Marc Rosenstein grew up in Highland Park, IL, at North Shore Congregation Israel. His first visit to Israel was as a high school student in the first exchange of the Eisendrath International Exchange (EIE) program in 1962. He was ordained at HUC-JIR in 1975, and then served as assistant rabbi at Community Synagogue, in Port Washington, NY. Rabbi Rosenstein was a teacher and also a principal at the Solomon Schechter Secondary School in Skokie, IL. He also served as the principal at Akiba Hebrew Academy in Lower Merion, PA.
In 1990, he made aliyah, moving to Moshav Shorashim, a small community in the central Galilee, founded in the early 1980's by a group of young American immigrants. He is presently the director of the Israeli Rabbinic Program of HUC-JIR, as well as the director of the Makom ba-Galil, a seminar center at Shorashim that engages in programming to foster pluralism and coexistence. Marc is married to Tami (originally from Waukegan, IL), a speech clinician working with handicapped infants and children. They have three children; Josh, Ilana, and Lev.
The Galilee Diary is designed especially for Reform congregational schools to teach about Israel, by means of a more personal viewpoint. Rather than limit our teaching about Israel to crises or the "victimization" of Reform Jews there, this diary offers an alternative perspective -- personal and direct.
You may consider the following options for use in your school:
Devote 5 minutes of each class session to read and respond to the weekly diary entry.
Compare news reports with the diary entries.
Have students respond to Marc Rosenstein's entries, with comments and questions. (Please feel free to email responses to Marc.)
Copy the Galilee Diary entries for your school's faculty to use at their discretion.
The Galilee Diary is a deliberate attempt to humanize and normalize our teachings about Israel. It is precisely when it is difficult to understand Israel that Jews have a responsibility to love Israel.
Diary entries are written by Marc Rosenstein, an educator who made aliyah with his family in 1990.