LimmudFest 2021 LimmudFest 2021

Current Events

Sunday, March 14, 2021

- CDT
Accessibility & Dignity: The Amazing Legacies of Rabbi Adin Steinsaltz and Rabbi Lord Jonathan Sacks
Rabbi Dr Raphael Zarum
Rabbi Dr Raphael Zarum
London School of Jewish Studies (LSJS), Dean

Why are these two men so important for the Jewish people today? Without one the Talmud would be a closed book for most modern Jews, and without the other, the deep meaning of Jewish tradition and the potential of the Jewish people would be diminished. In this session, their lives, ideas, and achievements will be summarised and peppered with personal stories. Laugh, learn, cry and hope…

This session is sponsored by the Sherry & Alan Leventhal Center for Interfaith Families.

- CDT
Israel: Democracy on Life Support - Trying to Find the Pulse of a Nation
Mitchell Barak
Mitchell Barak
KEEVOON Research, Founder

Israel is in the midst of its fourth Parliamentary election in two years. The Knesset and the Government are barely functioning in one of the most challenging times in Israel’s history. People have lost faith in their elected officials who seemed detached from any reality or sense of responsibility. Why is Israeli Democracy on life support? Do Israelis have a pulse? Understanding who Israelis are and what they think is the key to understanding Israel. Utilizing exclusive public opinion research and polling data, a thorough perspective of Israelis is presented. What is the difference between Israeli Jews and Israeli Israelis? Ashkenazim and Sephardim? Left and Right? Religious and Secular? Veterans and Immigrants? Jews and Arabs? Learn how these various demographic groups impact the political system and the Knesset.

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In Quarantine with Anne Frank
Dr. Naomi Yavneh Klos
Dr. Naomi Yavneh Klos
Loyola University of New Orleans, Professor of Languages and Cultures

In the early days of the pandemic, the name Anne Frank was everywhere, whether as a Facebook meme or as a stern warning never to forget the unique horror of the Holocaust. But although Anne Frank is an iconic figure for Jews and non-Jews alike, most of us do not know the nuances of her story or its context in the Dutch experience of World War II. We also may not be aware that the "diary" we read is, in fact, a combination of Anne’s daily diary and her own (incomplete) revision, which she hoped to publish after the war. Looking at examples of Anne’s own writing and re-writing, we will consider how she might serve as a model of spiritual resilience and hope in a time of anxiety and hate.

- CDT
Israel and Our Jewish Values: Where do they mesh? Where do they conflict?
Rabbi Debra Kassoff
Rabbi Debra Kassoff
Hebrew Union Congregation, Rabbi
Rabbi David Gerber
Rabbi David Gerber
Gates of Prayer Synagogue, Senior Rabbi
Lynne Wasserman
Lynne Wasserman
Avodah, Board Chair

Join our panel of rabbis who lean left, right, and center for an honest discussion on the current state of affairs in Israel relating to the situation vis a vis the Palestinians and all aspects of Jewish life. Moderated by Lynne Wasserman, we will cover not only what we love about Israel, but also what bothers us and why. Bring your curiosity and your questions.

- CDT
Jewish Leadership in Turbulent Times
Aaron Ahlquist
Aaron Ahlquist
Anti-Defamation League (ADL), Regional Director
Arnie Fielkow
Arnie Fielkow
Jewish Federation of Greater New Orleans, CEO

Join ADL Regional Director Aaron Ahlquist and Jewish Federation of Greater New Orleans CEO Arnie Fielkow for a discussion moderated by New Orleans Councilman Joe Giarrusso about meeting the challenges facing the Jewish community in an environment of polarization, rising Antisemitism, pandemic, and fraying Jewish unity and identity. The conversation will frame the challenges, and discuss the work being done to navigate the troubled waters.

This session is generously sponsored by the Goldring Family Foundation Center for Jewish-Multicultural Affairs.