eFestival May 3, 2020
Limmud brings people together to take them one step further on their Jewish journeys. During the days when the world was quarantined, LimmudBoston put forth the notion that while we are in isolation, we need not be alone. BE A PART, NOT APART captured that essence in our first-ever eFestival taught by two rabbis and a rabbinical student from the LimmudBoston board, exploring the overall theme of “Finding Your Path: Jewish Responses to Life in Unsettling Times.”
Presentations & Resources from the May 2020 eFestival
Naomi Gurt Lind - Blessing Hard Times: What Mishnah Berachot Teaches About Patience, Endurance and Gratitude
Reviewing a number of challenging texts from the Mishnah, students were able to engage with Hebrew College first-year rabbinical student Naomi Gurt Lind and each other in high-level dialogue to see how the wisdom contained in these verses might apply to our present situation. Important takeaways from the conversation include: how the rabbis lived at the time of the Mishnah can inform how we live today, and can change us. And, sometimes we can only see what God reveals in retrospect.
Naomi Gurt Lind has been an opera singer, a synagogue executive, and a stay-at-home mother. In September she started school at Hebrew College in pursuit of her long-held dream of becoming a rabbi. In her free time, she hangs out with her husband and their two genius boys, solves crossword puzzles (in pencil), and bakes a legendary challah.
For questions or further info, feel free to contact Naomi at: firstname.lastname@example.org
Marcia Plumb - Finding Order in a Pick-Up-Sticks World with Mussar
According to our teacher, Marcia Plumb, the rabbi at Congregation Mishkan Tefila in Brookline, “the virus has played the old children's game of Pick Up Sticks with our daily routines. All our schedules have been suddenly turned upside down.” In this session, we were able to explore how the Mussar middah (trait) of seder/order can help us manage our time, spaces, and mental health during this time. In dialogue with our teacher and in small breakout groups, we considered how, at this difficult time, we are able to bring meaning into our lives. And, think about Marcia’s contention that every day of the week brings us closer to Shabbat, with our whole lives ahead of us.
Marcia Plumb is the Senior Rabbi of Congregation Mishkan Tefila, Brookline. She has studied and taught Mussar for over 25 years, and is working to embed Mussar into all aspects of her synagogue. She teaches several classes at Mishkan Tefila and throughout Boston, as well as online internationally. Marcia lives in Needham with her husband and two children.
For questions or further info, feel free to contact Marcia at: RabbiPlumb@MishkanTefila.org
Julie Wolkoff - Jewish End-of-Life Decision Making
Learning from Julie Wolkoff, a rabbi and hospice chaplain at BI Lahey Health@Home in Watertown, we considered how Jewish texts and traditions guide us as we face dilemmas of end-of-life decision making. In addition to exploring this question, information was provided about documents everyone should have, along with ways to have conversations about our wishes for medical treatment at the end of life or in the face of a terminal condition. Considering what a loved one who is dying might want, especially in the era of Covid-19, is particularly poignant and important. The silver lining nowadays is that people are discussing these issues more than ever before.
LimmudFest is a happening, a volunteer-driven celebration of Jewish culture and identity. From storytelling, music and meditation to Torah and Talmud, LimmudBoston offers inspiration and education – engaging beginners and scholars alike.