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Rabbi Andrea Cohen-Kiener comes to us after a two year sabbatical at the Rochester Folk Art Guild as a member of the farm team. Previously Andrea served Congregation P'nai Or of Central Connecticut as their founding spiritual leader for 15 years.
Andrea's first degrees are in Jewish education. She directed the Midrasha Community High School in West Hartford for ten years. Andrea has vast experience in informal and values-based education. She has a book out with Melton Center for Research in Jewish Education on prayer education, For All Who Call, with Rabbi Jeff Hoffman.
As part of her studies for ordination in Jewish Renewal, Andrea published a translation of the hasidic master Kalanymous Kalman Shapira's book Conscious Community.
Andrea led Connecticut's Interfaith Power and Light chapter for ten years. While there, she helped establish a congregational carbon footprint self-study called This Old House of Worship. TOHW became a utility vetted program and over 250 Connecticut congregations took these classes in geographical clusters.
Andrea has additional training in supervision (Yale Divinity School), ritual and chant leadership (Rabbi Shefa's Kol Zimrah) and inter group communication (Compassionate Listening Project).
Andrea is a scholar, a published author and a practiced activist. She has four grown children, two daughters-in-law and two grand babies, and she is inordinately proud of all of them.
"What is conscious community? What can we do together that is harder to do as individuals? These questions guide my tenure here.
Judaism offers us tremendous wisdom for pressing current concerns: right values; right relationship with land, food and money; powerful communication tools for conflict resolution and strong healthy communities. I hope to live and teach these practices here at Temple Israel."