Shema Elul Programme – Rabbi Joe Wolfson


Wednesday 1st October 2014

Rabbi Joe Wolfson
International Educator
Graduate of Yeshiva Har Etzion (Gush), Cambridge University, UCL
LSJS Lecturer
“Yona and Nineveh, and the Positive Hypocrisy of Teshuva”

Manchester Maccabi

Click here to view handout from the lecture

About Joe Wolfson
Joe is the recipient of the Aria Fellowship for Rabbinic training from the Office of the Chief Rabbi. In the past he has studied at Bet Morasha, Cambridge, where he read Social and Political Science at Trinity Hall, and UCL where he gained his Masters in Legal and Political Theory. He has taught in London, Sydney and New York and various locations in Israel.

Read more from Joe on his website
Follow Joe on Twitter @jjwolfson

In association with London School of Jewish Studies


Shema Elul Programme – Maureen Kendler

maureen kendler

Wednesday 17th September 2014

Maureen Kendler
Teaching Fellow, London School of Jewish Studies
Experienced and Popular Educator
“The Akeidah: How We Carry Our Childhood With Us”

We will look at a bold and surprising explanation for Abraham’s willingness to sacrifice Isaac – what was Abraham’s secret that drove this decision? And what was the legacy of that for Isaac, and the next generation?

Manchester Maccabi

Click here to view handout from the lecture

About Maureen Kendler
Maureen Kendler is a Teaching Fellow at London School of Jewish Studies. Maureen has a degree in English Literature, a Post-Graduate Certificate in Education and an MA in Jewish Education. She is a UJIA Ashdown Fellow and broadcasts regularly for BBC Radio. Maureen loves teaching texts, ancient and modern, preferably at the same time….

Watch Maureen Kendler’s video presentation for JDOV about the role of women in the Orthodox Jewish Community – “52%: At The Crossroads” (15 mins)


In association with London School of Jewish Studies


Shema Elul Programme – Rabbi Joseph Dweck

rabbi dweck

Sunday 14th September 2014

Rabbi Joseph Dweck
Senior Rabbi, Spanish and Portuguese Jews’ Congregation, London
Deputy President, London School of Jewish Studies
“Rosh Hashanah- The Day We All Get Real”

King David High School

About Rabbi Joseph Dweck
Rabbi Dweck was born in Los Angeles and is of Syrian origin. He has served as the rabbi of Congregation Shaare Shalom in Brooklyn since 1999 and Rosh Yeshiva/Head of School at Barkai Yeshivah since 2010. He studied at Yeshiva Hazon Ovadia in Jerusalem. He received his semikha from Rabbi Ovadia Yosef under the auspices of the Sephardic Rabbinical College, Brooklyn. He was appointed Senior Rabbi of the Spanish and Portuguese Jews’ Congregation of London in 2013.

Rabbi Dweck spoke at the recent rally against anti-semitism in London. Listen to his talk here (5 mins).

Read Rabbi Dweck’s Weekly Torah Updates

Follow Rabbi Dweck on Twitter

Like Rabbi Dweck on Facebook


In association with London School of Jewish Studies


Shema Elul Programme – Rabbi Michael Pollak

rabbi pollak

Shema Elul Programme
Sunday 7th September 2014
Maccabi Centre

Rabbi Michael Pollak
“Are Observant Jews The Only Real Jews? – Inclusivism and Exclusivism in the Rosh Hashanah Machzor”

“The Jewish people are hurtling towards a full schism. Various factions are becoming increasingly exclusive, even to the extent of denying the Jewishness of their opponents. We seem to have been here before and last time it ended in tears. Is it too late to save ourselves this time?”

About Rabbi Michael Pollak

Michael spent 3 years studying in Chevron Yeshiva in Jerusalem and graduated in philosophy at the LSE. He has held a series of high profile communal positions and is a seasoned Talmud Daf Yomi teacher. He is currently working for the UJIA and Partnerships for Jewish Schools as an educational consultant, and is a member of the LSJS teaching faculty and is particularly involved in the Masters in Jewish Education which will be available to students in Manchester in the academic year 2015/6.

His first book as editor is being published in August 2014 titled Moreshet Kehillat Yaacov. Published by Maggid Books it contains 60 articles by leading Rabbis worldwide in honour of Lord Rabbi Jonathan Sacks.

In association with London School of Jewish Studies


Rav Moshe Taragin: “Are We Crying Crocodile Tears?”


Sunday 20th July 2014

Rav Moshe Taragin:
“Are We Crying Crocodile Tears?”

Maccabi Centre, Manchester

Click here to view handout from the lecture

Year in, year out, we focus our attention during the Three Weeks on the rebuilding of the Beit Hamikdash, but do we really understand what that means?  That dark period in Jewish history marked a dramatic and traumatic change in our relationship with HKB”H. What altered religious reality do we inhabit? How can we recover the world from which we fell? What role does mourning play in this recovery process?  Rabbi Taragin will offer a contextual understanding of the temple’s destruction and its relevance today.

About Rav Moshe Taragin

Rabbi Moshe Taragin has been a Ram at Yeshivat Har Etzion in Gush Etzion for the past 20 years. He has Semicha from the Rabbi Isaac Elchanan Theological Seminary, a BA in Computer Science from Yeshiva College, and an MA in English Literature from City University. Rabbi Taragin previously taught Talmud at Columbia University, lectured in Talmud and Bible at the IBC and JSS divisions of Yeshiva University, and served as Assistant Rabbi at the Fifth Avenue Synagogue. In addition, Rabbi Taragin currently teaches at the Stella K. Abraham Beit Midrash for Women of Yeshivat Har Etzion in Migdal Oz in Gush Etzion. He is the author of an Internet shiur entitled “Talmudic Methodology” with over 5,000 subscribers, a weekly shiur on Pirkei Avot with over 1,400 subscribers and has delivered hundreds of audio shiurim featured on the Yeshivat Har Etzion “Audio Beit Midrash” (KMTT) as well as on YU Torah online. Rabbi Taragin is currently authoring a Yom Ha’atzmaut Machzor for Koren Publishers, due out in April 2015. Rabbi Taragin, his wife and 8 children reside in Gush Etzion.

Rabbi Dr. Ben Elton: “Is Open Orthodoxy Orthodox?”

ben elton

Sunday 29th June 2014
Rabbi Dr. Ben Elton
“Is Open Orthodoxy Orthodox?”

Maccabi Centre, Manchester

Click here to view handout from the lecture (1997 article by Rabbi Avi Weiss on Open Orthodoxy)

Open Orthodoxy was first used as a term by Rabbi Avi Weiss of Yeshivat Chovevei Torah (Riverdale, New York) in an attempt to try to reconcile traditional Judaism with the demands of the present whilst staying within the scope of Orthodoxy.

The meaning of Open Orthodoxy has become distorted over time due to misuse on the left of Orthodoxy, leading to widespread criticism from the Orthodox right that it goes too far on matters such as women’s issues, biblical studies and interfaith relations. What is Open Orthodoxy today and does it have a future?

Ben Elton, Rabbinic Fellow and Director of Education at Lincoln Square Synagogue in New York who is a final year student at Yeshivat Chovevei Torah, presents an overview of the movement and its agenda, and gives a candid view of its prospects and challenges.

About Rabbi Dr. Ben Elton

Rabbi Dr. Ben Elton was born in Manchester. He was educated at Cambridge University (MA) and London University (PhD). He learned at Yeshivat Darche Noam in 2004 and is now in his third year at Yeshivat Chovevei Torah.

After a first career in the Civil Service in London, he came to New York in 2011 and joined Lincoln Square Synagogue in September 2013. He received Semicha from Rabbi David Bigman, Rosh Yeshiva of Maale Gilboa, in February 2014.

In addition to Ben’s rabbinic activity, he is a Fellow of the Royal Historical Society and a Visiting Scholar at Columbia University. He has published and spoken widely on Jewish religious history.

Some of his writings can be accessed below:

Jewish Chronicle – Shavuot puts the meaning into mitzvah

Times of Israel articles

Morethodoxy Blog – The Boundaries of Orthodoxy

Morethodoxy Blog – Living by the Word of God

Rabbi Dr. Nathan Lopes Cardozo: “I am Taking Off My Kippah”

rabbi cardozo

Sunday May 25th 2014
Rabbi Dr. Nathan Lopes Cardozo
Dean, David Cardozo Academy
Maccabi Centre, Manchester

“I am Taking Off My Kippah”
Being religious, not observant.
How to start Judaism all over again.

Click here to view handout from the lecture

About Rabbi Dr. Nathan Lopes Cardozo
Rabbi Dr. Nathan Lopes Cardozo is a world-renowned thinker, lecturer and ambassador for Judaism and the Jewish people. He is known for his original insights into how Judaism can rejuvenate itself, showing new ways to authentic religiosity. He is a sought-after lecturer on Judaism and Israel at numerous institutions of higher academic learning, including Jewish study programs at leading universities, religious academies and rabbinical colleges. He is also the founder and Dean of the David Cardozo Academy, the Aron and Betsy Spijer Institute. The Institute is a think-tank where rabbis, educators and professors under Rabbi Cardozo’s guidance try to lay the foundations of a new approach to Judaism based on the classical sources. The author of many books on Judaism, Rabbi Lopes Cardozo writes a weekly column, “Thoughts to Ponder,” on his website ( Educated in Amsterdam, he received his rabbinical degree from Gateshead Talmudical College, studied at Yeshivat Mir in Jerusalem, and holds a doctorate in philosophy. Rabbi Cardozo is a distinguished member of the Portuguese and Spanish Jewish community and lives with his wife, children and grandchildren in Jerusalem.

Click here to read ‘Lonely but not Alone’, a short spiritual autobiography by Rabbi Dr. Nathan Lopes Cardozo.

Rabbi Dr. Raphael Zarum: Egyptology & The Exodus

rabbi rafi zarum

Sunday April 6th 2014

Rabbi Dr. Raphael Zarum
Dean of London School of Jewish Studies (LSJS)
Maccabi Centre, Manchester

Spice up your Seder with some original relationships between ancient Egypt and the Haggadah by Rabbi Dr. Raphael Zarum, Dean of London School of Jewish Studies (LSJS).

Click here to view handout from the lecture

A knowledge of ancient Egypt enables a deeper understanding of the Pesach Haggadah and an appreciation of the revolutionary nature of Yetziat Miztrayim. This presentation will show the fascinating relationship between Egyptology and our Torah, as well as providing useful materials and exciting ideas for you to share at your Seder table this year.

About Rabbi Dr. Raphael Zarum
Rabbi Dr Raphael Zarum is Dean of London School of Jewish Studies (LSJS). He received semicha from Emeritus Chief Rabbi Lord Sacks and Dayan Saadia Amor after studying at the Kollel of the Judith Lady Montefiore College. He holds an MA in Education, a PhD in Theoretical Physics and is a graduate of Jerusalem’s prestigious Mandel Leadership School. Rabbi. Dr Zarum is a leading Jewish educator in the UK and teaches at conferences and seminars, synagogues and Jewish community centres across the globe. In 2008 he was ranked 26th in the Jewish Chronicle Power100 list of the most influential people in UK Jewry. London School of Jewish Studies is a world-class centre of Jewish scholarship, teaching and training that inspires our community with a lifelong love of Jewish learning and practice.

egyptology exodus