High Holidays Discussion Groups 5780

Thu, 09/26/2019 - 3:14pm -- Anonymous (not verified)

Rosh Hashanah Day 2 - Tuesday, October 1 - 11:30 am

Sara Knizhnik of the IL Gun Violence Prevention Coalition will describe legislative successes on the state level and ongoing state and national campaigns.   We’ll learn about the network of community organizations, policy makers and individuals who make up our gun violence prevention community. Come to be inspired and leave knowing more about taking action! Sponsored by Peace Dialogue.


Yom Kippur - Wednesday, October 9

2:15 - 3:30 pm: Book Club: The Russian Debutante's Handbook  by Gary Shteyngart .

Bursting with wit, humor, and rare insight, this book is both a highly imaginative romp and a serious exploration of what it means to be an immigrant in America. Everyone is encouraged to read the book and join the conversation. Co-sponsored by the JRC Book Group and the Immigrant Justice Task Force.

2:15 - 3:30 pm: The Last Word: Write Your Own Obituary

Have you had a few adventures in your time? Are you an opinionated person? Do you like to have the last word? There’s no better way to do that than by writing your own obituary. As we contemplate our mortality on Yom Kippur, come write the story of your life. Facilitator: Kim Moldofsky

2:15 - 4:45 pm: Meditative Arts

Members of all ages are invited to this alternative discussion group to create works of art reflecting on the Days of Awe. All artistic abilities welcome. Please join us if your observance allows it. We will be drawing and listening to reflective music. Sponsored by Chibur (JRC's 20s-30s group)

2:15 - 4:45 pm: A Sacred Puzzle

It is said that a picture is worth a thousand words, or is it a thousand pieces? As part of our contemplative afternoon on Yom Kippur, we are providing all those who enjoy the focused concentration of jigsaw puzzles the opportunity to reconstruct one of the central and most unique elements of our JRC home: The Ark. In silence or in hushed voices, drop by to add a piece or spend all or part of the break between Open Mic and Minchah working together to complete this one-of-a-kind image.

2:15 - 3:30 pm: Al Cheit... What will I change this year? What do I feel proud of?

Each year on Yom Kippur we recite the “Al Cheit” and “Ashamnu,” confessions of sins, multiple times throughout the holy day. This year our contemplative discussion group will offer an opportunity to speak to each other more deeply about the contemporary or traditional lists of sins we have confessed aloud. In small groups of no more than four, we will take an hour to expand our thoughts and listen deeply and confidentially to each other on those recitations that have resonated most personally. Facilitator: Lou Weiss

2:15 - 4:45 pm: Walk to the Lake

Meet Michael Bloom on the front steps of First United Methodists Church for a contemplative walk to the lakefront to enjoy nature and talk quietly with old friends and an opportunity to make new friends.

This gentle paced walk may even stroll through the Clark Street Beach Bird Sanctuary along the way. If desired, Stewards Jerry Herst and Julie Dorfman could answer questions about the sanctuary and why this space is meaningful in their lives.

3:45 - 4:45 pm: Meditation Practice

Join us in a walking meditation as we embody our personal truth and cultivate traits for healing and forgiveness. If weather permits, we will meet outside in the courtyard and utilize the existing labyrinth. Otherwise, we will meet in Glenna Hall. Facilitator: Ellen Rosen Kaplan

3:45 - 4:45 pm: Contemplative Music

Join us in the sanctuary for an hour ofcontemplation with musical accompaniment preceding our Yom Kippur afternoon services. We hope you'll find that this quiet interlude provides both peace and clarity for a new year.

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The Green Synagogue and the Pillars of Chai


In 2008, we built the first platinum LEED-certified green synagogue in North America. The construction required 18 pillars - the number in Hebrew that also means "chai" or "life." 

Now, more than ten years later, JRC has launched the Pillars of Chai Campaign to raise $4.4m to wholly own our beloved building. 


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