Soon I’ll be in my backyard, building my rickety old sukkah, laying palm fronds on its roof, trying not to kill myself with a falling beam, cursing out my clumsiness and the thorns or splinters that come my way. My sukkah-building has been the butt of family jokes for decades. But no one complains as they dine among the decorations on a beautiful autumn evening. I love Sukkot’s earthiness, the glow of Hanukkah’s candles piercing winter’s darkness, and singing until our voices give out at our Passover Seder. Each festival brings unbridled joy, celebrated in the warm company of family, friends, and community.
Last Friday, 20 youth professionals met at the Jewish Federation of the East Bay for our Youth Mental Health First Aid training. This training filled up within hours of registration opening - proving that there is, indeed a demand for this critically important work.
The surprising success of Donald Trump's candidacy in 2016 brought a number of literary works out of the woodwork, but none so much as Philip Roth's "The Plot Against America." Roth's work of counterfactual historical fiction (sometimes known as the "What if?" genre) explores the imagined impact of aviator Charles Lindbergh's defeat of incumbent Franklin ...
Printable Activity Pages for Kids
Everyone has a little trouble focusing sometimes.
Keep little hands/minds engaged with activity pages created for kids of all abilities and appropriate for all types of observance. Use at home, in the car, on an airplane or during services. Share it. Print it. Pass it on!
Check out whats inside:
High Holy Days Opportunities for Families from Kesher
This time last year, we’d just concluded a strategic plan in response to an existential crisis: would we survive? And, should we?
As it turned out, our attention shifted to a different question: what matters most? What work, outcomes, and impact, were calling us?
I reflected on how Jewish learning has affected my life. It’s helped me to be a better husband, better father, better son, better brother, better friend, better neighbor, better citizen. It informed my life with joy and purpose. It helped me understand my place in the world and with whom I belong. It provided tools with which I could discern what success and happiness mean. It opened my eyes to the many blessings life has provided me. It deepened my connections with and obligations to my family, community, and the world. It helped me understand what and whose story I am a part of.
In short, Jewish learning helped me understand how to live.
The report that follows showcases our impact and explores who we are, what we do, who we serve, and who supports our work. Every section, including this one, offers an overview and an opportunity to click to dive in where your interest or curiosity is piqued.
If you find information that intrigues you, or puzzles you, or concerns you – please reach out to me by responding to this email or by phone - 415.529.3204. We are a learning organization. Jewish learning involves conversation.
Over the years, I’ve participated in almost every educational opportunity that BJE/JLW has offered. Your programs have been the foundation of my professional development for many years. They’re also the foundation for my sense of collegiality. I still meet several times each year with my colleagues from the Shofar Fellowship - even all these years later.
The Jewish Community Library is a treasure. When I encounter Jews who don’t know about it, I am shocked and saddened. It’s such a vibrant and vital part of our community, with opportunities for all ages to connect, grow and learn.
I have the utmost respect and confidence in Jewish LearningWorks. I know that when I make time to participate, I will absolutely walk away with something useful to me - personally and professionally. I’ve learned with and from JLW educators since I was a teen!
I absolutely recommend the Kesher concierge to any family looking to connect with the Jewish community. Because of Kesher, I’m more comfortable inviting others to gather in my home and I’m more confident in sharing rituals and traditions.
Times are changing and people are getting more and more information online, but if you're a novice in a field, you have a hard time knowing what's factual. At the Jewish Community Library, the librarians help guide you. As concerns programming, I'm always amazed by the caliber of speakers which is very impressive. I've never been disappointed and wish I had more time to spend there. Click image for the full story…
Download and print our Shabbat @Home Guide, designed to enrich your family's experience of Jewish life, including the celebration of Shabbat.
Throughout the ages, Shabbat (the Jewish Sabbath) has been celebrated in countless ways. This guide includes many traditions and customs but you won’t nd the words “should” or “ought to” in these pages. We hope you’ll experiment with practices that help your family create a joyful and meaningful Shabbat. The Jewish community as a whole is enriched by diversity, creativity and pluralism. We believe that there is no one “right” way to celebrate Shabbat or to be Jewish