Wednesday, February 13, 2008

A Life-Changing Weekend

By Jake Goodman

Storah On The Road

I want to report the news from Storahtelling’s most recent busy, fabulous, life-changing weekend! Storahtelling had three different teams going out this weekend, performing/facilitating three totally different programs, all with reportedly wild success. Here is a run-down:

Harrison Carter’s Bar-Mitzvah: Amichai Lau-Lavie, Shira Kline, Ronen Itzik, Isaac Everett, Jeremy Brown, David Wolkin and Sarah Sokolic all played various roles in making Harrison Carter’s Raising the Bar/Bar-Mitzvah a truly life-changing event. Apparently, many members of Harry’s non-Jewish family wanted to convert. While this is certainly not our goal, it does attest to the power of the ritual these Storahtellers and the Carter family helped to create. Mazal tov to Harry!

Maven Shabbaton Weekend at Temple Israel in Columbus, Ohio: Shawn Shafner and Shoshana Jedwab wowed the Temple Israel community with a full weekend of Setting the Stage, an incredibly funny/interesting/meaningful Maven Torah Reading Ritual of a very difficult parsha, and two workshops for students and educators. Some of the educators were apparently on the verge of tears during the workshop because they found the material (and Shawn’s and Shoshana’s teaching) so meaningful. They changed their lives! AND, poor Shawny and Shosh had some airplane woes that they handled with calm and grace. On the upside, Shawn apparently shook Hulk Hogan’s hand in the LaGuardia airport bathroom. I do not question, I only report.

National Union of Jewish JGBTQ Students (NUJLS) Conference at Columbia University: Amichai Lau-Lavie and Jake Goodman (whoever he is) facilitated a workshop for Columbia, Barnard and JTS students entitled “GAY-ned in Translation” at Columbia University on Sunday. Addressing the theme of “A Time of Change,” Amichai and Jake shared personal stories with the group, spoke about Storahtelling’s vission (mission/vision) and why it is directly related to Queer rights and pluralism, and engaged the participants in a short but very exciting Versatility exercise. Clearly, the Storahtelling vission is catching. We are changing their lives!

I am proud to be a member of this company. I love you all.

A cog in the life-changing wheel,

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