Since August of 2015, Rabbi Eve Posen, Assistant Rabbi at Congregation Neveh Shalom in Portland, Oregon, and one of her congregants, Lois Shenker, have been engaged in a one-on-one program of study. They are learning from one another and are a living example of inter-generational learning at its best with an age span of 45 years between them.
Their study of Pirkei Avot, a book of rabbinic commentary containing many one-sentence gems that serve as guidelines to daily living, moral, and ethical behavior, is the motivation for their writing Pirkei Imahot.
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Make for yourself a teacher. Acquire for yourself a friend.
-Pirkei Avot, Chapter 1, Mishnah (Teaching) 6.
Rabbi Eve Posen serves as the Associate Rabbi at Congregation Neveh Shalom in Portland, Oregon, where she teaches, preaches, inspires, and engages all generations of the synagogue community. Previously, Rabbi Posen spent four years as Campus Rabbi of Ann and Nate Levine Academy in Dallas, TX. Born and raised in the suburbs of Detroit, Michigan, Rabbi Posen attended the University of Michigan, Ann Arbor, where she received a B.A. in Judaic Studies. She also holds a Master’s Degree in Experiential Education from the American Jewish University’s Fingerhut School of Education. Upon her ordination from the Ziegler School of Rabbinic Studies at AJU in 2010, she received the SREL (Schechter Residency in Educational Leadership) Fellowship. Rabbi Posen is married to Duncan Gilman, and their children Shiri and Matan are a constant source of inspiration.
Lois Shenker is an educator by training, and currently spends much of her time as a writer. She has been the Director of the Early Childhood Learning Center and Program Director of the Mittleman Jewish Community Center in her home town of Portland, Oregon, has served as Administrator/Facilitator for the Oregon Board of Rabbis’ Introduction to Judaism class and has been a frequent speaker and leader of workshops on issues of Jewish parenting and family life. In May, 2016, she retired after 7 years as the Facilitator/Teacher of the Portland cohort of Mothers Circle, teaching non-Jewish mothers seeking to raise Jewish children. Her volunteer service to her community spans decades. Ms. Shenker is the author of two books: Welcome to the Family: Opening Doors to the Jewish Experience and A Blessed Dying. She has been married for 60 years to her childhood sweetheart, is the mother of 3 and their mates, and Bubbe to 11 grandchildren and 5 great grandchildren.