BAJHC is dedicated to providing Jewish spiritual care and support services to those living with illness, to those caring for the ill, and to the bereaved.
Jewish healing and spiritual care can help us articulate the spiritual experience where ever and how ever one engages medical attention, from the hospital bed to the clinician’s office to one’s home. Jewish Spiritual Care also helps us define the human experiences in which spiritual yearning may come to the fore, such as when facing a difficult diagnosis or losing a loved one. We all know that when one person become ill, is in pain, comes to their last breath, and meets grief the impact is felt by those around them. These experiences may range from childbirth to a day procedure, from an emergency to a long-term stay.
Mission: Bay Area Jewish Healing Center is dedicated to providing Jewish spiritual care to those living with illness, to those caring for the ill, and to the bereaved through direct service, education and training, capacity building, and information and referral. Established in 1991 as the nation’s first Jewish healing center, Bay Area Jewish Healing Center provides spiritual care sometimes referred to as chaplaincy or pastoral care and support services to anyone who wants spiritual care, regardless of affiliation or financial resources. We receive support from the Jewish Community Federation of San Francisco, the Peninsula, Marin and Sonoma Counties, and various foundations and individuals.
Operating as usual
We are currently forming an Intergenerational Bereavement Spiritual Support Group as a collaboration between the Bay Area Jewish Healing Center and Beyer Square at the San Francisco Campus for Jewish Living. Grieving during the Covid-19 pandemic is particularly isolating, and we are often unable to access intergenerational spaces for wisdom, connection, and healing. This group will provide a supportive context with a spiritual framing, where we can meet each other empathetically in a non-judgmental space. This is a closed group with limited space. To foster an inter-generational community with the elders at the San Francisco Campus for Jewish Living, we have more spots available for younger mourners around age 18-45 years old. However, we will have room for a few older participants so please return the attached registration form or reach out soon if you are over 45 and interested.
This group will run from March 12-May 7, Fridays 10am-11:30am, by Zoom. It is for anyone grieving a human being, with any loss, at any point in the grief journey. No Jewish knowledge or identification is required. Pre-registration is required, and we will not be able to accommodate drop-ins. To register email back the attached registration form and I will be in touch to schedule an intake conversation or for more information please contact Rabbi Elliot Kukla at: [email protected].
Calling all #JewsofColor! Our friends at the @JewsofColorInitiative commissioned a study, housed at Stanford, to understand the experiences and perspectives of #JewsofColor in the United States. If you’re a Jew of Color, what has been your experience in Jewish communities? How do you think about Jewish identity? How has systemic racism affected you in Jewish spaces? Click below to answer these and other questions in the #CountMeIn study at JoCsurvey.org. The goal is to have 1,000 survey participants! #JoCsurvey
This past week has been one of the deadliest in US history and there is a startling absence of communal memory. Please join us b Zoom on Thursday Dec 17th at 4pm, for an Azkarah, service of memory to mark communal, as well as personal losses with ritual, discussion, and Chanukah candle lighting. Everyone is welcome! No religious background or beliefs expected. Closed captioning will be avaialble. This event is free, but registration is required.
jewishhealingcenter.org Please join us for an Azkarah, service of healing and memory, led by the rabbis of the Bay Area Jewish Healing Center, on Thursday, December 17, at 4:00pm. This program will offer comfort and support to people grieving global, existential losses as well as people mourning the loss of a human being.....
Please join us for an Azkarah, service of healing and memory, led by the rabbis of the Bay Area Jewish Healing Center on December 4 at 12:30 pm. This program will offer comfort and support to people grieving the loss of a human being. The Azkarah gives an opportunity to honor our loved ones, acknowledge communal and global suffering and be comforted by our community. It will include ritual and small group discussion. Everyone is welcome, no religious knowledge or beliefs expected. Live closed captioning will be provided. This program is free, however, registration is required. Register by 5:00 pm on December 3. A zoom link will be sent to all registered participants on Friday morning December 4.
jewishhealingcenter.org Please join us for an Azkarah, service of healing and memory, led by the rabbis of the Bay Area Jewish Healing Center, on Friday, December 4, at 12:30pm. This program will offer comfort and support to people grieving the loss of a human being. The Azkarah gives us an opportunity to honor our loved o...
Central Conference of American Rabbis
Shabbat Nachamu is a time for comfort and hope, beginning our seven-week journey from Tishah B’av to Rosh Hashanah. Rabbi Eric Weiss of Bay Area Jewish Healing Center offers this prayer for healing from his CCAR Press book, "Mishkan R’fuah: Where Healing Resides." May it comfort us when we feel broken or lost. Shabbat Shalom.
In this moment of revolution and pandemic - and as the US is beginning to open things up in varying degrees this summer - I want to be sure everyone knows how to be connected to the COVID Grief Network. Spread the word to your communities, and share this post!
The COVID Grief Network connects young adults who are grieving the illness or death of someone close to COVID-19 to free emotional and spiritual support--and to each other. Our mission is to undo isolation for young adults grieving in the midst of this crisis.
covidgriefnetwork.org Get connected to a community of young adults who know what it’s like, and free one-on-one support from a volunteer grief worker.
Thank you for joining us over these past several weeks. We hope you will enjoy this gift from us. Please click on this soothing video meditation. You may want to settle in at your screen, close your eyes and just listen, or you may want to grab a cup of coffee and let your eyes go into soft focus.
Here is Rabbi Natan Fenner:
Spiritual care resources in times of pandemic: Rabbi Natan Fenner of the Bay Area Jewish Healing Center shares reflections addressing pain, fear, anxiety and...
Don’t panic, but be mindful. Help flatten the curve.
Is there someone missing from your life right now? Being with other people in grief can help.
Bereavement Spiritual Support Group in Formation
Fridays, 12-1:30pm, Feb 14-April 3, 2020
Kehilla Community Synagogue, hosted by the Bay Area Jewish Healing Center
This group will provide a supportive, non-judgmental context with a spiritual framing for anyone who has lost a human being. All types of loss are welcome, as well as all genders and family relationships. No Jewish knowledge or identification is required. The space is wheelchair accessible and low-scent, please be in touch if you have other access needs. Pre-registration is required, and we will not be able to accommodate drop-ins.
To register, or for more information, please contact Rabbi Elliot Kukla, [email protected]
After 50 years Shma Now Journal of Jewish Thought ends publication with this final issue on “numbering our days” with essays on dying and endings from BAJHC rabbi Elliot Rose as well as Rabbi David Ellenson @alice shalvi and more.
forward.com In depth opinions and conversations on issues important to contemporary Jews and Judaism.
We are so excited to be a part of creating this important event. Please join us!
letsreimagine.org A retrospective conversation on the history of end-of-life care in San Francisco, ranging from the AIDS epidemic, queer history, the impact of race and gender, spirituality, and the role of the arts.
brightvibes.com At the Dutch Jumbo Supermarket in Vlijmen they help fight loneliness amongst the elderly with a Chatter Checkout and special Coffee Corner
re you missing someone right now? A weekend surrounded by loving grief care support with others who have expereinced a loss will help at our 23rd annual Grief and Frowing Weekend. People of all genders, religions, races, family constellations, and disabilities encouraged to join us. We have childcare, bodywork, massage, nature, music, and more. No One Turned Away For Lack Of Funds
jewishhealingcenter.org Grief and Growing™: A Healing Weekend for Bereaved Individuals and Families August 23-25, 2019 “It is incredible to have that time and space to be where we are at, knowing our kids are in loving hands and that there are people who care. It’s hard not to have this more often in my grief, but .....
“Speaking out loud to a loved one who has passed — whether at a grave site or out loud at home — is helpful for many people processing grief,” Dr. Alison Forti, an assistant professor in the Department of Counseling at Wake Forest University, told Teen Vogue. “I will sometimes encourage my clients to speak to an empty chair in an effort to help them cope with grief. Many people will experience a sense of disbelief after they lose a loved one. By encouraging people to speak out loud to their loved one it helps them resolve that disbelief.”
teenvogue.com And it's totally normal.
Oliver Sacks: "In 40 years of medical practice, I have found only two types of non-pharmaceutical “therapy” to be vitally important for patients with chronic neurological diseases: music and gardens."
“The reason I’m being honest with you and not trying to impress you, and make you think I’m cool or that I’m a tough guy, or maybe working through loss in an inspiring way, is that I have found that if a bereaved parent or bereaved sibling reads this, I want them to know that it’s okay that they feel terrible, sad, confused and so brutally humbled.
standard.co.uk Catastrophe star Rob Delaney says he is still “a mess” after the death of his two-year-old son Henry and that coping with the loss is a “life-time work in progress”. The toddler died from a brain tumour in January last year. US actor and writer Delaney, who lives in London, said: “I’m ....
nytimes.com Grief is not a problem to be solved or resolved. Rather, it’s a process to be lived through in whatever form and amount of time it may take.
“We often think of grief as primarily emotional, but grief is a full-body, full-mind experience. You’re not just missing the one you’ve lost; your entire physiological system is reacting, too.
Studies in neurobiology show that losing someone close to us changes our biochemistry: there are actual physical reasons for your insomnia, your exhaustion, and your racing heart.”
#refugeingrief #itsokthatyourenotok #grief #griefsupport #griefrevolution #grief #loss #aftermath #griefsymptoms #lifeafterloss
We often think of grief as primarily emotional, but grief is a full-body, full-mind experience. You’re not just missing the one you’ve lost; your entire physiological system is reacting, too.
Studies in neurobiology show that losing someone close to us changes our biochemistry: there are actual physical reasons for your insomnia, your exhaustion, and your racing heart.
#refugeingrief #itsokthatyourenotok #grief #griefsupport #griefrevolution #grief #loss #aftermath #griefsymptoms #lifeafterloss
Are you called to be a companion to the dying?
The Bay Area Jewish Healing Center, in collaboration with the San Francisco Campus for Jewish Living, is seeking our next cohort of leaders who are ready to create a more caring and less isolated world, person by person. Become a Spiritual Care Partner with our multiple award-winning end of life volunteer program, Kol Haneshama.
No religious knowledge or beliefs are required to apply, just curiosity and compassion. All genders, sexualities, races, and abilities (please email to discuss access needs) warmly encouraged to apply. Training is June 18th to 27th, 2019 and space is limited. For more information go to https://jewishhealingcenter.org/volunteer/kol-haneshama or email Rabbi Elliot Kukla at [email protected].
"These are important issues we need to talk about. I want to be able to talk about the danger disabled and incontinent people put ourselves in to be seen as normal. I want to be able to talk about my experiences without shame. I want to be able to discuss how people of different ethnicities, socioeconomic positions, and genders are affected by incontinence. I want to be able to talk about the cisnormativity embedded into the designs of incontinence wear without bracing myself for the mockery and derision I’ve come to expect. But I can’t do this until it’s normalized to even talk about incontinence in general."
Happy Chanukah from the Bay Area Jewish Healing Center. Chanukah Reflections are a great thing to share at your Chanukah party this year.
Are you missing someone right now?
Being with others who are bereaved can help. At the Bay Area Jewish Healing Center we have a Bereavement Spiritual Support Group currently in formation. Dec 13-Feb 7th, Thursday evenings from 5-7pm at Congregation Shearith Israel. Everyone who is grieving for a human being is welcome: all types of relationships, families, races, abilities, and genders warmly invited. For more information about access be in touch directly. You don't have to be Jewish, just interested in healing in a Jewish space. For more information or to register [email protected]
A Spiritual Care Reflection on Pittsburgh from BAJHC rabbi Eric Weiss
Vayehi erev, vayehi voker: yom chamishi, There was evening, there was morning, the fifth day.
The Story of Creation from B’resheet/Genesis
It is day 5, Thursday. Tomorrow is Shabbat -- the first Shabbat after Pittsburgh. We will arrive at another Torah portion, this one is called Chaye Sarah; Sarah’s Life. Across this great land and in every land, a child will stand at our Torah, chant our ancient language of community, and continue to tell us our own story. Across millennia, sitting on hewed stones and plush pews, our people have gathered each Shabbat to watch a child take their place in our tradition. We will rise to recite Kaddish. To the names on our respective lists we will add Rose Mallinger, Melvin Wax, Sylvan Simon, Bernice Simon, Joyce Feinberg, Daniel Stein, Irving Younger, Jerry Rabinowitz, Richard Gottfried, Cecil Rosenthal and David Rosenthal, may their memories be a blessing. In these past days, one day to the next, Jews across the world attended the funeral of a loved one, danced at a wedding, attended a bris, ended shiva, began sheloshim, invited loved ones over for Shabbat dinner. And we have opened e-mails, read texts, watched TV, and talked to one another. We have many feelings, thoughts, and spiritual rumblings in response to Pittsburgh. We are open and because we are open, we are filled up. We are contemplating our place in the world. Time does not heal all wounds, but time does continue. Some of us have a relational connection to Squirrel Hill, some of us feel a deep empathy that resonates across our Jewish communal arc. Every Jew is connected to every Jew. Some of us are stimulated in our guts as if we can genetically sense the expulsion of our distant relatives. All of us are linked to The Tree of Life. Some of us are called to political action, some of us are reflecting in the private spaces of our friendships, some of us are enraged, bewildered, confused, overwhelmed. Some are clear. Out of the very core of our tradition, we are bequeathed Shabbat, a day of rest. Rest is complex. Rest is the landscape of re-newed action, rest is the recipe of re-dedicated nourishment, rest is the insight of a strong heart after a strenuous journey. In every place, though shiva is suspended, grief is not, yet that the community gathers as one to embrace one another. This Shabbat, however you celebrate Shabbat: a hike, a drive to someplace special, sitting in temple, going out to brunch, sleeping late--let it be a Shabbat that we all declare with intention. Enjoy Shabbat with deliberate rest however you engage it. If your Shabbat is in a restaurant order a bottle of wine, lift your glasses high and toast L’chaim, wear your kippah everywhere you go, cloak your tallit with kavannah and walk home from shul at a sacred deliberate pace, call someone and wish them Shabbat shalom, gather, gather, gather in rest, in the fullness of your being, your thoughts, your insights, your love, to then emerge into the first day of creation nourished by rest, to say yes to the new day. Let us declare–out of the very core of our theological and spiritual expression--our presence in the world: in our neighborhoods, on our streets, on our buses. Let the world know our love, our very existence. Rest at home, rest in the streets, rest in the cafes, rest in our museums, rest in our concert halls. Death may re-define time, grief may re-align vision. But, how we see, how we
take our time, is our tradition’s spiritual nourishment to live life as best we can in any moment. Let us declare our rest, our Shabbat, with intention, and let our rest give pause, give succor, give life. Let us use our rest to grant us insight, strength, and kavannah to face the next day. Rabbi Eric Weiss CEO and President Bay Area Jewish Healing Center www.jewishhealingcenter.org
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An inclusive chapter of San Francisco Bay Area Episcopal clergy
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Jesús es EL ÚNICO SEÑOR! Somos jóvenes de la diócesis de San Francisco, pcia. de Cba, Arg. Buscamos evangelizar y una firme conversión de la juventud♥
Cities Outreach Department is a ministry within Youth With A Mission San Francisco that leads short term Missions Trips within the city of San Francisco
Verbum Dei is a Catholic missionary community. We inspire spiritual growth and social transformation in a broad range of spiritual practices.
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Congregation Beth Israel Judea is a center for progressive, egalitarian Judaism located in southwest San Francisco. Our multigenerational, participatory community welcomes all Jews and interfaith families along with their partners and friends.
Adath Israel is San Francisco's premier modern orthodox shul. Learn more at www.adathisraelsf.org
Check us out on Yelp! http://www.yelp.com/biz/sunset-ministry-san-francisco
Somos un Ministerio dedicado al Servicio Pro-Construcción y Pro-Restauración del Templo de Jehova.