Neil Arnold, Author at Center for Small Town Jewish Life

Author: Neil Arnold

Virtual Maine Jewish Community Offerings

The Maine Conference for Jewish Life Online Statewide Shabbat Services Friday, June 12, 2020 at 6:30 p.m. Sunday Music and Learning June 14, 2020  from 10 a.m. to 5 p.m. Learn more and register HERE! In recognition of the constraints of our extraordinary times, the 2020 Maine Conference for Jewish Life will go online. In … Continued

Slingshot’s “10 to Watch” List

Center Honored for Groundbreaking Work The Center for Small Town Jewish Life has been named to the Slingshot fund’s inaugural “10 to Watch” list. An organization that engages young Jewish philanthropists to make lasting impact, Slingshot made its announcement on Jan. 29, 2020, honoring the Center and nine other young organizations in North America that are responding to … Continued

Teaching Faith in Waterville

I was frustrated. As far as I could tell, many Colby students didn’t understand or know how to engage with our local community members. I figured this was largely for socioeconomic reasons. After all, as a low-income student from conservative rural New England, I struggled to feel heard or understood at Colby. Waterville felt far … Continued

Sukkot as a Shivah of Simcha

Over Sukkot in Waterville, we had the opportunity to learn and celebrate with one of the center’s rabbinical student fellows, Max Edwards. Max is a fourth-year rabbinical student at Hebrew College in Newton, Mass. and is working with Rabbi Isaacs at Beth Israel Congregation in Waterville. We are thrilled to share the D’var Torah Max gave … Continued

What the Periphery Can Teach the Center

It is 6:45 a.m. on a Sunday morning in April, and I am sitting in a coffee shop in Brookline, MA, with two young women. We’re staking out this very spot, across the street from the closest kosher supermarket to the town we live in, 185 miles away. The supermarket doors are due to open at 7A.M., and we’re sipping much-appreciated coffee as … Continued

eJewish Philanthropy

In my final year of rabbinical school, a leader from the Conservative movement shared an alarming assessment, “The future of the American Jewish community is in 12 major cities, and we need to find a way to let the rest go.” As an emerging American Jewish leader, predictions of demographic gloom were not novel for … Continued

Rabbinic Student Fellows Application Information

Are you an entrepreneurial rabbinical or cantorial student interested in creating vibrant Jewish life? Are you looking for meaningful mentorship from clergy who serve small-town congregations and meaningful relationships with congregants? Would you like to spend seven extended weekends in beautiful Maine over the coming year? If so, please apply to be a 2019/20 Rabbinical … Continued

Joy and Sorrow, Gratitude and Anger

It’s been almost a week since the Fall Shabbaton. It’s been almost a week since the horrific attack on Tree of Life synagogue in Pittsburgh. At the Center for Small Town Jewish Life, we’ve spent the week reflecting on the beauty and success of this past weekend of community, song and learning, as well as … Continued

2018-2019 Community Conversations Series

Community Conversations is a series of three events bringing together Waterville faith and community institutions with Colby faculty and students to consider major issues of common concern. The series brings together thought leaders in our Maine community for a hour-long educational program and then provides an hour for participants to have open conversations about core … Continued

Grant Award from the Robert and Toni Bader Charitable Foundation

The Center for Small Town Jewish Life receives a multi-year grant from the Robert and Toni Bader Charitable Foundation to support Maine Jewish Youth Connection programming. It is with great joy and anticipation that we announce the award of a multi-year grant from the Robert and Toni Bader Charitable Foundation to support one of our … Continued