Telephone Torah Study: Archive

After more than a decade, the Telephone Minyan/Telephone Torah Study is hanging up the phone to clear the way for innovative programs that continue serve the current needs of our ever-changing community.

The Telephone Minyan was founded in 2005 by five BCC members who were homebound at that time: Ray Eelsing, Bob Adels, Evelyn Poplawski, Sarah Trutt and I. Feeling isolated from our Jewish spirituality and BCC community inspired us to study the weekly Torah portion via conference phone. Soon after, others who sought connection and community for varied reasons — distance, travel, and recuperation from temporary illness or surgery — joined in. Quickly, Telephone Minyan events broadened as we added High Holy Day and Yom HaShoah services, along with classes-by-phone led by scholars throughout the United States.

Over time, people called in to the Telephone Minyan from remote places like Brazil, Germany, North Dakota, and the San Fernando Valley. We even made forays into providing remote access to BCC’s regular Shabbat services--remember those days at 6000 Pico when we balanced the conference phone on the bimah while the clergy led services?

Most proudly, the Telephone Minyan was the kickstarter to the highly successful BCC Live and its motto—Wherever you go, BCC goes with you! Since 2011 when we moved to our new building, BCC has been able to live-stream its weekly Shabbat services, members’ simchas, classes, guest speakers and special events to a worldwide audience—and archives the videos for those who missed them or want to forward the link to friends. The humble telephone may have been replaced by state-of-the-art technology, but the original aim remains the same—to provide connection and community to all who seek it.

I feel honored to have been given the opportunity to chair and facilitate the Telephone Minyan these many years. I thank all those who helped make it a trailblazer in re-envisioning community for BCC and the larger Jewish and LGBT communities. Check the G’vanim and BCC website for more to come in the secular New Year 2015.

- Bracha Yael

Telephone Minyan: Yom Kippur Machzor

written on October 3, 2014 // 0 Comments

October 4th, 2014 10 Tishrei 5775 Compiled and Edited by Bracha Yael Click here for Print version On the tenth […]

Telephone Minyan Rosh Hashana Machzor

written on September 24, 2014 // 0 Comments

Telephone Minyan Rosh Hashana Machzor: September 25th, 2014/ 1 Tishrei 5775 Compiled and Edited by Bracha Yael Download printed version […]

An internet resource guide for the High Holy Days

written on September 16, 2014 // 0 Comments

Compiled and Edited by Bracha Yael Download printed version QUICK LINKS Elul: The Month of Spiritual Preparation What is Elul […]

Telephone Torah Study: It is Not in the Heavens

written on September 15, 2014 // 0 Comments

Double your fun with this week’s double Torah portion, Nitzavim-Vayelech (Deut. 29:9-31:30). Although it’s a short double portion it’s packed […]

Telephone Torah Study: Could the Curses be a Blessing?

written on September 9, 2014 // 0 Comments

A long list of curses punctuate this week’s Torah portion, Ki Tavo (Deut. 26:1-29:8). We, like centuries of Jews before […]

Telephone Torah Study: Torah Portion with the Most Mitzvot

written on September 3, 2014 // 0 Comments

This week’s Torah portion, Ki Teitzei (Deut. 21:10-25:19), contains more mitzvot (commandments) of any portion, 74 of the traditional 613. […]

Telephone Torah Study: Justice, Justice Shall You Pursue

written on August 27, 2014 // 0 Comments

Justice, Justice shall you pursue… one of the most famous verses in Torah is in this week’s portion, Shoftim (Deut. […]

Telephone Torah Study: Blessing and Curse

written on August 19, 2014 // 0 Comments

God sets before the Israelites the choice between blessing and curse in this week’s Torah portion, R’eih (Deut. 11:26-16:17). Join […]

Telephone Torah Study: What Does God Demand of You?

written on August 12, 2014 // 0 Comments

Torah portion Eikev (Deut.7:12-11:25) asks “What Does God Demand of You?” And, we ask back “What Do We Demand of […]

Telephone Torah Study: The Shema and Ten Commandments!

written on August 5, 2014 // 0 Comments

In this week’s Telephone Torah Study (Thursday 4-5pm) we’ll study one of the greatest Torah portions ever this week! Triple […]