Adult Education

Learning Opportunities

Expand your Jewish knowledge and friendships by being part of our growing community of lifelong learners. Please check our calendar for more information on Adult Learning opportunities in 2022. We also invite you to learn more about our resources in the Rabbi Richard B. Safran Library. 

Classes are currently offered on Zoom. Links are sent to members of our extended Temple family by email. Please contact the Temple office for access information at or (260) 744-4245.

Beit Midrash With Rabbi Meir

Beit Midrash translates to “House of Study,” and describes the institution of classical Jewish learning.  Join Rabbi Meir Bargeron or guest teachers to learn about a variety of topics. Classes generally are offered two Tuesdays per month at 7 p.m. on Zoom, along with ongoing weekly study groups. 

A Year for the Trees: The Environment & Jewish Tradition
Tuesday, January 11 at 7 p.m. on Zoom

Join Rabbi Meir and members of the Temple community to learn about the Jewish holiday of Tu Bishvat, and how traditions surrounding this festival contribute to a deeper understanding of our connection to Creation and our obligation to care for the earth.  Please RSVP to by the Thursday prior to the class to receive materials.

Hebrew 1: Kita Aleph
Sundays, beginning January 23 at 7 p.m. on Zoom

Ready to follow along in the Hebrew at Shabbat services? Wondering how to master your pronunciation of the prayers? Then our new “Hebrew 1: Kita Aleph” class is for you!

John Planer will guide us through our study of Hebrew on Sunday evenings from 7 p.m. to 8 p.m. via Zoom, beginning January 23. The class will meet for 11 sessions, through April 10. (We will not meet on February 20).

Registration is required by Sunday, January 9 by emailing us at The Zoom link to attend will be sent to those who register.

Beyond the Gender Binary in Judaism with Ariel & Ze’evi Tovlev
Tuesday, January 25 at 7 p.m. on Zoom

While “transgender” and “nonbinary” are modern terms, our Jewish tradition has understood gender to be beyond “male” and “female” for almost 2,000 years! Come learn about gender beyond the binary in Judaism, and what our ancient texts can teach us about gender expansiveness.

Ze’evi Tovlev (pronouns: they/them or ze/zem) is a 4th year cantorial student and a graduate of the Master’s degree of Jewish Education at Hebrew Union College – Jewish Institute of Religion (HUC-JIR). Ariel Tovlev (pronouns: he/him or they/them) is a 4th year rabbinical student and a graduate of the Master’s degree of Jewish Education at HUC-JIR. Please RSVP to by the Thursday prior to the class to receive materials.

Doing Unto Others: Compassion in Jewish Life

Wednesday, February 9 at 7 p.m. on Zoom

Explore how the human trait of caring for the wellbeing of others is expressed in Judaism and other faith traditions of the world. Please RSVP to by Thursday, February 3 to receive materials.

Judaism and the Afterlife

Tuesday, February 22 at 7 p.m. on Zoom

Do Jews believe in heaven, hell or any type of afterlife? The answer is complicated and may surprise you! We will come together to read Jewish texts and reflect on their meaning for our lives today. Please RSVP to by Thursday, February 17 to receive materials.

Strings of Inspiration with Bruce Colegrove

Wednesday, March 2 at 7 pm

Bruce Colegrove, a Temple member and ardent researcher in Holocaust studies, returns with new stories of some of the most remarkable events in the life of the women’s orchestra at Auschwitz-Birkenau. He is the developer of the website Women’s Orchestra of Auschwitz-Birkenau. 

The orchestra at Auschwitz-Birkenau included three different pairs of sisters, all of whom played fascinating roles in the ensemble. Remarkably enough, a mother-daughter pair also found its way into the group. Find out more

Ongoing Classes:

Hebrew Liturgy Study Group

Study the Hebrew texts – both Orthodox and Reform – of the daily and Shabbat liturgies on Mondays at 7 p.m. led by John Planer on Zoom. Join us to examine the meanings and grammar of the texts we recite and note significant variants. The group is open to any and all.

Five Books Of Moses Study

Read and study the Torah, verse by verse, with classic commentaries by Rashi, Rashbam, Seforno and many others during a weekly study group led by Rabbi Mitchell Kornspan on Sundays at 7 p.m. on Zoom. Temple members, as well as members of the larger Fort Wayne Jewish community, are invited to participate. 

This approach to the study of Torah delves into the depths of Rabbinic teaching on the Torah Portion. Note that this group is not studying the texts on the same schedule as the weekly Torah portion. Participants should attend with a Tanakh, and learners with any level of Hebrew proficiency are welcome.

Temple Book Club

Tuesday, March 8 at 7 p.m. on Zoom

Our enthusiastic readers will meet on Zoom for a book discussion and to talk to the author via videoconferencing.

Join us when we discuss Florence Adler Swims Forever by Rachel Beanland.  Find out more

Author of a New Book Exploring the Tree of Life Synagogue Shooting

Mark Oppenheimer, author of Squirrel Hill: The Tree of Life Shooting and the Soul of a Neighborhood, spoke to us about his new book in October 2021 at the Temple and via livestream. This was a joint program with the Jewish Federation of Fort Wayne and the Purdue Fort Wayne Institute of Holocaust and Genocide Studies. Find out more 

Signed copies of the book are available for purchase ($25) in the Temple office. Watch the video of his presentation

Hot Topics Shabbat

The Temple’s Social Action Committee hosts occasional programs on Friday evenings highlighting important social justice topics.

On Friday, December 10, we welcomed speakers from Catholic Charities of the Diocese of Fort Wayne–South Bend to inform our members on resettlement efforts for the recently arrived Afghan refugees. Watch the program

On June 11, we learned about Police Reform and Social Justice with guest speaker Michelle Chambers, an at-large member of the Fort Wayne City Council who co-chaired the city’s Commission on Police Reform and Social Justice. Please check our calendar for upcoming programs.  

Genealogy and the Holocaust

Over the past few years, Temple member Irv Adler has presented several programs on Genealogy and the Holocaust in Fort Wayne and beyond to share his worldwide search through Holocaust records to find out more information about his grandmother and family. Watch his presentation on “Families Lost & Found: Tracing My Viennese Roots After the Holocaust” to IPFW’s Campus Ministry on November 16, 2017.

As part of this personal historical journey, Irv traveled to Vienna to place a Stone of Remembrance in front of the home where his grandmother Clara Bader Nichtern lived before she was murdered in 1942 by the Nazis at the Maly Trostinets death camp outside of Minsk. He returned in 2018 to dedicate additional stones of remembrance. His research continues today. 

Learn more about family history resources in the Madge Rothschild Resource Center and through the Northeast Indiana Jewish Genealogy Society.

Strings of Inspiration

Temple member Bruce Colegrove will be back with more stories of some of the most remarkable events in the life of the women’s orchestra at Auschwitz-Birkenau on Wednesday, March 2. Find out more

Bruce describes the group as the most eclectic, the most unique, the most controversial, and, without any question, the most zealously documented gathering of female musical talent the world has ever known. By many regards, it was also the most inspiring.

An ardent researcher in Holocaust studies, Bruce is the developer of the website Women’s Orchestra of Auschwitz-Birkenau. He was a long-standing Hebrew teacher at Achduth Vesholom and a 20+-year faculty member at Canterbury High School.