JEWISH LEARNING PROJECT
The Jewish Learning Project (JLP) is Congregation Beth Yeshurun's Adult Learning Program. Our JLP sessions offer a variety of spiritual, intellectual, and stimulating topics for you to choose from. Sessions are held mostly on Sunday mornings and are open to the public and free of charge. (Some classes may have materials fees.) For information contact Lisa Unsell, or call at 713-666-1881
Spring 2018 Class Schedule
9:00 AM CLASSES
Invitation to Judaism for Adults with Rabbi Steve Morgen (9-10am: year long class)
Beyond the Aleph Bet Hebrew with Cantor Diane Dorf (9-10am: year long class)
Students will learn simple conversational Hebrew appropriate for tourists to Israel, as well as core vocabulary for basic Hebrew prayers. This class is especially for people who already know the Hebrew alphabet. The textbooks include the Hebrew University beginning Hebrew ulpan book (!), and a book especially designed for learning the meaning and vocabulary of our prayers.
10:00 AM CLASSES
Pirkei Avot - Jewish Wisdom from the Past Made Relevant for Today with Rabbi Danny Horwitz (10:00-11:00am: year long class)
Our Sages of 2,000 years ago lived at a time of great social upheaval. Greek philosophy had become part of the culture of most of the world. In the wake of the destruction of the Temple, the Jewish world was dealing with crises of faith and morality. Pirkei Avot is a collection of jewels of wisdom from our Sages of that time. Rabbi Horwitz will lead a discussion that will demonstrate their relevance for us today.
Begining Hebrew for Adults with Cantor Diane Dorf (10:00-11:00am: year long class)
Learn to read Hebrew and to recognize essential prayer vocabulary. No prior knowledge is necessary. The textbook is Shalom Hebrew Primer, and can be purchased from Beth Yeshurun for $13.00. This course is open to everyone but is a requirement for Introduction to Judaism students. This is a year-long course.
Understanding Genesis with Dr. Nahum Footnick (10:00-11:00am: year long class)
An ongoing class dedicated to learning valuable lessons from the Torah verse by verse.
Four Decades at 50,000 Feet with Rabbi David Rosen (10:00-11:00am: March 25; April 8, 15)
A fascinating review of Rabbi Rosen's memorable career as a Rabbi, offering his insights into the history and future of Judaism in America.
Preserving Houston's Jewish History with Dr. Joshua Furman (10:00-11:00am: April 22, 29)
Discover the rich history of the Houston Jewish community with Dr. Joshua Furman. Together we will explore items to be included in the archive Furman is currently building for Rice University.
11:00 AM CLASSES
Where Heaven meets Earth - An Introduction to Jewish Mysticism with Rabbi Danny Horwitz (11:00am - Noon: year long class)
Jewish mystics throughout the centuries yearned to come ever closer to our Creator, to penetrate the great mysteries of our world and the meaning of our existence. Using Rabbi Horwitz’s engaging new book, he will explore the various methods and opinions that the mystics uncovered in their quest for Ultimate Truth. Highly recommended to buy Rabbi Horwitz’s book: A Kabbalah and Jewish Mysticism Reader (JPS, 2016).
"La Soledad Del Hombre De Fe" Por Joseph B. Soloveitchik with Rabbi Diana R. Siegel – (11:00am - Noon: Feb. 11, 25; Mar. 11, 18, 25; Apr. 8, 15, 22, 29; May 6)
En este conmovedor y profundo libro el gran Rabino Ortodoxo Moderno, Soloveitchik investiga dilemas familiares a la soledad de la persona de fe. Esta soledad se aplica también a las vidas de los individuos dentro de cualquier tradición de fe e incluso "pertinente a la persona laica." El autor ofrece profundas ideas espirituales sobre los desafios que enfrenta una persona fe en nuestra sociedad moderna, ego-centrada, pragmática, tecnológica y materialmente orientada. In this poignant book the great Modern Orthodox Rabbi, Soloveitchik, investigates dilemmas familiar to the loneliness of the person of faith. This loneliness applies also to the lives of the individuals within any faith tradition and even "to pertinent secular man." The author offers profound spiritual insights about the challenges faced by a person of faith in our modern ego-centrical, pragmatical, technological and materially oriented society.
In Our Museum with Dr. Bernice Heilbrunn Potvin - (11:00am - Noon: Feb. 11, 25; March 18)
Beth Yeshurun has a truly amazing collection of Judaica in our museum. We will look at unique and stunning pieces from our collection that relate to particular holy days in the Jewish calendar. February 11 Shabbat, February 25 Purim, and March 18 Passover.
Famous Rabbis of the Talmud with Rabbi Steven Morgen (11:00am–noon: March 11, 18)
Hillel and Shammai, Rabbi Akiba and Rabbi Ishmael, Rabban Gamliel, Rabbi Eliezer ben Hyrcanus and many more. Just as the United States had “Founding Fathers” that created the first-ever constitutional democracy, we Jews had our own “Founding Fathers” who shaped the course and direction of Judaism as we know it today. Who were these great Sages? What stories were told about them? How did their provocative ideas shape Judaism after the calamitous destruction of the Temple in Jerusalem and the crushing collapse of the Jewish revolt against Rome?
The Synagogue: Inside and Out with Dr. Bernice Heilbrunn Potvin (11:00am - Noon: Apr. 8, 15, 22, 29)
Join us for an in-depth tour of select synagogues in Europe and the United States. Enjoy the beautiful, creative, and intriguing architecture of ultra-modern as well as some historic synagogues on two continents.
Hope and Healing After Harvey with Gayle Kamen-Weinstein (11:00am - Noon: March 18 and 25)
Let’s face it: Harvey has disrupted and dispirited so many of us in Houston. And particularly for those whose homes were flooded (and even for many who were not, who may have “survivor’s guilt”), it will take quite some time to overcome the “post-traumatic stress.” Gayle Kamen-Weinstein, LMSW, a clinical therapist, will lead a group conversation about recovering, re-energizing, and redirecting our lives in “post-Harvey” Houston.