Step into Shavuot
Presented by Limmud New Orleans,
Shir Chadash Conservative Congregation,
and Congregation Beth Israel

May 16-17, 2021
3 PM - 5:30 AM
3 - 5 PM
3:00 PM
Cheesecake Baking Demonstration
with Rabbi David Posternock
Join Rabbi David Posternock, Beth Israel's administrator and cheesecake baker extraordinaire, for an exclusive peek at his cheesecake secrets. The cheesecakes need to cool overnight, making them perfect for an early morning (or perhaps late-late-night) snack on the evening of Shavuot.
3:30 PM
Your People Shall Be My People:
The Book of Ruth
with keynote speaker, Dr. Ronna Burger
Ronna Burger is the Catherine & Henry J. Gaisman Chair in the Department of Philosophy and Affiliate Professor in the Department of Jewish Studies at Tulane. 
4:15 - 5:00 PM
The Jazz Amidah
with Rabbi Deborah Silver and
Meryl Zimmerman
Did you know the Amidah once worked like jazz and was largely improvised? Join Rabbi Silver and jazz singer Meryl Zimmerman to find out more and to workshop a unique Jazz Amidah to celebrate Shavuot!
All Night Long:
A Marriage of Piety and Coffee
with Rabbi Josh Pernick
Join Rabbi Josh Pernick as we explore the origins of the Tikkun Leil Shavuot, the customary all-night learning session on Shavuot. How far back does this custom reach? And what role did the proliferation of coffee play in its growth? Come join us to find out!
Tikkun Leil Shavuot
Join Us In-Person
8 PM - 5:30 AM
at Congregation Beth Israel
4004 W. Esplanade Ave.
Metairie, LA 70002

Advanced registration is required.
8:00 PM
Delicious Dairy Dinner
Enjoy individually packaged dinners outdoors!
9:00 PM
To Zoom or Not to Zoom - That is the Question!
Panel Discussion with Rabbis Deborah Silver, Josh Pernick, and David Gerber
Over the course of the pandemic, all denominations of Judaism have made use of technology to stay connected. Now that we hope to come back in person, what is the role of technology in our communities? Join us for what promises to be an electric conversation!
10:00 PM
Voices from the Periphery: The Story of Ruth
with Rabbi Josh Pernick
The primary Biblical story that we associate with the holiday of Shavuot is that of Ruth, a story whose interwoven themes intersect perfectly with those of the holiday of Shavuot. But how does the story of Ruth fit within the Biblical story? What earlier stories is it responding to and subverting in order to teach a broader lesson not limited to Shavuot? Join Rabbi Josh as we explore the Book of Ruth in context, allowing us to explore the deeper resonances that it is intended to communicate.
The Silence of Shavuot
with Rabbi Deborah Silver
Out of the three pilgrimage festivals of the Jewish year, Shavuot is always "the forgotten child". In this session we will see if we can reclaim her.
In Search of Sinai
with Rabbi David Gerber
Shavuot commemorates the giving of the Ten Commandments, but our tradition teaches us that revelation is ongoing. We'll study the evolution of revelation through the Hebrew Bible and how we continue to receive the Torah anew with every new generation. 

11:00 PM
Sensory Overload:
A Story of Revelation
with Rabbi Josh Pernick
Is the giving of Torah a onetime event, or an ongoing process? And what's the deal with all the thunder, the lightning, the seeing of sounds and hearing of sights that the Torah records occurred as the Torah was being given? In this mind-blowing session, we'll piece back together why the minds of the Israelites were blown by the experience of revelation and what their experience has to do with us.
12:30 - 5:30 AM
Forbidden Learning
with Rabbi Josh Pernick
"One may not expound upon the topic of forbidden sexual relations before three people, nor expound upon the act of creation and the secrets of the universe before two people, nor expound by oneself upon the design of the divine chariot unless he/she is wise and understands on his/her own". So begins the second chapter of Tractate Chagigah, a fascinating tractate of the Talmud concerned primarily on the thrice-annual pilgrimage to Jerusalem. Join Rabbi Josh as we spend the wee hours of the morning exploring these hidden and forbidden topics, getting us ready to receive the Torah first thing in the morning.