January 2021 Events

        KOL AMI of Boca Raton
An affiliate of Reconstructing Judaism


Nefesh b’Nefesh, the US agency for helping make Aliyah is starting 5 weeks of on line Hebrew classes for beginners and intermediates. The classes start Wednesday at 12 noon our time. Register at this email address. (And don’t worry about starting late. The classes are being presented by topic.)

Find the link here.


Find the page and information here


From the Jewish Federation of Palm Beach County:

On January 27, the world observes International Holocaust Remembrance Day. On this meaningful day, we remember the atrocities of the Shoah and commemorate the anniversary of the liberation of Auschwitz. It is also a day for us to strengthen new connections and nurture hope as we build a brighter future.
In 2021, we’ll do that by launching the world premiere of the Humans of the Holocaust photo exhibit. This moving exhibit is brought to you by photographer Erez Kaganovitz (creator of Humans of Tel Aviv) and tells the story of the Holocaust in a different way: with inspiration and optimism. The exhibition takes a fresh perspective on the experiences of Holocaust survivors, showcasing how the human spirit can overcome even the most dire of circumstances.
Join our community for this impactful event on Wednesday, January 27, at 7 p.m., during which Erez will present and discuss the exhibit and the stories behind it. Click here to register: https://zoom.us/…/tJMpfuyoqTooGdTTxdo5OmPol5TzZyuWpZyi


 Tensions of Religious Life in the Jewish Experience: A Poetic Exploration Leyv Ha-Ir’s Education Committee is pleased to present our Winter Education Series, led by Ross Weissman.

Throughout the centuries, Jews have used poetry to sing praise, to ponder evil, to shout souls’ desire, and to dwell in the profane of the day-to-day. Poems tell stories– Jewish stories — and they capture the richness and complexity of Jewish experience, intellect, and spirit.

In this series, we will explore Jewish religious life through the reading of American and Israeli poetry. We will delve into the contemporary writing of Orthodox and Reconstructionist rabbis; professors and community leaders; Hebrew and English speakers.  We will unravel the layers of human and cultural complexity held within their poems: the tensions, ambivalences, and paradoxes of Jewish life and religious thought.

While each poem tells a story, it can also reveal aspects of our own experience and narrative. In each session, we will read the work of a different contemporary poet, paying special attention to the art, the religious commentary within, and its resonance with our lives.

You need not attend all sessions to participate.

Session I:  “Loneliness” – Tuesday, January 19, 7:00 – 8:15 PM

While Jewish religious life is deeply communal, it is oft-experienced alone. This is in part due to the nature of people’s inner and private lives, but also due to social tension and pressure that drive people to hide parts of themselves. In this lesson, we will explore the work of Israeli writer Elhanan Nir, and his poetic exploration of religious loneliness in the modern world.

Ross Weissman is a life long educator and student of poetry, currently serving on the teaching team of Poetry in America. His poetry and translations have appeared in Exchanges,Caliban OnlineLunch TicketPusteblumeMizmor L’ David Anthology, and elsewhere. Ross holds a master’s degree from the Harvard Graduate School of Education, where he also served as a Teaching Fellow in classes on human development. He has completed graduate coursework in Judaic Studies at Bar-Ilan, Harvard, and the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College. Ross Pic.jpg

Participation for LHI members is free of charge.  We ask non-members to consider making a suggested minimum donation of $18 per person,which you can make through Paypal on LHI’s website or by check payable to Leyv Ha-Ir, P.O. Box 15836, Philadelphia, PA 19103.

Information for this and all virtual events will automatically  be sent to LHI members.  If non-members would like to participate, please email us at info@leyvhair.org, or call us at 215-629-1995 to request that the remote access information be sent to you the day before each session.

Session II:  “Conversation Not Submission” – Wednesday, February 3, 7:00 – 8:15 PM

Jewish tradition engages in recurring dialogue with those that came before. We recall memories of those passed, and we read and reread texts that have been studied for generations. While these sources can be stabilizing in offering a steadying-comfort, they can also simply be one voice to consider amongst the multitudes– akin to the reconstructionist principle of “a vote, not a veto.” In this session we will explore the poetry of Israeli poet Linda Zisquit, to step into some of her experiential and theological conversations.

Session III:  “Insider and Outsider” – Wednesday, February 17, 7:00 – 8:15 PM

For many, religious life is not static. It waxes and wanes in intensity, in traditional commitments and curiosities. David Caplan writes frequently about the Baal Teshuva experience– the process of a deepening religious commitment in Jewish life. While religious life can change incrementally and subtly, often a Baal Teshuva’s experience can be marked by sharp contrasts to one’s life prior. In this session, we will explore Caplan’s poetic rendering of one’s simultaneous inspiration and alienation from community and theology — with a special focus  on 20th century hassidus.

Session IV:  “MIddle-ways” – Wednesday, March 3, 7:00 – 8:15 PM

Reconstructionist Judaism speaks of living in two civilizations — this can be a conscious or unconscious activity. This session will explore a middle-path, living in a Jewish reality and American one, with poet and Rabbi Josh Bolton. This session will include an appearance of the guest Rabbi and poet, with an accompanying poetry reading.