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Twice each year B’nai Israel brings top scholars of Judaica to our congregation for an entire weekend. Over the years our speakers have covered a broad range of topics including Jewish law and practice, history and culture, sociology, and the Jewish future. Weekends typically include a Friday evening lecture following a community Shabbat dinner, a Saturday sermon and presentation, and a Sunday morning program. We often include an informal Saturday evening opportunity as well. The Scholar-in-Residence program is made possible by the vision and generosity of the Dollye and I. Wolford Berman Educational Initiative Grant.

upcoming events

Spirituality and Activism: The Legacy of Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel
with Rabbi Gordon Tucker

Friday, March 3–Saturday, March 4

Friday, March 3
6:15 PM Kabbalat Shabbat
7:00 PM Shabbat Dinner
(Click here to register.)
8:00 PM Learning Session: Spirituality and Activism: The Role of the Prophet
Abraham Joshua Heschel was deeply concerned with the prophets, and wrote both his doctoral dissertation on that subject, as well as a comprehensive book published in 1962. But he was also deeply interested in the phenomenon of prophecy throughout the ages, even to contemporary times. That interest took two forms: the private and contemplative on the one hand, and the public and activist on the other. We will examine both of these, and attempt to understand how they may actually be related to one another.

Saturday, March 4
9:00 AM Shabbat Morning Services with Sermon by Rabbi Tucker
12:30 PM Lunch and Learn: Heschel on Racism and Systemic Injustice

Injustice can result not only from illegal acts and corruption, but from the workings of the law itself. We will examine rabbinic acknowledgments of this unfortunate phenomenon of systemic injustice, and then we will consider what Heschel discovered along these lines in the United States and how that spurred him to form alliances for action.

As vice chancellor for Religious Life and Engagement, Rabbi Gordon Tucker focuses on enhancing Jewish life at JTS, enriching our study of Judaism with the joy and deep understanding that only lived experience can provide. A leading scholar and interpreter of Conservative Judaism, he also articulates the enduring power of JTS’s compelling approach to Jewish law and Jewish life. He was ordained at JTS in 1975 after receiving his A.B. at Harvard College. He also earned a PhD in Philosophy from Princeton University. Rabbi Tucker served from 1994 to 2018 as senior rabbi of Temple Israel Center in White Plains, NY. Under his leadership, the synagogue flourished and was characterized by vibrant communal life and an exceptional devotion to Jewish learning.


masorti Shabbat

with Rabbi Mikie Goldstein, Masorti Director of Development 

Friday, April 14
6:15 PM               Kabbalat Shabbat Services
7:00 PM               Shabbat Dinner (Click here to register.)
8:15 PM               Learning Session with Rabbi Mikie Goldstein 

Saturday, April 15
9:00 AM               Shabbat Morning Services with Sermon by Rabbi Mikie Goldstein
12:30 PM             Post-Kiddush Learning with Rabbi Mikie Goldstein

Originally from Liverpool, UK, Rabbi Mikie Goldstein made aliyah in 1989, after completing a BA in Middle Eastern Studies at the University of Manchester. He received his rabbinic ordination in 2014 from the Jewish Theological Seminary in New York, returning immediately to Israel to fill the position of rabbi at Adat Shalom-Emanuel, the Masorti congregation in Rehovot of which he had previously been a member, until June 2022.

Before turning to the rabbinate, Rav Mikie worked chiefly in the non-profit sector, including heading Masorti’s development department. He has volunteered at various organizations, including the Jerusalem Open House for Pride and Tolerance, where he served as board chair from 2008-2010. Rav Mikie also worked abroad for the Foreign Ministry in the Public Diplomacy (Hasbarah) and Culture departments of various Israeli missions.

During his rabbinical studies, Rav Mikie interned at the New Israel Fund, New York Presbyterian Hospital, Town & Village Synagogue in New York’s East Village, and at Congregation Beit Simchat Torah, the world’s largest LGBTQ synagogue. In 2017, Mikie was elected to serve as president of the Israel region of the Rabbinical Assembly (RA), placing him on the International RA’s Executive Council, until 2022, as well as on the boards of the Masorti Movement and the Schechter Rabbinical Seminary.

In July 2022, Rav Mikie started a short stint heading the Religious Services Bureau of the Masorti Movement and the RA in Israel. In January 2023, he returned to direct Masorti's development department, this time leading the movement's global fundraising efforts.

Rav Mikie continues to accompany new and established kehillot, working to facilitate congregants’ journeys to owning their Judaism. He is a staunch supporter of religious pluralism in Israel and works in the wider community to reconnect the unaffiliated to their Jewish tradition.

Tue, June 6 2023 17 Sivan 5783