Course in St. Johns County locations bucks trend of bleak predictions


This spring, Chabad Centers throughout St. Johns County will offer “This Can Happen,” a new six-session course by the acclaimed Rohr Jewish Learning Institute (JLI) that will address a pressing question on many minds: Is the current situation going to get any better?

“Many people nurse this idea that matters are getting progressively worse, and, fostered by much hysterical media and general dialogue, an environment of fear and despair is all too rampant,” a Chabad spokesperson said. “Exploring the science of world history and looking at the actual facts paint an eye-opening picture, one that can provide real, practical hope.”

Beginning towards the end of April, students who enroll in this course will embark on a journey that will explore one of the most misunderstood and maligned topics in the Jewish canon — the future redemption.

“This Can Happen” presents audiences with an opportunity to appreciate what Judaism really means when it talks about a “Messiah.” Considering that for many in the modern world, utopian visions of world peace and endless bounty sound like the stuff of fairy tales, this course summons the sources and the data to dispel such primitive notions and educate audiences that the Messianic era is a deep, broad climax to the entire story of the universe.

The subtitle of “This Can Happen,” “A credible case for feeling good about the future,” is indicative of an approach to the topic that is particularly timely.

“Recent events have put so many on the edge, and the longer matters drag on, the louder the voice of helplessness becomes,” said Rabbi Naftali Silberberg of JLI’s Brooklyn, New York, headquarters. “If we can make — as stated in our title — a ‘credible case’ to be optimistic about times ahead, that is remarkably edifying.”

As with all of JLI’s programs, “This Can Happen” is designed to appeal to people at all levels of knowledge, including those without any prior experience or background in Jewish learning. All JLI courses are open to the public, and attendees need not be affiliated with a synagogue, temple, or other house of worship.

The course will be offered both in person and over Zoom. Sign in information will be provided at the time of enrollment.

 People interested in participating may call their local Chabad Center: St. Augustine (904) 521-8664; Ponte Vedra (904) 543-9301; and St. Johns and Golf Villages (904) 701-4422 or go to for registration and for other course-related information.


No comments on this story | Please log in to comment by clicking here
Please log in or register to add your comment