In 5776, Congregation Beth Israel has a two Scholars-in-Residence in attendance.  We hope you will join us for these great weekends as we learn from others in the community.

January 29 – 31, 2016 
Noah Aronson, Musician In Residence

Noah Aronson

Noah Aronson is an energetic and soulful composer/performer whose unique musical style propels his music into communities across the country and in Israel.  We are pleased to welcome Noah Aronson to our community for a special weekend of inspiring Jewish music from one of today’s most compelling talents.

Friday night, January 29

6:30 pm Noah will be partnering with Jewish youth from our synagogue and our community to lead the Friday night service for NFTY-TOR’s Regional Winter Conclave.  This service is not to be missed!

Saturday morning, January 30

10:30-12 PM.  Noah will be leading us in a musical and spiritual Shabbat morning service, in our Chapel. 

Sunday morning, January 31 

10: AM and 12:30-1:30 PM.  Noah Aronson in Concert! Join us in the sanctuary for a special concert where Noah incorporates his work with our Religious school students into a fun and interactive musical experience.  Join us for a beautiful morning of soulful, original Jewish music. 

All events are free and open to the entire Jewish Community. Donations can be made to the Alan L. Schechter Scholar in Residence Fund which assists us in underwriting this fabulous weekend and others like it.


February 5-7, 2016
Rabbi Jonathan Slater

Jonathan Slater

Rabbi Jonathan P. Slater, DMin, is co-director of programs at the Institute for Jewish Spirituality and teaches mindfulness meditation at the JCC in Manhattan and other venues. He is the author of Mindful Jewish Living: Compassionate Practice.We are pleased to be able to offer a complete weekend of programs with Rabbi Slater, in honor of Rabbi Folberg’s 25th anniversary at Beth Israel.  Rabbi Slater is one of Rabbi Folberg’s beloved teachers, and we are honored to bring him and his transformational teachings to our community. 

If Abraham Kept All of the Torah, Can We?

The Sages claim that Abraham kept all of the commandments — both Biblical and Rabbinic! — even before the Torah was given? How did he manage that? Is that something that we can do? Is it what we would aspire to?

When we speak of commandments, we often feel resistance, doubt and apathy. What might happen if instead of observing commandments, we engaged in spiritual practice? What if whatever we did Jewishly was to help us soften our hearts in compassion, deepen our sense of gratitude, open our hands in generosity and strengthen our capacity to act righteously?

Through contemplative prayer and study, conversation and practice, we will investigate these questions together with Rabbi Slater. 

Friday, February 5 

6:30pm – Simchat Shabbat Services followed by a delicious dinner prepared by our Sisterhood. Discussion with Rabbi Slater beginning at approximately 8pm in the Helen and Milton Smith Auditorium.

Saturday, February 6

9-10:15am – Torah Study with Rabbi Slater in the Helen and Milton Smith Auditorium. (Please note earlier start time and location change.)

10:30am – Shabbat Morning Services – Rabbi Slater, along with Sarah Avner, will be leading a contemplative service filled with nigunim and chants.

6:30pm – Havdallah and Chasidic text study

Sunday, February 7

9:15-10:30am – Adult Education in the Chapel