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Choose your Story!

Below you'll find a detailed outline for our Erev Shavuot Tikkun Leil. You can choose your Shavuot Story by booking in your sessions on our event page here! 


Stay in and Yin: Yoga and Meditation with Shelly Kielar - Our resident Yogi Shelly is back to get our minds and bodies ready for a night of learning. This calming session doesn't require you to bring anything except comfy clothes and a few pillows or blankets. It's really the perfect way to break from the hectic day, centre yourself for the evening ahead. 


Erev Shavuot Service with Rabbi Benji and Yoav Oved - Come together for our festival service with beautiful singing by Yoav. We will have the Siddur for the service available online and include it in a reminder email on the day.


*Keynote* New Bearings: making sense of a world in disarray with Ned Temko - Former JC editor, and veteran foreign correspondent and author, Ned Temko looks at the unsettled state of the 2020 world – from rise of far-right populism and nationalism to the coronavirus and climate change – and at how social and economic values like trust and fairness, tolerance and cooperation have become more urgently needed than ever. Join us for this talk, followed by the chance to ask your questions!

*Or Shabbat* Film Screening: The Tattooed Torah with Yael Roberts Over the last three decades, the beloved children’s book by Marvell Ginsburg, "The Tattooed Torah," has been a powerful resource for Holocaust education for children all over the world. The book recounts the true story of the rescue and restoration of a small Torah from Brno, Czechoslovakia, and teaches the Holocaust not only as a period of destruction but also as an opportunity for redemption. We'll send a link so you can watch at home, and then come together afterwards! Mainly aimed at Or Shabbat families, though all are welcome.


Dine or Dessert! with various member hosts - We'll be having time for people to finish eating dinner and giving you the opportunity to connect with other members in smaller rooms as you share your own stories on how you're doing right now or some past lockdown anecdotes! 


Out of the Darkness: Mental Health  with Jonny Benjamin and Abbie Mitchell - Mental Health Awareness Campaigners, Jonny Benjamin and Abbie Mitchell hold an In Conversation on Mental Health. This will be a chance to hear their stories and ask your questions. Whilst awareness about Mental Health is getting better, it's through real stories and education that we can ensure that everyone knows it's good to talk, to ask for help and to take care of yourself.  

Is Storytelling Central to being Jewish? with Rabbi Dr Thomas Salamon - Oy! Another Spiel? Not quite! Our Emeritus Rabbi leads this exciting discussion on storytelling, bringing in Chassidic Rabbis, Martin Buber and quote from Michael Gladwell. 

Another Side of the Stories & Music of Shavuot with Yoav Oved - To celebrate Shavuot, our lovely Cantor, Yoav, brings us different Shavuot songs from different Shavuot traditions across the globe. There will be stories, singing and a chance to be 'experimental' with your voice. 


Before the Law: A Story about the Stories we tell ourselves with Rabbi Benji Stanley - Our resident Rabbi invites you to join him as we read and delve into Franz Kafka’s short story Before the Law sitting in its existential ambiguity and looking to draw the courage and clarity to live.

Thoughts, Words & Actions: The Three Holy Garments as Daily Practice with Alexander Massey - Prayer leader, celebrant, writer, teacher, cantorial soloist, and published composer of Jewish sacred music, Alexander Massey invites you to this texutal and practical journey through Tazria-Metzora, Talmud and Tanya, learning how to navigate the life of the beinoni, the in-between.


From Our Table: Dairy Delights with Niklas Von Mehren - Need a pick me up? Maybe a Midnight Feast? You're in luck! Culinary Wizard Niklas takes our chef's hat as he treats us to some dairy dishes you can make to celebrate Shavuot. We'll be sending out an ingredients list beforehand so you can ensure you're all prepared, or just sit back and him work his magic (think Masterchef...but not quite)

Late-Night Tales with Yelala with Kohenet Yael Tischler and Kohenet Yael Tischler - As we draw closer and closer to midnight, it feels like an opportune time to soften our eyelids with stories. Join  Kohenet Yael Tischler of Yelala to hear a collection of Jewish folktales and fairytales, as we await the revelation of the greatest Jewish story of all time. 

Kohenet Rachel Rose Reid and Kohenet Yael Tischler are the first women based outside of North America to be ordained by the Kohenet Hebrew Priestess Institute. They are the co-founders of Yelala, a constellation of work that celebrates Earth-centred, feminist Jewish spirituality and reclaims the practices of our women/femme and folk ancestors. They are ritual-weavers, and spinners of songs and stories.

Yael is passionate about the power of myth to heal and transform individuals, communities and the world. Her work is the making, breaking and remaking of stories into immersive ritual experiences for the sake of personal and political liberation. She holds an MA in Writing for Young People from Bath Spa University, a BA in English Literature from Columbia University and a BA in Tanakh (Bible) from the Jewish Theological Seminary. She looks forward to stepping deeper into Jewish leadership through study at Leo Baeck College, when she enters the Rabbinic Programme in September 2020.

Rachel's work encompasses story, song, community activism, and ritual. She was a founding resident of Moishe House London. Whether holding space at Sukkat Shalom, Limmud South Africa, Wilderness Torah, or the Sadeh, her priority is the renewal of meaningful, living connection with Jewish-rooted spiritual practice and ancestors, in particular for those who struggle to find themselves reflected in institutional spaces. She is an award-winning writer and storyteller who has worked with Billy Bragg, BBC Radio and the London Symphony Orchestra.


Whiskey Room with various member hosts - All good Westminster Events end in the Whiskey Room, and tonight is no exception. Pour a dram and catch up with members and friends. Share things you've learnt through the day or just swap stories on how you're getting on. Though we might have to ask you to bring the whiskey yourself this time, we'll still be able to Le'Chaim all together and enjoy being connected, even if we can't be in the same room.

Choose your Story!

Excited? You can choose your Shavuot Story by booking in your sessions on our event page by clicking here! 

Sun, 26 May 2024 18 Iyar 5784