Previous Initiatives & Events

Jewish Wisdom and Wellness: A Week of Learning

Jewish Wisdom and Wellness: A Week of Learning was a community-wide series of lectures and workshops, mining the Jewish tradition to improve health and well-being in the Jewish community.

2012 Jewish Seminary Pastoral Educator Conference

The Kalsman Institute on Judaism and Health and the UJA-Federation of New York co-sponsored and coordinated a rabbinic seminary pastoral educator conference to explore pedagogy, advance field-building, and disseminate scholarly findings in pastoral education.

10th North American Chevra Kadisha and Jewish Cemetery Conference

The 10th North American Chevra Kadisha and Jewish Cemetery Conference took place June 10-12, 2012 at American Jewish University.

Midrash and Medicine

The Midrash and Medicine conference highlighted leadership and innovation in the healthcare and Jewish healing fields. Presentations and interactive workshops drew from scholars of midrash, health and spiritual care providers, and artists who are creatively engaged in the landscapes of illness, wholeness, and spirit. Presenters at the conference included musician and performer extraordinaire, Debbie Friedman; noted expert in the field of Judaism, Health, and Healing with respect to Aging, Rabbi Dayle Friedman, and renowned scholars of Midrash from Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion, Drs. Norman Cohen and Lewis Barth.
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North American Chevra Kadisha Conference
Annually in June (June 11-13, 2006)

Kavod v'Nichum (Honor and Comfort) presents this conference to provide training, identify resources and encourage networking among Chevra Kadisha groups and bereavement committees in U.S. and Canadian synagogues and communities.

Sherut L'Am Award

As a part of the 2005 Partner Gathering, the Kalsman Institute and Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion presented Kalsman Partner Debbie Friedman with the Sherut L'Am Award in recognition of her contribution to the Jewish healing community.
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Kalsman Institute Partner Gathering III

Professor Victor Fuchs at the 2005 Kalsman Institute Partner Gathering lectures on economics of medicine. Fuchs is the Henry J. Kaiser, Jr., Professor of Economics and of Health Research and Policy, Emeritus, at Stanford University.
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Models of Cooperation: Reflections on the Jewish Healing Movement

Along with the Bay Area Jewish Healing Center. In December, 2003, the Kalsman Institute presented a conference for the leadership of the Jewish healing movement. Celebrating the 13th year of this movement, the conference presented models for creating interdisciplinary teams within communities to do health-related work, and explored a vision for the future of the Jewish healing world.
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Mining the Jewish Tradition for its Healing Wisdom

May, 2003, Scottsdale Arizona: an unprecedented gathering of 275 individuals eager tto dig deeper into what Jewish text and tradition teach about health and healing. The HUC-JIR Kalsman Institute on Judaism and Helath and Temple Chai of Phoenix co-sponsored this important milestone in the Jewish healing movement.
Click here to view video: Part 1, Part 2, and Part 3.

Kalsman Institute Partner Gathering II

In January 2003, more than 80 Partners of the Kalsman Institute on Judaism and Health gathered in Southern California to assess the status of their healing work and formulate strategies for the future of their communities. Main presentations included: Thinking About Stigma: What the Health and Human Rights Movement and the Jewish Health and Healing Movement Can Learn From Each Other; Jewish Texts on Stigma; the Changing/Changed Jewish Community; and New Models of Collaboration.
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Mental Illness in the Jewish Community: Help, Hope and Healing
October 20, 2002

A consortium of northern California Peninsula synagogues, the Bay Area Jewish Healing Center and the Kalsman Institute presented a one-day conference on reducing the stigma of mental illness in the Jewish community.
To view all HUC-JIR video/audio recordings, go to