The 27 rabbis in the current cohort of the Rabbinic Leadership Initiative are arriving Thursday, January 29, for the second winter session of their three-year program. The rabbis from all across North America will once again come together at Hartman Institute for an intensive week-long program of lectures, study in havruta (peer-based learning) and peer teaching.
One of the highlights this seminar, which is on the theme, "Prayer," will be a joint prayer service, initiated and planned by the rabbis themselves. For the first time, in an authentic manifestation of the Institute’s mission, rabbis from the Orthodox, Conservative, Reform, and Reconstructionist movements will pray together.
Current events in Israel will also receive expression in the program. The upcoming elections will be addressed in a lecture by Jerusalem Post Editor-in-Chief David Horovitz, and economic issues will be discussed by Amotz Asa-El, founder of Business Week’s Israel edition.
In addition, at the request of the participants, the group will go on Friday morning on a "mitzvah visit"to Ashkelon, where they will hear firsthand accounts from residents about their lives under the shadow of the hundreds of missiles that fell on them daily during Operation Cast Lead.
Among other things, they will bring gift packages to the patients in Barzilai Hospital, including a wounded soldier. The visit will conclude with "tzedaka shopping" at the Hutzot shopping mall, which suffered a direct rocket hit last March.
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