Heritage Florida Jewish News - Central Florida's Independent Jewish Voice

'Everyday Judaism': being Jewish beyond the synagogue


We’ve all been there: on our way to a time-sensitive appointment (and probably running a little late) when all of sudden traffic on the highway comes to a screeching halt. As you crawl forward inch by inch, the first thing that comes to mind is definitely not “What does Judaism have to say about this?”

“It’s natural to equate religious practice with religious institutions,” observes Rabbi David Kay of Congregation Ohev Shalom in Maitland. “That’s especially true for Jews, where the synagogue is the focal point of the community.”

But a faith tradition is supposed to be more than that, Kay notes. “It’s supposed to be a way of life, a way of navigating the challenges and celebrating the blessings we encounter every day.”

On Wednesday evenings at 7 p.m., from Oct. 9 through Dec. 18, Rabbi Kay will be facilitating a class through Ohev Shalom’s Adult Yeshiva Program, titled “Everyday Judaism: Putting Jewish Values Into Practice Beyond the Synagogue.” It will address the Jewish way to respond to that traffic jam... and more.

“We crowd-sourced the topic on Facebook,” Kay says, “and got a number of variations on the theme of ‘What does being a Jew mean in day-to-day life?’ There’s a yearning to find guidance and wisdom in one’s faith tradition for things other than ritual and prayer.”

Besides some set topics, there will be plenty of opportunity for those taking the class to pose their own questions. These can be submitted during a class or e-mailed to JewishQs@gmail.com, to be considered for a subsequent session. “We want to address the things that are meaningful to today’s Jews living in today’s world,” Kay explains.

Each session of the series is self-contained, meaning that anyone can join the class at any time or attend any session. R.S.V.P.s are requested (but not required), and there is no charge, although donations are gratefully accepted.

For more information on “Everyday Judaism,” visit the Ohev Shalom website (http://ohevshalom.org) or call or email Susan Sparrow at ClergyAsst@OhevShalom.org or 407-298-4650. The Ohev Shalom Adult Yeshiva is made possible through the generous support of The Sager Fund.


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