Due to Omicron COVID Surge, this event will be presented solely on Zoom.  Link will be shared with registrants prior to the event.

In was the third of four events in the Grounding our Lives series, Congregation Am HaYam has the honor of hosting the distinguished Rabbi, Joshua Hoffman, President of the Southern California Board of Rabbis

Watch the YouTube presentation here.

Rabbi Joshua Hoffman spoke on The Power of Peoplehood in Enhancing Spirituality. This free event was a sponsored by Congregation Am HaYam, took place on Wednesday, April 6th  at 7 p.m. via Zoom.

For the past 25 years Rabbi Hoffman has studied and practiced as a pulpit Rabbi in the Southern California area. He proudly served Congregation Valley Beth Shalom in Encino from 2003-2021.

Rabbi Hoffman states in his biography, ” My core beliefs in respecting the dignity of every individual, celebrating the joys of life with tradition and wisdom, and planning for a future with the loftiest visions of prosperity, healing and growth have guided my successful service to the Los Angeles Jewish community and across the globe. I take great pride in the thousands of individuals, couples and families I have had the privilege to work with through every stage of life.”


In this talk, Rabbi Hoffman spoke about peoplehood in three ways:

On the smallest level, he will speak of our sense of peoplehood in belonging to a movement (e.g. Conservative–but he won’t be speaking about the Conservative Movement specifically). What are the benefits of belonging to a movement? What is its spiritual power? How do we relate to other Jewish movements or Jews who belong to no movement?

On the next level, he will speak about belonging to a people. To what degree can we really speak of Klal Yisrael, “the Jewish people”? Is it a thing, or is it mythic? When do we tend to feel the spiritual power of belonging to a people. What are the benefits? What are our responsibilities?

Finally, he will address our community’s sense of mandate to be Or LaGoyim, a “light unto the nations.” How does peoplehood inform the way we relate to and interact with other faith communities or people who profess no faith community? What kind of expectations and hopes should we have in building these relationships and conceivably forging a larger community of spiritual people? What are the benefits and what might be the limits to interfaith cooperation?

You may learn more about Rabbi Joshua Hoffman by visiting his website

Watch the session on YouTube here.

This event is funded in part thanks to a grant from Pacific Southwest Region of the United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism .

We also received a generous donation from the Joseph P. Reardon Funeral Home.