2023 Winter Hevraya Retreat


Sunday January 29 – Thursday February 2, 2023

American Jewish University
Brandeis-Bardin Campus
Simi Valley, CA

Members of the IJS Hevraya (alumni of the IJS clergy and educator leadership training cohorts) are invited to join us for our annual in-person winter Hevraya retreat at the Brandeis-Bardin Campus of American Jewish University in Simi Valley CA, outside Los Angeles, from 4:30 pm PT Sunday, January 29, 2023 through noon Thursday, February 2, 2023.


In this retreat, we will immerse in continuous, contemplative practice, through mindfulness meditation led by Rabbi Nancy Flam, yoga led by IJS Senior Core Faculty Rabbi Myriam Klotz, text study and directed writing led by Dr. Melila Hellner-Eshed, chevruta and group practice — all within a safe and supportive container intended to help us cultivate inner stillness and clarity. Participants will have an opportunity for one-on-one meetings with the IJS faculty after lunch and during dinner.

As always, our retreat will be partly silent, with morning davvening led by Hevraya members, meditation and yoga (or optional mindful walk and hitbodedut practice) all held in contemplative silence. After lunch we will open to speech with one on one meetings with faculty, and text study in the afternoons. Breakfast and lunch will be silent meals; dinner will be a speaking meal, with an optional silent eating table. Evening programs will end at 9 pm with a contemplative ma’ariv, and return to silence. On Wednesday morning, weather permitting, we will rise to “greet the dawn” in the fashion of the Hevraya of the Zohar, taking a short pre-dawn hike and davvening al fresco.


We will begin at 4:30 pm on Sunday, January 29 (registration will be from 3-4:30 pm), and conclude on Thursday, February 2 at 12 pm (box lunches will be available).


In order to be more equitable and inclusive, this year we are offering both double and single rooms including single rooms needed for health or other reasons. The single rooms are offered at two price points, as we recognize that participants may be immunocompromised or otherwise needing to exercise extra caution. We hope that those wanting a single room who have the financial means will select the higher price point, but we are glad to be offering single rooms at a lower price point for those for whom this can help make the retreat possible.

Costs (includes both tuition and room & board):

      • For those willing to share a double room, $1,500
      • For those who prefer a single room and understand the additional cost, $1,800
      • For those who require a single room for health reasons, $1,500