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Monday, June 14, 2010

At every critical juncture in Jewish history, Jews have understood a dynamic theology to be essential for a vital Jewish community. This important collection, “Jewish Theology in Our Time: A New Generation Explores the Foundations and Future of Jewish Belief" (Jewish Lights Publishing), which features a preface by Dr. Carole Balin, Professor of Jewish History at HUC-JIR/NY and essays by HUC-JIR faculty and alumni, sets the next stage of Jewish theological thought, bringing together a cross section of interesting new voices from all movements in Judaism to inspire and stimulate discussion now and in the years to come.  Provocative and wide-ranging, these invigorating and creative insights from a new generation’s thought leaders provide a coherent and inspiring picture of Jewish belief in our time.  Contributors to the volume include HUC-JIR faculty and alumni: Rabbi Bradley Shavit Artson, D.H.L., Rabbi Carole B. Balin, Ph.D., Rabbi Rachel Sabath Beit-Halachmi, Ph.D., Rabbi Daniel M. Bronstein, Ph.D., Rabbi Jonathan Crane, Ph.D., Rabbi Naamah Kelman, Rabbi Michael Marmur, Ph.D., Rabbi Evan Moffic, and Rabbi Leon A. Morris.  Click here for further information.


Dr. Jason Kalman, Assistant Professor of classical Hebrew text and interpretation at HUC-JIR/Cincinnati, recently co-authored “Canada's Big Biblical Bargain: How McGill University Bought the Dead Sea Scrolls” with Jaqueline S. du Toit.  Their new book tells the story of Canada's attempt to purchase the greatest manuscript discovery of the twentieth century.  The discovery in 1947 of the first pieces of the Dead Sea Scrolls, biblical texts dating from the time of Jesus, grabbed headlines around the world and catalyzed as many controversies and conspiracy theories over their ownership as debates about their place in Christianity and Judaism. Years later McGill University and the Vatican were among the first institutions to buy a significant selection of these texts from Jordan in order to protect them from the black market. Canada's Big Biblical Bargain recounts the nearly forgotten story of the complicated purchase of these texts by McGill University and the reasons they never arrived.  Click here for further                                                 information.

Rabbi Dalia Marx, Assistant Professor of Liturgy and Midrash at HUC-JIR/Jerusalem, recently published “When I Sleep and When I Wake: On Prayers between Dusk and Dawn” (2010, Hebrew).  Her book, which deals with day and night prayer books, describes in detail the fascinating history of these texts and rituals from the time of the sages to today's modern arrangements.  The book offers the reader a wide-ranging historical survey with surprising and new interpretations of well-known texts. Click here for further information.





Rabbi Dr. Marc Rosenstein, Director of the Israel Rabbinic Program at HUC-JIR/Jerusalem, recently published “Galilee Diary: Reflections on Daily Life in Israel” (URJ Press, 2010).  For most American Jews, Israel is only seen through the lens of the political debate, the impressions of the news report, or the windows of a tour bus. Begun as a weekly online essay in response to the Second Intifada in 2000, “Galilee Diary” goes beyond the headlines to provide an insider’s view of the rich and complex reality that is Israel. First time readers and longtime fans of the series will enjoy this multidimensional look at Israel, which includes revised and updated highlights from the popular online series.  Click here for further information.

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.