Certificates for Graduates of the Life Texts - Talmudic Bibliotherapy Program Presented at HUC-JIR/Jerusalem Ordination and Academic Convocation - Hebrew Union College - Jewish Institute of Religion
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Certificates for Graduates of the Life Texts - Talmudic Bibliotherapy Program Presented at HUC-JIR/Jerusalem Ordination and Academic Convocation

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Monday, November 1, 2010

The Jerusalem campus of Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion held its Ordination and Academic Convocation on Friday, October 29, 2010 at 13 King David Street, Jerusalem, Israel.  Please click here to view the 2010 program.

Certificates for graduates of the Life Texts - Talmudic Bibliotherapy Program, sponsored by the Blaustein Center for Pastoral Counseling, were presented to:
Yona Arazi
Inbal Briskin-Pery
Ofra Hepner
Sara Katz
Tsippy Levin Byron
Edna Mazor
Michal Segal
Eli Sharon
Kineret Shiryon
Michal Yaniv
Hemda Zukerman

Dr. Ruhama Weiss, Professor of Talmud at HUC-JIR/Jerusalem, gave the introduction.

Yona Arzi is a wife, mother of four children and grandmother of two. An artist and teacher of Torah, Yona teaches in the Bina secular yeshiva and is a member of the yeshiva’s advisory council.

Inbal Briskin-Pery leads the Kehila Madlika group in Emek Hefer, which meets for Kabbalat Shabbat and festival celebrations in a pluralistic atmosphere. She also serves as the group’s representative in the Network of Community and Prayer Houses in Israel. She is a counselor and member of the steering team in Zayit (Jewish Identity and Culture) in Emek Hefer. Inbal leads workshops in the fields of identity, Judaism, the festivals, and counseling skills. She is the director of Class, a company that runs group - formalization and other activities for various groups and companies. She is coordinator of ties between Emek Hefer and Richmond, VA for the Jewish Agency. Inbal is married to Tal. The couple have three children – Shahar, Ronnie, and Liri.

Ofra Hepner, 41, is married and the mother of three daughters. She holds a BA cum laude in Hebrew literature and language from Bar Ilan University and an M.Ed. cum laude from Lesley University in the use of arts in teaching. She is a teacher of literature and writes a personal column on literary themes for a women’s website. She also works as a counselor with women’s groups using literature as a tool for examining life issues.

Sara Katz was born in 1958 and is married with four children. She holds a BA in social work and law and works as an attorney, social worker, and mediator in family matters. She is responsible for the field of mediation in WIZO Jerusalem.
Sara wrote a book entitled "Bridge over Troubled Waters" about the use of mediation in divorce. She was one of the founders of the Israel Union for Environmental Defense. She is a member of the judges’ panel of the Shelli Fund, which awards grants to environmental NGOs.

Tsippy Levin Byron was born in Tel Aviv and works as a lecturer and counselor in the fields of Bible and Jewish philosophy in communal and academic frameworks. She is studying for a PhD in comparative literature at Bar IIan University. Her thesis addressed the representation of secular Jewish identity in literary writing. Tsippy is a secular rabbi, ordained by Tmura in Jerusalem. She is a graduate of the Helicon poetry class in Mishkenot Sha’ananim, and her poems have been published in literary journals and in her own books: Buried in Sand (Aked, 1995), Reading the Liver (Hakibbutz Hameuchad, 2000), Soft Back (Rhythm series, Hakibbutz Hameuchad, 2006), and The Theory of Relativity of the Pineapple (Rhythm series, Hakibbutz Hameuchad, 2010).

Edna Mazor was born and raised in Nahariya, where her family was involved in Emet VeShalom Congregation since its establishment. She has lived in Kfar Sava for 31 years and is married to Rabbi Yehoram Mazor. Their son, Rabbi Oded, is a member of Kibbutz Hanaton, and their daughter Noa is a member of Kibbutz Ketura. Edna is a teacher of Judaism, coordinating and running the Nativ course in the central region, which addresses the teaching of basic Jewish studies to soldiers in the process of conversion. She also works as a linguistic educator. Edna holds a BA in psychology and will shortly complete studies for an MA in Jewish Studies.

Michal Segal
was raised on a kibbutz in the 1950s and 1960s. After completing her military service, she moved to Haifa, and since the late 1970s she has lived in the Gush Dan area. She holds a BA in special education, literature, and language, and an MA and PhD in linguistics. She worked in remedial teaching and counseling in the IDF Education Corps and now works as a lecturer in the Kibbutz Seminar. Michal also writes and edits books, and has published three books in the field of the linguistic development of children.

Eli Sharon is a Jerusalemite who was born in Magdiel transit camp and grew up in the Ajami neighborhood of Tel Aviv, in Tel Aviv itself, and in Haifa. His personal development took place in New York. He is an ordained rabbi and holds an MA in Jewish philosophy. He is also a graduate of the School of Storytelling and Psychodrama and works as a personal coach using the cognitive training method. Eli lectures in the field of Jewish culture and is a facilitator in "Torahpy" groups, which run psychodrama and bibliotherapy activities based on Biblical and Talmudic themes.

Rabbi Kinneret Shiryon was born in 1955 in North America, where she grew up. She gained a BA in comparative literature in 1977, and also holds an MA in Hebrew literature. In 1981, she was ordained at HUC New York. She has an honorary doctorate in religious studies and is a qualified spiritual counselor. Thirteen years ago, Kinneret founded Yozma Congregation in Modi’in, where she continues to serve as rabbi. She has four children and is married to Baruch. Rabbi Shiryon comments that her life so far has been challenging and satisfying, and she looks forward to further growth and activity.

Michal Yaniv received her Bachelor degree in Psychology and Philosophy from Tel Aviv University and studied Linguistic Editing at Tel Aviv University. She was the Director of the Community Programs Dept. at Beit Daniel, and was the director of the IMPJ Communities Dept. She leads, together with Rabbi Nir Barkin, the Beit Midrash at the Yozmah community in Modiin, she appreciates poetry and is involved with the relations between the Modern Hebrew language and Jewish sources of earlier times.

Hemda Zuckerman, born in 1954, has three children. She is a social worker, specializing in the field of rehabilitation. Hemda runs guidance and training programs for professionals working with populations in crisis, believes in the power of the word, and is a lover of Israel.

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 leaders to serve 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. www.huc.edu