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The End of Life
William Cutter, Laurie Zoloth,
Richard Address & Dayle Friedman
Recorded November 2002

 

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The Joint Commission is pleased to sponsor this mini-course in partnership with the Kalsman Institute on Judaism and Health. This course addresses the cultural foundations of our current ethical dilemmas and some practical strategies for addressing the changing realities surrounding death and dying.

In the first session, Bill Cutter explores stories and poems that created our cultural context; from Tolstoi to A.B.Yehoshua, from John Donne to Zelda. In the second session, Laurie Zoloth introduces new perspectives on public policy and personal decision making in life and death crises. In the final session, Dayle Friedman joins Richard Address in considering how these perspectives play themselves out and how we may improve our management of the ultimate in the human condition.


Program

This mini-course includes three, 1-hour phone presentations, which were recorded in November 2002. Each session is accompanied by a set of materials. The sessions are as follows:

Session Presenter and Title
1.

Bill Cutter

Death and Dying:
Literature, Ethics, Caring

2.

Laurie Zoloth

Public Policy and
Personal Decision Making

3.

Richard Address &
Dayle Friedman

Improving Our Counseling
and
Likrat Shelemut: Sustaining Ourselves as We Accompany Those at the Edge of Life

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Scholars' Bios

Rabbi Richard F. Address serves as the director of the UAHC's Department of Jewish Family Concerns. The mission of this department is to work with the congregations of the Reform movement to create “caring congregations” that have as their foundation the “theology of sacred relationships.” The department is involved in several major programmatic areas. They include such issues as: the changing faces of the contemporary Jewish family; issues relating to older adults, their spiritual aging and the challenges of intergenerational care-giving; concerns over self destructive behaviors within our youth; issues of inclusiveness and openness for people with special needs, and the impact of emerging medical technology on the choices that confront today's Reform Jews.

Richard joined the UAHC staff in 1978 after pulpit work in California. He served as Regional Director of the Pennsylvania Council of the UAHC from August of 1978 through December of 2000. He was named director of Jewish Family Concerns on July 1, 1997. He was ordained from HUC-JIR Cincinnati) in 1972 and received his honorary Doctor of Divinity from HUC-JIR in 1997. In May of 1998, he received a Certificate in Pastoral Counseling from the Post Graduate Center for Mental Health in New York and in May 1999 he received his Doctor of Ministry from the Hebrew Union College in New York. He is married to Jane Travis-Address and they have three children.

Rabbi William Cutter is Director of the Kalsman Institute on Judaism and Health, Paul and Trudi Steinberg Professor of Human Relations, Professor of Education and Modern Hebrew Literature, and Lecturer in Chaplaincy, Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion /Los Angeles. He has taught at the College-Institute since 1965, and has served as the Assistant Dean and Director of the Rhea Hirsch School of Education, which he helped found in 1970. He is from St. Louis, Missouri, and received his A.B. Degree from Yale University in 1959. His current research concentrates on the development of modern Hebrew literature at the turn of the century, and the ideological place of the Hebrew language in modern Judaism. He serves on the advisory board to the UCLA Medical Center Department of Spiritual Care and supervises the chaplaincy training of the students at HUC-JIR Los Angeles.

Rabbi Dayle Friedman is the director of the Geriatric Chaplaincy program at the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College, where she has been an adjunct faculty member since 1989. She is the editor of Jewish Pastoral Care: A Practical Handbook from Traditional and Contemporary Sources (Jewish Lights, 2001). Dayle was the founding Director of Chaplaincy Services at Philadelphia Geriatric Center, where for 12 years she was responsible for the Jewish life and pastoral care of the Center's 1100 tenants and residents. Dayle was ordained from HUC-JIR NY in 1985 following her Masters of Jewish Communal Service from USC and Social Work from HUC-JIR LA in 1981. In addition to her work in aging and pastoral care, she has created healing services and programs and participated in the development of RRC's groundbreaking spiritual direction program.

Laurie Zoloth is Professor of Ethics and Director of the Program in Jewish Studies at San Francisco State University. In 2001, she was the President of the American Society for Bioethics and Humanities. She is a member of the NASA National Advisory Council, the nation's highest civilian advisory board for NASA, the Executive Committee of the International Society for Stem Cell Research, and she is the Chair of the newly formed Howard Hughes Medical Institute's Bioethics Advisory Board.

In 1993, at the Graduate Theological Union, Berkeley, Laurie earned a PhD. in Social Ethics and a Masters in Jewish Studies. She is also on the national advisory boards of the American Association of the Advancement of Science's Dialogue on Science, Ethics and Religion; the Geron Ethics Advisory Board; The Robert Wood Johnson's Project on Excellence at the End of Life; The American Association for the Advancement of Science's Working Group on Human Germ-Line Interventions and on Stem Cell Research; the Ethics Section of the American Academy of Religion; the Western Jewish Studies Association; The Louis Finkelstein Institute for Jewish Social Ethics; The Park Ridge Center's Project on Judaism and Bioethics, and the editorial boards of Shofar: A Journal of Jewish Studies; The Journal of Clinical Ethics; American Journal of Bioethics; and Second Opinion: A Journal of Health, Faith and Ethics.