The Orthodox Union (OU) Women’s Initiative will mark its first two-year Nach Yomi cycle featuring Torah classes from women scholars with a series of celebratory events in New York, Israel and across the country.
The program, officially titled Torat Imecha Nach Yomi, was launched in Jan. 2020 and has featured daily downloadable audio shiurim (classes) on Nach, Nevi’im (prophets) and Ketuvim (writings).
To date, more than 6,500 women are subscribed to receive the daily learning modules, which total 742 individual shiurim. More than 1,000 women have completed the full series. The program is meant for women of all ages and religious and educational backgrounds to learn on their own schedules.
“What Nach affords you, as a learner, is to be part of the journey and history of the Jewish people and be an audience to the sacred words of our prophets.”
– Rebbetzin Dr. Adina Shmidman
“What Nach affords you, as a learner, is to be part of the journey and history of the Jewish people and be an audience to the sacred words of our prophets.” Rebbetzin Dr. Adina Shmidman, director of the OU Women’s Initiative, explained.
The first siyum (celebratory) event will begin on Shabbat Shira, Jan. 14-15 at synagogues from California to Colorado, from Toronto to Texas. So far 22 speakers and cities are slated to participate with the list growing.
Nach Yomi participants in Israel will enjoy two more special events starting with shiurim at the OU Israel Center on Jan. 23. On Jan. 24, events continue with a talk entitled “Yehoshua and You” and a tour of Qasr al Yuhud and Mitzepe Yericho with Rivi Frankel and end with a grand siyum celebration in Jerusalem in the evening.
“Rebbetzin Dr. Shmidman and the OU’s Women’s Initiatives Department advances the fundamental values of Torah Judaism,” Moishe Bane, OU president said. “The Nach Yomi program exemplifies this commitment, ensuring that each and every day includes an expansion of one’s Torah knowledge.”
Rabbi Moshe Hauer, executive vice president of the OU, added: “The OU Women’s Initiative Nach Yomi program was an inspired idea that has created a spiritual anchor for what has become a learning community of thousands of women who are infusing their daily lives with Torah knowledge, guidance, and connection. We view this as a critical contribution to Orthodox communal life and look forward to its growing impact.”
In Jan. 2020, when the most recent cycle of Daf Yomi started, there was an increase in attention on daily learning. Shortly thereafter, the Covid-19 pandemic forced many to isolate and find more virtual learning opportunities.
The program prides itself on participation by women of diverse backgrounds with varying levels of learning skills, geography and age all learning together. “The dedication of both participants and educators is extraordinary and speaks to the remarkable impact of this program,” Shmidman said. “It’s been incredible to hear from so many participants how connected they feel to these beloved texts and how much, over these last two difficult years, these words have been such an anchor.”
Rabbi Josh Joseph, Executive Vice President & Chief Operating Officer of the OU remarked, “The number of women now learning Nach on a daily basis is quite simply astounding. We thank the Torat Imecha Nach Yomi participants and our leadership for making this the largest women’s learning program ever.”
Expressing her appreciation for the program, Elaine Tuchman, a Nach Yomi participant from Baltimore, said: “I so appreciate this program as it permits me to learn whenever it is most convenient for me. Torat Imecha Nach Yomi is a very important part of my day.”
To donate and participate in the in-person events or to livestream the celebrations visit ou.org/women/nachsiyum.