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Saturday, April 14
 

7:00pm PDT

Intro and Welcome
Saturday April 14, 2018 7:00pm - 7:15pm PDT
Ballroom

7:30pm PDT

Tastes Across Centuries: The Enduring Influence of the Foods of Spain’s Medieval Jews
Spain's medieval Jewish community was the center of the Jewish world for centuries. What we know of their diverse, healthy and flavorful cuisine comes not from existing Jewish cookbooks, as there are none from the time. Still, there is much to discover about the fascinating food history of Spain's Jewish community before the expulsion, including what these original Sephardim grew and cooked, as well as how their cuisine spread after the expulsion and its lasting influence on Sephardic and other cuisines. Talk includes a handout of some of the Sephardic recipes discussed.



Speakers
avatar for Susan Barocas

Susan Barocas

Susan Barocas finds the kitchen to be a place of unending creativity and connection with family, community and culture. She is a writer, chef, speaker and teacher of cooking to all ages for over 20 years. Susan was honored to serve as the guest chef for the 2014, 2015 and 2016 White... Read More →


Saturday April 14, 2018 7:30pm - 8:30pm PDT
Room A

7:30pm PDT

Sacred Texts: Three Religious Traditions in Twenty-Five Words or Less
Judaism is a parent religion of Christianity and Islam; Torah is a parent scripture of New Testament and Quran.  All three scriptures have powerful opening paragraphs. Each offers a complete life-philosophy, telling us where the world is going, what is good, and what sort of God is at work. Not surprisingly, Torah sets the tone, while the the others riff off Torah’s views. As a group, we’ll explore these three opening paragraphs. Through lecture, text study, and discussion we’ll explore our kin monotheistic traditions, discover their novel directions, and refine our own philosophies of life.

Speakers
avatar for Laura Duhan-Kaplan

Laura Duhan-Kaplan

Rabbi Laura Duhan Kaplan is Director of Inter-Religious Studies at the Vancouver School of Theology and Rabbi Emerita of Or Shalom Synagogue. She is a musical, animal-loving, philosophically-inclined spiritual teacher and blogger.



Saturday April 14, 2018 7:30pm - 8:30pm PDT
Foyer

7:30pm PDT

Yonah ben Amitai, Inc. - a dramatized midrash
A one-man theatrical examination of text and midrash. The Book of Jonah is read on Yom Kippur because the rabbis viewed it as a tale of repentance and God's forgiveness.  But it is so much more - and less! It's an existentialist tale with an abrupt beginning and no satisfying ending, a parade of self-doubt, wondrous conversions, smugness and outrage, concern and conceit, and a toxic employer-employee relationship requiring terrible work travel and a three night stay at the Sheraton Leviathan.

"This session is dedicated to the memory of Ruth Hess-Dolgin z”l, who created Limmud Vancouver and empowered me through her life -  Avi”


Speakers
avatar for Avi Dolgin

Avi Dolgin

Though working for years in mental health and education, Avi kept a background hand in Jewish ritual and midrash: marriage ceremonies, Bibliodrama, interfaith davenning - the usual stuff!  One year, after hearing another boring haftara of Jonah, he said "there has to be a better... Read More →


Saturday April 14, 2018 7:30pm - 8:30pm PDT
Room F

8:45pm PDT

Havdalah
Saturday April 14, 2018 8:45pm - 9:15pm PDT
Ballroom

9:15pm PDT

Schmooze and Snack
Saturday April 14, 2018 9:15pm - 10:00pm PDT
Ballroom
 
Sunday, April 15
 

8:30am PDT

Registration
Sunday April 15, 2018 8:30am - TBA PDT
Lobby

9:30am PDT

Arguing with the Storm: The Genesis of an Anthology
Author, professor and translator Rhea Tregebov describes how collaboration with a community group of nonprofessional native Yiddish speakers enabled the  research, solicitation, editing and translation efforts that produced the unique anthology, Arguing with the Storm: Stories by Yiddish Women Writers.  The anthology, consisting of fourteen stories (fiction and memoir) by nine authors, derived from the Winnipeg Yiddish Women's Reading Circle, an exceptional grass-roots seniors' group included in the UNESCO Register of Good Practices in Language Preservation.

Speakers
avatar for Rhea Tregebov

Rhea Tregebov

Rhea Tregebov is the author of seven critically-acclaimed collections of poetry. Her historical novel, The Knife-Sharpener's Bell, won the J.I. Segal Prize for Jewish fiction in 2010 and was shortlisted for the 2012 Kobzar Prize. Arguing with the Storm: Stories by Yiddish Women Writers... Read More →


Sunday April 15, 2018 9:30am - 10:30am PDT
Room G

9:30am PDT

Celebrating Chagall
We will experience the exuberant life of the shtetl as expressed through a combination of Chagall’s painting, reading (by Errol Durbach from Chagall’s autobiographical sketch), Jewish music (with Eliana and Rebecca Silver playing the violin), and commentary.

Speakers
avatar for Jonathan Wisenthal

Jonathan Wisenthal

Jonathan Wisenthal was born in Montreal, attended university in the Province of Quebec and in England, and taught in the UBC English Department from 1964 until his retirement in 2005.


Sunday April 15, 2018 9:30am - 10:30am PDT
Room I

9:30am PDT

Tell Your Own Torah Story -- Children age 8-12
We all love stories – our stories, Torah’s stories, and midrash stories. Don’t you know what midrash is? How it creatively plays with Torah stories? Join us, listen, learn, and create your own midrash story!

Led by Jenny Glickman-Rynd. For Jenny, a storyteller and educator, our personal and cultural stories define who we are and what we do.


Sunday April 15, 2018 9:30am - 10:30am PDT
Kids and teen programming room

9:30am PDT

From Mameh-Loshn to S'fat Em: The Untold (Yiddish) Story of the Revival of Spoken Hebrew
As remarkable as the story of the establishment of the modern State of Israel is, in one respect the Zionist revolution was totally unique and unprecedented: the revival of a language that for all of it's vitality, had not been used as a day-to-day, spoken vernacular in almost two thousand years. Such linguistic revivals have been attempted elsewhere (Ireland, for example), but without much success. What was the secret to Hebrew's success? Hint: It has much more to do with Yiddish, and less with Eliezer Ben-Yehudah, than you might think!

Speakers
avatar for Adam Rubin

Adam Rubin

Adam Rubin has been the rabbi at Beth Tikvah Congregation in Richmond, BC since the summer of 2017. Rabbi Rubin received his doctorate in modern Jewish studies from UCLA, and was a member of the faculty at Hebrew Union College in Los Angeles for over ten years, publishing a number... Read More →


Sunday April 15, 2018 9:30am - 10:30am PDT
Room H

9:30am PDT

Reading Jewish Women: The Benefit of Marginality A SpeakChorus
In her book Reading Jewish Women:  Marginality and Modernization in Nineteenth-Century Eastern European Jewish Society, Iris Parush makes a paradoxical claim.  The award-winning professor of Modern Hebrew Literature at Ben Gurion University argues that, because Jewish women were marginalized and neglected by the rabbinic authorities, they were free to read secular literature in German, Yiddish, Polish and Russian.  The freedom and latitude enjoyed by these reading women exposed them to a wealth of literature.  They became important conduits for Enlightenment ideas and ideals within the 19th century Eastern European Jewish community.

In this participatory workshop we will explore Parush's thesis:  that the very status of women as inferiors allowed many to gain superior literacy skills, gave them an advantage in traditional society's encounter with modernity, and enabled them to function as agents of social change.  We will "embody" these reading Jewish women, become them and their experiences, through a SpeakChorus, a modern version of the Chorus in Greek dramas.  This mix of poetry, flash mob, traditional and modern midrash and commentary with a bit of singing thrown in for good measure, brings historical events alive in a unique performance style using spoken word and music.  Where will it take us?

Speakers
avatar for Susan Shamash

Susan Shamash

Rabbi Susan Shamash was born in North Battleford, Saskatchewan and grew up in Edmonton, Alberta.  She graduated from the University of Alberta with a BA Honours in Political Science in 1972 and from the University of British Columbia with an LLB in 1980.  In between degrees she... Read More →


Sunday April 15, 2018 9:30am - 10:30am PDT
Room F

9:30am PDT

The Complicated Life Journey of Child Holocaust Survivors
Fewer than 10% of all Jewish children in Nazi occupied countries survived the war. However, liberation was not particularly liberating for the surviving children. It is then that they began to understand the enormity of what had happened and became aware of the losses of home and family.  Dr. Krell will explore the impact of the traumas endured during the developmental years and how they impacted the lives of child Holocaust survivors, to this day.  He will also comment on the remarkable resilience and contributions of many of these surviving children.

Speakers
avatar for Robert Krell

Robert Krell

Dr. Robert Krell was born in Holland and survived the Holocaust in hiding. His family moved to Vancouver, Canada where he obtained an MD from the University of British Columbia and became professor of psychiatry. In his psychiatric practice, he was director of child and family psychiatry... Read More →


Sunday April 15, 2018 9:30am - 10:30am PDT
Room E

9:30am PDT

Climate Change is a Jewish Issue
The talk will present some basic information about climate change and its effect on the individual and on society's health. We will place the issues in a BC and Canadian context. Participants will be encouraged to discuss their own thoughts and concerns re climate change. We will try to establish some consensus and consider future directions. Jewish sources and Jewish experience will be used to frame the discussion.

Speakers
avatar for Larry Barzelai

Larry Barzelai

Larry Barzelai is a family physician, who has practiced in Vancouver for many years. He is active  within the Jewish community and chairs the annual Public Speaking Contest. He is a board member of CAPE (Canadian Association of Physicians for the Environment) and chair of the BC... Read More →


Sunday April 15, 2018 9:30am - 10:30am PDT
Room D

9:30am PDT

Combating Antisemitism on the Internet
The European Commission adopted a Code of conduct on countering illegal hate speech online. Major internet providers agreed to review notifications for removal of illegal hate speech and remove or disable access to such content. NGOs were accepted as trusted flaggers to notify the companies of alleged illegal hate speech content and report to the Commission on the reactions. The Commission reported publicly on the results. The presentation would elaborate on how effective the operation of this Code has been in Europe in combating antisemitism online and whether it could work for Canada.

Speakers
avatar for David Matas

David Matas

David Matas is an immigration, refugee and international human rights lawyer in Winnipeg, Manitoba; B'nai Brith Canada Senior Honorary Counsel; author of "Bloody Words: Hate and Free Speech" 2000, "Aftershock: anti-Zionism and antisemitism", 2005; co-chair of Working Group on Antisemitism... Read More →


Sunday April 15, 2018 9:30am - 10:30am PDT
Room C

9:30am PDT

DiverCity: Why diversity is Jerusalem’s best hope
With almost all the different sects of the monotheistic religions represented, Jerusalem is amongst the most diverse cities in the world. Could so many different groups overcome their inherent differences for their mutual city?

Speakers
avatar for Lior Schillat

Lior Schillat

Director General of the Jerusalem Institute for Policy Research, a Jerusalem based think-tank; Former advisor to Israeli Prime Ministers Sharon and Olmert; and experienced manager in the public and private sectors.


Sunday April 15, 2018 9:30am - 10:30am PDT
Room A

9:30am PDT

Childcare Available All Day - for children ages 3 to 11
Relax, play games, chill out! Childcare is staffed by leaders of the HabonimDror Ken Achva. The ken (nest) offers activities for Camp Miriam campers, their friends, and the greater Vancouver Jewish community. Ken activities, led by experienced camp counsellors, focus on fun, group bonding, Jewish culture, Israel, and social action.


Sunday April 15, 2018 9:30am - 4:15pm PDT
Childcare room

10:50am PDT

Cartooning a Split Jewish Identity: the Autobiographical Comics of Miriam Libicki
Nonfiction graphic novelist Miriam Libicki will read from her works on identity, politics, and Israel-diaspora relations, and encourage the audience to explore their own stereotype fears by leading them in drawing their own cartoon self portraits.

Speakers
avatar for Miriam Libicki

Miriam Libicki

Miriam Libicki is a graphic novelist living in Vancouver, Canada. Her short comics have been published by Alternate History Comics, Rutgers University Press, and the Journal of Jewish Identities, and her Israeli Army memoir "jobnik!" has been used in over a dozen university courses. Her book of drawn essays, TOWARD A HOT JEW, published by Fantagraphics, was named a FORBES Top 10 graphic novel of 2016 and received the 2017 Vine Award for Canadian Jewish Literature. Libicki teaches illustration at Emily Carr U... Read More →


Sunday April 15, 2018 10:50am - 11:50am PDT
Room F

10:50am PDT

Celebrate Israel's 70th with PJ Library - Families with children age 3-7
Explore Israeli traditions through books, music, craft and play. Visit us for story time, Israeli snacks, the chance to create fun art with Hebrew stencils and more. Hosted by PJ Library – the library of high quality Jewish children’s books that comes directly to you.

Led by Lissa Weinberger and Katia Fermon. Lissa is the PJ Library Coordinator as well as the Manager of Jewish Education and Identity Initiatives at Jewish Federation of Greater Vancouver. Katia is the PJ Library and JCC Family Programmer and Assistant Director of Camp Shalom.

Please note:  Children participating in this program must be accompanied by a responsible adult.


Sunday April 15, 2018 10:50am - 11:50am PDT
Kids and teen programming room

10:50am PDT

The Long and the Short of Noodles
Explore the history of noodles from China and all along the Silk Road to ancient Persia to Eastern Europe and now in contemporary Jewish cuisines. Stops along the way also include Israel for Yerushalami noodle kugel and India for some special noodle dishes.



Speakers
avatar for Susan Barocas

Susan Barocas

Susan Barocas finds the kitchen to be a place of unending creativity and connection with family, community and culture. She is a writer, chef, speaker and teacher of cooking to all ages for over 20 years. Susan was honored to serve as the guest chef for the 2014, 2015 and 2016 White... Read More →


Sunday April 15, 2018 10:50am - 11:50am PDT
Room A

10:50am PDT

Translating the Enemy? Arabic Literature in Hebrew
Are Israelis interested in reading the other side's literature and learning more than what's on the news? Are Arab writers interested in Israelis reading their works?
Learn about books which cannot be published, others, published but waiting to be read, and why bother continuing to translate.

Speakers
avatar for Rahel Halabe

Rahel Halabe

Rachel Halabe has taught Biblical and Modern Hebrew in both academia and the community. Translates Modern Arabic Literature into Hebrew. Author of 'Hinneh - Biblical Hebrew the Practical Way' published by the Hebrew University Magnes Press.


Sunday April 15, 2018 10:50am - 11:50am PDT
Room H

10:50am PDT

Not Really Elementary!!! The Damascus Document and the Community Rule
The Damascus Document : A Qumran work was found among the discarded texts in a geniza in Egypt when the DSS had yet to be discovered. What community does it describe and who was this cryptic figure,  the Teacher of Righteousness?

Speakers
avatar for Joelle Lake

Joelle Lake

Joelle Lake, who has a passion for languages and writing, has had a career as a professional translator but was always fascinated by the Dead Sea Scrolls (DSS) and their mysteries.  As a result, she decided to study ancient Hebrew and undertook a Master in Biblical Studies at the... Read More →


Sunday April 15, 2018 10:50am - 11:50am PDT
Room G

10:50am PDT

Tzedaka, Tzedaka, Tirdof
In this famous saying, we are commanded to do Tsedeka - justice. Tsedeka comes from our hearts, but do we always use our heads?  In this presentation, we will discuss the nuances of Tsedeka, and make our giving, regardless of size, a more meaningful experience.  


Speakers
avatar for David Berson

David Berson

David Berson is the Executive Director of Canadian Associates of Ben-Gurion University of the Negev, Western Region. He has served as campaign director for numerous community based organizations including the Jewish Federation of Greater Vancouver, Vancouver Theatre Sports League... Read More →
avatar for Nomi Yeshua

Nomi Yeshua

Nomi Levin Yeshua grew up in Vancouver and has spent the last 27 years in Israel. She began her work in Jerusalem working with legendary Mayor Teddy Kollek. Nomi has worked with a number of institutions in the city in fundraising and marketing, including the Jerusalem Foundation... Read More →


Sunday April 15, 2018 10:50am - 11:50am PDT
Room C

10:50am PDT

Exploring Elder Wisdom through a Jewish Perspective
"Teach us to use all our days, That we may attain a heart of wisdom." Rabbi Zalman Schacter-Shalomi reminds us that Elders are wisdom keepers who have an on-going responsibility for maintaining society's well-being and safeguarding the health of our ailing planet." To re-examine familiar viewpoints and explore alternatives ones, a person must have wisdom and courage. This is achieved by an inner journey of self-reflection and the ability to enlarge our vision of life. J. R. Staude in his book, Wisdom and Age, writes, "Wisdom is a state of the human mind characterized by profound understanding and deep insight. It is the knowledge that comes from an accumulation of countless responsibilities and changes that a life demands. A long life with many experiences generally results in mature judgement, understanding and acceptance of one's self and others. Wisdom requires remembering successes and mistakes. It is an awareness of wholeness which, at the same times, does not lose light of all of the particulars. We will explore relationship with family of origin, spouses, children, friends and aquaintances, regrets and gratitude. We will learn how to cultivate empathy and compassion and the limitations of reverence. Hopefully we will gain a deeper appreciation of the here and now of mindful awareness.

Speakers
avatar for Gloria Levi

Gloria Levi

Independent scholar, Member of Or Shalom since 1983, 20 years studies in summer in Israel, member of SPEC Elders Council, member of Eshet Chazon, Professional Agitator.


Sunday April 15, 2018 10:50am - 11:50am PDT
Room B

10:50am PDT

Face to Face - Seeing God in Ourselves and Others
Come to this engaging session with Rabbi Adam Stein as we delve into some Torah text in chevruta then journey through a powerful midrash on the Sinai experience using engaging digital technology. You’ll be enraptured by both the message of the derash and the power of the presentation, and come away with a new interpretation that you can pass on to others, and renewed appreciation of technology in education.

Speakers
avatar for Adam Stein

Adam Stein

Originally from the San Francisco area, Adam Stein spent college at UC San Diego and Hebrew University, then attended the Pardes Institute and worked at Hillel. He received ordination from the Ziegler School at the American Jewish University in LA, 2009, along with an MA in education... Read More →


Sunday April 15, 2018 10:50am - 11:50am PDT
Room I

10:50am PDT

Outtake: Joseph, yes that Joseph, recites morning prayers during seduction scene
It didn’t make it into the final version of Torah. It’s not there in the weekly Parashah reading, Vayeshev, incorporating Genesis 39 and the whole Joseph Egypt thing. But Talmud, Masechet Yoma 35b, restores the lost outtake and records the matter: Joseph, upon persistent prodding and attempts at seduction by Potiphar’s wife, up and recites the morning blessings of our liturgy! We’ll work our way through this wild anachronism, and why the Rabbis might nevertheless have found such an implausible seduction scene compelling and instructive. We’ll try to make some sense of the interplay between Written Torah and Oral Torah.

Speakers
avatar for Mark Stein

Mark Stein

Mark J. Stein is a Research Associate at the Vancouver School of Theology. He holds a doctorate in linguistics from the University of Massachusetts at Amherst, and is a graduate of the Rabbinical Assembly of Canada’s School for Shamashim. He served as an Interfaith Chaplain at Albany... Read More →


Sunday April 15, 2018 10:50am - 11:50am PDT
Room D

12:10pm PDT

Salomone Rossi and the Jews of Italy
A singular figure in the history of Jewish music, Rossi was a prominent composer in early 17th century Italy. This presentation looks at his work in the context of the history of the Jews in Italy.

Speakers
avatar for David Skulski

David Skulski

David Skulski is a well-known musician (the founder of Early Music Vancouver), and the Assistant Executive Director of the Peretz Centre for Secular Jewish Culture.


Sunday April 15, 2018 12:10pm - 1:10pm PDT
Room I

12:10pm PDT

Art Exploration: Jewish Symbols in Mixed Media - Children age 8-12
What happens when you combine pencil crayon, oil pastel, and water colour? Come find out! With Julia Bennett, visual artist and teacher of art and comparative religion at the K-12 Langley Fine Arts School.

Speakers

Sunday April 15, 2018 12:10pm - 1:10pm PDT
Kids and teen programming room

12:10pm PDT

Israeli Life
Marsha Lederman will interview Alden Solovy about his life in Israel. From going to a Palestinian mourning tent in a refugee camp to being attacked at the Kotel for supporting women's prayer rights, Alden has experienced and participated in Israeli life in unique ways. Hear about and discuss Israel from a very personal perspective.

Speakers
avatar for Marsha Lederman

Marsha Lederman

Marsha Lederman is the Western Arts Correspondent for The Globe and Mail, where she writes about books and publishing, as well as film, TV, visual art, theatre, dance and other cultural matters. The child of Holocaust survivors, Marsha was born and raised in Toronto, and moved to... Read More →
avatar for Alden Solovy

Alden Solovy

Alden Solovy is a liturgist, poet, essayist, and teacher. His award-winning writing is informed by both joy and tragedy. Alden lives in Israel, where his activism supports women’s prayer rights and interfaith dialogue.


Sunday April 15, 2018 12:10pm - 1:10pm PDT
Room A

12:10pm PDT

Jewish Early Childhood Education Across the Ages
The presentation will include textual and artistic representations of Jewish early childhood education in different countries in different time periods. The major question raised by this presentation is: What were the assumptions about children, childhood and early education in the Jewish world?

Speakers
avatar for Hillel Goelman

Hillel Goelman

Hillel Goelman retired from UBC in September, 2017. His areas of expertise were early childhood education and interdisciplinary studies. He was ordained through Aleph by Rabbis Zalman Schachter-Shalomi, Shlomo Carlebach and Akiva Mann. One of his retirement projects is researching... Read More →


Sunday April 15, 2018 12:10pm - 1:10pm PDT
Room H

12:10pm PDT

The Christie Pits Riot of 1933 in Toronto, Canada's Worst Race Riot
The catalyst for the Toronto Christie Pits riot of August 16th, 1933 was a complex cocktail of events: the Great Depression, anti-semitism, the rise of Adolph Hitler & Nazism and xenophobic resentment of "foreigners" in Canada.

Speakers
avatar for Gordon Cherry

Gordon Cherry

Gordon Cherry was born in Toronto and moved to Vancouver in 1974 with his wife Joyce to perform with the Vancouver Symphony, CBC Radio Orchestra & teach at UBC. He retired from full time work in 2009 but is still very busy as a publisher of music & performer, teacher.


Sunday April 15, 2018 12:10pm - 1:10pm PDT
Room G

12:10pm PDT

Jews and Anxiety - Are our people more anxious than most?
As a Mental Health Clinician over the past 25 years, I have dealt with a lot of youth, parents and children who exhibit anxiety. Half of those years I have worked in a Jewish Day School setting. In my talk I will present the causes of anxiety and how it is treated. I will illustrate some of my techniques through personal case studies. I will then look into the ideas of suffering and neuroses as portrayed in the Yiddish language. I will then look at the role of humour in dealing with suffering as illustrated by Jewish Jokes. I will conclude with a discussion on how my Jewish clients dealt with anxiety and whether we are more prone to it than the general population.

Speakers
avatar for Marion Rom

Marion Rom

Marion Rom is a Mental Health Care Provider who has worked with adolescents in the Mental Health Department of Children’s Hospital, specifically with Eating Disorders. Prior to that she worked as a Clinical Social Worker in the Jewish Day Schools in Cape Town South Africa, Toronto... Read More →


Sunday April 15, 2018 12:10pm - 1:10pm PDT
Room D

12:10pm PDT

Do we really love anyone unconditionally? Even our kids?
We can't truly love another if we don't first love ourselves. Our job, then, is to learn how to love ourselves, because actually, most of us don't! The problem is that we have subconscious negative beliefs about ourselves that we've carried around with us since we were seven or eight years old and these beliefs act as barriers to love. The solution? A deep and personal understanding that we are all created In God's Image.

Speakers
avatar for Anne Andrew

Anne Andrew

Anne Andrew PhD is the former Principal of Temple Sholom Religious School where she worked for over 20 years, and is currently on the education committee of the Jewish Federation of Greater Vancouver. Originally from Leeds in England, she studied geology at the University of Edinburgh... Read More →


Sunday April 15, 2018 12:10pm - 1:10pm PDT
Room C

12:10pm PDT

Three Spheres of Transformation: Collaborative Poems for Counting the Omer
Together, we will explore three themes of meaning in our counting of the seven weeks between Pesach and Shavuot: an agricultural count from harvest to harvest, an historical journey from Egypt to Sinai, and a personal climb toward readiness for Revelation. Each theme is a lens of meaning through which can appreciate the count, as we elevate our awareness of incremental growth, of formation and transformation. In the second half of the session, we’ll collaborate in creating poems based on these themes, each poem comprised of 49 words or phrases to be meditated upon, word by word or phrase by phrase, on successive days of the Omer.

Speakers
avatar for Hannah Dresner

Hannah Dresner

Rabbi Hannah Dresner, MFA, is rabbi of Or Shalom, where she works toward integration of head, heart and physical being, so that our religious lives address the breadth of our human needs. Rabbi Hannah comes to the rabbinate with an exhibition and university teaching record in the... Read More →


Sunday April 15, 2018 12:10pm - 1:10pm PDT
Room B

12:10pm PDT

Approaching the Edge: Texts and Resources Addressing the End of Life
Finding ways to speak and think about death and dying is a shared human challenge in modern society and is, for many of us, a delicate topic. Embedded in our tradition are resources that can support these important conversations. Study, contemplate, and discuss several rich classical and contemporary Jewish texts that wrestle with end-of-life concerns (discontinuing life support, preparing spiritually for our deaths) and offer opportunities to nurture relationships and share blessings even in our final breaths. Source materials include Talmudic, liturgical, and poetic passages.

Speakers
avatar for Natan Fenner

Natan Fenner

Natan Fenner is a rabbi and board-certified chaplain at the Bay Area Jewish Healing Center (BAJHC) in San Francisco. He has been involved in training, consultation, and direct spiritual care around illness, aging, end-of-life, and bereavement for 25 years, along the way serving on... Read More →


Sunday April 15, 2018 12:10pm - 1:10pm PDT
Room E

12:10pm PDT

The Messianic Era, Are We There Yet?
Is history a purposeful process with a beginning and an end? Or, is it a random series of events with neither purpose nor direction? Our sources explain that history unfolds according to the Divine plan, they also explain that the 6 days of Creation hint at the 6000 years that this world will exist for. After 5778 years have we reached the point in history where the Divine plan is apparent? Have we almost completed preparations for the End of Days? What will happen next?  Are we backseat passengers in this journey, or, are we steering in the driver's seat?

Speakers
avatar for Daniel Friedmann

Daniel Friedmann

Daniel Friedmann was CEO of MacDonald, Dettwiler and Associates, "Canada's largest space systems company" and the world's largest  commercial communications satellite manufacturer, for 20 years, until May 2016.  He has worked for 30 years in the space industry. Friedmann has published... Read More →


Sunday April 15, 2018 12:10pm - 1:10pm PDT
Room F

1:00pm PDT

Pluralism, Identity, and You - Inter-Religious Field Trip - Teens grade 8-12
A field trip. Gather at Limmud Vancouver for lunch at 1:00 pm. Travel together to the Ismaili Centre (Burnaby) to meet Islamic youth and discuss issues of common concern, e.g., social media, parental expectations, and life as a religious minority.
Led by Hillary Kaplan and Alykhan Velji, with support from Camp Miriam counsellors.

Hillary has led children’s programs at Camp Miriam, Or Shalom Synagogue,  CJSF Radio, and Cedar Cottage Neighbourhood House, and co-ordinated inter-religious conferences at the Vancouver School of Theology.

Alykhan holds a bachelor’s degree in education. At the Ismaili Centre in Burnaby, he is the grade 10 teacher, and part of the youth education team.


Sunday April 15, 2018 1:00pm - 5:00pm PDT
Lobby

1:10pm PDT

Lunch and schmooze
Sunday April 15, 2018 1:10pm - 2:00pm PDT
Ballroom

1:20pm PDT

Jewish Youth: A conversation taking stock of our place   in the world
A space for young Jewish adults (~18-30) to be in conversation about the times we are in and the complex relationships and obligations that pull on us.
What does it mean to be Jewish in progressive circles? Do we feel comfortable displaying our cultural heritage at pride marches, rallies, and other events? What is our responsibility as white-presenting people acting as allies to others who are marginalized? How do our texts and cultural inheritance inform the way we position ourselves in this world?
This not a workshop and as such, there is no goal or outcome beyond sitting together.
The conversation will take place over the lunch break from  
1:20-2:00 in the Kids’ Program Room downstairs. Grab your lunch upstairs and come join us!


Sunday April 15, 2018 1:20pm - 2:00pm PDT
Kids and teen programming room

2:00pm PDT

Arabic, Mediterranean, Spirituality and Rap: Current Trends in Israeli Popular Music
At the eastern edge of the Mediterranean Sea, a strong musical sun shines at the juncture between Africa, Asia and Europe, between Hebrew and Arabic, between an urbanized Westernized economy, and traditional religious societies, with roots in dozens of lands worldwide. Israeli popular music today is vital and dynamic, and like the 700 million birds that migrate through its airspace, the cultural currents in Israel’s musical airspace is diverse, colourful, energetic and beautiful. A listen to a sampling of what’s going on musically in Israel, with some analysis and context.

Speakers
avatar for Benjamin Rubin

Benjamin Rubin

Benjamin Rubin is a Toronto lawyer by trade. Under his pen name, eBenBrandeis, he composes poetry, lyrics and YouTube video poems. He has edited and published a book of contemporary Jewish humor, translated from the Hebrew an autobiography of life in pre-war Pinsk, Poland, and was... Read More →


Sunday April 15, 2018 2:00pm - 3:00pm PDT
Room I

2:00pm PDT

Outcasts: Images of the Jew in Western Art
Marginalized, outcast and demonized in Christian art of the late Middle Ages and the Renaissance, Jews were often the subject of ridicule or condemnation. This lecture will look at popular narratives and visual imagery in which the Jew was positioned as a social and religious outcast. These include the so-called blood libels (specifically the infamous story of Simon of Trent), images of Judas Iscariot, and the Mocking of Christ. We will consider the socio-religious function of such stereotyped images, how the Early Modern viewer might have interpreted them, and the particular values they were meant to impart.

Speakers
avatar for Efrat El-Hanany

Efrat El-Hanany

Dr. Efrat El-Hanany, an art historian, specializes in the visual culture of the Italian Renaissance, with interests in Chinese, Jewish and contemporary art. She graduated from Hebrew University in Jerusalem with a BA in the History of Art and East Asian Studies and a BA in Education... Read More →


Sunday April 15, 2018 2:00pm - 3:00pm PDT
Room G

2:00pm PDT

Jewish Themed Games hosted by Camp Miriam Counsellors - Children age 8 - 12
Enjoy learning with teachers who can make anything into a game. Led by Vancouver’s HabonimDror Ken Achva, home of year-round activities for Camp Miriam campers and their friends.

Sunday April 15, 2018 2:00pm - 3:00pm PDT
Kids and teen programming room

2:00pm PDT

Jews and Gambling: Texts and Types
Already in the mishnah we learn that Jews gambled. The rabbis disapproved, but it hardly mattered. In 1939, sociologist Louis Rosenberg admitted that in Canada “gambling offences amongst Jews are more frequent than among the general population.” While officials would wring their hands in disapproval, counter-cultural figures would celebrate stories of Jewish high rollers. Together we will study the central rabbinic text on gambling. I will present some examples of Jewish gamblers and how they figure in narratives of Jewish life. We will discuss possible socio-cultural factors for the prominence of Jews in gambling, and the ethics of community-sponsored lotteries.

Speakers
avatar for Richard Menkis

Richard Menkis

Richard Menkis teaches modern Jewish history at UBC. He is fascinated by the range of identities within the Jewish community and how these identities shape, and are shaped by, the narratives of Jewish history in popular and academic writing, museum exhibitions, and memorials. He is... Read More →


Sunday April 15, 2018 2:00pm - 3:00pm PDT
Room D

2:00pm PDT

Regina Jonas (1902-1944): The First Female Rabbi of Berlin
Regina Jonas was the first woman ordained as a rabbi. She served Jewish communities in Berlin and Theresienstadt and was eventually killed in Auschwitz in 1944. Her story was almost lost to history. It was only when the Berlin Wall came down that her documents were found and legacy established. Her story is remarkable for the courage she showed in the face of this very difficult time in history.

Speakers
avatar for Carey Brown

Carey Brown

Rabbi Carey Brown is Associate Rabbi of Temple Sholom in Vancouver. She is the founder of East Side Jews, an outreach initiative of the shul, to connect young Jewish families in East Van and beyond. She and her husband, Gregg Gardner, are the proud parents of Yael and Jonah.


Sunday April 15, 2018 2:00pm - 3:00pm PDT
Room H

2:00pm PDT

Finding Consensus About the Census: Our People Count
Moses, our greatest leader, was also an accomplished statistician. He carried out repeated censuses during the Israelites’ time in the wilderness. From the first year of wandering to the 40th year, the total Israelite population remained almost unchanged; the loss was a minuscule 0.3%! Three and a half millennia later, Statistics Canada’s 2016 census reported the population of Jewish Canadians had dropped by more than half in only five years. That’s a drop of biblical proportions. They should have consulted Moses. The reported decline is clearly in dispute. How are ethnicity and religion are measured in the Census to define “who is a Jew”? We will examine the use of the Census to count Jews in Canada, past, present and future. And we will compare Canada’s methods and results with those from the U.S. We’ll conclude with a look at Angus Reid Institute’s research on faith and religion in public life, a topic about which Canadians are deeply divided

Speakers
avatar for Jonathan Berkowitz

Jonathan Berkowitz

Dr. Jonathan Berkowitz is a consulting statistician and a full-time instructor with UBC’s Sauder School of Business. Jonathan is recognized as an outstanding teacher, of adult and of children. While numbers are his vocation, words are his avocation. A passion for puzzles, word games... Read More →


Sunday April 15, 2018 2:00pm - 3:00pm PDT
Room A

2:00pm PDT

Pride and Prejudice: Exploring the intersectional politics of Jewish LGBTQ2SA issues in Canada
Jewish organizations are increasingly taking efforts to become more welcoming and inclusive to queer people, which means not only creating safe spaces in our communities, but also creating a safer world. In the spirit of this call to action, the Centre for Israel and Jewish Affairs (CIJA) created an LGBTQ+ Advisory Council to help guide the national Jewish community’s response to LGBTQ issues in Canada and worldwide, and to foster connections between the Jewish and queer communities at a local level. In this workshop, participants will learn about policy issues the Council is addressing, explore intersectional issues surrounding Canadian Pride politics and Jewish communities, and discuss ways to strengthen, support and engage the LGBTQ2SA Jewish community in Vancouver.

Speakers
avatar for Alycia Fridkin

Alycia Fridkin

Alycia Fridkin is Jewish Queer White Settler, who lives in Vancouver on the unceded and occupied territory of the Musqueam, Squamish and Tsleil-Waututh Nations. She is an active member of several Jewish communities, including Or Shalom synagogue in Vancouver, Yad B’Yad - a Jewish... Read More →


Sunday April 15, 2018 2:00pm - 3:00pm PDT
Room C

2:00pm PDT

Liturgical Chevruta
After studying a passage of prayer, participants break into facilitated paired-partner learning. The pairs use a series of questions to help each other explore the inner workings of their pray lives. Passages for study can come from traditional or non-traditional sources.

Speakers
avatar for Alden Solovy

Alden Solovy

Alden Solovy is a liturgist, poet, essayist, and teacher. His award-winning writing is informed by both joy and tragedy. Alden lives in Israel, where his activism supports women’s prayer rights and interfaith dialogue.


Sunday April 15, 2018 2:00pm - 3:00pm PDT
Room F

2:00pm PDT

Ritual Magic and the Modern Rabbinate
For years I have been quietly meditating and creating amulets, putting the evil eye on trial and crafting rituals of liberation and healing for interested congregants. I have kept this practice very close to my chest, not out of fear of what others would think, but because deep down I am a rationalist. This discussion/workshop will explore various modes of ritual as well as the context and understanding of the place of folk ritual/magic in a progressive liberal congregation. We will also touch my initial impetus for entering this practice as well as how it has evolved over the years.

Speakers
avatar for Harry Brechner

Harry Brechner

Rabbi Harry Brechner is the father of two amazing young men. He is married to RaeAnn Witkin Brechner who is a counsellor and social worker as well as an incredible life partner. For the past 13 years Harry has been the spiritual leader of Congregation Emanu-El in Victoria, B.C. on... Read More →


Sunday April 15, 2018 2:00pm - 3:00pm PDT
Room E

2:00pm PDT

Shots of Holiness: The Changing Role of Hebrew in Contemporary Judaism
Since ancient rabbis were adamant that prayer can be in any language you understand, why do we still feel the push to use Hebrew in our services? By looking at some of the ancient sources along with looking at more contemporary reflections on Hebrew and prayer, we will discuss the role that Hebrew plays in our cultural and spiritual lives.

Speakers
avatar for Philip Gibbs

Philip Gibbs

Philip Gibbs began as the rabbi of Congregation Har El in West Vancouver this past August after his ordination from the rabbinical school at the Jewish Theological Seminary in May 2017. He has led backpacking trips for Ramah in the Rockies, and as a student at JTS served as the secretary... Read More →


Sunday April 15, 2018 2:00pm - 3:00pm PDT
Room B

3:15pm PDT

Shylock?
Mark Leiren-Young talks about his play, Shylock - which has been produced around the world - and the controversies surrounding Merchant of Venice and Shakespeare's notorious Jew.

Speakers
avatar for Mark Leiren-Young

Mark Leiren-Young

Mark Leiren-Young is a playwright, screenwriter, journalist, satirst, director and author. His play, Shylock, has been produced around the world (and translated into three languages) since it debuted at Vancouver's Bard on the Beach in 1996. His latest play, Bar Mitzvah Boy, premiered... Read More →


Sunday April 15, 2018 3:15pm - 4:15pm PDT
Room C

3:15pm PDT

Three Songs, Three Languages
Members of the Vancouver Jewish Folk Choir, under the direction of David Millard, will lead participants in learning a song in Hebrew, one in Yiddish, and one in Ladino. The music of these diverse Jewish traditions is a window into diaspora cultures. Choral singing is a joyous experience, both physical and creative, and brings us together as a community. It is a safe place for hesitant singers to find their voice and an opportunity for experienced singers to share their talent. We invite musical novices and mavens alike to take part in the joy of creating art together.

Speakers
avatar for David Millard

David Millard

The Vancouver Jewish Folk Choir was founded in 1979 by Searle and Sylvia Friedman, z”l. Now directed by David Millard, the choir holds regular holiday and concert performances singing music that bridges diverse traditions, languages, musical styles and modes. The choir’s stirring... Read More →


Sunday April 15, 2018 3:15pm - 4:15pm PDT
Ballroom

3:15pm PDT

The Ancient Jewish Art of Balloon Twisting - Children Age 8-12
Have you wondered how the pros do it? Want to learn how to twist balloons into a magen david, a dog, or a light sabre? This workshop is for you!

Led by Leora Zalik. Leora is a retired teacher and party entertainer.

Speakers

Sunday April 15, 2018 3:15pm - 4:15pm PDT
Kids and teen programming room

3:15pm PDT

From Truman to Trump: Jerusalem between 1948 and 2018
President Trump’s recent declaration brought Jerusalem back to the headlines. Let us take a journey along Jerusalem’s dynamic borders to learn more about the battles around its territory, demography and geo politics.

Speakers
avatar for Lior Schillat

Lior Schillat

Director General of the Jerusalem Institute for Policy Research, a Jerusalem based think-tank; Former advisor to Israeli Prime Ministers Sharon and Olmert; and experienced manager in the public and private sectors.


Sunday April 15, 2018 3:15pm - 4:15pm PDT
Room A

3:15pm PDT

Naming and Shaming: Jewish Names in German History
About two hundred years ago, Jews in Germany were required to adopt names that would conform to the normal first-name last-name pattern of German names. Yet at the same time Jews were not supposed to assume names that sounded too Germanic since this might conceal their Jewish identities. This lecture-discussion will begin with some stories about controversies concerning Jewish names in Germany in the 19th and 20th centuries and then move on to a general conversation about how Jewish names can reflect different patterns of assimilation, acculturation and group identification.

Speakers
avatar for Chris Friedrichs

Chris Friedrichs

Chris Friedrichs has been teaching European and world history at the University of British Columbia since 1973. His research areas are European urban history and German Jewish history. He is active in the Vancouver Jewish community as a member of Temple Sholom, as a speaker for the... Read More →


Sunday April 15, 2018 3:15pm - 4:15pm PDT
Room F

3:15pm PDT

Can Jewish Values Solve Vancouver's Housing Crisis
Vancouver is in a housing crisis, both in terms of affordability and availability. Housing and land ownership have long been central to Jewish life and community.  This session will explore Jewish values and texts related to land use and ownership, tenant's rights, and the interconnectedness of land and social justice in Torah, to find insights that can help solve Vancouver's housing crisis today.

Speakers
avatar for Noam Dolgin

Noam Dolgin

Noam Dolgin is a local Realtor with a specialty in sustainable living, community development and alternative housing.  Before entering real estate Noam worked for almost 2 decades in educational and community development positions within the Jewish community. Noam was a pioneer in... Read More →
avatar for Michael Geller

Michael Geller

Michael Geller is an architect, planner, real estate consultant and property developer with four decades' experience in the public, private and institutional sectors. He is President of the Geller Group and serves as an Adjunct Professor in Simon Fraser University's Centre for Sustainable... Read More →


Sunday April 15, 2018 3:15pm - 4:15pm PDT
Room H

3:15pm PDT

JACS Presents Addiction 101: Myth Busters
Approximately one in six people in our community is impacted by the effects of addiction, this includes the loved ones of a person with an addiction. Historically, the dominant Jewish communal response to addiction has been based in denial and myth. Family members and clergy denied or minimized the problems of addiction by attributing them to other less stigmatized problems, which left people with addiction related issues marginalized and alienated. In many cases, the shame associated, prevented them from seeking help while still being connected to the Jewish community.
Recognizing the existence of myths surrounding Jews and addiction, JACS has developed Addiction 101: Myth Busters, to help break down the stereotypes and stigma and instead, encourage compassion, understanding and support for those affected by addiction.

Speakers
avatar for Rebecca Denham

Rebecca Denham

JACS is intended to provide immediate assistance for those looking to heal from issues stemming from addiction.  JACS provides a culturally appropriate and integrated response to addiction and addiction related issues by:Immediate assistance and appropriate referrals to individuals... Read More →


Sunday April 15, 2018 3:15pm - 4:15pm PDT
Room G

3:15pm PDT

Legacy Letters (AKA Ethical/Spiritual Wills - So That Your Values Live On)
The tradition of bequeathing a spiritual legacy to future generations has its roots in the Bible and Talmud. Legacy Letters allow us to transmit our knowledge, love, and blessings, to be remembered, to have one’s life make a difference. The process of transmitting our wisdom to future generations gives us the opportunity to more deeply reflect on our own lives, what we truly value and what gave our lives meaning.. We will look at the legacy letters of famous and ordinary Jews and non Jews and begin the process of writing our own legacy letters-so that our values live on.

Speakers
avatar for Annie Klein

Annie Klein

Annie Klein is an almost retired casting director in film and television. She is a Reiki Master, Soul Memory Discovery practitioner, Spiritual Director and artist. She is a Certified Age-ing to Sage-ing Leader with years of experience as a hospice volunteer and workshop facilitat... Read More →


Sunday April 15, 2018 3:15pm - 4:15pm PDT
Room E

3:15pm PDT

Sold at Sotheby's
For over a thousand years, our most important cultural activity has been the study of the Talmud. It has sustained us through persecution and exile, shaping the discourse of our people and serving as the crowning achievement of our intellectual tradition. Sold at Sotheby’s will provide participants with the opportunity to analyze a famous and fascinating case of disputed ownership through the lens of Jewish law. By employing Talmudic legal skills and applying halachic principles, we will unwrap the different legal issues that surround this case and examine them thoroughly. In doing so, we will not only try to answer our overarching question, but we will also sharpen our thinking and familiarize ourselves with several intriguing Talmudic concepts. Sold at Sotheby’s will challenge students’ wits to solve a real-life, historic case-study, deciphering original Talmudic texts for clues! Topic: SOLD AT SOTHEBY’S In 1984, a curious case leapt from the normally demure world of antique Judaica and onto the front pages of America’s newspapers. It became known as the Sotheby’s Case, named after the storied auction house at the center of the controversy. Who was putting these books up for auction? How did he or she get them? Who did the books really belong to? Sold at Sotheby’s workshop is an interactive learning program that introduces participants to Yeshiva-style Chavruta learning. The entertaining and informative lesson is appropriate for learners on all levels, even those with no prior Torah-learning experience. The fast paced 1-hour session investigates an intriguing legal case from 1984 about ownership of valuable manuscripts confiscated by the Nazis and explores universal legal and ethical questions. The program includes a brief documentary-style introduction and incorporates Live Polling technology accessed with students’ smartphones. This workshop is unlike any other typical lecture. After the case is introduced to the students with the video, the audience is polled for their initial opinion. Participants then pair up to study the related sources in Jewish Law. Peer learning is followed by a moderated discussion leading to the discovery of the timeless genius of Torah’s legal system.

Speakers
avatar for Binyamin Bitton

Binyamin Bitton

Originally from Lyon France, Rabbi Binyomin Bitton is the founder and spiritual leader of Chabad of Downtown Vancouver and Dean of the Jewish Academy. He studied at the world-renowned Yeshiva of Paris France, the Rabbinical College of America and the Talmudical Seminary in New York... Read More →


Sunday April 15, 2018 3:15pm - 4:15pm PDT
Room D

4:30pm PDT

Closing Event, Music and Raffle Draws
Sunday April 15, 2018 4:30pm - 5:00pm PDT
Ballroom