Adult Learning

Pre-registration is required for ALL classes for security purposes.
To register, please fill out the form below, call 631-324-9858, or email

Speaking Truth to Power: The Prophets
TUESDAYS: JUNE 11, 18, 25  |  JULY 2, 9, 16
10:00–11:15am with Michael Senft
Come uncover the enigmatic history of the Prophets. Their literature encompasses an entire section of the Hebrew Bible, their messages permeate modern calls for social justice, and their lives are the stories of legends.

Talmudic Debate
THURSDAYS: JUNE 20, 27  |  JULY 11, 18, 25  |  AUGUST 1, 8, 15
12:15–1:30pm with Rabbi Josh Franklin
Why do Jews love to debate? We might point to the great book of legal debates, The Talmud. The complex legal formulations have exercised the Jewish mind for thousands of years, causing it to become a guide as to how Jews exercise the mind. Come explore some of the Talmud’s best legal debates.

Jewish & Christian Parables
FRIDAYS: JUNE 28  |  JULY 19, 26  |  AUGUST 9, 23, 30
10:30–11:45am with Rabbi Josh Franklin & the Very Reverend Denis C. Brunelle (St. Lukes Episcopal Church)
Jews and Christians have used the art of parables throughout the ages to imprint faith’s most important messages into tightly knit metaphors and stories. Parables invite us to unpack and interpret vivid images and memorable stories, and just when we think we understand their meaning, a new layer of spirituality emerges. Come explore the best parables of Jewish and Christian literature. Note: This class will be held at two alternating locations.

The Bible as Literature: Reading the Torah on its own Terms
MONDAYS: JULY 1, 8, 15, 22, 29
10:00–11:15am with Rabbi David Whiman
The Hebrew Bible employs a uniquely non-Western approach to story telling. Using the new Robert Alter translation of the Tanach, we will explore the techniques and conventions of Hebrew narrative to examine selected passages from the Books of Genesis and Exodus. Stripped of centuries of Rabbinic commentary and avoiding what Alter calls “the heresy of interpretation”, we gain new insights into the meaning and purpose of the stories we read from Torah. A respectful but not necessarily faith-based approach to Scripture. Bring any translation of the Bible you have to class.

Adult Torah Chanting and Bar/Bat Mitzvah Class
MONDAYS: JULY 1, 8, 15, 22, 29
11:30am–12:45pm with Cantor/Rabbi Debra Stein
Many Shabbat mornings, Bernie, our beloved Torah chanter leans over to me and says that I should let people know that they only have to learn three sentences to come up and chant Torah. That is true, the minimum amount of sentences one must chant for an Aliyah is three. In this course, we will work together supporting one another and empowering each other to learn how to chant three sentences of Torah. No singing expertise is needed, each person will chant according to their own abilities. Each student will have the opportunity to learn one Aliyah, or work towards becoming an adult Bar/Bat Mitzvah and preparing for a special day.

Hidden Jewels of the Prayerbook
FRIDAYS: JULY 5  |  AUGUST 2, 9, 30
12:15–1:30pm with Dr. Joel M. Hoffman
The prayerbook is the written record of our people’s journey throughout time and around the world. Join our Director of Education, Dr. Joel M. Hoffman, as he exposes some of the prayerbook’s hidden jewels, from surprising details of well known passages to texts that we more often skip. After each class you’ll walk away with a deeper appreciation for the richness and glory of our tradition and with better insight into both familiar and new prayers. No particular background is necessary, and each class stands on its own.