In addition to the previously announced Scholar-in Residence in April 2019 with Brandeis Professor Marc Zvi Brettler, Rabbi Michelle H. Fisher is coming to Syracuse at Congregation Beth Sholom-Chevra Shas January 25-26 for a special Scientists in Synagogues Scholar in Residence. Rabbi Fisher is the Executive Director of MIT Hillel and the first alumna rabbi from MIT.

Rabbi Fisher earned her undergraduate degree in chemistry from Princeton University, and her Masters in Chemistry from MIT. Ordained at the Jewish Theological Seminary, she has served as the Associate Rabbi of Congregation Har Shalom in Potomac, MD and the Rabbi of Congregation B’nai Shalom in Walnut Creek, CA. She is an alumna of the Wexner Graduate Fellowship, a veteran of the US Naval Chaplain Corps, and a former student at both the Pardes Institute and the Hartman Institute in Jerusalem. Additionally, Rabbi Fisher was a Sinai and Synapses Fellow from 2013-2015. She specializes in exploring the nexus of science and religion.

Rabbi Fisher will speak on the following topics during her weekend in residence:

Friday Night Drash and Dinner: Metaphors for God
5:45 pm Asefat Shabbat, 6:00 pm Kabbalat Shabbat,
7:15 pm Dinner

God is referred to by many metaphors in our Jewish texts and liturgy. Which ones resonate for you? Which don’t? Using our modern-day science and scientific language/ideas, what new metaphors can we use to renew our prayers?

Traditional Catered Shabbat Dinner
Dinner Cost: $20/Adult, $10/Child 6-12, Children under 5 – free.
Cap: $60

Shabbat Lunch and Learn:
Religious Culture, Politics, and Science
9:30 am Shacharit Services, 12:00 pm Lunch and Learn

We like to think of science as a “pure” study, beyond external influence. Using the US and Israel as case studies, we will explore how a religious culture affects political decisions on what scientific work may easily be done.

The Shabbat Lunch and Learn does not require an RSVP.

Saturday Night Havdalah Program:
Wine in the Jewish Tradition
7:00 pm Havdalah and Wine Seminar with Light Appetizers

“Wine gladdens the heart,” but wine has a complex tradition in Judaism, often reflecting the social beliefs and concerns of the time. How has our relationship with wine been affected by our scientific knowledge and our socio-cultural beliefs?

Wine Seminar
Seminar Cost: $10/Adult Over 21

This Scholar-in-Residence weekend is sponsored by the Joseph and Leah Kalina Memorial Scholar-In-Residence Fund. It is a collaboration of the CBS-CS Adult Learning Committee and the CBS-CS Scientists in Synagogues Program. The Scientists in Synagogues Grant program is run by Sinai and Synapses in consultation with the AAAS Dialogue on Science, Ethics and Religion, and funded by the John Templeton Foundation.