We offer many introductory classes that are ideal for those who want to learn more about Judaism, whether they are new to Judaism or simply wish to reconnect.
Rabbi Batsheva Appel
This year-long class presents a thematic introduction to Jewish ideas, texts, theology, history, and culture taught in an interactive and participatory discussion style. Learn all the basics, exploring the most important texts of Jewish tradition: Torah, Prophets, Writings, Mishnah, Gemara, Midrash, Codes, Philosophy, and Liturgy. This class is a prerequisite for the Adult B'nai Mitzvah program, Adult Confirmation, and for all conversion students. Course fees include textbook.
Registration Fees: $95 for members; $135 for non-members
Thursdays from 7:00 pm to 8:15 pm.
October 24, 31; November 7, 14, 21; December 5, 12, 19; January 9, 16, 23, 30; February 6, 13, 27; March 6, 13, 20, 27; April 3, 10, 17, 24; May 2, 8, 15.
Are you an interfaith family? Are you looking for an opportunity to explore your Jewish faith with your family in an open and supportive environment?
Temple Emanu-El has a phenomenal program for those exploring the possibility of bringing Judaism into their home. If you or someone you know is an interfaith family considering if Judaism could be a good fit, think about joining our ongoing program, "Stepping Stones to a Jewish Family," which is designed to provide an open and supportive environment for interfaith families to learn about Judaism and explore inclusion into synagogue life and community. Temple Emanu-El is partnering with the Tucson Hebrew Academy on this program, which is sponsored by a grant from the Steven A. Lightman Family Foundation.
Cantorial Soloist Marjorie Hochberg
Learn to read Hebrew in two fun sessions -- just seven hours -- guaranteed! This year, read along with the prayers at services, and make Hebrew a language you know.
Registration Fee: $45 for members; $60 for non-members
Sunday, August 25, from 1:00 to 5:00 pm and Monday, August 26, from 6:00 to 9:00 pm
Sunday, October 20, from 1:00 to 5:00 pm and Monday, October 21, from 6:00 pm to 9:00 pm
Sunday, January 12, from 1:00 to 5:00 pm and Monday, January 13, from 6:00 to 9:00 pm
Rabbi Batsheva Appel
Through mitzvot, sacred Jewish obligations, we can change our lives, improve our community, heal the world, elevate the ordinary into the extraordinary, and transform special occasions into holy occasions. This is a class on both what it means to be a Jew and how to be a Jew. We will learn about mitzvot such as honoring one's parents, good stewardship of the world, and giving tzedakah, financial support for good causes. We will learn about the Sabbath and ways to make it a "palace in time" as Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel referred to it. We will also learn about the holidays and ways to make them meaningful and spiritual, from the High Holy Days to Hanukkah to Passover and more.
Registration Fees: $45 for members; $60 for non-members
Sundays from 9:30 am to 11:00 am.
September 15; November 10; January 12; February 16; March 30; April 20.
The process of becoming Jewish is very individual and personal. Our conversion to Judaism program is flexible and organic in nature, but it does have certain specific requirements to assist you in coming to understand Judaism and determine if it is a choice you wish to make.
Rabbi Samuel M. Cohon
More advanced than Basic Judaism, this is a year-long study of the ideas, practices, and connections that make Judaism a vital and evolving religion today. As a comprehensive exploration of the reality of today's Judaism, Intermediate Judaism focuses on the great ideas and trends of modern and contemporary Judaism: the origins and development of Reform, Conservative, and Modern Orthodox Judaism, Reconstructionist ideas, and other movements within modern Judaism. This course will focus on themes of current importance and debate.
Registration Fees: $95 for members; $135 for non-members
Thursdays from 7:00 pm to 8:15 pm
October 24, 31; November 14, 21; December 5, 12, 19; January 9, 23, 30; February 6, 13, 27; March 6, 13, 20, 27; April 3, 10, 17, 24; May 1, 8, 15
Simply Shabbat is an exploration of the Friday evening Shabbat Service, with explanations of the service and introductions to Shabbat songs and prayers in a slower-paced, non-threatening celebration of the Sabbath. Rabbi Samuel M. Cohon, Rabbi Jason Holtz and Cantorial Soloist Marjorie Hochberg lead this open approach to understanding the rituals, history and practice of a Reform Sabbath experience. Instead of a sermon, there is a question-and-answer session. Come find out what Shabbat is all about! All are welcome.
Simply Shabbat is provided by the Ruth F. and Samuel H. Cohen Outreach Program of Temple Emanu-El.
Temple Emanu-El's Babies and Bagels Club is a monthly program for families with young children. We do various family activities around town or at the Temple, we play, discuss parenting and ethical issues, explore Jewish holidays and values, eat, create and have fun together. Babies and Bagels events are open to all, and the events are designed to appeal to both younger and older children alike.
The Babies & Bagels Club is provided by the Ruth F. and Samuel H. Cohen Outreach Program of Temple Emanu-El.
Temple Emanu-El's Taste of Judaism program offers free introductory classes that explore Judaism, Jews and Israel through learning, discussion, stories, jokes, and, of course, sampling of traditional Jewish foods. The class is in three 2-hour sessions and is open to the entire community.
Taste of Judaism classes are an open, interactive explortion of history and practice of Judaism in 3 sessions that discuss Jewish Spirituality, Values and Community, led by Rabbi Samuel M. Cohon and Rabbi Batsheva Appel. This is an exciting learning opportunity for all who want to deepen their knowledge and understanding of Jewish culture, history, rituals and practice; who want to learn more about the Reform Jewish perspective; or are simply curious about Judaism. The classes are free, but pre-registration is required. Please call Mila Vasser at 327-4501 ext. 16 for more information and to register.
This class is provided by the Ruth F. and Samuel H. Cohen Outreach Program of Temple Emanu-El.
FREE, but you must register by calling Mila at (520) 327-4501.
Sundays, August 11, 19, 25, from 2:00 pm to 4:00 pm at the Tucson Hebrew Academy, 3888 East River Road.
*Parallel kids' programming for this series
Mondays, August 12, 19, 26, from 6:00 pm to 8:00 pm at the Nanini Library, 7300 North Shannon Road
Wednesdays, August 14, 21, 28, from 6:00 pm to 8:00 pm at the Ramada Inn, 6944 East Tanque Verde Road
Thursdays, August 15, 22, 29, from 6:00 pm to 8:00 pm at Temple Emanu-El
Sundays, September 29, October 6, 13, from 1:00 pm to 3:00 pm at Temple Emanu-El (free childcare provided - please mention when registering)
Rabbi Samuel M. Cohon and Rabbi Batsheva Appel
This three-part class will help those who have a modest knowledge of Jewish life to better understand Judaism as practiced in America. This is a broad-based presentation of three major themes in American Judaism, a fun, upbeat but intelligent approach to getting a better handle on just what today's version of our ancient religion is all about.
Taught in the same energetic, interactive style as the hugely popular Taste of Judaism series, the classes include "Jews in America -- Movements (Reform, Conservative, Orthodox & More)", "Assimilation & Creativity: From Davening to Rock? A Jewish Way to Pray", and "American-Israeli Relations". Includes delicious "tastes" of traditional Jewish foods.
Registration Fees: $25 for members and non-members (includes snacks and two CDs of Jewish music)
Thursdays from 6:00 pm to 7:30 pm.
October 3, 10, 17.