The Center for Prayer and Spirituality at B’nai Jeshurun is a hub of expansive spiritual practice, devotional music, innovative ritual, and immersive experience, providing the tools for personal and communal transformation. When courageous innovation is brought to the richness of Jewish tradition, we can affirm the notion of why prayer matters, harness the power of spiritual practice to build community, and realize the possibility of transformation that is true and enduring:

INWARD

Cultivating a deeper sense of awe (yir’ah), lovingkindness (hesed), and gratitude (hoda-ah)

UPWARD

Enabling us to revitalize and nurture intimate relationships with the Divine Presence

OUTWARD

Heightening personal relationships and profound connections within the embrace of a spiritual community

FORWARD

Inspiring and propelling a community of spiritual practice toward making meaningful change in our world


Who Are We?

Cantor David Mintz, Director
Cantor David Mintz joins B’nai Jeshurun from New Orleans, LA, where he served as cantor of Touro Synagogue since 2014. While at Touro, he created a variety of initiatives to develop a culture of communal singing as spiritual practice. In addition, he reimagined young family Shabbat programming and oversaw the community’s 26-year tradition of Jazz Fest Shabbat, collaborating with renowned jazz musicians such as the Preservation Hall Jazz Band, Jon Cleary, Sunpie Barnes, and the Panorama Jazz Band of New Orleans. Read moreContact Dave
Dan Nadel, Music Director
Dan Nadel is an Israeli born, New York-based guitarist and composer, whose personal style combines flamenco, jazz, and Middle Eastern influences. He is a bandleader, a solo performing artist, and a collaborator with Tavche Gravche, his multinational neo-Balkan group.A busy musician on New York’s scene, Nadel has also worked with many world-renowned artists, including jazz musicians… Read moreContact Dan
Kristen Kersey, Program Administrator
Kristen’s first position at B’nai Jeshurun was as the Administrative Assistant for Youth and Family Education Department (now known as Family Life and Learning). After three years as an Event Coordinator at Citigroup, Kristen is thrilled to be returning to her spiritual home. She received a Bachelor of Arts in History from American University in 2009. Kristen lives on the Upper West Side, and when she is not at BJ, you can often find her cooking, singing, writing, or attempting some dangerous combination of the three.Contact Kristen

 


Upcoming CPS Programming

Monday Meditation Minyan

Monday, May 20 | 6:30-7:00PM | Chapel

Whether you have a deep meditation practice or are interested in exploring mindfulness for the first time, we invite you to join us for Monday Meditation Minyan, led by Yael Shy. Each session will begin with wisdom from the Jewish tradition, followed by focused meditation (with some guidance), a short discussion, and an opportunity for community members to recite Mourner’s Kaddish. No experience necessary; all are welcome.

Monday Meditation Minyan meets weekly, with the exception of national and Jewish holidays. To get a glimpse of what you can experience in-person, check out the live stream of this season’s first session.

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Weekday Evening Minyan: A Pilot of the Center for Prayer and Spirituality

Mondays-Thursdays | 6:30PM | Community House

We are excited to announce that, beginning on Monday, April 1, we will be starting a three-month pilot of an evening minyan at BJ, with the hope that—through communal engagement—it will become a long-term practice.

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A Taste of Freedom: Chefugee Shabbat Dinner

Friday, May 24 | Following Kabbalat Shabbat Services | Frankel Hall
Join Rabbi Shuli Passow for a delicious Shabbat dinner cooked by one of the refugees we are supporting through the BJ Refugee and Immigration Committee’s Family Support Team. Enjoy a traditional Chadian meal with members of the BJ community.

Kourtegue grew up in Chad, and recently fled to the United States, making a new home for herself, her husband, and her son. Cooking has always been a central part of Kourtegue’s life, and she is excited to prepare a traditional Chadian meal featuring moula daraba (fish) served with fried rice, fresh salads, and boiled spiced vegetables.

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Hakhanah laTefillah

Saturday, May 25 | 8:45-9:25AM | Chapel

Join Rabbi Roly Matalon to prepare the soul and open the heart for Shabbat morning prayers through the singing of piyutim and reflections on kavannah. This series is open to all, no registration necessary.

Upcoming Dates: June 1, 15

Women's Retreat 2019

Friday, May 31-Sunday, June 2 | Isabella Freedman Jewish Retreat Center, 116 Johnson Road, Falls Village, CT

Meet Me at Sinai: Women’s Love, Rage, and Righteous Indignation at a Time of Revelation

Join Rabbi Felicia Sol, and MTM fellows Abi Weber and Margo Hughes-Robinson, for a glorious Shabbat of joy, song, learning, and connection in a beautiful, natural environment filled with the exclusive sound of women’s voices. Whether you are new to BJ or a long-time member, the Women’s Retreat creates an atmosphere of connection where all are embraced for who they are. Community is built throughout the weekend and sustains itself when we get back to NYC.

Click for more information.

Paying it Forward Shabbat Dinners

Friday, June 7 | Various Times | Various Locations

Since October, over 100 BJ members have signed up to attend a Paying it Forward Shabbat Dinner in another member’s home, while committing to pay it forward by hosting a meal themselves in the future. Together, we are broadening Shabbat meal culture at BJ and transforming our community through building closer connections and elevating the beauty of Shabbat at home.

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Our Immortal Soul—Film Screening and Q&A

Tuesday, July 16 | 7:00PM | Chapel

Based on the best-selling book by Brazilian Rabbi Nilton Bonder, this documentary presents the story of characters who resorted to transgression as the only possible way to do what was right. Among the topics covered are infidelity, atheism, homosexuality, betrayal, breakup, and innovations in politics, religion, art, and science. Interviews with prominent non-conformists (among them Michael Lerner, Rebecca Goldstein, Etgar Keret, Uri Avneri, Reb Zalman Schachter, Rabbi Steven Greenberg, Noam Chomsky, and the Rosenberg Brothers) are interspersed with choreography from Deborah Colker’s dance company.

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