December 23, 2020 - 8 Tevet 5781
As we begin winter break for students, the JCA will take a bit of a break as well; we’ll be closed December 24 - 28th. The Goldman Family Preschool will reopen January 4th, and “J All Day” will begin its second semester on January 11th.

Summer 2021 registration for Center Day Camp opened just after Thanksgiving, at 25% capacity of our regular Camp program, and with a new, cohort-based session structure. We are excited about the reception this offering received, as we are fully subscribed for the second session and have just 4 spots remaining in the first! We hope to add capacity to Camp this summer if we can do so safely and in line with state recommendations; please stay tuned here and follow Center Day Camp on social media for up-to-date information.

Though we know that change is a healthy part of growth, it is always difficult to share the news of the departure of a beloved staff member. Karli Efron will begin work in January as Assistant Professor and Field Experience Coordinator at St. Joseph’s College. Through multiple stints at KJFS over several years, Karli worked tirelessly to make it the program that it is today, and we are so lucky to have benefited from her skill and commitment. We are thrilled that she will remain connected as a parent in the Preschool and CDC, and involved in supporting KJFS as a volunteer. We are accepting applications for the KJFS Director position and invite anyone who is interested to let us know.

Our J All Day Program will be continuing in 2021, serving elementary school students who are in hybrid programs with full and partial care during the week. The wonderful Hannah Lilly, who took on a new role when she started working with Camp Director Chris Thurston over the summer, is also leaving the J in January to return to her Communications roots, so we invite applicants for that role as well.

The year 2020 has brought untold pain and suffering across the globe, but this community has managed to generate the positive energy and momentum to sustain - and even grow - our connections during this time. 

Even in the darkest of times we have the right to expect some illumination, and that such illumination may come less from theories and concepts than from the uncertain, flickering, and often weak light that some men and women, in their lives and work, will kindle under almost all circumstances and shed over the time-span that was given them on earth.
– Hannah Arendt

Thank you for all the ways you help our community remain illuminated. May we all find space for rest, joy, and hope as we welcome more light each day, and the Gregorian calendar moves us into 2021.


Molly Curren Rowles
Executive Director
The Osher Marin JCC has partnered with JCCs across the country to create the National JCC Adult & Senior Alliance, offering an array of interesting, engaging and educational programs for continued growth and learning, including entertaining classes and workshops, enriching discussions, and cultural trips.
See the complete schedule here.
A portion of the proceeds benefit the JCA.
Four Monday sessions on Zoom
January 4, 11, 18, 25 | 2:00-3:15 PM EST

Would you still like to travel? Now you can without leaving your home – just stay still! Let us whisk you away for an "armchair adventure" on an interesting, educational, fun and live, guided group tour in a destination beyond your front door.
Our virtual itinerary includes:
• Jan. 4 - Historical Overview & the Alcazar
• Jan. 11 - The Cathedral & Giralda
• Jan. 18 - Barrio Santa Cruz & Jewish Seville
• Jan. 25 - Modern Seville 
Join us for the full series or for single visits - whatever works best for you!
$15/single session, or $50 for the series.

Please select “ME - JCA of Southern Maine - Portland” when asked through which program partner you learned about this event.
MUSIC & MORSELS: Classical Elegance for the New Year
Wed, Jan 6th | 4:00-5:00 PM EST 
Free up to 72 hours before event, then $8-$15 tickets 

Bring your dessert and coffee or cocktail and a nosh, and take your front-row seat for a beautiful and interesting live musical event with insights into each piece of the program! Pianist Ian Scarfe brings a special New Year's program featuring the most refined and elegant of classical masters - sonatas by Franz Joseph Haydn and Wolfgang Amadeus Mozart. Scarfe will give a breakdown of the history and context of the sonatas, offering a kind of "listening guide" to these incredible works. After the program, stay for live Q&A with our guest artist.  
Please select “ME - JCA of Southern Maine - Portland” when asked through which program partner you learned about this event.  
Four Thursday sessions on Zoom 
January 7, 14, 21, 28 | 4:00-5:30 PM EST  

Let JCC Program Director and Broadway/opera instructor James Sokol sneak you in the stage door to go “backstage” on Broadway! Meet special guest theater professionals – who bring unique expertise, experiences and insights to the discussion – at our exclusive, live, behind-the-scenes visits. Photos/video clips (when available) will enrich the experience. Come learn, off-stage, what makes the magic happen on-stage! January guests include:  
• Jan. 7 - Randy Graff – The Veteran  
• Jan. 14 - Kelli Barrett – The One to Watch  
• Jan. 21 - James Moye – The Actor/Director  
• Jan. 28 - Carolee Carmello - The "Go to Gal"   
Join us for the full series or for single visits - whatever works best for you!  
$15/single session, or $50 for the series. 

Please select “ME - JCA of Southern Maine - Portland” when asked through which program partner you learned about this event. 
A 4-session online course with Anna Wrobel 
Wednesdays, January 6, 13, 20, 27  | 10 - 11 AM 
Suggested tuition: $50 

This course examines American Jewish history in the last hundred years or so. Key themes are historically contextualized including, but not limited to, migration, labor, antisemitism, Israel, the Shoah, and cultural influence. 
The class has been adapted to a Zoom format; each session will last one hour, and while Anna will cite primary sources, there will be less focus on in-class analysis of documents. Time is divided between lecture-style presentation and inquiry-based discussion constructed upon the questions and commentaries of the group. Personal and family histories bearing on the discourse are welcome. Past participation in American Jewish History - Part I is not required. 

Advanced registration required by Weds. Dec. 30th  
Registered students will receive the Zoom class link on Monday, Jan. 4th. 
A 6-session online course with Ellie Miller
Tuesday mornings, Jan. 12, 19, 26, Feb. 2, 9, 16 
10:00-11:15 AM | Suggested tuition: $72 

How did Moses’ leadership of the Israelites evolve over 40 years in the Biblical narrative? What were the influences that impacted change in his leadership and style: External politics? Shifting dynamics among the people Israel? Competition for leadership roles from within? Changing demographics? In this class we’ll examine a number of incidents from Exodus through Deuteronomy that show how Moses responded to every day demands and to crisis. We’ll have the opportunity to analogize between realities of Moses’ time and our own through text and commentaries. A text of the Hebrew Bible is required - all translations are appropriate. 

Advanced registration required by Tuesday, Jan. 5th.
Registered students will receive the Zoom class link on Friday, Jan. 8
An online study group facilitated by Ellie Miller 
Thursdays, 10:00 – 11:00 AM 

Join us for the continuation of our journey through Genesis, as we engage in a careful reading of every word of the text. We focus on language and structure along with the tales the text imparts. Join the group each week by using the Zoom link below.

We will not be able to admit late arrivals to the meetings. 
To join the study group email list and to get schedule updates, contact Diane Newman
With JCA instructor Ashley Flowers
Classes are $5/session.

  • Monday - 5:30 PM - Evening Yoga 
  • Tuesday - 11:30 AM - Midday Yoga 
  • Wednesday - 9:00 AM - Rise & Flow Yoga 
  • Thursday - 10:15 AM - Midday Yoga 
  • Friday - 9:00 AM - Rise & Flow Yoga 

Visit Ashley’s website for the complete class schedule and to register:
OPENING THE INNER EYE: An Introduction to Mysticism, Inside and Outside of the World’s Religions 
With Dana Sawyer, Professor Emeritus of Philosophy & Religion, MECA 
Presented by ChIME – the Chaplaincy Institute of Maine 
Mondays | 6:00-7:30 PM

  • Asian Mystical Traditions - Jan. 11, 18, 25 
  • Abrahamic Mystical Traditions – Feb. 22; March 1, 8 
  • Mysticism Today - April 5, 12, 19 

Each 3-part lecture is $50, or $125 for all three.  
With the Center for Small Town Jewish Life 
Each day, December 28-31 | 9:00 - 10:00 AM 

We will offer songs, stories, Hebrew games, and crafts, and every day will have a color, a letter, and a number. The program is free, though of course your support is appreciated. Generally recommended for kids 4 - 11, but all are welcome! We suggest that kids have paper, crayons or markers, and a snack with them as needed.
Free online sessions with Barbara Merson
Sundays, weekly - starting Jan. 10th
2:30 - 4:00 PM
Looking for a fun way to get some exercise this winter?
Join us on Sundays on Zoom for a free Israeli dance class. Dancers of all experience levels are welcome! Each class will start with a review of beginner and classic Israeli dances. The last part of class will focus on a (slightly) more difficult dance and requests. You will be amazed at how quickly you will learn and how good it will feel to move! Instructor Barbara Merson is a highly experienced Israeli dance teacher with a very wide repertoire. Wear comfortable clothes and shoes and have some water handy. For more information, schedule updates, and to participate, contact Barbara at the link below.
Presented by the Jewish Review of Books 
Thursday, Dec. 24th | 05:00 PM EST 

Join JRB for our conversation with acclaimed historian Sarah Abrevaya Stein. Stein will discuss her award-winning book, Family Papers: A Sephardic Journey Through the Twentieth Century, which uses the correspondence of one Jewish family to tell the story of their journey “across the arc of a century and the breadth of the globe.”
Presented by the Consulate General of Israel to New England

The Hebrew language was practically dead for 2000 years. It was revived almost singlehandedly by one man, Eliezer Ben Yehuda. Join us for a four-part online series that explores this unprecedented linguistic miracle:

  • Jan. 5th | 1 PM EST - My Grandfather, the Prophet with Gil Hovav
  • Jan 14th | 6:00 PM - Do Israelis Really Speak Hebrew? With Ghil'ad Zuckermann
  • Jan 21st | 6:00 PM - Text and the City - Learning Hebrew in the Street with Guy Sharett
  • Feb 1st | 1:00 PM - Pajamas in Paradise - The Iranian Connection with Thamar E. Gindin
Hartman@Home Online Learning
From the Shalom Hartman Institute, Jerusalem

Weds., Jan. 6th | 12:30 PM EST – From Left to Right: The Importance of Jewish Political Diversity with Yehuda Kurtzer and author Nancy Sinkoff 

Weds., Jan. 6th | 8:00 PM EST - The Texts & Topics Shaping Modern Jewish Life Four-part series exploring The New Jewish Canon anthology with Yehuda Kurtzer, Mijal Bitton, David Zvi Kalman and Elana Stein Hain. 

Thursday, Jan. 14th | 12:00 PM EST – From Election to Inauguration and Beyond 

Sunday, Jan. 24th | 10:00 AM EST – The Wondering Jew: Israel & the Search for Jewish Identity with Micah Goodman 
The JCA’s mission is to enhance and promote Jewish life and continuity locally, in Israel and throughout the world, and to generate the financial resources to develop, provide and support diverse programs, education and services in order to accomplish these goals.

To view all current employment opportunities CLICK HERE.
The JCA wouldn’t exist without the support of our incredible donors. When you donate to the J’s Annual Campaign, you’re ensuring the continuity of all the amazing programs the J offers. From our nationally accredited preschool and summer camp, our food and diaper pantries, to PJ Library and our amazing programs and events; your gift powers it all. Don’t forget — one quarter of all Annual Campaign support is also allocated to critical Jewish organizations and initiatives, locally and overseas. There truly is no better way to support the Jewish community, than with a meaningful Annual Campaign gift. Donate today!
1342 Congress St. Portland, ME 04102 | 207-772-1959