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Hillel at Stanford Family Newsletter 

Check out everything that's happening with Hillel at Stanford! Interested in a specific topic? Sign up options below. 
  • Resilience Boxes - The High Holiday Care Package
    A Resilience Box will help you transform the room in which you make your normal video calls into a beautiful, elevated, Jewish space that prepares you for the reflection and growth of the holidays. The box will lead you through a series of engaging activities and resources that will build your resilience, pique your curiosity, and engage in Jewish traditions around the high holidays. For students, receive a deck of Resilience Cards with activities and texts, music, and podcasts, special adornments to elevate your video space, sweet treats, and handy self-care items. For the first 180 community members who sign up, receive the deck of Resilience cards and a beautiful "Shiviti" art piece. Unfortunately, we can only mail Resilience Boxes within the United States, but will make each of the printed materials available digitally to anyone who requests it.
  • Higher Holidays: Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur Experiences
    We will welcome you to the holidays with Hillel via two videos created by Hillel at Stanford and the Office for Religious Life. The videos will arrive in your inbox one or two days ahead of Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur. You will see familiar faces-- our Stanford rabbis, musicians, and student leaders-- as we proclaim the new year, sound the shofar, and hit the low and high notes of Yom Kippur together from iconic campus locations. For a more "full service" experience, we will organize watch parties so we can pray together as a community on the holidays. These services are being produced in partnership with Hillel International and will be available to watch coast-to-coast: "In the Book” Rosh Hashanah Day 1 (September 19), Kol Nidrei (September 27), Yom Kippur and Yizkor (September 28) Reform services led by Rabbi Nikki Deblosi and Maya Abramson, using the mahzor (prayer book) Mishkan HaNefesh available online and screencast. Information about Conservative services coming soon. We also have cool opportunities planned to help delve into the themes of the holidays in creative and unusual ways, which we are calling “Unbound”. Think about the holidays reimagined through two immersive days of music, learning, comedy and conversation - all presented by some of the greatest thinkers, artists, authors and musicians of today. "Unbound" is designed in partnership with Reboot, the folks who brought us all Saturday Night Seder last spring. Registration, timing, and more information about these experiences are coming soon and will be emailed to you when available.
  • Yizkor, the Memorial Service"
    You can participate in Yizkor services led by Hillel at Stanford live by zoom on Yom Kippur day (September 28). In typical years, we read the names of people members of our community are remembering. This year, we think that it would be very meaningful to see images of these beloved people as well. If you are saying kaddish for someone, please consider sharing the name and picture of the people you are remembering and we will compile a moving montage. Only names submitted before September 10 will be guaranteed to be read by the service leaders. If you miss this deadline, don't panic. Participants will also be able to share names during the ceremony in real time. The zoom link and exact timing will be sent to your email at a future Questions about Yizkor? Please contact Jeremy Ragent
  • Community Deep Dives
    On Yom Kippur, the medieval prayer Unetaneh Tokef is grounded in the repetition of the verse: “u’t’shuvah (repentance), u’t’filah (prayer), u’tzedakah (righteous acts of giving/justice) avert the severe decree.” Over the month of Tishrei, we will explore together each of these themes with Stanford community teachers. These hour long interactive webinars are free, open to all, and are supported by our generous community members like you. Topics include: T'shuvah, The High Holidays challenge us to reckon with our flaws and missteps, and beckon us to return to our better selves. Join Donnovan Somera Yisrael, Senior Health Educator on Mental Health and Well-Being for Well-Being at Stanford for a heartfelt look into the connection between self-reflection, repentance, and resiliency. T'filah, The liturgy of the High Holidays is highly visceral and gives voice to the full range of the human experience, but how much do we know about this intricate framework and the themes contained within? Join Oshman Family JCC Director of Jewish Content Tova Birnbaum and Hillel@Stanford Executive Director Rabbi Jessica Kirschner as they help participants rediscover the hidden treasures of Judaism's most evocative and inspirational prayer experience. Tzedakah and the Ethics of Giving. Charity is what we give from love when our hearts are moved. Tzedakah is what we are obligated to give to ensure a just world. These two words, tzedekah and charity, reflect very different ways of thinking about money, society, and our roles and responsibilities as human beings and Jews. Where should our tzedakah dollars go? Join a conversation across centuries with Jewish thinkers who grapple with this imperative to give.
  • Beth Am Reform and Kol Emeth Conservative Services
    The service offerings above have been designed with students as the primary audience. While our whole extended Hillel community will be welcome, if you are looking for a more conventional synagogue-based worship experience, we've got you covered. Our wonderful local partners, Congregation Beth Am (Reform) and Congregation Kol Emeth (Conservative), have been working for months to perfect their live-streaming service capabilities, and are very graciously ready to welcome members of the Hillel at Stanford community to join them for the holidays. Beth Am Reform Services: finalized service times are coming soon, but you can register for information sent to you when available here: Kol Emeth Conservative Services: finalized service times coming soon and will be posted here for registration:, along with the ability to livestream directly from their website.
  • Community Members, Parents, and Alumni: We Need You Now"
    The theme of this year's High Holidays at Stanford is resilience. Every year, because of the support of community members like you, we are able to help our students respond to the challenges life brings with resilience, strengthened by Jewish grit, wisdom, and perspective. They need this more than ever, and we need you. The support you give now sustains a community of students throughout the year, enables us to secure the technology and training to pivot to a virtual model, support our students through this time of disruption with care packages, Shabbat-to-go kits, check-in calls, and more. Thank you in advance for your gift for our students.Donate here.
  • Questions?
    Reach out to Assistant Director Jeremy Ragent.
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