top of page

CURRENT PROGRAMS

BJCC Events 2023

Presentation on “Jewish Life Under Muslim Rule,” by Rabbi Judith Seid, Friday, January 6, 7:30PM

Rabbi Judith Seid will speak on "The History of Jewish Life Under Muslim Rule" on Friday, January 6 at 7:30PM via Zoom. Judith is a secular rabbi, founder of the Baltimore Jewish Cultural Chavurah 24 years ago and now the founder/leader of a similar community in the Bay Area.

To participate or for more information, please contact us at baltimoresecularjews@gmail.com.

Nneka N’namdi will address the BJCC on Stop Oppressive Seizures (SOS), a subsidiary of Fight Blight Bmore, of which she both founded. In Baltimore City, people can lose their homes over unpaid bills or taxes as low as hundreds of dollars. SOS organizes against this situation. SOS is one of our two tzedakah recipients for the current fiscal year.

To participate or for more information, please contact us at baltimoresecularjews@gmail.com.

Sunday, January 22, 10:30AM – Presentation by Nneka N’namdi, founder of Stop Oppressive Seizures, a tzedakah recipient for 2022–2023

Join the Baltimore Jewish Cultural Chavurah and other congregations and organizations in the Baltimore area for our 6th Annual Martin Luther King, Jr. event of a movie screening, panel, and talkback on Sunday, January 15 at 1:00PM. The event will be held at Baltimore Hebrew Congregation, 7401 Park Heights Avenue, Baltimore 21208.

 

This year's event will feature the film "On These Grounds," an award-winning documentary that explores the school-to-prison pipeline by focusing on an explosive video of a white school resource officer in South Carolina throwing a Black teenager from her school desk. The movie explores what role race played in the incident, examining the disparate media coverage of the incident and the origins of criminalizing children's behavior in school. Our panel discussion will include speakers from the Office of the Public Defender, Baltimore Algebra Project, and Youth as Resources. 

 

The event is free and light refreshments will be served. Click here to register:

BHC Justice: MLK Weekend "On These Grounds"

Sunday, January 15, 1:00 PM - Martin Luther King Day Film and Discussion

New BJCC logo colorful.png

Friday February 17, 7:30PM – “The Founding Fathers Views of Religion: The Letter from George Washington to the Jews of Newport” an IN-PERSON talk by David Saltzberg

In honor of Presidents' Day weekend, on Friday, February 17, BJCC member David Saltzberg will present on "The Founding Fathers’ Views of Religion: The Letter from George Washington to the Jews of Newport".  He will discuss the status of the American Jewish community at the time of the American Revolution and how the community was impacted by the Founders' views of religion. We will read the foundational letter from Washington establishing religious and civil equality for religious minorities.

This is an in-person event. For people who are concerned about Covid, we have 2 provisions with the event. Between 7:30 – 8:00 PM there will be food and socializing. People should bring dairy or vegetarian appetizers or desserts to share. At 8:00 PM, the food will be put away and everyone will be required to wear masks when the program begins. All attendees must be fully vaccinated and boosted.

The event is in person only. To participate in the event, please contact baltimoresecularjews@gmail.com for directions.

Sunday March 5, 10:30AM – Purim Party at the home of Robyn Hughes.

**Program Cancelled**

Due to unforseen circumstances, this event is being cancelled. We apologize and hope to try again next year. Thanks.

Sunday March 26, 10:30AM – Harvey Milk: Secular Humanist Role Model 2022-2023

The Society for Humanistic Judaism, the umbrella organization of the BJCC, has chosen Harvey Milk as its Secular Humanist Role Model for 2022-2023. Arlene Ogurick will discuss Milk’s life as a gay activist and member of San Francisco city council before his untimely assassination.

 

For people who are concerned about Covid, we have 2 options to participate in the program. If participating in person, from 10:30AM – 11:15AM, there will be food and socializing. Participants should bring brunch-type appetizers or desserts to share. At 11:15AM, the food will be put away and everyone will be required to wear masks when the program begins. Anyone who only wants to be in a masked environment should arrive at 11:15AM. All attendees must be fully vaccinated and boosted.

 

We will also have the event available via audio-only on zoom. You will be able to call in and listen to the speaker and hear excerpts from a documentary film. To participate in the event, please contact baltimoresecularjews@gmail.com for directions if participating in person, or for the zoom link if participating in the audio-only zoom option.

Sunday, April 9, 5:30 PM - In-person Secular Passover Seder

We will be holding a secular humanistic seder on Sunday, April 9, 5:30 PM at the Summit Chase Clubhouse, 2405 Green Summit Rd. in Pikesville (see below for directions).

 

IMPORTANT:  Only people who have received anti-Covid vaccines and booster shots will be admitted.  People will be expected to wear masks when not eating or drinking.  If you have already RSVP’d you do not need to again.  If you have not already RSVP’d, please do so by April 5, to baltimoresecularjews@gmail.com.

 

Admission is free (donation accepted). Everyone attending is asked to bring a dish to share.  We will provide the entrée of Peruvian chicken and also beverages. If your dish needs heating, please bring a warming device.

Directions: 

From the north:  Take the Beltway or Old Court Rd. SOUTH to Greenspring Av., toward the City.  Pass Quarry Lake on right.  Take a left at the 2nd light onto Green Summit Rd.

Pass Chasemount, Stablemere, fields and swimming pool on the right, then right into the parking lot next to a one-level building. If you come to Diana Rd. you’ve gone a bit too far.

 

From the south:  Take Greenspring Av. NORTH toward the Beltway.  Just past Lighfoot, right onto Green Summit Rd., then follow directions above (lines 3 – 4).

Sunday, April 30, 10:30 AM - B’more Community Food

J.C. Faulk, the founder of B'more Community Food, a program of An End to Ignorance, Inc., will speak on Sunday, April 30, at 10:30AM via Zoom. B'more Community Food is one of our two tzedakah recipients this year. Faulk founded BCF during the pandemic and began by distributing food out of his car. The organization gathers food from restaurants, farms, and individual donors, distributing more than 1.7 million pounds of food in 2021. BCF is described as "one of the largest food rescue organizations exclusively serving our city." J.C. Faulk is a documentary producer and a diversity and inclusion consultant. An End to Ignorance "addresses racism, other isms and phobias". 

To participate or for more information, please contact us at baltimoresecularjews@gmail.com.

A docent-guided tour of the exhibit “Material/Inheritance: Contemporary Work” will take place at the Jewish Museum of Maryland (15 Lloyd St., Baltimore 21202) starting at 10:30 AM (participants should arrive at 10:15 AM). This is a new exhibition featuring 30 artists whose work has been supported by the New Jewish Culture Fellowship (NJCF), a national arts fellowship that advances the work of groundbreaking Jewish artists.

Featured Artists of the exhibit include: Hadar Ahuvia, Jett Allen, Zoë Aqua, Liat Berdugo, Danielle Durchslag, Jay Eddy, Laura Elkeslassy, Julia Elsas, Dan Fishback, Fancy Feast, Ben Gassman, Ariel Goldberg, Shterna Goldbloom, Jake Goldwasser,  Adam Golfer, Tom Haviv , Adah Hetko, Rosza Daniel, Lang/Levitsky, Ellie Lobovits, Michael McCanne, Tyler Rai, Nora Rodriguez, Naomi Safran-Hon, Arielle Stein, Nat Sufrin, Tatyana Tenenbaum, Ira Khonen Temple, Katz Tepper, Daniel Terna, Mariya Zilberman.

To participate or for more information, please contact us at baltimoresecularjews@gmail.com.

Sunday, May 7, 10:30AM – “Material/Inheritance: Contemporary Work by  NewJewish Culture Fellows”

Friday, May 19, 7:30PM – Antisemitism 2023: Alternative Views

The program originally scheduled for May 19, "Israel Update" by Rabbi Jeremy Kridel, will be rescheduled for the fall.

On May 19, Fred Pincus will discuss alternative approaches to understanding antisemitism.

 

Is there a “new” antisemitism that is different from the more classic form? Is antizionism necessarily antisemitic?  Fred will compare the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA) Working Definition of Antisemitism with the Jerusalem Definition.

The talk will be on Zoom and will begin at  7:30PM.

 

To view the documents go to https://www.holocaustremembrance.com/resources/working-definitions-charters/working-definition-antisemitism for the IHRA definition and  https://jerusalemdeclaration.org/ for the Jerusalem Declaration definition. 

Fred Pincus is an emeritus professor of sociology at UMBC where he taught about racial conflict and diversity for 44 years. He is the author of 5 books and numerous articles about prejudice and racism and is a founding member of the BJCC.

To participate or for more information, please contact us at baltimoresecularjews@gmail.com.

Sunday, June 25, 5:00 PM - BJCC Picnic/BBQ

BJCC invites both members and non-members to our annual picnic on Sunday, June 25 at 5:00PM.  Hot dogs, hamburgers, veggie burgers and beverages will be provided. Attendees should bring side-dishes or desserts to share. This event is free.

Please contact us at baltimoresecularjews@gmail.com for the location and any additional questions.

Sunday, August 27, 1:35 PM - Orioles Game 

Come join our friends from Chevrei Tzedek Congregation to cheer for the Orioles as they take on the Colorado Rockies. The game will be on Sunday, August 27 at 1:35 PM. The tickets are $20 each. The seats are in the upper deck, section 340 behind home plate, rows 22, 23, and 24. They are high up so they will be in the shade for most of the game. Deadline to order tickets is July 26.

 

Please contact us at baltimoresecularjews@gmail.com to request tickets or for more information.

High Holidays with Machar

Our sister organization, Machar Congregation of Greater Washington, has invited the BJCC to join them for High Holiday celebrations both in-person and online.

 

Their schedule is as follows:

 

Rosh Hashanah service - 10:30AM on September 16

Kol Nidre service - 7:30PM on September 24

Yom Kippur service - 10:30AM on September 25

 

These services will be held at the Unitarian Universalist Congregation of Rockville, 100 Welsh Park Drive, Rockville, MD 20850. They will also be live-streamed (links not yet available).

 

The discounted cost for paid up BJCC members to attend Machar’s in-person services will be $50 per service. Whether or not there will be a cost for the live-streamed services has not been decided. See https://machar.org/holidays/ for registration details.

 

Other SHJ affiliates are also offering High Holidays programming that will be open to BJCC members and friends. For example, the Congregation for Humanistic Judaism of Fairfield County (Connecticut) will be doing a High Holidays program over their youtube channel. For details, see their website (https://humanisticjews.org/). Per Art Starr, who has seen their programming in the past, this program should be well-organized, meaningful, and feature wonderful music.

Friday,  September 22, 6:00 PM - BJCC Pot Luck Dinner

We will gather for an informal, High Holidays-themed pot luck dinner. Everyone is encouraged to bring food containing apples and/or honey or other dishes you associate with the High Holidays. We will hold our regular, brief Friday night rituals, but please note that this will not be a High Holidays service.

Please contact us at baltimoresecularjews@gmail.com for the location and any additional questions.

Friday, October 13, 7:30 PM - Jewish Humor & Culture in MAD Magazine

The BJCC will screen the video “Jewish Humor & Culture in MAD Magazine,” a talk by Rabbi Kenny Weiss. Weiss is the rabbi and executive director for Houston Hillel. Kenny is also a lecturer in religious studies at the University of Houston. Prior to arriving at Houston Hillel in 2001, Kenny served as a congregational rabbi in Bucks County, Pennsylvania, and D.C.

 

From 1952 - 2019 MAD magazine was an influential source of satire on American culture and

a real cornerstone in the lives of many Baby Boomers. Most of MAD’s founders and many of its writers and artists were Jewish.  Rabbi Weiss will illustrate (so to speak) the ways in which Jewish culture appeared in MAD and how that reflected the question of American Jewish identity the second half of the 20th century.

Please email baltimoresecularjews@gmail.com for the zoom link and any additional questions.

Sunday, October 29, 10:30 AM - Hebrew Braille Talk

Please join the Baltimore Jewish Cultural Chavurah for a virtual Talk by Rabbi Lenny Sarko  to learn about his exciting and important Hebrew braille program.

Rabbi Lenny Sarko is the spiritual leader of the Reform Congregation Emanu-El Israel in Greensburg, PA. He received smicha (rabbinical ordination) from the Rabbinical Seminary International in New York City. After losing some of his vision in 2016, Rabbi Sarko and a dedicated group of his CEI congregants embarked on an ambitious mission to create and run a Hebrew braille program that today ranges from producing/lending braille Sifrei Torah (Torah scrolls) and Hebrew/English braille siddurim (prayer books) to providing virtual/in-person Hebrew braille tutoring for Jews with low vision/blindness across the US and internationally.

BJCC member Robyn Hughes was interviewed by the Baltimore Jewish Times about this upcoming talk on Jewish braille. The article is available through this link: https://www.jewishtimes.com/baltimore-jewish-cultural-chavurah-to-explore-hebrew-braille-at-upcoming-lecture/

bottom of page