May 19, 2024
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Linking Northern and Central NJ, Bronx, Manhattan, Westchester and CT

Shabbat Project 2018: A Retreat for Body and Soul

(Courtesy of Project Inspire) As Jewish communities around the world are gearing up for this year’s annual Shabbat Project, the team at Project Inspire announces a brand new venue and an innovative experience in our area. Rabbi Yaakov Giniger, director of programming at Project Inspire, explains: “This year, our Shabbat Project will become a Shabbat Retreat, to be held at the Sheraton Parsippany [in] New Jersey. Participants will experience an outstanding weekend that will pamper the body and inspire the soul.”

The event, which is scheduled for the weekend of October 26-28, promises to be a groundbreaking experience. It will include a full roster of inspiring speakers, thrilling entertainment and stand-up comedy, zumba classes, sports activities, gourmet cuisine and so much more. A special program for children and teens is also being planned, and guests are encouraged to bring along their families.

Rabbi Chaim Sampson, director of Project Inspire, says, “We decided this year to offer frum yidden an opportunity to bring their less affiliated friends and acquaintances to a weekend Shabbaton in a hotel setting. The experience of several hundred yidden of all backgrounds coming together will create an incredible achdus. Relationships will be forged and developed. It promises to be electric and life transforming for all.”

The annual Challah Bake, an event that is always eagerly anticipated, will be held at the retreat on Erev Shabbat. Families will prepare the challahs together and then enjoy them during their Shabbat seudah. In fact, says Rabbi Giniger, the entire Shabbat program is designed to be an interactive, shared, inspirational experience. “Unlike a conference or a convention,” he points out, “participants will join in a series of meaningful discussions and workshops.”

Members of the community are welcome to join the Shabbat Retreat, says Rabbi Giniger, “as long as they bring along a guest who they will be introducing to the Shabbat experience.”

The Gross family will be dedicating the Shabbat Retreat in memory of their beloved mother, Malka bas Yosef Yuspah, z”l. Mr. Isaac Gross says that a Shabbat experience is really the best time to spark a Jewish soul. “Shabbat,” he says, “is all about family and tradition. It’s the most spiritual day of the week, and an excellent opportunity to generate an appreciation of Yiddishkeit among our fellow Jews.”

And the hotel setting is the perfect venue. “While bringing guests into our homes is a wonderful idea,” he says, “it can also be awkward. Potential guests are sometimes reluctant to move into someone’s home for Shabbat.”

But the hotel experience will be a game changer. “Everyone will feel comfortable. We’ll all be enjoying Shabbat together while being wined and dined, inspired by an incredible program and staying in a luxury hotel. All this while our guests will discover the beauty of disconnecting from the world and enjoying a genuine and spiritual Shabbat. What could be better than that?”

The Shabbat Retreat is the first of its kind and represents a pioneering new approach to kiruv. The team at Project Inspire is preparing an unprecedented and very unique program. “Our goal,” says Rabbi Sampson, “is to bring together a community of people from all walks of life who will learn and grow together and build relationships that will last for years. We are extremely excited about this and would love for you to join us!”

For more information, contact Project Inspire at [email protected], visit jinspire.org  or call 646-291-6191.

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