Isabella Freedman Jewish Retreat Center and the Elat Chayyim Center for Jewish Spirituality
Elat Chayyim Center for Jewish Spirituality

Nehirim: GLBT Spiritual Retreat

A soulful, heartful gathering where you can connect with your community, relax and refresh, and explore your spiritual path.

May 30-June 1, 2008

Join us for a retreat full of workshops, classes, services and performances that are joyful, creative, and energetic. Participants come from a diverse array of religious observance levels (and, yes, non-Jewish partners are welcome), sexual and gender identities, and age and socio-economic backgrounds (full student scholarships are available).

Participants come for transformative spiritual experiences, diverse and welcoming community, or simply to have fun and meet people in a beautiful natural setting. All are welcome!

Last year's retreat sold out, so please register today!

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For more information including retreat schedules and past participant feedback, please visit


Amichai Lau-LavieAmichai Lau-Lavie is the Founder and Executive Director of Storahtelling. He is an Israeli-born teacher of Judaic Literature, described as “one of the most interesting thinkers in the Jewish world” by the NY Jewish Week. Amichai is a member of the Synagogue 3000 Leadership Network, a member of the advisory council for the Six Points Fellowship and a consultant to the Reboot Network.

Jay MichaelsonJay Michaelson is the director of Nehirim: GLBT Jewish Culture and Spirituality, the chief editor of Zeek: A Jewish Journal of Thought and Culture. His most recent books are God in Your Body: Kabbalah, Mindfulness, and Embodied Spiritual Practice (2006) and Another Word for Sky: Poems (2007).

Rabbi Dawn RoseRabbi Dawn Rose, PhD, brings with her a broad background in the pulpit rabbinate, academia, and the arts. A Phi Beta Kappa graduate of UC Berkeley in Literature, Rose took a several year hiatus from academia to pursue vocal training in classical music. At age 30, she entered the Jewish Theological Seminary where she earned an MA in Rabbinic Studies and a Ph.D. in Jewish Philosophy. Having taught part time first at JTS and then at the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College in Philadelphia, Rose became the Director of RRC's Center for Jewish Ethics.

David BrodskyDavid Brodsky, PhD., is assistant professor and co-chair of the department of Rabbinic civilization at the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College. He teaches courses on Talmud, Midrash and other aspects of rabbinic literature and civilization. Before coming to RRC, he was the Perlow Lecturer in Classical Judaism in the religious studies department at the University of Pittsburgh. He has also taught courses at New York University, the Jewish Theological Seminary and the Academy for Jewish Religion.

Rabbi Jill HammerRabbi Jill Hammer, PhD is an author, educator, midrashist, myth-weaver and ritualist. She is the co-founder of Kohenet: The Hebrew Priestess Institute, and the director of Tel Shemesh, a website and community celebrating and creating Jewish earth-based traditions. She is also the Director of Spiritual Education at the Academy for Jewish Religion, a pluralistic Jewish seminary. Rabbi Hammer is the author of two books: Sisters at Sinai: New Tales of Biblical Women (Jewish Publication Society, 2001) and The Jewish Book of Days: A Companion for All Seasons (Jewish Publication Society, 2006). Rabbi Hammer conducts workshops around the country on ancient and contemporary midrash, bibliodrama, creative ritual and Jewish cycles of time. She was ordained at the Jewish Theological Seminary and holds a doctorate in social psychology from the University of Connecticut. Shoshana Jedwab

Shoshana Jedwab is a prize-winning Jewish educator and the Jewish Studies Coordinator at the A.J. Heschel Middle School in New York City. She is the founding facilitator of the Makom Drum Circle at the JCC in Manhattan and is a percussionist and performance artist who has trained in bibliodrama and psychodrama. Shoshana has provided empowering drum circles to singles, student, training and bereavement groups. Shoshana has performed with Storahtelling, Chana Rothman, Debbie Friedman, Akiva Wharton, A Song of Solomon, Hebrew Mystical Chant with the Kirtan Rabbi Andrew Hahn, and Tel Shemesh seasonal events. She is Kohenet's ritual drummer and also serves on the Kohenet faculty.

Additional teachers will be listed in early 2008; check back soon.

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