JLI to offer course that bucks general trend of bleak predictions

Chabad Center will offer “This Can Happen,” a new six-session course from the Rohr Jewish Learning Institute, via Zoom. The course will run for six consecutive Mondays, beginning on April 26, with the first session at 7 pm and the second beginning 8:45 pm. Sign-in information will be offered to enrolled participants. The course fee is $79 and $150 per couple, which includes the text book. To register for the course visit

www.chabadofbinghamton.com/templates/articlecco_cdo/aid/4725643/jewish/Virtual-JLI-Classes-Registration.htm or call Chabad at 797-0015 and ask for Ruth Shea. 

“This has been a difficult year on many levels,” shared Rivkah Slonim, the local JLI instructor. “While I never bought into the ‘unprecedented’ nature of the difficulty, it has been physically and emotionally taxing. This is why I am especially excited to share the news about a course that is the perfect antidote to all the bad news we are regularly bombarded with.

“Many people nurse the idea that matters are getting progressively worse and, fostered by much hysterical media and general dialogue, an environment of fear and despair is all too rampant,” said Slonim. “Exploring the science of world history and looking at the actual facts paint an eye-opening picture, one that can provide real, practical hope. Those who enroll in this course will have the ubiquitous question answered: is the current situation going to get any better? In fact, participants should prepare to embark on a journey that will explore one of the most misunderstood and maligned topics in the Jewish canon – the future redemption.”

“This Can Happen” will present audiences with an opportunity to appreciate what Judaism really means when it talks about a messiah. “Considering that for many in the modern world, utopian visions of world peace and endless bounty sound like the stuff of fairy tales, this course summons the sources and the data to dispel such primitive notions and educate audiences that the messianic era is a deep, broad climax to the entire story of the universe,” said course organizers.

The subtitle of “This Can Happen,” “A credible case for feeling good about the future,” is indicative of an approach to the topic. “Recent events have put so many on the edge and the longer matters drag on, the louder the voice of helplessness becomes,” explained Rabbi Naftali Silberberg of JLI’s Brooklyn, NY, headquarters. “If we can make – as stated in our title – a ‘credible case’ to be optimistic about times ahead, that is remarkably edifying.” 

As with all of JLI’s programs, “This Can Happen” is designed to appeal to people at all levels of knowledge, including those without any prior experience or background in Jewish learning. All JLI courses are open to the public and attendees need not be affiliated with a synagogue, temple or other house of worship.

JLI, the adult education branch of Chabad-Lubavitch, offers programs in more than 1,600 international locations in the U.S., Argentina, Australia, Belarus, Belgium, Brazil, Canada, Colombia, Denmark, Estonia, Finland, France, Georgia, Germany, Greece, Guatemala, India, Israel, Italy, Japan, Kazakhstan, the Netherlands, Panama, Russia, South Africa, Sweden, Switzerland, Turkey, Ukraine, the United Kingdom, Uruguay and Venezuela. More than 400,000 students have attended JLI classes since we were founded in 1998.