Adult Education

Also, please see our Programs and Calendar pages for further information.

Continuing education is a vital part of Judaism and can deepen one's understanding of Jewish history, heritage, culture and traditions.

Introduction to Judaism Classes • Wednesdays (Aug. – May)
Beginning Hebrew, which emphasizes learning to read and write Hebrew, meets from 7:00 to 8:00 pm.  Introduction to Judaism, including a study of the Jewish calendar and Jewish holidays, is offered from 8:10 to 9:30 pm. The reasons "why" we observe the festivals and fast days and basic information on "how" to celebrate are discussed. One may take only the first hour (Beginning Hebrew) if so desired. Anyone interested may attend either one or both classes. For more information, contact Rabbi Robert Eisen.

Kollels (classes) on a variety of interesting topics and Jewish history seminars are held several times a year and usually take place over the course of several weeks. Some are offered for a nominal fee, others are free; all are open to the entire community.


19, 26 & Sept 2

The High Holy Days :"Are You Ready?"
Every year, from about the end of August until Rosh Hashanah, Rabbi Eisen is asked: “Rabbi, are you ready?” Ready? For what? For the High Holy Days, of course. Though he approaches the time of year very differently than most, his usual response is: “Are you?!” By which he means: These days are not about him, they are about “us” – as individuals and as a community. Whether he is ready with notes, sermons, signs and songs is not as important as whether we are looking inward to find our own faith and fortitude to make this a NEW year.
To help us each answer the question: “Are you?” we have invited some congregants to share with us something of importance to them; something that helps them with their preparation for this season, so that it can become that much more for us as well.

August 19: Rabbi Dr. Bennett Blum presents “Forgiveness: The Law and The Lore”
August 26: Rabbi Dr. Howard Schwartz presents “T’SHUVAH (Repentance): Up Close & Personal:
What Does/Can it Mean in Today’s World?”
September 2: Scott Lewis presents “Learning to Learn from Each Other: A Collaborative Exploration of our Jewish Ethics through PIRKE AVOT”

$18 for the 3-week series PLUS food or cash donation for the Community Food Bank. RSVP to Michelle.

December 6

The “Real Story” of HANUKKAH, 9:30-10:30am
If most Jews knew the “real story” of Hanukkah, they probably wouldn’t celebrate it! HINT: It involves events that resonate to this day – gross inequality and religious coercion. Join us for a special class where we will explore the texts/history behind this holiday, after which attendees are invited to stay and participate in our Religious School Hanukkah Family Workshop. There is no charge, but a contribution (non-perishable food item or monetary donation) to the Community Food Bank is appreciated. Please RSVP to call Michelle.

10, 17 & 24

"The Wisdom of Jewish Tucson", 7:00-8:30pm
"What We Need to Know About…” CAI has invited three speakers of different faiths for the program:
On Feb. 10 we welcome Dr. Watheq Alobaidi from the Muslim Community Center of Tucson;
On Feb. 17 the keynote is Rev. Gerald Kicanas with the Roman Catholic Diocese of Tucson;
On Feb. 24 the president of the Church of Jesus Christ of Latter Day Saints, Cole Thies, will join us.

Cost for the 3-week series: $18 per person PLUS food donation for the Community Food Bank.

For more information & to RSVP, contact Michelle.

March 9 & 16

“Not Your Children’s Purim Party: How to do Purim as an Adult”‚Äč

April 6 Seder Cheder
June 5

Yom Yerushalayim Program

  11 Tikkun Leil Shavuot: A Guide to the Evening of Shavuot

Visiting Scholars/Special Programs
Throughout the year, CAI hosts visiting scholars who offer a variety of Judaic topics. Generally, the scholar-in-residence participates in a Shabbat service, followed by a Shabbat dinner, and his/her presentation. As part of the Shabbat morning service he/she may deliver the D’Var Torah and lead our Torah Study that afternoon. Some visiting scholars also lead family workshops. Portions of a scholar’s visit are open to the community and may include a nominal fee.


Scholar-in-Residence: Gil Hoffman
Gil Hoffman is the chief political correspondent and analyst for The Jerusalem Post. Well-connected to Israeli and Palestinian leaders, Hoffman has interviewed every major figure across the Israeli political spectrum, has been interviewed by top media on six continents and is a regular analyst on CNN, Al-Jazeera and other news outlets. Called "the most optimistic man in Israel" by Israel Television, Hoffman's writing and TV appearances provide a behind the scenes look at both the intrigue and humor in the Israeli political arena.

His visit will include a Shabbat dinner and presentation, and delivering the Shabbat morning D’var Torah and an afternoon presentation on Saturday. *RSVP & fee required by Nov. 9 for Shabbat dinner only. To learn more, click here.

Kabbalat Torah Program • Tuesdays, 7:00 pm (Open to CAI members only.)
Kabbalat Torah translates as "The receiving of the Torah." The goal of the two-year program is to help attendees better understand Torah so as to make it their own. Classes taught by CAI's clergy and held for approximately 30 weeks each year beginning in August. For more information, contact Rabbi Robert Eisen.

Shabbat Afternoon Torah Study • Saturdays, one hour prior to Mincha Service. See Calendar page for times.
Whether you come every week or once a month, are a beginner or a scholar, you will find intellectual stimulus and challenge. This is a great opportunity to become more involved in "Living Judaism." Lay-led.  No charge to attend.

Talmud on Tuesday • Tuesdays, 6:00 pm. See Calendar page for schedule.
Learn about the law and lore in the “sea” of Talmud with Rabbi Robert Eisen as we dig deep into the “who, what, where, when, why and how” of living Judaism. No charge to attend.

Weekday Torah Study Group • Wednesdays, 11:00 am. See Calendar page for schedule.
Led by Rabbi Robert Eisen, a lively and energetic text study with an in-depth look at the weekly portion.  No charge to attend.

"Read It & Meet" Book DiscussionsSaturdays (usually Sept.-May), 12 noon (+/- 15 mins.)
Book discussions are held once a month and are open to all. We discuss selected books by Jewish authors and/or with Jewish content, and share our experiences, reactions and ideas. Moderators facilitate each discussion. For more information, contact Vicki Kaufman No charge to attend.

Women's Study Group • most first Mondays, 12:00 pm
Rabbi Robert Eisen leads these monthly group sessions using The Five Books of Miriam: A Woman’s Commentary on the Torah as the core for discussion. Topics can be interesting, insightful and inspiring. Bring your own dairy lunch; beverages and dessert provided. No charge to attend.