Days of Learning Spring 2021

The fact that throughout history people have devoted their lives to extending the frontiers of knowledge is a compelling testimony to the restlessness of the human spirit and its constant desire to go further, higher, deeper.- Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks

Days of Learning marks a special time on RS’s calendar. Coming just a few weeks after Passover when we recommit ourselves to the goal of human dignity for all people and just a few weeks before Shavuot when we recommit ourselves to Jewish learning, it invites congregants of all ages to learn from each other and create profound relationships. 

Questions? Contact Gail 'Malka' Meister or Ellen Poster.          

Days of Learning Planning Group: Ben-Zion Friedman, Howard Green, Avi Katz, Marc Lowenstein, Jeffrey Saunders, Jerry Silverman
Co-Chairs: Gail 'Malka' Meister and Ellen Poster

Click here to learn more about our moderators and presenters. 


Monday, April 26

Jewish Journeys
Panelists Gail ‘Malka’ Meister, Michael Riccardi, Alice Sayles, Len Sayles, and Seif Sekalala, and Scott Engel, moderator
A rabbi once said, “One who walks 100 feet and one who walks 2,000 miles have in common that both must take a first step before taking a second step.” Listen to the Jews of Color, Jews by choice, and Jews by birth on our panel describe the Jewish journeys that have brought each of them to RS. 


Tuesday, April 27

More Meaningful Retirement: A Jewish Perspective
Michael Freidman and Rabbi William Kuhn, with Roberta Brenner and Scott Engel

Hear and discuss what psychology and Jewish wisdom can teach us about opening doors to new meaning after closing the door on the workplace, with Michael Freidman and Rabbi Bill Kuhn, and small group facilitators Roberta Brenner and Scott Engel. Join for the first time or return to continue the provocative discussion we started last fall. 

Star Trek to Judaism and Beyond
Hector Kilgoe and Len Lipkin, moderator

Boldly go on a journey through time and space in a conversation about the Jewish and American values represented on Star Trek: Deep Space Nine. Learn about how a man with a dream brings together African Americans, Jews, and humanoid alien species of the future as allies inspired by the story of the Exodus. 


Wednesday, April 28

Bread and Torah2:00 to 3:30 PM
Panelists Allie Hauptman, Jane McDowell, and Dan Seltzer, and Rabbi Eli Freedman, moderator

Meet a farmer who partners with adults with developmental disabilities, a South Philly grocery store owner, and a volunteer leader in feeding our food-insecure neighbors as they discuss aspects of food equity through a Jewish lens. The panel will be moderated by Rabbi Eli Freedman, who will discuss how food equity is rooted in our Jewish texts and values.


Authors Among Us
Panelists Robin Black, Rachel Dougherty, Katherine Locke, and Louise Simons, and Ivy Barsky, moderator

Sit down with Robin Black, novelist and short-story writer; Rachel Dougherty, book author-illustrator; Katherine Locke, young adult and children’s author; and Louise Simons, poet, short-story writer, and editor. Hear them read from their published works and tell their own stories about their creative process, writing careers, and how their Jewish sensibilities intersect with their work. 


Thursday, April 29

Jews Go to the Movies…and Write the Songs
Lou Bernstein and Jon Broder

Join us as we remember some of the greatest songs ever written for the silver screen. This interactive session will feature music by Leonard Bernstein, Alan and Marilyn Bergman, Burt Bacharach, Marvin Hamlisch, and many more. 

Can You Find the Words? More Spiritual Expression and Growth through the Book of Psalms
Rabbi Jill Maderer

The isolation of the pandemic continues not only to challenge our physical health, but also to threaten us with personal stagnation. These challenges compel us to seek out ways to grow spiritually and personally in all aspects of our lives. In this study, we will work on the growth of our souls as we shed light on the ancient words of the Psalms. All are welcome: come for the first time or come back if you studied Psalms with Rabbi Maderer last fall. 

A Musical Journey in Central Asia: The Jewish Diaspora Along the Silk Road, 5:00 to 6:15 PM
 Adam Grode and Adelle Rubin, moderator

Travel from the comfort of your home to ancient Central Asia with a Fulbright Award-winning ethnomusicologist. Through stories and songs, Adam Grode will provide a living soundtrack for the rich cultural heritage and musical traditions of the Jews who for millennia have lived in Central Asia’s oases and steppes. This class is designed for people of all ages. Children and adults will be equally captivated! 

Friday, April 30

Jews of Penn’s City
Joella Clamen and Jerry Silverman, moderator

Before the United States became a country, the Jews of Philadelphia were already exporting kosher meat and praying in a minyan. What discrimination did they face?  What were their accomplishments and dilemmas? Discover their stories as you join tour guides Joella Clamen and Jerry Silverman for a virtual journey through the homes, businesses, artifacts, and legacies of Philadelphia’s Jewish founders.