These and Those

Musings from Students of the Pardes Institute of Jewish Studies in Jerusalem

Reflections on The Marilyn and Sigi z”l Ziering Omer Program 2020/5780

Posted on May 4, 2020 by Elaine Friedberg

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This reflection was written by Elaine Friedberg, Pardes Community Education Participant.

My husband and I have been attending Pardes Community Education (CE) classes for about eight years.   We find the classes extremely stimulating and appreciate that Pardes courses allow us to choose from a wide variety of subjects including Halacha, Tanakh, Jewish History, Parsha Hashavua, and the application of Halacha to current issues.  It’s also important that our teachers are willing to explore different points of view, religious and otherwise, always within the bounds of halacha.   

Besides all this, the CE programs allow us to see friends who live here in Israel, as well as those who live abroad and attend classes while visiting.  We’ve also made many new friends over the years.

In March 2020, the Corona Virus began to affect more and more people, and the government closed schools, stores, theatres, etc.  We were advised to stay home and to distance ourselves from others.  It could have been very lonely and boring, given our normal busy lives; but Pardes quickly switched all its in-person classes to online offerings.  The teachers and classes have been as stimulating as ever on the online platform; and the Pardes teachers are, as per usual, well-prepared and well-informed.  Besides, we’re still able to see many of our friends, although not in person.

After the Passover break, the classes resumed, again online, with the Omer program.  They continue to be high caliber, and we still look forward to Mondays, Tuesdays, and Thursdays, because we know we are able to participate in the Pardes Omer Program from home.

Of course, it would be nice to get back to taking Pardes courses in person.  Hopefully, that will happen soon.

In thanks from the 2020 Zoom Omer program,

Elaine Friedberg

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