The Rabbi Samuel Chiel (zt”l)
Genesis Forum Downtown

Jewish Visions of an Ideal Society: Messianism, Utopianism and Self-Perfection

All sessions meet on Wednesdays, 12:00–1:15 p.m.
at CJP's Kraft Family Building, 126 High Street, Boston.

The event is free and open to the public. Registration is required.
Please feel free to bring your lunch. Beverages will be available.

We live in tumultuous times. In past generations, Jews have dealt with chaos by dreaming of a better future. In this year’s Genesis Forum Downtown, our sessions will look at models of idyllic dreaming from the Jewish past as a way to build our own dreams for the Jewish present.

Register online, email learnon@cjp.org, or call 617-457-8789.


February 26
Radical Hope: Prophetic Visions of Resurrection and their Rabbinic Legacy
with Rabbi Dr. Benjamin Samuels

March 25
Jewish Visions of an Ideal Society:  An Exploration of Philip Roth’s “Conversion of the Jews”
with Dr. Abigail Gillman

April 29
A Day in Degania: Building a Secular Utopia in Israel's First Kibbutz
with Dr. Shayna Weiss

May 27
The World to Come - Now? Messianism and Modern Jewish Politics
with Professor Yehudah Mirsky

June 24
“Ani Ma’amin — I Believe with Perfect Faith in the Coming of the Messiah”:
Contemporary Jewish Views of Perfecting the World and the Arrival of a New Age
with Rabbi Benjamin Samuels and Rabbi Elyse Winick


Rabbi Samuel Chiel (zt”l)

הרב שמואל בן שלמה ופרימט זצ"ל

Rabbi Samuel Chiel (zt”l) was CJP’s Scholar-in-Residence for many years and was instrumental in founding the Genesis Forum.

Rabbi Chiel left us with a glorious legacy of communal service and teaching. At the beginning of his rabbinical career, he also proudly served his country as a Jewish chaplain in the U.S. Armed Forces. He went on to become the beloved spiritual leader of Temple Emanuel of Newton for 27 years. 

He never stopped learning and teaching, and was involved in the training of young rabbis and the continuing education of mid-career rabbis through the Rabbinic Institute at Hebrew College, as well as serving as the Jewish Scholar for New Directions in Catholic-Jewish Dialogue, an interfaith program co-sponsored by the Anti-Defamation League and the Archdiocese of Greater Boston.

Rabbi Chiel was renowned for his unique combination of erudition, insight, empathy, and warmth. He was a master speaker and teacher of Torah, as well as a great believer in and advocate for the elevating and healing powers of spiritual practice. Through our study, we hope to memorialize Rabbi Chiel for eternal blessing.