Mónica: At this point Leora and I have been learning together for five years. At the beginning, we would sit in a café and drill one another on verb forms. Now we try to wrap our heads together around the complicated logic of the Rishonim. Along the way, we have run a minyan together, worked together as activists on justice issues, collaborated on creative life-cycle events, and witnessed one another’s struggles, losses and joys. Being in this kind of long-term relationship makes our Torah learning thick and complex. It means we are having many conversations at once, over the course of years, and growing into rabbis with the resource of friendship, allyship, and chevruta.
Leora: We met coordinating a workshop on ritual for a national gathering of activists working for justice in Israel and Palestine. I was deciding between different rabbinical schools and also considering deferring for a year, but I came to Hebrew College and came when I did so that I could be in Mónica’s class, and it was the best decision. For five years we have been having conversations in multiple dimensions: deep inside the text, as fellow community-builders, as activists with shared values and a shared agenda, and as friends committed to one another’s well-being. #HumansHC