You are invited to join others, 60 years and better, at Stephen Wise Temple for our regular series of learning, lunch, leisure, and community.
Mornings feature speakers on a wide range of timely and timeless topics. Following lunch together, afternoons offer a choice of films or games.
Join the adventure and be a part of Wise Years. Bring a guest, they are always welcome!

Our Guest Speakers

Join us for Wise Years online on July 9 at 1 p.m.

A Jewish Family’s Century in Shanghai

Thursday, July 9 at 1 p.m.

Author, artist, and musician Ester Benjamin Shifren was born in China to a prominent British Jewish family that had flourished in Shanghai for five generations. They were interned for three years by the Japanese during World War II, and in the Communist era were forced to relocate to Hong Kong and then Israel. She served in the IDF, married, and lived in South Africa for 36 years and Canada for five years before moving to Los Angeles. Ms. Shifren has spoken internationally to numerous groups about the history of the Jewish community and multi ethnic groups in Shanghai, the “Paris of the Orient”. In 2005 Ester was a guest in a BBC One program, “We’ll Meet Again”, and lectured at the Imperial War Museum in London. She is the author of “Hiding in a Cave of Trunks.”​​​​​​​

Join us for Wise Years online on August 13 at 1 p.m.

Two Meaningful Journeys

You may not be traveling for a while, but you can join Wise Years via Zoom and learn about two remarkable trips.

Thursday, August 13 at 1 p.m.

While most people her age were enjoying well-deserved retirement, Rabbi Corinne Copnick began a six-year course of study and was ordained a rabbi at the age of seventy-nine. The ordination was the beginning of a new adventure—and an unconventional “pulpit.”

In A Rabbi at Sea, Rabbi Corinne narrates the stories of her five years of travel experiences as a guest rabbi on cruise ships. On every journey and in every country visited, she uncovered and explored Jewish life—from Hawaii to Australia, the Mediterranean, Central and South America, Mexico, Southeast Asia, and everywhere in between. Offering a global perspective, she presents a host of insights about the cultures and the people she encountered throughout her travels.

Learn the dramatic and little-known story of Aristides de Sousa Mendes, the Portguese Consul General in Bordeaux, France, from 1938 to 1940. He defied his government to write life-saving visas for 30,000 people. For his efforts, he died an ostracized pauper.

Monique Rubens Krohn is a writer and historian. Her mother, grandparents and six other maternal members of her family were saved by Sousa Mendes. In 2016, Monique traveled with the Sousa Mendes Foundation, through France, Spain and Portugal to retrace her mother’s journey to freedom.