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Educational Resources

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Yom HaShoah

Yom Hashoah 101 Discussion Guide

Yom HaShoah is Holocaust Remembrance Day. Traditionally observed around the anniversary of the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising, this annual day of remembrance commemorates the atrocities perpetuated against Jews and others like the Roma, LGBT individuals, and those who tried to protect the persecuted. It remembers the 6,000,000 Jews and 5,000,000 Roma, LGBT, and others who were systematically murdered as part of Nazi Germany's "final solution."


Passover Discussion Guide

Passover, or Pesach , is an 8-day holiday (in Israel it’s celebrated for only 7 days) when we commemorate the Jewish People’s redemption from slavery in Egypt thanks to G-d’s miracles. Traditionally, our observance of this festival begins with a Seder, a special meal on the first and second nights.

Purim Discussion Guide

Purim Discussion Guide

Purim commemorates the celebration of the Jews in the Persian Empire when they were saved from their aggressor Haman. In the 4th Century BCE, the Jews were ruled by Achashverosh, King of the Persian Empire. While he was no friend to the Jews, his most trusted advisor Haman, was worse. Haman sought out a decree that would allow him to kill all Jews in the land, beginning with a man named Mordechai, who was uncle to the new queen.

Happy Tu B'shevat

Tu B'shevat Discussion Guide

Tu B’shevat, meaning the 15th of Shevat, marks the new year of Israel’s trees and, this year, begins on the eve of Wednesday, January 15. By the middle of the Hebrew month of Shevat, the rains that began during Sukkot have absorbed into the soil and we see new growth in the form of fruits. It is a Jewish custom to eat more fruits than usual in an effort to give thanks to G-d for all forms of fruits created.


Hanukkah Discussion Guide

Hanukkah is the eight-day celebration that marks the triumph of a small band of Jews, the Maccabees, over the Greek Empire, which ruled Babylonia at the time. In the 2nd century B.C.E., the ruling Greeks sought to assimilate the people of Israel, making it illegal to practice some Jewish rituals. But the Maccabees overpowered the Greeks and reclaimed the Holy Temple.

Simchat Torah 2013 Discussion Guide

Simchat Torah 2013 Discussion Guide

Simchat Torah may be one of the reasons why Jews are referred to as ‘the People of the Book.’ At the end of the festival of Sukkot, we celebrate Simchat Torah, ‘rejoicing with the Torah,’ which marks the completion and rebooting of the weekly Torah reading cycle. Jewish communities have special celebrations of dancing, singing and rejoicing with their Torah scrolls as they turn them from Devarim, the last portion of the Torah describing the end of wandering in the desert, to Bereshit, the first portion of the Torah and the essential story of new beginnings...

Sukkot 2013 Discussion Guide

Sukkot 2013 Discussion Guide

Sukkot, the first of three pilgrimage festivals and four days after the High Holidays, helps us experience the uncertainty our ancestors felt for forty years of desert-wandering and the complete dependence on G-d for their basic survival. The festival also celebrates the moment in early fall when farmers in Israel harvest the food that will sustain them, their families and their communities until the following summer...

Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur 2013 Discussion Guide

Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur 2013 Discussion Guide

No matter where you have navigated, searched or browsed throughout the year, the High Holidays of Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur give the Jewish people an opportunity to come home, to return to who they really are or who they want to be...

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