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MakomDC 2020-2021

Ve-Dibarta Bam — Torah That Speaks To You & Me: 
Learning, Living and Exploring in Adas Israel’s Virtual Biran Beit Midrash

There’s always a way in to Jewish learning. This year we intend to capture the passion and expertise of our core teachers and offer topics in text learning that will inspire deep learning, generate new knowledge, and open up critical conversation. Each month, for the first two Tuesday evenings, a rabbi (Holtzblatt, Alexander, Krinsky, Yolkut) will offer a 2-part mini-series that will tackle essential subjects in Judaism, with close attention to the textual tradition that inspires so much of Jewish life today. The Third Tuesday of each month will be taught by one of our Mendelson Scholars. 


Makomdc (Learning & Immersion)

 2020-2021 Mendelson Scholars


Dr. Shaul Magid: "The Holocaust as Inverse Miracle: A Hasidic Understanding of the Holocaust by Rabbi Shalom Noah Barzofsky of Slonim"
Tuesday, February 16 @ 7:30pm | Click Here to Register
Dr. Shaul Magid is a Senior Fellow of the Kogod Research Center at the Shalom Hartman Institute of North America. He is a Professor of Jewish Studies at Dartmouth College, where he teaches Jewish Studies and Religion,

Dr. Mara Benjamin: To be Human is to be Obligated
Tuesday, April 20 @ 7:30pm | Click Here to Register
How might our ordinary, daily experiences of being interpersonally obligated shed light on the idea of a life driven by mitzvah, or sacred obligation? Mara Benjamin will lead us in examining how everyday experiences of obligation toward others can shed light on Jewish religious thought, and how both classical and modern Jewish religious thought can speak to us in new ways when we bring the tradition’s key ideas into everyday life

Dr. Joy Ladin: Reading Between the Angels: How to Read the Bible from a Transgender Perspective Whether or Not You are Trans
Tuesday, June 8 @ 7:30pm | Click Here to Register
Sponsored by the Annie Bass Yellen Scholarship Fund
Long before I knew the word “transgender,” I read the Bible from a “transgender perspective” – that is, I read it in light of my personal, painful experience of how inadequate human categories like male and female are for defining humanity. Few people identify as transgender, but all of us have “trans experiences,” experiences of being more than, or less than, or simply other than the roles and identities we are born or grow into. This talk will teach everyone to recognize and name their own “trans experiences,” and use them to read Biblical texts in new ways, ways that reflect the fullness of our humanity.

Makomdc (Learning & Immersion)

 MakomDC Two-Part Pod Series with Adas Clergy

*New Offering! Each of our rabbis will bring their passion and expertise to 3 core areas of Jewish Life and Living. Each session will be devoted to a deep-dive textual exploration of the chosen topic. While these classes are labeled as “advanced” and may assume some working knowledge of the topic, all are welcome to join and each learner will gain new insight that will will expand their knowledge and skills. 

Rabbi Lauren Holtzblatt
Tuesdays, November 10 & 17 @ 7:30pm
Click Here to Join the Class

Rabbi Aaron Alexander
Tuesdays, December 1 & 8 @ 7:30pm
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Rabbi Sarah Krinsky
Tuesdays, January 5 & 12 @ 7:30pm
Click Here to Join the Class

Rabbi Elianna Yolkut
Tuesdays, February 2 & 9 @ 7:30pm
Click Here to Join the Class

Rabbi Lauren Holtzblatt
Tuesdays, March 2 & 23 @ 7:30pm
Click Here to Join the Class

Rabbi Aaron Alexander
Tuesdays, April 6 & 13 @ 7:30pm
Click Here to Join the Class

Rabbi Sarah Krinsky
Tuesdays, May 4 & 11 @ 7:30pm
Click Here to Join the Class

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Featured Learning Opportunities

Friday Parsha Sudy with Adas Clergy

Fridays at 1:00pm
Click Here to Join the Class

Join us for an exclusive in-depth look at the Torah portion. On alternating Fridays Rabbi Holtzblatt will explore the parsha through the lens of Hassidut and mysticism, Rabbi Alexander will use the Talmud as the prism for the                             weekly reading, and Rabbi Krinsky will teach the hidden recesses of the Parsha’s passages and discover its                                         meaning and relevance. 

Boker Or Shabbat Study

Shabbat Mornings at 8:30am
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The Boker Ohr Torah study group meets Saturday mornings at 8:30 a.m. with the weekly portion as its focus. Join our clergy and community over zoom each week for an engaging, text-based conversation on the week's parsha,                               before Shabbat services. *Note: Zoom meeting will begin before Shabbat starts. All participants who would like                                to join the class before Shabbat and leave their devices open for Boker Ohr study may do so. 

Intro to Judaism 2.0 (Quarterly)
Wednesdays at 7:30pm-9pm | Click Here to Register
November 4, January 13, March 17, May 5

This course is designed for alumni of Intro to Judaism. Each of the four sessions will focus on a practical aspect of Jewish life, incorporating the learning from the Intro class into everyday routines and spaces. Topics will include: living Jewish space, creating a Jewish kitchen, observing Jewish time, and practicing Jewish ritual. The                              class will meet virtually until the Adas building has been re-opened (virtual options will continue through the                                  pandemic).

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Advanced Learning with Adas Clergy

Advanced Halakhah (Jewish Law) With Rabbi Aaron Alexander
April 28 @ 7:30pm
Click Here to Join the Class

Rabbi Alexander will lead learners in a textual exploration of a topic in Jewish Law, using original sources without translation. This series is designed primarily for those with previous experience studying classical rabbinic texts in hebrew/aramaic.

Advanced Mysticism With Rabbi Lauren Holtzblatt
April 27 at 7:30pm
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This class will offer a deep dive into Jewish mystical practices of centering the mind.  We will explore the teachings of the Piacezno Rebbe, Rabbi Nachman of Breslov, the Zohar, and HaRav Kook. We will look into the specific Hasidic theologies of each teacher and delve into their mindfulness practices. Each class will conclude                                with a “mindfulness lab”- a chance to try on the practice that we study.

Advanced Musar With Rabbi Sarah Krinsky
May 25 @ 7:30pm
Click Here to Join the Class

Delve deeply into the practice of musar - a guided journey through middot (traits) that help us to better understand who we are, notice and hone our key attributes, and show up as our best selves in the world. Each session will focus on one particular middah, and will include text study from rabbinic sources about the trait as                                well as guidance for incorporating reflection and practice in our own lives. 

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Study Scholarship Fund

Michael Stern Scholarship Fund
Click Here to Apply!
The synagogue is happy to announce the establishment by his family of The Michael Stern Torah Study Scholarship Fund. It is intended to help launch Adas Israel’s young people into their own explorations of the intellectual and spiritual heritage of our people. It is named in memory of one of this synagogue’s own great sages, Michael Stern, who engaged in Torah study for its own sake, advancing to the level of “master teacher,” a designation conferred in 2018 by our senior rabbis. Michael was propelled only by his desire to learn the profound teachings of our tradition and to impart them to various segments of his community. For decades, Michael offered Divrei Torah in the daily minyan, in the traditional egalitarian minyan, and in the Havurah where he served for over 40 years as ba’al Koreh. In this latter capacity, Michael trained over 150 people to chant from the Torah scroll. He also was a leading force in his Adas Israel-based study group now approaching its 50th anniversary. There Michael created numerous curricula, with topics ranging from Jewish mysticism, to personalities of the Talmud, to modern Jewish authors. 

This Fund is intended to assist young adult members of Adas Israel, including those attending high school or college, and is available for any level of learning. Accepted applicants may use money dispensed by the Fund to participate in programs or courses of study “lishma” (for its own sake) at institutions such as the Jewish Study Center, Hadar, Svara, Brandeis Bardin Institute, and others. The fund will be administered by Rabbi Kerrith Solomon and Rabbi Sarah Krinsky.

Please respond to questions below in no more than 500 words. Questions can be sent to Rabbi Kerrith Solomon or Rabbi Sarah KrinskyThe program is commencing immediately. Applications for 2021 will be received and considered on a rolling basis. 

Fri, July 23 2021 14 Av 5781