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Rabbi Michael Goldstein received rabbinical ordi­na­tion from Yeshiva University and currently serves as Director of Outreach for Jewish Education through Torah (JET) of Ottawa. Rabbi Goldstein formerly spent two years as an educator at NCSY’s Torah High in Toronto, Canada.

I didn’t really expect that the trip would impact my perspec­tive on the Israeli-Palestinian conflict or the way in which I would conduct my future rabbinic career and my path as an educator. I remember commenting to a friend that I don’t know why I’m going; I know I’m going to be angry… but I had a very powerful expe­ri­ence on that two-day trip to Bethlehem. Three years later I’m not yet done with Encounter.”

Rabbi Michael Goldstein received rabbinical ordi­na­tion from Yeshiva University (YU) and spent several years teaching for the Orthodox Union. He discov­ered Encounter when studying as a rabbinical student at YU’s Jerusalem Campus.

Two weeks after partic­i­pating in his first trip to Bethlehem, Michael joined an advanced trip to Hebron. The following year, he returned to Bethlehem twice as a facilitator.

Since his return to Canada, Michael has been a member in Encounter’s newly launched Israel Education Initiative where he works with a group of 15 Encounter alumni educa­tors from across the reli­gious and polit­ical spec­trum to create inno­v­a­tive educa­tional resources fitting for the 21st century.

Encounter is making me a better rabbi and a better teacher. Thanks to Encounter, I was able to model an approach for my students that balances a love for Israel while recog­nizing Israel’s mistakes. It was a perspec­tive that they needed to hear; it brought them back into a posi­tive rela­tion­ship with Israel, the Jewish home­land and Zionism that they’d previ­ously disre­garded. because of what they were hearing from the evening news. Encounter has a crit­ical role to play in the future of North American Jewish educa­tion and I feel priv­i­leged to be a part of it.”

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Encounter is an edu­ca­tional orga­ni­za­tion dedi­cated to strength­ening the capacity of the Jewish people to be construc­tive agents of change in resolving the Israeli-Palestinian conflict.

Moti­vated by the relent­less Jew­ish pur­suit of hokhma (wis­dom) and binah (under­stand­ing), Encounter cul­ti­vates informed Jew­ish lead­er­ship on the Israeli-Palestinian con­flict by bring­ing…

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