Texas “Encounter” Weekend To Unite Young Jewish Professionals

Facing challenges in the workplace and online, hundreds of young professionals are set to unite in Houston for the first-ever CYP Encounter: Texas weekend of Jewish pride and community activism.

Young Jewish professionals from across Texas and beyond, are looking forward to the first CYP regional Shabbaton in Houston, a weekend celebrating community, connection, and shared values. Featuring in-depth workshops on pressing topics facing young Jews in the workplace as well as volunteering opportunities with local charities, the Shabbaton aims to cultivate a sense of Jewish community, leadership and empowerment.

The robust program will present a meaningful and uplifting Shabbos experience hosted by Rabbi Chaim & Chanie Lazaroff and their Young Professional community in Houston. Shluchim from Chabad Young Professionals communities across the state and beyond will join with representatives from their CYP community. These include Rabbi Mendy and Mussy Levertov of  CYP Austin, Rabbi Mendy and Mushka Plotkin of CYP Intown Dallas, and Rabbi Eli and Tzivia Block of S. Antonio.

Among the activities planned are a talk from local Holocaust survivor Bob Ulman on the historical resilience of the Jewish people in the face of evil and how it can be applied to the current climate, a relationship compatibility symposium led by a local relationship coach together with Shabbaton host Mrs. Chanie Lazaroff, and delectable Shabbos meals with a giant Challah because “everything Texas is bigger and better.”  Rabbi Mendy and Mussie Levertov of CYP Austin will lead an interactive workshop on the Jewish response to antisemitism. 

“In a time when meaningful relationships are more critical than ever, young people are seeking ways to make them more fulfilling,” says Rabbi Chaim Lazaroff, Director of CYP  Uptown and Shabbaton host. “Especially in a large state like Texas where the Jewish community is a small minority group, connecting with fellow Jews goes a long way towards a sense of community and Jewish continuity.”

The weekend will conclude on Sunday with the opportunity to give back to the local community. In partnership with The Friendship Circle, attendees can work with special needs youth to prepare and distribute meals for the unhoused. In collaboration with the Aishel House, participants will also prepare meals for patients and family members at the world-famous Texas Medical Center hospitals. 

“With many young Jews seeking renewed Jewish connection since October 7th, the Shabbaton provides a space to expand their network of like-minded peers at a time where positive connections may be hard to come by,” says Rabbi Beryl Frankel, Director of CYP International at Merkos 302. With Texas being the sixth regional Shabbaton this season, the CYP Encounter initiative brings the micro-communities of the world’s largest network of  young Jewish professionals together for immersive Jewish experiences, new friendships and touring new cities with a meaningful twist. 

“In the current climate, young Jews are seeking opportunities to come together more than ever,” says Rabbi Mendy Kotlarsky, Executive Director of Merkos 302. “These meetups are invaluable as we see participants walk away proud, confident Jews, advocates for their faith, empowered with the knowledge that they aren’t alone.”

Participating CYP Chapters as of publication of Article:
Austin TX
Bellaire, TX
Brooklyn, NY
Cincinnati, Ohio
Dallas, TX
Houston, TX
Livingston, New Jersey
Los Angeles, CA
Manhattan, NY
Miami, Fl
Rochester, NY
San Antonio, TX
Skokie, IL
Talent, OR
Tarzana, CA

For more information, visit  https://www.chabadyoung.com/tx 

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