Rabbi Joseph Potasnik
host of radio’s
“Religion on the Line”
The Mitzva Clowns nurture the sick
Gershom Sizumo
Abayudaya’s
Spiritual Leader
Rabbi Mark Borowitz
Director of
Beit T’Shuvah

The Biblical injunction to “teach your children” extends to young and old alike, according to Jewish tradition. In fact, the medieval scholar, Maimonides, called “the advancement of learning, the Highest Commandment.”

“The Highest Commandment,” takes a look at several dynamic individuals who have overcome great obstacles in their desire to fully explore Judaism’s rich heritage, rituals and sacred texts.

Viewers will meet: a thirteen-year-old boy pursuing post-bar mitzvah study at JTS’s Ivry Prozdor Supplemental High School; an eighty-nine-year-old woman and her Torah study group from the Cambridge House in New York preparing for and celebrating a communal b’not mitzvah, an honor they were all denied as girls; a deaf woman, determined to convey to her hearing children a deep love and appreciation of their heritage, demonstrating her unique work as a Jewish educator.

From “Mitzvah Clowns” in wigs and large red noses who learn how to fulfill the commandment of bikkur holim (visiting the sick), to another group that incorporates Torah study with yoga or meditation, to those more traditionally inclined shown poring over texts or attending a lecture, “The Highest Commandment” also details the wide range of programs available to anyone seeking continuing Jewish education.

In one of the program’s most affecting segments, members of Uganda’s Abayudaya tribe, who have embraced Judaism for more than three generations, are shown crowded into a tiny, one-room schoolhouse learning the Shema and other Jewish prayers from their spiritual leader, Gershom Sizumo.

Throughout the program, the leading rabbis and Jewish educators of our day comment on the current efforts being made to create, support and advance Jewish learning all around the world.

Torah Yoga
exercising to
Jewish prayers

Rabbi Gershon Winkler
teaches spiritual meditation

Jewish Tai Chi
Sharon Jo Sperlin
teaches signing of
Jewish prayers