesday evenings 7:30 – 9:00

WHAT IS HAVDALAH?– Wednesday  May 12

Here’s a lovely way to make the end of Shabbat as special as the beginning of Shabbat. Havdalah is a feast for the senses. Tune in to your body with these elements of the ritual: see the candle flame, smell the spices, taste the juice, hear the sizzle of the multi-wicked candle as we extinguish it in the wine. Use your breath/ruach to sing the blessings and songs.

IN DEPTH ORDINARY TIME VS. SACRED TIME– Wednesday May 19

Havdalah is done at the end of Shabbat and Holy Days. How does Havdalah help us move from ideal moments like Shabbat, Pesach, etc. back to everyday concerns. How has the ritual evolved over time?

HOW TO MAKE HAVDALAH YOURS – Wednesday May 26

How will you bring Havdalah home? Yes it is a tradition but that doesn’t mean there’s just one way to do Havdalah. Drawing on different sources see what you’d like to incorporate into your personal Havdalah practice.

JOIN TOGETHER – Saturday night June 5

Get together with Cantor Barbara (on zoom) to welcome the new week and practice the doing Havdalah together. 

*(Please use the weekly Havdalah zoom link found in weekly Shabbat Shalom email)

FAMILY SESSION – INTERGENERATIONAL HAVDALAH – Sunday May 23 from 10:00am to 11:00am 

The ritual of havdalah awakens all 5 senses to the possibilities of the week ahead.  The word literally means “separation”.  So let’s talk about structure and separation, holiness, and possibility.  Parents, children and grandparents from near or far are invited to join together in this conversation.  We will make spice boxes out of recycled materials, and of course we will end by chanting the havdalah together.  Try to have on hand: an empty toilet paper roll, acrylic paints, and whole spices such as cloves or cinnamon sticks.  If you email Deborah two weeks in advance, we will send you the spices in the mail.

– Conversation led by Rabbi Ilana
Please RSVP to Rabbi Ilana’s Conversation to deborah@bethjacobrwc.org