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Gamliel Institute

Student Projects

Burial beyond Bodies

An exploration and establishment

of a burial site for holy objects.

Project Abstract


A multiple-approach effort to research, document, educate, design rituals, and implement the historic practice of using a Genizah for storage/burial of religious and sacred articles, specifically including those items that have an actual name of G-d in Hebrew on them.


This project includes a survey of literature and resources for existing information on this practice; develop a lesson plan/curriculum to teach about this concept, develop or refine one or more rituals for this purpose, and undertake to perform the ritual at each congregation I serve.



Student Profile

Rabbi Joe Blair has

served as the rabbi and spiritual leader of Temple House of Israel  and Beth El Congregation in Virginia.  He also serves the extended Jewish community in the Shenandoah Valley and Central Virginia.


Rabbi Joe’s vision has been to build, nurture, and nourish a strong, vibrant Jewish community in the Shenandoah Valley in Central Virginia, and to be connected to and support the larger community in the local area and outward into the world.  He was selected to be one of eighteen rabbis nationally to participate in the sixth cohort of the STAR PEER program, which assisted him in honing his skills and directing his energies, which makes him one of the one hundred and sixteen rabbis nationally who engaged in this exclusive training program (since terminated).  He serves as the Administrator and Webmaster for the Jewish Values Online project, and is an instructor, staff member, and Administrative Dean of the Gamliel Institute, the leadership training arm of the national organization, Kavod v’Nichum.

Project Links:

Genizah Project