On Friday, July 7, 2017, the Kohenet Hebrew Priestess Institute will give smicha/ordination, to thirteen women at a ceremony at the Isabella Freedman Jewish Retreat Center in Falls Village, Connecticut. The new Kohanot, Hebrew Priestesses, will constitute the fifth graduating class since Kohenet was founded 12 years ago.
I am one of these women who will be ordained following completion of a three-year program of study. The Kohenet certification empowers and enables new graduates to build on the work they are doing as chaplains, community leaders, scholars, nurses, midwives, mothers, therapists, teachers, ecological restorationists, wilderness educators and narrative medicine specialists. We are gifted artists, sacred dancers and holy drummers. We have founded communities and written liturgical poetry. We are activists for human rights, for dialogue and understanding, and for ecological sustainability. We lead communities in prayer, and conduct marriages and separation rituals, funerals, baby namings, house blessings, and other ceremonies which mark milestones in Jewish ways. We are learned in the use of mikveh to mark transitions in women's lives from conversion, bat mitzvah, menarche, niddah, relationship, abortion, miscarriage, birth, and adoption, pre- and post-surgery, menopause and eldering.
The education and training provided through the "Kohenet Institute is an utterly new, yet ancient, movement, drawing on stories of women of the Bible and Talmud as well as ancient, medieval, and modern ritual practices to create a Jewish experience that is transformative, reverent, and inclusive,” says Rabbi Jill Hammer, cofounder of Kohenet and the Director of Spiritual Education at the Academy of Jewish Religion.
Your ongoing support of my continued spiritual development and studies in this and other programs has been deeply meaningful to me.
During the next year, I am planning to focus on the development of leyning skills, drumming, and also preparing for a long-distance move to Victoria, BC. Once settled, I intend to re-apply to the ALEPH Rabbinical Ordination Program and complete that program, or a graduate program.
In the interim, I am available for counselling, education, or mentoring teach; to teach Hebrew, prepare you and your children for b'nei mitzvot coming of age rituals, and facilitate meaningful life-cycle and Jewish holyday and other rituals. I can be reached by phone: [phone redacted]; E: [email redacted] or Skype: annalmaranta or on Facebook.
In deep gratitude for your ongoing support.
- Brenda Vellino
- Maureen Walton
- Sheldon Taylor
- David and Toby Brooks
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