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Adult Learning

Hebrew Union College Connect Series 2021
Psalms for a Pandemic with Rabbi Debra Robbins 2021

Hebrew Union College (HUC) Connect 2021

Click here for more information and to register for the following events:

  • April 7 - Opening the ark/bringing a lost polish synagogue to life
  • April 27 - The world of the Cairo Genizah/Medieval Islam
  • May 11 - Jews of Color
  • May 13 - Inter-sectional Jewish Identities
  • June 1 - Creative thinking as our compass/navigating uncertainty with optimism (Miriam Heller Stern)
  • June 8 - Chagall and the Bible

Psalms for a Pandemic with Rabbi Debra Robbins

Offered Thursday mornings from 9 - 9:45 a.m.

The Psalms have spoken to people of faith across time and space and give voice to the varied emotions not only of our ongoing pandemic but of the holidays and historical observances that fill the calendar in the month of April. Join Rabbi Debra Robbins and a diverse group of learners as we connect with each other with the poems of the bible that open our minds and hearts. Bring a pencil and some paper and be prepared to turn on your video so we can be in conversation with each other.

No experience or preparation necessary. Come every week or come when you can! See the list of Psalms for each week below as well as recommended reading. Psalms for April are posted below.

We will start promptly but feel free to come at 8:50 to visit and get settled. No registration in advance is required; simply click to join on Zoom.  Zoom link for April 

Recommended reading:

  • This article by Rabbi Rachel Adler has informed my thinking and will enhance your experience of the Psalms, during a pandemic and beyond.  
  • Build your library! There are many translations of Psalms and we will explore a variety of them in class. Our base text will be the translation and commentary by Rabbi Richard Levy, published recently entitled, "Songs Ascending."  If you’d like to own a copy of this beautiful book, Here’s the link  
  • "Psalms as the Ultimate Self Help," by Rabbi Simcha Weintraub
  • "Songs Ascending," by Rabbi Richard Levy. Hebrew text and translation with commentary that explores the nuances of the Hebrew and brief essays on the possible spiritual application of each psalm.
  • "Our Haven and Our Strength," by Martin Samuel Cohen. Hebrew text, translation and commentary in the form of a short essay connecting a theme of the psalm to the life of the reader.
  • "The Book of Psalms, A Translation with Commentary," by Robert Alter. Translation and commentary that focuses on the nuances of Hebrew language, metaphor, and historical context.
  • "The Complete Psalms, The Book of Prayer Songs in a New Translation," by Pamela Greenberg. Poetic, vibrant, and accessible translation through which the reader is invited to engage directly with God.
  • "Joy, Despair and Hope: Reading Psalms," by Edward Feld. Short essays on 14 different psalms from a progressive and open hearted perspective. Psalms No More by AJ Berkovitz, Professor of Bible at HUC-JIR in NY
  • "Psalms No More" by AJ Berkovitz, Professor of Bible at HUC-JIR NYC 

Current Programs

Historic Torah Scroll

Adult learners at Temple Emanu-El will have a special opportunity to study Torah from a scroll that is almost 150 years old! Click here to learn more. 


For more information about these or other adult learning programs, please contact Rachel Tucker at or 214-706-0000 ext. 131.