In-Person Outdoor Picnic July 11

The BJCC will hold its first post-pandemic outdoor event when we gather in the back yard of a member's house at 5:00 PM on Sunday July 11. Fully-vaccinated members and non-members are welcome. This is a good time members to socialize with friends and for new folks to meet BJCC members.


Although we've shared food in a pot-luck spirit in the past, we think it best for everyone to bring and eat their own food this time. It seems safer. We will provide beverages and dinnerware.


In case it rains or is too hot, we will send around a cancellation email by noon on July 11. The rain date is the following weekend July 18. For information about the specific address please contact We hope to see you there.

Our next event will be an outdoor showing of the movie "Broadway Danny Rose" on Sunday August 22 at 8:00. The film stars Woody Allen, Mia Farrow and Nick Apollo Forte. In his attempts to reconcile a lounge singer with his mistress, a hapless talent agent is mistaken for her lover by a jealous gangster. For more information contact us at

In-Person Outdoor Movie August 22

American Jews and Surnames, Sunday, October 10, 10:30 AM

"Why and How (Many) American Jews Changed Their Surnames;" a talk by Bob Jacobson. 

Bob Jacobson (family name Jakubowicz until 1902) will present mostly based on the book

A Rosenberg By Any Other Name, by Kirsten Fermaglich, who studied New York City court

records as well as national trends and patterns in name changing.  We'll also discuss surname

changes among our own families, friends and acquaintances, focusing on the motivations of

those who changed their names. The talk will take place via Zoom on Sunday October 10 at 10:30AM.


Bob is a long-time member and current vice president of the BJCC. He has conducted a great deal of genealogical research and is a local musician.

I*Virtual Event* 

Friday, July 23, 2021 from 7:30 pm - 9:30 pm.

Please join us Friday, July 23rd at 7:30 pm for the second talk in a two part series by David Saltzberg, a BJCC member. Franklin Delano Roosevelt was the most important president of the 20th century. He was elected four times and confronted the Great Depression and World War II. He struggled with problems eerily similar to our day, including nativism, white nationalism, isolationism, religious prejudices, and economic insecurity. He is viewed as a highly successful president.

But was he good for the Jews? In this second session, we will explore the status of Jews in America in the 1940s and discuss Roosevelt's relationship with Jews and the Holocaust.
David Saltzberg is a practicing gastroenterologist at GBMC. He has a master’s degree in Jewish history from the Baltimore Hebrew Institute at Towson University. David has lectured on topics at the intersection of Jewish and American life, including Jewish medical ethics, Jews in sports, and a modern view of circumcision.

Please contact to get the Zoom link.

FDR and the Jews, Part 2: 1939-1945

“Jewish Humor”, Sunday, November 7, 10:30AM

Arlene Ogurick will present "Jews and Humor," on Sunday, November 7 at 10:30AM. Speaking about Jews, Sigmund Freud (who wrote a book about jokes!) said "I do not know whether there are many other instances of a people making fun to such a degree of its own character.” Arlene will base her talk mostly on the book No Joke: Making Jewish Humor by Ruth R. Wisse, a professor of Yiddish literature at Harvard University who also wrote The Schlemeil as Modern Hero. 


Arlene is a member of the BJCC, a retired librarian, and an occasional clown.

Please contact to have the Zoom link forwarded to you.

Rabbi Judith Seid will speak on “This Again?: Three Unsettled Questions for Secular Jews” on Friday, November 19 at 7:30PM via Zoom.  Since the Jewish Enlightenment in central and southern Europe in the late 18th and 19th centuries, Secularist Jews have faced several continuing issues: universalism vs particularism; our relationship with the religious Jews; are/should the Jews be like any other nation or are we different? The Zoom link was sent to all paid up BJCC members. 

Rabbi Seid is a third-generation Secularist.  She holds rabbinic and cantorial degrees from the International Institute for Secular Humanistic Judaism and is the author of God-Optional Judaism, available from  She is the founder of the BJCC.

Please contact to have the Zoom link forwarded to you.

​“Recurrent Issues Facing Secular Jews” Friday, November 19, 7:30PM

A talk by Rabbi Jeremy Kridel via Zoom. Please contact for the Zoom Link.

“Jews of The West Wing”, Friday, December 17, 7:30PM

Roads Taken: The Great Jewish Migration to the New World and the Peddlers Who Forged the Way. A video talk by Hasia R. Diner, the book’s author, and Zoom discussion moderated by Hildy Sanders.

Please contact for the Zoom Link.

“Jewish Peddlers in Rural Areas”, Friday, January 7, 2022, 7:30PM

Honor Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr’s birthday at a dynamic, interactive exploration of the “Letter from a Birmingham Jail.” Students from the Baltimore School for the Arts will deliver portions of the Letter as dramatic readings. Then Pulitzer-prize winning author and King scholar Taylor Branch, grant maker and pastor Tara Huffman, and community organizer Tre’ Murphy will discuss the relevance of the Letter today – including its religious and organizing implications. You’ll be invited to share thoughts and feelings in break-out sessions with other attendees. The BJCC is one of a number of co-sponsors. You must preregister for the event,

Please see this link for more details:

“Honoring Dr. King: The Enduring Relevance of ‘Letter from a Birmingham Jail.’”, Sunday, January 16, 2022, 1:00PM

“Examining the Fetus in Jewish Texts: Implications for the American Abortion Debate,” presented by Rabbi Rory Katz, Friday, January 28, 7:30PM

According to the American Journal of Public Health, one in four women have had an abortion by the time they are 45. Abortion is a safe, essential component of health care and a basic human right. Sadly, we are living in a time where this right is being severely threatened. As we listen to the debate about abortion on the national stage, we are often given language that hampers discourse and that dehumanizes people who have abortions. In this session, Conservative Rabbi Rory Katz will guide us through a variety of Jewish texts which will provide us with a richer vocabulary for talking about abortion with greater nuance, sensitivity, and compassion.


Rabbi Katz is the spiritual leader of Baltimore’s Chevrei Tzedek Congregation. She was ordained by the Jewish Theological Seminary of America in 2019

Please contact for the Zoom Link.

The Secular Humanistic Jewish Role Model, Friday, February 11, 7:30PM

Arlene Ogurick will lead a program on Yaakov Malkin, the Secular Humanistic Jewish Role Model for this year. 


Please contact for the Zoom Link.

Presentation by Bob Jacobson on “The Expulsion of Jews from Spain and Portugal: What Happened Next?”  

Please contact for the Zoom Link.

The Expulsion of Jews from Spain and Portugal: What Happened Next?, Friday, February 25, 7:30PM

“Jews of the Land” by Rabbi Judith Seid, Friday, March 11, 7:30PM

When you think of Jewish farmers, you might think of the early pioneers and kibbutzniks in Israel. Or you might think of the chicken farmers in California or New Jersey. But did you know there was a Jewish agricultural settlement in Baltimore County?  Not to mention dozens of other places throughout the world. Come take a peek at the world of Jewish farmers through the centuries and help figure out why we aren’t farmers any more. The program begins at 7:30PM.


Judith is a secular rabbi and the founder of the BJCC who now leads a similar community in northern California.

Please contact for the Zoom Link.

In-person Secular Passover Seder, Sunday, April 24, 5:00 PM

We will be holding a secular humanistic seder on Sunday, April 24, 5 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 21 to


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.



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). 

“The Weaponization of Critical Race Theory,” co-sponsored with the Baltimore Ethical Society, by Fred Pincus, Sunday, April 3, 10:30 AM

Please contact for the Zoom Link.

Judy Jacobson will speak on several Torah portions, Friday, March 25, 7:30 PM

Please contact for the Zoom Link.

An Annual Update on Israeli Politics: Rabbi Jeremy Kridel, Friday, May 13, 7:30 PM

Rabbi Jeremy Kridel will share his thoughts about political developments in Israel via Zoom. A close observer of Israel, Jeremy is the Rabbi of Machar, our sister SHJ organization in Bethesda.


BJCC members will receive the Zoom link a few days prior to the talk. Non-members who would want the link should contact

BJCC members Fred Pincus, Arlene Ogurick, and David Korn will discuss the results of two national opinion surveys that were recently released: “National Survey of Jewish Voters” (Jewish Electorate Institute) and “Jewish Practices and Customs (Pew Research Center).


Fred is a retired sociologist, Arlene is a retired librarian, and David is a federal government employee.


BJCC members will receive the Zoom link a few days prior to the talk. Non-members who would want the link should contact

Jewish Public Opinion: A Review of Two Surveys, Friday, May 27, 7:30PM

Rabbi Sivan Malkin Maas will be updating us on the realities of the Secular Humanistic Jewish Movement in Israel. 

Rabbi Maas is the director of Timura-IISH [International Institute for the Secular Humanistic Judaism] in Israel. In 2003, she was the first Israeli to be ordained as a rabbi in Humanistic Judaism. Her thesis was "How to build and develop a Secular Humanistic Jewish community in Israel".

She is the daughter of Yaakov Malkin, the Secular Humanistic Jewish role model for 2021/5782.


Maas founded the Institute for Training Secular Humanistic Rabbis and Jewish Leadership in Israel, which ordained its first group of secular rabbis in Israel in 2006 (five men and two women). She views a rabbi as "an educator, a counselor, an expert in Jewish culture ...and an initiator and organizer of community events and a person involved in people's life-cycle events".

BJCC members will receive the Zoom link a few days prior to the talk. Non-members who would want the link should contact

Secular Judaism in Israel, a talk by Sivan Malkin Maas, Sunday, June 12, 10:30AM

Field Trip to Aberdeen IronBirds Baseball on Jewish Heritage Day, Sunday, June 26

Come join your BJCC friends and members of other Jewish organizations aroundcentral Maryland for Jewish Heritage Day at Ripken Stadium for the Aberdeen IronBirds baseball game at 2:05PM.

Tickets are $22 each and can be ordered by contacting

Deadline to order tickets is Monday, June 13, 2022.

If you missed the deadline to request tickets through the BJCC, The Baltimore Jewish Times is promoting Jewish Heritage Night that will take place at the Leidos Field in Ripken Stadium. Please see the article with information to purchase tickets:

"The End of Roe v. Wade: A Jewish Perspective on Reproductive Rights." Tuesday, June 21, 7PM-9PM

BJCC Events 2021

Outdoor picnic and short hike in Patapsco State Park, Hilton Area, Sunday, July 10, 5:00 - 7:00 PM 

We will resume our annual outdoor picnic tradition at the Hilton Area of Patapsco Valley State Park in Catonsville. Those who wish to participate in a short hike guided by Robyn Hughes should meet at the All Sensory Trailhead, across from the Nature Center, at 5:00PM. The All Sensory Trailhead is clearly identified by a braille/print sign. The trail is semi-rugged and wooded with loose rocks and tree roots. Non-hikers should meet at Pavilion #201 at 5:30PM. Bring and eat your own food and drinks.

“Blacklist: The Hollywood Red Scare”, Sunday, August 14, 10:30AM

Blacklist: The Hollywood Red Scare, originally curated by the Jewish Museum Milwaukee and revised by JMM to accommodate social distancing and limited-contact interactives, is a multi-sensory exhibit that explores the intersection of politics, art, economics, and social dynamics that impacted our First Amendment rights of speech, religion, and assembly during Hollywood’s “red scare.” Through personal narratives of those who were blacklisted, members of the House Un-American Activities Committee, and film executives of the period, Blacklist examines the shifting definition of what it meant and means to be a patriotic American.

Blacklist takes on new relevance today. As free speech, journalism, and freedom of assembly resurface as rights in need of protection, Blacklist provides a look back at an era in which art, artistic expression, and speech were threatened.

We will take a virtual tour, via Zoom, of the exhibit. BJCC members will receive the link a few days before the event. Non-members should contact to request the link.

Ethics of the Fathers (Pirkei Avot) is one of the oldest, shortest, and most popular texts in Judaism. BJCC member Bob Jacobson will summarize the book and talk about some of its guidelines for positive living that we can still learn from today.


Bob’s presentation will take place on via Zoom. The Zoom link will be sent to members a few days before the event. Non-members should contact us at for the link.

“Ethics of the Father” by Bob Jacobson, Friday, September 9, 7:30PM

BJCC Events 2022

Pikesville Fall Festival at Quarry Lake, Sunday, September 18, 10:00 AM to 3 PM

The BJCC will have a table at the Pikesville Fall Festival at Quarry Lake. Look for us if you plan to attend.

The BJCC will hold our High Holidays observance on Sunday, October 2 at 6:30PM. We will explore the themes of the High Holidays through readings and exercises, with opportunities for self-reflection and optional group sharing. Apples & honey will be provided. To participate or for more information, please contact us at

High Holidays program, Sunday, October 2, 6:30 pm