Adult Studies

Adult learning is a vital part of our congregation. Here are some of the programs that are offered on a regular basis. Please see 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 two biweekly seminars. Previous attendance at either of these seminars is not required, nor is regular attendance necessary.


How often have you been asked to define Reconstructionism?  This course will address all questioners, and will satisfy your own curiosity as well. After an introductory session on its place within the context of American Jewish history, Rabbi Lee will offer a topical approach to the study. Topics to be considered will include: the meaning of God, ritual practice, the nature of prayer, the place of Israel, Judaism as a civilization, living in two civilizations – the Jewish and the American, life cycle practices, political action, and Jewish Peoplehood. Topics will be announced in advance for your consideration.  One need not attend every session to benefit from the course. The entire RSNS community is invited to attend this monthly course.  Tuesdays 6:30 - 8 pm: 9/13, 10/18, 11/15, 12/13. 1/17, 2/14, 3/14, 4/18, 5/9

     Shabbat Seminar: The History of Israel: A Documentary Approach: We began our examination of Zionism seven years ago through the lens of the writings of Zionist and anti-Zionist ideologues.  This year, beginning on October 29, 2016, we will begin with Israel’s post Yom Kippur War history.  We will continue to critically review the development of the State through original source political and sociological documents. This seminar meets biweekly on Shabbat afternoons from noon to 1:30 p.m.

     Bible Study: This group has been and continues to be committed to reading every word of the Hebrew Bible (in English translation). After more than a decade and a half, the group has reached the so-called Minor Prophets, minor not in importance, but in the amount of material that has survived of theirs. We begin this year’s study, which resumes on October 20, 2016, with the end of the Book of Psalms quickly turning to the Book of Proverbs. This seminar meets biweekly on Thursday nights from 8:00 to 9:30 p.m.

     Eat, Read, Talk  . . . with Rabbi Lee:  The rabbi will present an article “ripped from the headlines” of Jewish relevance. Feel free to bring a dairy lunch and we’ll supply the hot drinks and the article to be discussed. Meets once a month on a Thursday from 11:30 a.m.-1:00 p.m.


Learn with Rabbi Jodie Siff

     Women’s Rosh Hodesh:  Traditional religious ritual was designed, and continues, to meet a variety of needs that relate to life passages: The need for the individual to be acknowledged by community, the need for the community/tribe to read itself into the passages of each member, the need for bonding, which serves both individual and community, the need to (re-)enact dramatically the great stories and messages of the tradition, for the sake of individuals and of the tradition.  Through rituals, we create structures that provide an element of predictability and, therefore, safety, around times of insecurity, transition, and/or loss.

All women of our congregation are welcome to join us as we continue to study, and learn from each other.  This year we will study the Torah portion of the week through women’s commentaries. This group meets once each month, October-June.

     Shabbat Yoga:  Experience Shabbat through movement; connecting body, mind and soul.This Shabbat Yoga program is taught by Rabbi Jodie Siff. Good for all levels, adults and post b'nai mitzvah teens, non-members welcome. Bring your own mats and yoga props (we have a few if you forget yours). Wear comfortable work out attire. One Saturday a month 8:15-9:30 a.m.  Beginning September 9, Rabbi Siff will also offer a weekly Friday morning class (when school is in session) from 10:00-11:15 a.m. Check our calendar for exact dates. If you have questions please Email Rabbi Siff at

     2ND GENERATION SURROGATE SURVIVORS: Children and grandchildren of survivors are invited to participate in continuing to tell the stories and the history of their family member.  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. The process begins with an education of how to effectively tell the story of your family member to different groupings of people.  Irving Roth for the Holocaust Center at Temple Judea trains family members of survivors to tell their relative’s stories. 


Learn with Cantor Eric Schulmiller

     Cantor’s Dinner (3/24, 4/28, 6/16)

Following dinner, participants engage in lively conversation and study of diverse topics on a different theme each year.  Previous themes have included Jews and Food, Jewish Mysticism, Jews From Exotic Lands, Jewish Music Through The Ages, and Jewish Legends. This year's theme is "Prayer Technology: Movement, Sound, Lighting, Text" - From ancient times to the 21st century, come explore the how's and why's of the Jewish worship experience!

Dinner is at 6:00 p.m., price per person varies depending on the menu. Anyone can skip dinner and come for FREE for the 7-8 p.m. study session.


Men’s Group

The Men's Group meets the second Wednesday of every month from 7:30 - 9:30 p.m. to discuss topics of interest selected by members.  While the discussion starts off with a selected topic the meetings move in many directions and are a wonderful way for members to get to know one another.  All men in the congregation are invited to attend.

Adult B’nai Mitzvah

We periodically offer a two year bnai 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 dvar torah (discussion on the Torah portion), as well as participate in the culminating service as a group.

Yiddish Reading Circle

We meet on average, every other week on a Friday at 10:00 a.m. in the RSNS Library.  We read both old and contemporary text, poetry, newspaper articles written in Yiddish. For more information and a schedule contact Jerry Bloom at 466-2519.