Jewish Renewal Leaders Gather In Boulder To Vision Judaism’s Future

Boulder’s Congregation Nevei Kodesh, the CU-Boulder Jewish Studies Department and the Boulder-based Yesod Foundation will host the final stop on the international Listening Tour of ALEPH: Alliance for Jewish Renewal this week, May 20-22. The public is welcome to participate and help vision an ever more vibrant future for trans-denominational Jewish Renewal.

Rabbi Rachel Barenblat
Rabbi Rachel Barenblat

ALEPH is the umbrella organization for the Jewish Renewal movement, growing from the life’s work of longtime Boulder resident Rabbi Zalman Schachter Shalomi z”l, who died in Boulder in 2014. Since Reb Zalman’s death, ALEPH has continued to flourish under a new generation of leaders (new co-chairs Rabbi Rachel Barenblat and Rabbi David Markus, and Executive Director Shoshanna Schechter-Shaffin), who began their tenure with a yearlong international Listening Tour with stops in Boston, Los Angeles, Montreal, New York, Philadelphia, San Diego, San Francisco, Santa Cruz, Vancouver, and Washington, as well as rabbinic associations and video meetings elsewhere in the U.S., Europe and Israel. The Listening Tour will culminate in the ALEPH International Kallah (July 11-17) in Fort Collins, CO, and a report about “Renewing Renewal” for the 21st century and beyond.

Rabbi David Markus
Rabbi David Markus

The Boulder weekend will feature focus groups, visioning sessions and an evening public event and “open mike” about the future (Nevei Kodesh, May 21, 6:30-9:30 pm).
ALEPH co-chairs Rabbis Rachel Barenblat and David Markus, said:

“We are thrilled to visit Boulder, a keystone of the global Jewish Renewal movement and a Jewish spirituality that is vibrantly alive now. ALEPH and Jewish Renewal seek a living laboratory for research and development to renew ancient traditions for a pluralistic world that needs every heart, mind and soul to heal society and the planet. The ALEPH Listening Tour asks Jews and spiritual visionaries of all stripes what the future of this research and development laboratory should be.”

Rabbi Sarah Bracha Gershuny
Rabbi Sarah Bracha Gershuny

Rabbi Sarah Bracha Gershuny of Boulder’s Congregation Nevei Kodesh said:

“I am excited to host the ALEPH Listening Tour to Boulder. ALEPH is a global community dedicated to shepherding a renewed Judaism rooted in tradition and also joyous, creative, spiritually rich, socially progressive and earth-aware. That’s our living creed here in Boulder, and for ALEPH – and someday may it be for all Jews everywhere.”

ALEPH and the Jewish Renewal movement grow an inclusive, participatory, multi-ethnic Judaism that transcends the boundaries of denomination. Jewish Renewal builds communities and fosters personal connection to the Sacred by infusing ancient Jewish wisdom with a modern, egalitarian, progressive consciousness and a focus on social and environmental justice.  


Friday May 20, 9:30am            Leadership Focus Group — CU-Boulder

Scheduled participants include Dr. David Shneer (CU-Boulder), Jonathan Lev (JCC), Rabbi Marc Soloway (Congregation Netivot Shalom), Rabbi Brian Field and Dr. Caryn Aviv (Judaism Your Way), Rabbi Sarah Bracha Gershuny and Dena Gitterman (Congregation Nevei Kodesh)

ALEPH hosts: Rabbi Rachel Barenblat (co-chair), Rabbi David Markus (co-chair), Shoshanna Schechter-Shaffin (executive director), Judith Dack (Boulder member of ALEPH Board)

Friday, May 20, 7:00 pm           Kabbalat Shabbat — Congregation Nevei Kodesh

Saturday, May 21, 10:00 am     Shabbat morning — Congregation Pardes Levavot

Saturday, May 21, 5:30 pm       Evening Program and Public Open Mike — Congregation Nevei Kodesh

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They call me "NewsHound IV," because I'm a clever Finnegan, sniffing out stories all over the Boulder area. I love Jewish holidays because the food is GREAT, especially the brisket. Well all the food. I was a rescue pup and glad to be on the scent!

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