Proposed Classes                                                     

Rabbi Oresky will be putting together a Survey Monkey survey to ask people what they would like to study. Initial plans are to continue Rabbi Cohen's Tuesday night at 7 time slot and to do a separate class on Wednesday from 6 to 7:30 when the Religious School meets. He would like to add a Sunday morning class after minyan and breakfast if there is sufficient interest. 

What makes a service Reconstructionist? 




Adult Bar/Bat Mitzvah Class

Designed for people who, for whatever reason, never celebrated their Bar/Bat Mitzvah, or who would like to study more and celebrate again!

An Introduction to Jewish Process Theology

Using Rabbi Bradley Shavit Artson’s God of Becoming and Relationship – The Dynamic Nature of Process Theology, we will explore a unique approach to Jewish theology. 

God Was in this Place &I, i Did Not Know

We will use the book of the same name by Rabbi Lawrence Kushner to explore the experience of encountering G-d through the story of Jacob’s first dream.

Hebrew – Levels I and II

The way into all Jewish learning is through Hebrew – learn this old-new language from alef to tav, or enhance the reading skills that you already have. We will use the National Jewish Outreach Program materials as well as several other sources, including the siddur (prayerbook) and chumash (The Five Books of Moses).

Jewish Food/Jewish Cooking

This class combines learning, cooking, and eating! We will hear about Jewish foods and the varied cultures and ethnicities from which they spring, then we will cook and sample the dishes in Mishkan Torah’s kitchen, leaving some of the delightful creations for our Shabbat Kiddush.

Joshua and Judges

Read beyond the haftarot! By delving deeper into some of the prophetic writings, we’ll begin to access the wisdom of this crucial middle third of the Tanakh. We will begin with the first two books of the prophets, “historical” books that tell the story of the conquest of the Promised Land from two very different perspectives.

Judaism 101

For all who are contemplating conversion to Judaism or who are Jewish but would like a refresher course, this course will start with the basics, using that as a springboard for continuous, future study.

Kashrut: The Hows and Whys

How would I keep kosher? Why would I keep kosher? Is there more to kashrut than knowing which animals are eaten and how they are killed? What do the kashrut symbols mean? How is kashrut related to the rest of Jewish identity and observance?


L’shon HarahWhat It Is and How to Avoid It

Spreading l’shon harah “evil speech,” which can be understood as “negative truth” is a damaging and pervasive habit. We’ll study its effects and devise ways to avoid committing this grave sin so that we might move from hurting to healing.


An ongoing contemplation and application of Jewish ethics, which could improve all of our relationships. We will use several sources and techniques to explore the middot (character qualities/goals).

News, Booze, Chews, and Shmooze

Weekly discussion of Jewishly relevant current events followed by a l’chaim (optional, of course) to our continued existence and lunch/dinner and socializing! Members of the class will be assigned a session to introduce the topic and provide printed articles for discussion. This will be held in a variety of area restaurants.


There is hardly a more important book for Jewish prayer and spiritual reflection than the psalter, the 150 psalms that make up Sefer Tehillim – the Book of Psalms. Looking at both the English translations and the Hebrew itself, where possible, we will study a small sampling of the psalms to unlock some of the book’s beauty, pathos, and wisdom.

Shema and its Blessings

Using Rabbi Lawrence Hoffman’s excellent volume in the My People’s Prayer Book series as a guide, we will explore this central prayer as an entry into exploration of tefilla, Jewish prayer, as a whole.

Star Shlep

Using Jewish science fiction short stories as the starship, we will explore the farthest reaches of the galaxy of issues of Jewish identity, survival, and development. Texts: Wandering Stars (WS) and More Wandering Stars (MWS – both edited by Jack Dann); People of the Book: A Decade of Jewish Science Fiction & Fantasy (PB – edited by Swirsky and Wallace); Great Tales of Jewish Fantasy and the Occult (GTJFO – ed. And trans. By Joachim Neugroschel); and several other sources.

Star Shlep: The Next Generation

The voyage continues! We will now explore Jewish themes in science fiction and fantasy through novels.  We will begin with The Golem and the Jinni by Helene Wecker and then move on to Snow in August by Pete Hamill.

Synagogue Skills: Torah and Haftarah Reading

An introduction to these important bimah skills – starting with trope in both modes.


The Amidah

Using another of Rabbi Lawrence Hoffman’s excellent volumes in the My People’s Prayer Book series, and several other sources as well, we will explore this most crucial prayer as an entry into exploration of tefilla, Jewish prayer, and as a source of insight into how prayers were and are devised.

The Sabbath

Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel’s book on the Sabbath is moving, poetic, and persuasive. It can transform how you think about Shabbat.