Adult Education

At NSTE, our Rabbis, special guests, and lay leaders provide meaningful formal and informal instruction to individuals of all ages and backgrounds. 

Adult Jewish learners may drop in to participate in our weekly "Parashat HaShavua" (Torah study) discussion group on Shabbat mornings at 9:00, or "Conversations with the Rabbi" on Monday mornings at 10:00.  In January, a special study session follows the Shabbat morning service (in place of a sermon) at 11:30 . This year, we studied the Birkat HaMazon (blessing after meals).  We also hold study sessions in the Succah during Succot, during our Tikkun Leil Shavuot on the eve of Shavuot, and in conjunction with other festivals and special events, such as the Shabbat Project.  Each year, we hold a Mums' Retreat in which the Rabbi and other professionals conduct Jewish workshops.  In addition, every Board meeting begins with a special d'var torah (short teaching) by the Rabbi. 

NSTE also offers classes which require more formal enrolment, such as our Shaliach Tzibur class with Rabbi Fred Morgan and our Introduction to Judaism class with Rabbi Nicole Roberts.  Please contact our office for more information about these.

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See below for a report on the recent Sir Asher Joel Oration, an NSTE tradition coordinated by member Gil Davis:

Who knew rainbows weren’t always good?

Visiting Professor Wayne Horowitz from Hebrew University wowed the crowd with his lecture on rainbows held at North Shore Temple Emanuel on 25 September. Wayne told an audience of about 50 people how the biblical story of the Flood had its origins in the misty Sumerian past, where rainbows more often than not portended disaster. He then linked the story with native traditions, such as the Gwich’in narrative of ‘The Boy in the Moon’ of Arctic Canada, where, curiously, they speak a language derived from Sumerian.

The talk was co-sponsored by Macquarie and Hebrew Universities. Dr Gil Davis, Director of Ancient Mediterranean Studies at Macquarie University, introduced Wayne and spoke a bit about the achievements of the Ancient Israel Program and the joint cooperation between the two universities. Robert Simeon, President of the Australian Friends of Hebrew University made a vote of thanks to Wayne and to the NSTE which is a frequent and welcoming host to such events under its President, Mark Ginsburg.

Many of the students in the audience will be taking part in courses that have been jointly set up by the two universities in Israel at Hebrew University over the coming summer break. These include a Biblical Archaeology course, an Ulpan, and a joint archaeological excavation between Hebrew and Macquarie Universities at the site of Khirbet el-Rai.

For more information contact Dr Gil Davis, gil.davis@mq.edu.au