A new book of essays from co-editors Rabbi Hayim Herring, Ph.D., and Ellie Roscher addresses investing in rabbis, trusting tradition, and embracing change. In an age when more and more American Jews outside of Orthodoxy feel distant from Judaism as a religion, we must ask, “How do we train our rabbis to lead us today?” Keeping Faith in Rabbis is a book published by Avenida Books of thirty-one essays that address that very question. The first book release launch event is December 2, 2014, at Bet Shalom Congregation, 13613 Orchard Road, Minnetonka, Minnesota. The book is available on Amazon.com and Avenidabooks.com. “Courageous conversation is imperative because we need our rabbis and pastors now more than ever,” says co-editor Ellie Roscher. “Spiritual leaders do the essential work of translating the sacred, facilitating relationships and preserving ritual. This book, along with Keeping the Faith in Seminary, explore the changing roles of
The year 1968 is burned into American history. For the players of Carbondale High School’s football team, 1968 was their season of destiny. It was the last undefeated season in the school’s history, and that team served as a launching pad for extraordinary careers and friendships. Destined for Greatness tracks this team through their remarkable season and beyond. More than a sports story, this is an American story about a team seeking greatness against great odds. From the introduction: It has been more than two years since Roger Medlen suggested to Mike Given at the Carbondale Community High School Alumni Christmas Eve gathering in Carbondale (at a favorite old “watering hole” Midland Inn) if he would be interested in writing a book about the 1968 Terrier Football team—still, the last Carbondale High School football to go undefeated— now, nearly 46 years later. It was a reasonable request and suggestion for
We’re going to have to move again. When I got home from school, an eviction notice was posted on the door. I don’t want to leave my school. Mama, why is this happening again? Angelika’s Journal is a resource for those who want to understand the impact of poverty on children. Each chapter starts with a journal entry from Angelika. As she deals with the challenges of poverty, she inspires all to see their world differently. At the end of each chapter, a study guide and questions dig deeper into the issues that confront Angelika. This is the perfect resource for people who want to understand how children experience poverty in the U.S. every day. The twelve chapters of Angelika’s Journal are meant to be used consecutively so you can follow Angelika’s journey as she experienced it. Follow up information, questions for discussion, and ideas for things you can do
Avenida Books’s latest book tackles problems in education from the angles of faith, hope, belief, and redemption. In a time when teachers are under attack, we chose to keep faith in teachers by giving them a place to tell the world why all of us should continue to believe in their soulful, worthy work. Keeping the Faith in Education is a collection of essays and poems written by teachers and students. It will inspire and restore anyone who works in education. Each page serves as a reminder of why teachers are still willing to bare their souls to help their students shine. Advance Praise: “I couldn’t put this book down. Its pages glow with spirit, energy, joy — and also pain, doubt and uncertainty. Throughout it all a deep river of compassion flows for teachers and their students. This is a book of grounded, centered, whole spirituality, not confined
We were thrilled to have José Luis Vilson, educator, writer, and activist, contribute to Keeping the Faith in Education. We interviewed him to hear more about why he chose to be a part of the project. What does it mean to you to “keep faith in education”? It means that, despite the rather negative tenor about the state of education right now, with soaring social inequity, and the changing landscape of the teaching profession, it’s important that we recognize and hold steadfast to teaching our students about how to make the world a better place. Too often mired in self-defeatist attitudes, we often pull each other down as a means of solidarity rather than looking at our current situation for what it is and working because of this. What initially drew you to teaching? Have your goals evolved over the years? Initially, I was attracted to the high salary and
Teach for America recruits intelligent, motivated new teachers, but what happens once they are in their placements? One of the essays in Keeping the Faith in Education takes us into one teacher’s experience as a first-year TFA corps member. Caring Enough to Quit by Abbi Heimach On a winter Monday morning, I found myself wondering how my life turned into shepherding hyperactive children into straight lines. I walked through the hallways picking up six-, seven-, and eight-year-old children from their classrooms to take them to my class for differentiated support as their Individual Education Plan (IEP) indicated. What will happen today? Will Andrew’s interruptions prevent me from finishing my lesson? Will Trevion hit someone? Will my kids learn anything I try to teach them? While I waited for five of my students to form a line, Rodell, a sweet, hyperactive first grader, turned to me and said, “Ms. Heimach, I
Ellie Roscher is the editor of Keeping the Faith in Seminary and the upcoming collection Keeping the Faith in Education. Watch her TED talk about an inspiring school that is listening to their students and helping them succeed.
Avenida’s latest book tackles two difficult issues: poverty and bullying. Author Beth Lindsay Templeton, inspired by her years of experience working closely with people living in poverty, wrote this children’s book to help parents answer questions about poverty. This is a children’s book for any parent who wants to help their children grow into a greater social consciousness and increase their empathy and understanding toward their peers. Questions such as “Why does my classmate smell funny?” indicate your child is noticing the socioeconomic differences between students. As a parent or grandparent, you may feel challenged to adequately and compassionately address your child’s questions. A Coat Named Mr. Spot along with the Parents’ Guide will assist you in developing and continuing a conversation for helping your child empathize with classmates who may live in poverty. Praise for A Coat Named Mr. Spot: “A community is only as strong as its ability
Religious life in America is changing rapidly. What does this changing landscape mean for seminary? Keeping the Faith in Seminary is a compilation of essays that address issues of theological formation and vocation for people who love God, the world and the church. Seminary graduates, professors and family members reflect on their experiences with humor, fondness, criticism, and, ultimately, hope for what seminaries can and should be in our ever-changing world.
The kindle editions of our books are now available at Amazon.com. Fritz & Christine and Their Very Nervous Parents The Outspokin’ Cyclist