Our Way, the Orthodox Union’s program for the deaf and hard of hearing, will hold a Shabbaton in St. Louis the weekend of October 19-20 at Nusach Hari B’nai Zion Congregation, 650 North Prince Road in St. Louis.
Our Way is dedicated to providing resources, services and social programming for the Jewish deaf and hard of hearing. It is a division of the OU’s National Jewish Council for Disabilities.
The Shabbaton will feature a Deaf Torah Scholar-in-Residence, Yehoshua Soudakoff, and Deaf Host Andrew St. Cyr. Interpreting services will be provided by Sarah Rush. The event is coordinated by Rabbi Eliezer Lederfeind, Director of Our Way.
Scholar-in-Residence Yehoshua Soudakoff, originally from Los Angeles, is currently a rabbinical student in Brooklyn, NY. He comes from a second-generation deaf family, and grew up with years of experience of involvement in the Jewish deaf community. Yehoshua is also the director of Jewish Deaf Multimedia (www.jewishdeafmm.org), a website geared towards providing educational videos for deaf Jews. He is excited to have the opportunity to meet the Jewish deaf at the St. Louis Shabbaton.
Deaf Host Andrew St. Cyr was born in New Orleans to deaf parents and has a younger sister who is also deaf. His parents moved to St. Louis because they felt the schools there are better. After high school, Andrew attended Gallaudet University. He now works with deaf teenagers in St. Louis. Andrew is looking forward to welcoming everybody to the Deaf Shabbaton for a great time together.
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