Lecture in Memory of Rabbi Mark Dov Shapiro z”l
Inaugural Annual Lecture
in Memory of Rabbi Mark Dov Shapiro z”l with Rabbi David Ellenson and Rabbi Michael Marmur
American Jewish Thought Since 1934 — Writings on Identity, Engagement, and Belief
Tuesday, October 26th, 1:30 pm
Two masterful teachers of the Reform Movement join forces to amplify the voices of those who have shaped the bold and shifting soundscape of American Jewish thought over the last few generations. They explore questions of theology, loyalty and belonging, the significance of halakhic, spiritual, and ritual practice, secularization and its discontents, as well as the creative recasting of Jewish peoplehood. The editors of this new anthology of Jewish Thought show how a plurality of approaches emerged in response to the Holocaust, the establishment of the State of Israel, and the Civil Rights movement in the twentieth century.
Rabbi David Ellenson, Ph. D. currently serves as Chancellor Emeritus as well as Professor Emeritus of Jewish Religious Thought at Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion. He served as Director of the Schusterman Center of Israel Studies at Brandeis University from 2015-2018 and is currently Professor Emeritus of Near Eastern and Judaic Studies there. Rabbi Ellenson received his Ph.D. from Columbia University in 1981 and was ordained by HUC-JIR in 1977. A member of HUC-JIR’s faculty since 1979, he served as its President from 2001-2013 and as its Interim President from 2018-2019. Rabbi Ellenson’s extensive publications study the rise of Modern Orthodoxy and the interplay between Jewish identity, culture, and halachah.
Rabbi Michael Marmur, Ph.D. is Associate Professor of Jewish Theology at Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion. He previously served as the Provost of HUC-JIR and as the Dean of its Jerusalem campus. Born and raised in England, Rabbi Marmur completed a BA Degree in Modern History at the University of Oxford before moving to Israel in 1984. While studying for an MA in Ancient Jewish History at the Hebrew University of Jerusalem, he completed his studies in the Israel Rabbinic Program of HUC-JIR, being ordained in Jerusalem in 1992. For six years following his ordination, he worked as rabbi and teacher at the Leo Baeck Education Center in Haifa. His Ph.D. and previous publications focus on the theology of Abraham Joshua Heschel. Rabbi Marmur lectures extensively in Israel and throughout the Diaspora. He is currently the Chair of the Board of Rabbis for Human Rights.
Rabbi Mark Dov Shapiro z”l served Holy Blossom Temple from 1977-1982. He is remembered by many with admiration and warm friendship.https://holyblossom.org/remembering-rabbi-mark-dov-shapiro-zl/. The majority of his rabbinate was in Springfield, Massachusetts, but he and his wife, Marsha, both native Torontonians, always maintained close ties here. Rabbi Shapiro was especially devoted to interfaith relations, social justice, pastoral care, and lifelong learning. He strengthened the Reform Movement by serving on many committees and writing publications for the Central Conference of American Rabbis and the Union of Reform Judaism. Most of all, Rabbi Shapiro is forever cherished for his constant warmth and kindness. Family and friends, colleagues and congregants have given generously to establish an annual lecture in Rabbi Shapiro’s name. We dedicate this learning to his memory.