I am now serving Or Shalom Jewish Community, as the Interim Rabbi (Half-time)
Reach me there at RabbiChaya@orshalom.org (as of Oct. 10, 2022)
Join me for services and other events by checking out our website: https://www.orshalom.org
Rabbi Chaya Gusfield and Musician/Educator Jen Myzel to co-lead Second Day Rosh Hashanah at Kehillah Community Synagogue, September 27 (Tuesday morning, 9:15 a.m.) Hybrid service. For more information go to Kehilla Community Synagogue to register. kehillasynagogue.org/ This service will be reflective, intimate, and joyous including the sound of the shofar, with original and traditional music. (recording: For the youtube of the service click here. (You will need to rewind to beginning.)
Tisha B’av, August 6, 2022, 8:30 p.m. When G-d Grieves, Who Comforts? Guest Rabbi, Rabbi Chaya Gusfield, bring pen and paper for reflection
ALEPH SMICHA WEEK
June 27-July 1, 2022: 15 hour Pastoral Counseling Survey Class for
Hashpa’ah (Spiritual Direction) Students
Sunday, June 12, Kavod v Nichum Conference, workshop leader
Title: Soothing Our Hearts with Artistic Expression
Description: How can we use artistic expression as portals to moving through grief? Rabbi Ilan will share the words of our tradition with original melodies as a balm leading to wholeness. Rabbi Me’irah will articulate her personal journey of painting out her grief. Rabbi Chaya will offer a container to share and be heard in a sacred context using the portals of abstract art and writing with an emphasis on making meaning of our experience.
Monday, June 12, Kavod v Nichum Conference, workshop leader
Title: Where Does Your Heart Need Tending?
Description: We engage with grief and mourning through our work, our learning, and our personal experience. Together we will learn ways to integrate and explore where your heart needs tending to through writing, sharing and Devotional Listening.
Friday, May 13, 2022, 7:30 EST–YAVNEH: Leading Shabbat Services
Sunday, May 15, 10 a.m. Temple Beth Torah, Fremont–Panelist re End of Life Issues for their event: Death and Taxes: Planning for the Inevitable.
A Taste of Jewish Prayer as Medicine-Using Writing to Access the Portal of Prayer
Sunday, May 1, 3-5, PST, on zoom to accommodate people from many locations. 16 people attended.
Accessing prayer has many portals. For some it is music, others text, some dance, others study. Today we will have a taste of finding our own stories woven into prayers we may or may not have experience with. With the assistance of learning, writing and witnessing, we ask the question “How is this prayer meant just for me as medicine?” This process will help us access and recognize prayer in general, not just the ones we will have time to learn.
What Moves You? Spiritual Reflections and Communal Meal
Wednesday, March 9, 5:30PM Spiritual Reflection: A time of spiritual hospitality in the Moss Lounge @ the 222, Healdsburg
A contemplative experience of shared spiritual reflections upon a sacred text from different faith traditions. We will hear a sacred text from the leader’s tradition in a contemplative manner, three times through. After each time, we will share responses and insights.
Spiritual Accompaniment for Chaplains and Spiritual Directors Group Started in April, 2022
THIS GROUP IS NOW FILLED, BUT TAKING NAMES FOR MY NEXT GROUP.
National Partnership for Hospice and Healthcare Innovation (NPHI)
Social Services Staff Meeting, March 17
I provided support to staff through a participatory creative expression session to assist participants in processing their experience of providing services to families and those at the end of life.
Seven Minute Immersion Ceremony for the National Partnership for Hospice and Healthcare Innovation (NPHI) Annual Summit, November 3 – 5, 2021
Torahscope Class Will Begin in the Fall/Winter
I have developed a unique approach to studying Torah that I call Torahscope. We begin with each participant’s birth portion, the Torah portion that was being read in synagogue the week you were born. This approach has been highly successful helping the most skeptical grasp the power of Torah study. I am also available for other forms of Torah study. I believe that we need to ask the question, “how can Torah guide me, our communities, or the world?” This class will be offered again in the Fall/Winter. This class is limited to 7 people and runs for 8 weeks. Please contact me here for more information and to apply to save your spot in the next opening.
Spiritual Direction Groups Using Writing and Devotional Listening
Group Spiritual Direction is a process of listening to the still small voice within, in a group setting. We use writing and devotional listening to deepen our awareness of the Sacred in our lives. You don’t have to be religious or Jewish to join. We often use Jewish texts as portals into our reflections.
Each group is limited to five or six people each. We meet for four sessions (every other week). At the end of this time, some people continue, some join, and some people feel complete. Please contact me here for more information and to apply to save your spot in the next opening in June.
Also see the Group Spiritual Direction page.
Second Day Morning Rosh Hashanah Service (September 8) with Eve Decker at Kehilla Community Synagogue
September 8, 2021
Eve and I co-lead for our 10th year a contemplative and personal second day Rosh Hashanah service drawing on Jewish and Buddhist teachings.
For the recording of this drash, go here: Rabbi Chaya Gusfield’s Second Day Rosh Hashanah Sermon. Also see the text of my teaching on Chaya’s Garden, my blog.
Give Me Your Hand: Exploring our Tradition – Visiting the Sick and Why it Matters
Sunday, May 15, 2021, Shavuot JCC East Bay
Hospice Chaplain Support Through Creative Expression (Capital Hospice)
May 18, 2021
We will use writing to explore our own grief and resilience, as well as practice offering blessings to those who have no religious affiliation.
Guest Rabbi: Torah Study, Congregation Beth Shalom, Modesto and Chadeish Yameinu, Santa Cruz (online)
Wednesday, February 17, 2021
Welcome to the Cancer Cafe, performance and discussion
Introducing the Artists’ Grief Deck
January 28, 2021
Join me at the Reimagine event where artists will share their work developing a deck to assist people grieving. I will be reading a poem I wrote.
See The Artist’s Grief Deck project here.