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To Everything There is a Season

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Monday, November 3, 2003

An Evening of Study and Discussion with

Dr. Leonard S. Kravitz, Professor of Midrash and Homiletics, HUC-JIR/NY
Dr. Kerry M. Olitzky, Executive Director of the Jewish Outreach Institute

Wednesday, December 10, 2003 at 7:00 PM

Admission is Free. No registration is required.
Photo ID required for entrance.

Hebrew Union College – Jewish Institute of Religion
One West 4th street (Between Broadway and Mercer)
New York City

When H. L. Mencken said, “The older I grow the more I distrust the familiar doctrine that age brings wisdom,” he must have been studying the Book of Ecclesiastes, which presents and examines the parable of old age that states with aging comes awe-inspiring wisdom. Join Dr. Leonard S. Kravitz, Professor of Midrash and Homiletics, at HUC-JIR at NY, and Kerry M. Olitzky, Executive Director of Jewish Outreach Institute, in study and discussion of the wisdom literature of the Book of Ecclesiastes: Chapter 12, providing new perspectives on life and aging as drawn from their new book, Kohelet: A Modern Commentary On Ecclesiastes (UAHC Press). The authors will talk about their perspectives on the relationship between wisdom and aging.

Dr. Kravitz is a rabbi and Professor of Midrash and Homiletics at HUC/JIR, New York. He received his undergraduate degree from John Carroll University and was ordained by the Cincinnati School of HUC-JIR where he received the degrees of Master of Hebrew Letters and Doctor of Philosophy. He teaches Medieval Jewish Philosophy and Midrash and specializes in Maimonidean studies.

Dr. Kerry M. Olitzky is the Executive Director of the Jewish Outreach Institute, the only national independent organization dedicated to bringing Judaism to interfaith families and the unaffiliated. Dr. Olitzky is also a Fellow at the Center for Jewish Studies, Graduate School and University Center, CUNY. He was ordained a rabbi at HUC-JIR, where he served on the faculty and administration for 15 years.

This program is offered in conjunction with the exhibition The Art of Aging, on view through June 25, 2004. Aging is a process that begins with birth—it is a lifelong journey affecting the dynamics of human relationships, creativity, memory, continuity, and growth. Jewish text sources are full of references to values affecting the dynamics of human relationships, creativity, memory, continuity, and growth. Jewish text sources are full of references to values intrinsic to the aging process, from the respect attendant to one’s elders, honor for one’s parents, forty as the age of understanding, fifty as the age of counsel, the celebration of wisdom at age sixty, the celebration of strength at the age of eighty, and intergenerational and familial responsibilities. Through painting, sculpture, photography, installation, mixed media, and video, contemporary artists from Israel and North America reflect on the diverse aspects of aging, including creativity and vitality, memory, anxiety, wisdom, physical change, loss, intergenerational interaction, responsibility, and optimism.

For further information, please call Amy Lehr at 212-824-2293 or e-mail

Founded in 1875, Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion is North America's leading institution of higher Jewish education and the academic, spiritual, and professional leadership development center of Reform Judaism. HUC-JIR educates men and women for service to North American and world Jewry as rabbis, cantors, educators, and nonprofit management professionals, and offers graduate programs to scholars and clergy of all faiths. With centers of learning in Cincinnati, Jerusalem, Los Angeles, and New York, HUC-JIR's scholarly resources comprise the renowned Klau Library, The Jacob Rader Marcus Center of the American Jewish Archives, museums, research institutes and centers, and academic publications. In partnership with the Union for Reform Judaism and the Central Conference of American Rabbis, HUC-JIR sustains the Reform Movement's congregations and professional and lay leaders. HUC-JIR's campuses invite the community to cultural and educational programs illuminating Jewish heritage and fostering interfaith and multiethnic understanding.