Adult learning is a vital part of our congregation. Here are some of the programs that are offered on a regular basis. Please check the calendar for actual dates.
Learn with Rabbi Lee Friedlander
Our congregation began its history with a seminar on Reconstructionism. It was only after a few years of people coming together to study the writings of Mordecai Kaplan that they decided to hold Shabbat and holiday services. By our engaging in these seminars, we keep alive the intention of our founders, that our spiritual experiences be tied to a self-conscious approach to Judaism grounded in an understanding of the Jewish People’s history. To that end, Rabbi Lee offers several options for your consideration. Previous attendance at either of these seminars is not required, nor is regular attendance necessary.
All About God: Tuesdays, 6:30-8:00 p.m. In our emphasis on ‘belonging’ over ‘believing’ we, Reconstructionist Jews, are reticent to talk about God. But Rabbi Lee will fearlessly devote his monthly Tuesday seminar to the evolution of God in Jewish history. Beginning with our classical traditions - the God of the Hebrew Bible and the God of the Talmudic and medieval sages - he will move on to modern Jewish existentialist philosophers Abraham Joshua Heschel, Martin Buber, and Mordecai Kaplan. He will conclude with a view of God through the lens of the contemporary Reconstructionist theologian, Harold Schulweiss. One need not attend every session to benefit from the course. The entire RSNS community is invited to attend this monthly course taught by Rabbi Lee.
Zionism Seminar: Saturdays, 12:00 - 1:30pm Join us to learn about the history of the modern State of Israel. We read original documents from a variety of sources to help understand how Israel became what it is today. Sources include memoirs, ideological treatises, positions of significant historical figures, and government and international documents. Rabbi Lee provides background information and clarification, which frequently lead to lively discussions. This year we will begin with the first ‘Intifada’, and move to the Oslo Accords and the aftermath. Each class is complete within itself, so drop by as often as you wish.
Bible Seminar: Thursdays, 8:00 - 9:30pm Come and dip a cup into the sea that is the Hebrew Bible, an anchor of the Jewish People for the last two millennia. Our particular study is without end, and requires no previous experience. This year begins with Song of Songs and moves on to Ruth and Lamentations. Don’t be intimidated. This class is for those without any biblical background and for those who know a great deal.
Eat, Read, Talk: Thursdays, 11:30am - 1:00pm We read articles of Jewish interest from a variety of sources. Subjects include politics, the arts, travel and the state of the State of Israel. Bring a dairy lunch. We’ll supply the beverages and the articles to be discussed.
Learn with Rabbi Jodie Siff
Women’s Rosh Hodesh: Wednesdays, 7:30-9:00 p.m. All women of our congregation are welcome to join us as we study and learn from each other. We examine traditional religious rituals and life cycle events and reflect on how they continue to meet the needs of women today. Current issues of importance to us are also discussed. Women of all ages are welcome.
Shabbat Yoga Fridays: with Rabbi Jodie (RYS-200 Certified) Fridays, 10:00 - 11:15am. Experience Shabbat through movement; connecting body, mind and soul. Good for all levels. Adults and post b'nai mitzvah teens, as well as non-members are welcome. Bring your own mat and yoga props (we have a few if you forget yours). Wear comfortable workout attire. Every Friday, excluding Holidays. Please check our website calendar to confirm dates.
2ND GENERATION SURROGATE SURVIVORS: Thursdays, 7:30pm. Children and grandchildren of survivors are invited to share the stories and the history of their family members. These connections provide a vital link to the events of the Holocaust in a time when there are fewer survivors living to tell their own stories.
Learn with Cantor Eric Schulmiller
Cantor’s Dinner & Study: Fridays, 7:00 - 8:00pm (dinner at 6:30pm). Join Cantor Eric for Shabbat dinner and engage in lively conversation and the study of diverse topics. Each year there is a specific theme. This year's theme is The Ten Commandments, Many Approaches. Each session will examine a different commandment (or two) from a broad range of perspectives, both ancient and contemporary. Dinner is at the synagogue at 6:30pm. Price varies depending on the menu. You are welcome to skip dinner and come for FREE for the 7:00 – 8:00pm study session. Shabbat evening services follow.
TUNEFUL TUESDAYS with Cantor Eric and Solomon. Tuesdays, 8:00 - 9:30pm Do you love to sing? Would you like to meet new people and also enrich musical participation in services and other events? Join choir members, old and new, as we put the TOGETHER in singing together. NO Hebrew or music reading skills necessary. Start Date: 10/10. Second and fourth Tuesdays of every month. Exceptions: We will not meet in December. In January we will meet 1/9, 1/16, 1/23.
Wednesdays, 7:30 - 9:00pm The Men’s Group is a monthly vehicle for the men of our congregation to socialize and discuss topics of mutual, personal and general interest. Rabbi Lee, a member of the group, participates in the discussions with items of interest. The discussions and socializing help members learn more about one another and develop friendships. Men of all ages are welcome. Members Only.
Adult B’nai Mitzvah
We periodically offer a two year b’nai mitzvah experience which has many varied components. Especially meaningful is the development of a sense of community. Study begins by forming Hebrew reading groups. Different segments of the program are taught by Cantor Eric, Rabbi Lee and Rabbi Jodie. We journey through historical, liturgical, literary and spiritual studies. Each student engages in Torah study with a small group to deliver a d’var torah (discussion on the Torah portion), as well as participate in the culminating service as a group.
Yiddish Reading Circle
Fridays, 10:00 - 11:30am. If you have an affection for Yiddish and its significance in our culture and daily life, this is the group for you. Whether you know a little Yiddish or are an expert, the group is glad to help you with the literature, poetry, readings from the Daily Forward, short stories and songs, which are read in Yiddish and discussed in English. Call the office to check dates.