Our special guest this week is Rabbi Talia Avnon-Benveniste, Director of the International School for Jewish Peoplehood Studies (ISJPS) at Beit Hatfutsot-The Museum of the Jewish People in Tel Aviv. Previously, Rabbi Avnon-Benveniste was the director of the education department at The Daniel Centers for Progressive Judaism in Tel Aviv-Jaffa, where she worked closely with the Tel Aviv municipality, the Ministry of Education, the Jewish Agency, and with other key leaders to establish the official national policy for Jewish curricula in Israeli secular schools. She completed a Masters with honors from The Schechter Institute for Jewish Studies, is an ordained rabbi from Hebrew Union College, and is a recipient of The Moshe Zemer Award for the writing of a Halachic Responsa. She frequently leads religious services and Jewish ritual ceremonies.
This week's Torah portion- Parashat Vayera (Genesis 18:1-22:24)- features several of the most well-known stories in the Bible, including the destruction of Sodom and Gomorrah, the birth of Isaac, the banishment of Hagar and Ishmael, and the binding of Issac. Our conversation focuses on the difficult question of what can be learned- and what young Jews can take away- from the story of the Binding of Isaac.