Adult Education

Adult EducationThe Alan & Linda Cohen Center for Jewish Learning & Living at Congregation Beth-El Zedeck

A rich adult and family education program provides courses in Hebrew and in various aspects of Jewish personal and family life. Course are taught by the Rabbis, Cantor and guest instructors. Through our Sam Smulyan Memorial Lectureship and Cultural Arts Fund, we feature nationally renowned guest speakers, artists and scholars-in-residence each year. The Feigenbaum Adult B’nai Mitzvah Program prepares members for participation in this meaningful life cycle celebration. For more information on these programs contact Shari Lipp-Levine, slevine {at} bez613(.)org or 317-253-3441.

2014-2015 Adult Education brochure



With Rabbi Hal Schevitz
Saturdays, 9:00 to 9:50 a.m.
beginning Saturday, September 28
Alpert-Solotken Library
Join Rabbi Hal Schevitz for a Shabbat morning Torah study session on Parashat
HaShavua (the weekly Torah portion)! Using everything from traditional rabbinic commentary
to modern creative understandings, Rabbi Hal will be your tour guide for a
year-long journey through our weekly wanderings and wonderings through Torah.
Come for Torah study and stay through services; or just come for Torah study if that’s
your thing! All learners interested in exploring the stories, laws, and traditions of our
most sacred and frequently read text are invited to participate in this chance to learn.



The Story of the Jews
Sundays, 10:00 a.m. to Noon
Join Rabbi Dennis Sasso for engaging conversations on the history, beliefs and practices of Jewish faith and tradition. Five sessions of video and dialogue based on the popular National Public Television series produced and narrated
by Simon Schama.

September 28: In the Beginning
The birth of a people and their relationship to God and the Hebrew Bible. What set the ancient Jews apart from others and preserved this distinction — despite wars, invasions, enslavement, exile, and assimilation? This segment
covers through the Romans’ destruction of the Temple in 70 CE.

October 12: Among Believers
Throughout the Middle Ages, whether under Christian or Muslim rule, Jews in the Diaspora endured suffering through blood-libels and discrimination and flourished in times of peace and tolerance. We will follow the extraordinary
history of a people and the remarkable individuals who made it possible, through the 1492 expulsion from Spain.

October 26: A Leap of Faith
Jews successfully integrated into the social, cultural, and commercial life of Europe, but the ever-present seeds of prejudice began to grow. As European nationalism and anti-Semitism spread, Theodore Herzl, the father of modern
Zionism, concluded that Jews would not be free from persecution unless they had a homeland of their own.

November 2: Over the Rainbow
The shtetl and its culture left an indelible mark on the modern world — from revolutionary politics in the Soviet Union to Hollywood, from Hasidism to the sons of immigrants writing the American songbook. This portion of The Story
of the Jews brings us back to Eastern Europe as the genocide of the “final solution” obliterates the shtetl world.

November 9: Return
With the end of the Holocaust and the establishment of the State of Israel, has the meaning of being Jewish changed? We will examine the remarkable people and events that helped turn a dream into reality and the chronic tensions this
new reality created for Israel and world Jewry.

The Ways of the Jews
Sundays, 10:00 a.m. to Noon

November 16: The Way We Pray
The words we use, our beliefs, rituals, and spirituality.

November 23: The Way We Celebrate
The flow of the Jewish yearly calendar and the meanings of our seasons, Sabbaths and festivals.

December 7: The Way We Live
Faith in practice – The Jewish life cycle, from cradle to grave…and beyond.

December 14: The Way We Belong & The Values We Affirm
What does it mean to be a religious community? What are the differences and similarities among the modern Jewish religious movements (Reform, Conservative, Reconstructionist, and Orthodox)? New challenges and issues facing Jewish identity and community today.



Are you a mother raising Jewish children … but you’re not Jewish?
Don’t do it alone!

The Mothers Circle provides FREE education and support for women of other religious backgrounds who are raising Jewish children. The course is coming to Indianapolis this fall. Classes will meet approximately twice a month and will focus on Jewish rituals, ethics, and the how-to’s of creating a Jewish home. Come be a part of this warm and nurturing environment and feel empowered to take on the responsibility of raising children in Judaism.

The free course will be held at the Jewish Community Center and is made possible by a grant from the Jewish Federation of Greater Indianapolis and commitments from David and Betty Klapper and Robert and Alice Schloss. It is overseen by a steering committee with representatives from the Bureau of Jewish Education, Congregation Beth-El Zedeck, Congregation Shaarey Tefilla, Indianapolis Hebrew Congregation and the Jewish Community Center.

For more information, please contact Patti Freeman Dorson at themotherscircle {at} comcast(.)net or 317-251-9467, x323 or visit