From live storytelling events to “divine” conversations, electronic music to beit midrash, the 2018 Auerbach Ignition Grant recipients explore, expand, and examine what Judaism means for the 21st century.
Rabbi Leiah Moser
Inspired by decades of Jewish musical innovation, Rabbi Leiah Moser brings traditional Jewish music into the 21st century, “to make Jewish prayer engaging, accessible and meaningful to a generation raised on electronic music and hip-hop.” She is currently developing and producing a full-length electronic album which takes listeners through an entire cycle of Jewish daily prayer. Follow her work here.
Rabbi Emily Cohen
Continuing with the success of “Jew Too? – Tales of the Mixed Multitude,” a podcast about the growing diversity of American Jewish families, Emily Cohen is expanding and exploring to reach new audiences. By supplementing each episode with educational materials and piloting a live storytelling event, Emily deepens both impact and accessibility of Jew Too. Listen to the podcast here and read about Emily’s work on My Jewish Learning.
Bec’s vision for a beit midrash (“house of learning”) hosted at Germantown Jewish Centre includes bringing “deep, creative outlets for Torah learning to the Mt. Airy Jewish community,” as well as developing relationships with “unengaged” Jewish community members to further explore their spiritual needs. Bec is also the winner of the 2018 Launch Grant for this project.
Identifying a gap in non-Orthodox and progressive communities to openly discuss personal experiences with divinity, Sarah is seeking to investigate how we can create space to have these conversations in accessible ways. Sarah will have individual conversations with those interested in reflecting on their own experiences, as well as run small group conversations on the topic. She is hoping that this can serve as a framework for people to have these types of conversations in their own communities. If you’re interested in participating, please email Sarah at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Rabbi Ariana Katz
As Hinenu: the Baltimore Justice Shtiebel develops, Ariana is searching for a “model of abundance to grow a synagogue.” By exploring voluntary dues structures through structured focus groups and a leadership cohort, Ariana seeks to embed values of “abundance, enoughness, generosity, and bravery” in Hinenu’s financial model. Follow Ariana here.
Rabbi Diane Tracht
As a rabbi in Louisville, Kentucky, Diane identified the deep need for a specialist to provide deep spiritual care for the local Jewish community. She is working to create counseling opportunities, support groups, and provide education to those in need in order to ensure that no one in the Jewish community “suffers alone.”