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Second Nurture

Susan SilvermanFilmed at Limmud Conference 2016

When Susan travelled to Ethiopia to adopt her son, she didn't expect to encounter Martin Buber there. But she did.   Jewish philosophy, theology and Torah study are ways to describe the indescribable, the unknowable: God’s will. But sometimes, in some moments, all these ideas take on immediate, gritty, real-life meaning. And that’s when they demand something from us – and when they matter most.  

Susan Silverman is an author, teacher, activist and founder of Second Nurture: Every Child Deserves a Family – And a Community, a program to find permanent, loving families for all children – with the added bonus of supportive communal contexts for their families, which can be found at She is an advocate for asylum seekers and of liberal Judaism in Israel, the author of Jewish Family & Life: Traditions, Holiday and Values for Today’s Parents and Children and, recently, of Casting Lots: Creating a Family in a Beautiful Broken World. She has appeared in Tablet Magazine, Moment Magazine, The Boston Globe, The Forward, The Jerusalem Post, Haaretz, YNet, The New York Times, NPR, and ABC’s The View, among others. She and her spouse, Yosef Abramowitz, have five children and live in Jerusalem. She can be found at and @rabbasusan.

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