Special Events

Israel Update with Anat Hoffman and John Rothmann

Thursday, March 12, 7:00 - 9:00 pm, Chapel
The Israel Action Committee invites you to learn from Anat Hoffman, executive director of the Israel Religious Action Center and Chair of the Board of Women of the Wall, and Emanu-El's own John Rothmann for this informational session on current issues facing Israel and the upcoming Israeli elections. John will outline the current political structure in Israel while Anat will share her perspective as a Reform Jewish leader at IRAC.

The Israel Action Committee is comprised of Emanu-El congregants from all political vantage points. We work together to support the Temple's Israel endeavors, promote Israeli pluralism, and inform congregants of important matters relating to Israel. Israeli wine and treats will be served. 



Politics, Pluralism, and Pressure All Around -- a look at the forces driving the need for change in Israel

Friday, March 13, 6:00 pm, ONE SHABBAT service, Martin Meyer Sanctuary

Anat Hoffman will speak about the forces impacting Israel today and where opportunities can be seized for positive change.

beach in HagbahMindfulness and Meditation: Mystical, Music and Meditation

4-Week Series beginning Tuesday, March 10, 7:00 - 9:00 pm, Congregation Emanu-El
March 17, 24 and 31
Price: $36 members, $54 non-members 

In this mindfulness meditation training, we will learn to cultivate the foundations for a life of greater presence, reverence, and ease of being. There will be music woven into the meditations. Through this progressive training we will learn meditations to deepen into our bodies, minds, hearts, and to the Nameless. 

Our teacher is Daniel Rechtschaffen, Marriage and Family Therapist. For more information, visit his website at www.danielrechtschaffen.com

Eliyahu Sills has been performing music for over 20 years on multiple instruments. For more information, visit www.eliyahusills.com

Register for the series

wiseagingWise Aging Open House

Monday March 16, 7:00 - 9:00 pm, Martin Meyer Reception
Rabbi Rachel Cowan, co-creator of the Institute for Jewish Spirituality’s Wise Aging program, will speak about "Making Each Day Count: A Jewish Approach to Growing Older with Wisdom."  

The Wise Aging program trains lay leaders in the use of a carefully developed curriculum designed to facilitate group learning. Grounded in Jewish mindfulness and contemplative practice as well as text study and traditional resources, Wise Aging enables participants to cultivate spiritual strength, enhance gratitude, hope and generosity and face fear, illness and death with resilience.  At the core of the Wise Aging program are facilitated peer groups of individuals in their 60’s, 70’s and 80’s, exploring together the ways Jewish tradition and Jewish spiritual practices can help them to welcome the later years of their life as a time of opportunity rather than fearing them as a time of decline. 

The sessions bring participants together to learn, share experiences, give and receive inspiration, and acquire skills for making changes in their lives that will lead to a deeper sense of well being.  The Institute for Jewish Spirituality is now training facilitators in a limited number of communities to run Wise Aging groups in synagogues and we hope that Congregation Emanu-El will have interested lay-leaders running groups for our community next year!

While this event is geared towards determining facilitator interest in running a Wise Aging group, congregants interested in participating in such a group, but not necessarily leading one, are also welcome to join us. 

For more information, contact: Barbara K. Shuman, Director of Wise Aging: barbaras@jewishspirituality.org or

Sandy Rechtschaffen: srechtschaffen@emanuelsf.org


PassoverPassover in Two Hours!

Tuesday, March 24, 7:00 - 9:00 pm, Guild Hall

A participatory workshop on the basics of Passover led by chef Rebecca Ets-Hokin and Rabbi Ryan Bauer. Learn how to understand the message of Passover, participate in a Seder, how to conduct a Seder with ease, how to arrange the Seder plate, know what is Kosher for Passover, and how to cook special Passover dishes. Whether you are conducting, cooking, or attending a Seder, you will be ready! Questions?

Contact Jennifer Goldstein at jgoldstein@emanuelsf.org or (415) 750-7548

Register by March 22


beach in HagbahLimonata and Learning in Marin

Wednesday, March 25 and April 22, 4:00 - 5:30pm, Book Passage, Corte Madera

Join Rabbi Jonathan Singer for a special learning opportunity, Limonata and Learning, offered exclusively for our congregants in Marin. We will meet for happy hour at Book Passage in Corte Madera while discussing text from the Torah. Please register so we know to expect you.


The Chuppah and Beyond: The Relationship Education Series for Couples in a Jewish Context

Next session beginning summer or fall 2015. More information to come!
Are you an engaged or newly married couple? Then this series is meant for you. Chuppah and Beyond helps participants cultivate the foundational tools for a successful life together while simultaneously building a community of peers. Emanu-El clergy co-facilitate each class along with Yael Melamed, psychotherapist and relationship expert (learn more at www.yaelmelamed.com).

Topics covered:

• Assessing the challenges of communication
• Develop skills for conflict resolution 
• Financial Planning
• Maintaining intimacy
• Lessons from a successful marriage

$150 per congregant couple; $200 per non-congregant couple

Questions? Contact Jennifer Goldstein at jgoldstein@emanuelsf.org or (415) 751-2541 x171

Please join us for an evening with Dr. Ruth Calderon

Save the Date: Tuesday, March 31, 7:00 - 9:00 pm (includes a 6:30 pm reception)

Dr. Ruth Calderon is an Israeli academic and politician who currently serves as a member of Knesset for Yesh Atid. In 1989, she established,  the first Israeli secular, pluralistic and egalitarian Beit Midrash for women and men. She also founded ALMA, which seeks to acquaint secular Israelis with Hebrew culture. In 2012 Calderon joined the new Yesh Atid party in Israel and was placed thirteenth on the party's list for the 2013 elections. Her initial speech on the floor of the Knesset included personal anecdotes and talmudic quotations in a plea for mutual understanding and respect, and became a YouTube sensation. This is an evening not to be missed!

a tribute to my teacher, rabbi krinsky An Afternoon of Yiddish Song and Poetry

 Songs of a Beggar, A Song Cycle

 April 12, 3:00 - 5:00 pm, Martin Meyer Reception

 Based on Rabbi Edward Zerin's book, A Tribute to my Teacher, music composed by  Dr.Michael Isaacson. Performed by Cantor Roslyn Barak accompanied by Ronny  Michael Greenberg. Reception to follow. 


beach in HagbahIgnite the Fire: Creating Your Next Chapter

Wednesday, April 15, 7:00 pm

Join congregants, Riva Aelyon and Danielle Siegel, for their 2 hour experiential workshop with reflective exercises for empty-nesters to boost their energies to start their next chapter. Participants will partake in exercises that help them to clarify values, purpose, strengths and vision. After the self discovery process, attendees will develop a goal and move into action planning. We will provide specific tools which will be helpful in the process of empowering attendees out of their "stuck" zone into their "can do" mode.


flintstonesJews and Cartooning

Opening night reception: Friday, April 10, 5:00 pm, location: Martin Meyer

What do Fred Flinstone, Shabot 6000, and Mr. Natural all have in common? They are all cartoon characters drawn by Jewish artists!

The Elizabeth S. and Alvin I. Fine museum is proud to present an exhibit on Jews and Cartooning featuring work by Bob Singer of Hannah Barbera, Ben Katchor, R. Crumb, Michael Capozzola, Ben Baruch, Evan Wolkenstein, Phil Witte; Dry Bones and others. Look for the exhibit in the Martin Meyer Reception and Chapel Hallway.

This exhibit starts April 1 and runs through September 1 (in connection with the Tauber class "They Tried To Kill Us, They Failed, Let's Laugh: Jewish Humor from Torah to Transparent" taught by Rabbi Sydney Mintz and Judi Leff.)

On Thursday, April 9, we will hold a discussion on Jewish Visual Humor at 7:00 pm. For more information, please contact Judi Leff at: 415-750-7545.

Put On Your Best Hat for Emperor Norton Day at the Cemetary!

Sunday, May 3, 2:00 pm, Home of Peace Cemetery, 1299 El Camino Real, Colma

Emperor Norton, a beloved 19th century San Francisco Jewish eccentric, died in 1880 but was not given a Jewish funeral or burial. He attended services every Saturday at Congregation Emanu-El. In 1979, our congregant John Rothmann portrayed the emperor at the Court of Historical Review where it was determined that the Emperor should indeed have had a Jewish burial. Join us a we right this historical wrong and lay a plaque in his honor at the Home of Peace Cemetary.

Following the ceremony, we will present a multi-media/live documentary about the Emperor by SF historian Peter Moylan featuring the Emperor himself, portrayed by Joseph Amster of Emperor Norton Walking Tours, and hear comments by John Rothmann about his experience with the Court of Historical Review. The afternoon will conclude with refreshments and we will declare the winners of the Emperor Norton hat contest.

RSVP to jleff@emanuelsf.org by April 21.

The Tribe Family BBQ Honoring Mothers

May 10, 11:00 am - 4:00 pm, Location: Vineyard Club, Geyserville

With special thanks to Emanu-El congregants Suzanne Felson and Laurie Beijen, this year's Tribe Family BBQ will be hosted at the Vineyard Club.

Vineyard Club life centers on the fun and beauty of the lake and surrounding hills. As comfortable as it is stunning, the club welcomes both families and friends with its warmth and friendly ambiance. To view the Club's amenities, please visit: Vineyards club

Join us for a relaxing day in the sun with food, swimming, good company and Emanu-El community.

RSVP by May 5 to Suzanne Felson, suzannefelson17@gmail.com


© 2012 Congregation Emanu-El 2 Lake Street, San Francisco, CA 94118
Phone: (415) 751-2535
Fax: (415) 751-2511