Zra'eem (Seeds), new Jewish Renewal Havurah (Community)
- Name: Yonina Andrea Foster
- Occasion: New Jewish Renewal Community in Germantown
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE: April 25, 2012
Contact (301) 353-1814; Andrea@Yoninatorahseed.com.
A New Jewish Renewal Community Takes Root in Germantown, Maryland
Germantown, Maryland - March 30, 2012 - Jewish Renewal experiences for body, mind, and soul are being created at “Zra’eem” (sounds like zhrah’eem and means Seeds,) a new Havurah (Community) blossoming in Germantown. Find out more about dates and times at Dr. Yonina Andrea Foster’s website www.yoninatorahseed.com.
Zra'eem arose from Foster's interest in Social History and Community Identity, the focus of her dissertation from George Washington University. Zra’eem meets at 16913 Germantown Road in the yurt at Sugarloaf Congregation of Unitarian Universalists.
All are welcome to help plant Torah seeds with Dr. Foster. Foster, an ALEPH Rabbinic Student and Spiritual Leader is Zra’eem’s founder. She is an exuberant teacher and graduate of the Davvenen' Leadership Training Institute. Possibilities in building Zra’eem are endless. Join her for prayer (davvenen’), study, song, chant, walking in nature, life cycle events, and more.
Foster loves creating, musical, contemplative services and programs. In addition, believing holiness is all around, Foster takes prayer into nature. Find her on spiritual walks and hikes in local parks.
During Zra’eem’s recent Friday night service, the group sang traditional and contemporary prayers and songs to welcome the Sabbath, the Jewish day of rest. Everyone’s voices, guitar and rhythm instruments supported the uplifting moment.
Before singing “L’cha Dodi,” “Come My Friend,” or “Beloved,” everyone walked out of the prayer space onto the adjoining hillside. Some spontaneously turned west toward the setting sun to receive, to welcome, the Sabbath. This tradition, known as Kabbalat Shabbat, is mentioned in the Talmud (200 CE - 500 CE) and became a custom of the 16th century mystics in Safed, Israel. We now carry on this tradition here in Germantown, Maryland.
Jewish Renewal creates a deep and meaningful path to the Divine, God, through meditation, prayer, music and chant, dance, study, and spiritually-rooted social action. Jewish Renewal combines ancient and modern Jewish wisdom, integrating devotional and mystical traditions with progressive egalitarian consciousness.
Learn more about ALEPH at www.aleph.org; and DLTI, www.davvenenleadership.com.