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Though the campus is closed, the Hartman Beit Midrash (study hall) is now open to the world — and free.

Out of crisis comes opportunity. At the Shalom Hartman Institute, we are proud that 500 rabbis, community leaders, students, and professionals come together at our Jerusalem campus each summer for serious Jewish study to address the greatest issues and ideas of our day. This summer, due to the pandemic, we sadly cannot gather in Jerusalem. Though the campus is closed, the Hartman Beit Midrash (study hall) is now open to the world — and free.

Rebecca Starr
Rebecca Starr

More than 3,000 rabbis, community leaders, students and Jewish professionals are already registered to join online for our new summer initiative, All Together Now: Jewish Ideas for this Moment taking place now through July 23. 

Our Detroit Jewish community can take advantage of this because it means we can all attend. Twenty of our local Jewish lay leaders, in partnership with the JCRC/ACJ, have spent the last nine months studying with faculty members from the Hartman Institute. They discussed issues of particularism and universalism, anti-Semitism, nationalism, notions of Jewish peoplehood, and more. They read articles, books, and texts which challenged their thinking. They were excited to spend 10 days this summer in Jerusalem as part of a culminating experience through Hartman’s Community Leadership Program.

They are moving forward with their course of study, albeit online, and the new arrangement means you can join them. Hartman sessions are educationally challenging, but they are also delightful and the more people from Detroit who attend, the stronger and better informed our community will be.

The Hartman Institute is uniquely positioned to share important ideas and convene conversations. Hartman’s month-long series of seminars, lectures, electives and cultural events will include discussions surrounding the challenges the Jewish community faces locally and abroad in the face of threats to justice, changes in nationalism and, of course, the novel coronavirus.

Speakers will address Israeli politics (annexation, coalition and more), Israeli culture (poetry, music and more) and Jewish angles on American culture, morality, spirituality and peoplehood. There are hundreds of impactful choices filled with ideas for us to apply to our own lives.

I hope that the wider Detroit Jewish community will join me, our local lay and professional leaders from Detroit, and others around the world as we engage in a summer filled with Hartman Torah — a summer that will surely offer restoration, comfort, the opportunity to wrestle with ideas and challenging topics. I hope to “see” you there.

Registration information can be found at

Rebecca Starr is Midwest Manager of the Shalom Hartman Institute.

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