Mishkan is a burgeoning spiritual community in Chicago reclaiming Judaism’s inspiration and transformative essence. Not bound by a particular location, we meet for soulful musical prayer and learning, at homes and spaces all around the city, from synagogues to yoga studios.
The Torah describes the Mishkan as a tent that the ancient Israelites carried with them through the desert, creating holy space whenever and where ever they stopped to gather around and in it. Where ever we are on our journeys as Jews and as citizens of the world, we create meaningful connections- with ourselves, with others, with Jewish wisdom and with God- when we gather together in prayer, song, learning, and tikkun (repairing the world). That’s what Mishkan is all about.
Our mission is to engage, educate, empower, connect and inspire people through dynamic experiences of Jewish prayer, learning, social activism and community building. Whether in person or online, through music or Talmud or powerful conversations, whether in services or social events, Mishkan is reimagining and reinvigorating the next generation of Judaism in Chicago and beyond.
We’ve been around since our first service in a Lincoln Park living room in September of 2011. Since then our staff has grown from one volunteer rabbi/founder to a growing staff of five, including our amazing Managing Director Rachel Cort, our Community Mobilizer, Ellie Spitz, and our newest hires, our intrepid Education Director Ilana Gleicher-Bloom, and our more-competant-than-G!d Office Manager Rachel Gray Alexander. We have 8 board members – all regulars at our events and people who care deeply about the present and future sustainability of our community. We have about 150 Builders and see a crowd of over 2,000 people at High Holidays and at events throughout the year. We’re constantly striving to maintain the energy of our fast growing community alongside the intimacy and familiarity of the Mishkan you know and love.
We envision a Chicago and American Jewish landscape in which Torah [Jewish wisdom, text, practice, culture], Avodah [being of sacred service in community] and Gemilut Hassadim [being of service to other creatures, people and the planet] guides and inspires our lives, and we as Jews participate in bringing about a world which all people feel safe and supported to manifest their fullest selves.
So join the rabbi for coffee, show up at a house party in your neighborhood, get inspired at a Friday night service, get involved in tikkun (repairing the world) work. Meet other folks in Chicago who are hungry for deeper Jewish experiences that get us higher, push us farther, and get us more and more connected.
Just get in touch already, would you?