Chicago Innovation Hub

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Welcome!


Are you looking for Jewish clergy for your upcoming wedding or baby naming? Seeking help on your journey to conversion? If you’re looking for support with a lifecycle event or to find inclusive Jewish events and meet other interfaith couples at your life stage, we’re here to support you. We have non-judgmental staff to help guide and connect you and a wealth of experience in the 18Doors Chicago Innovation Hub.

We are thrilled to have Tani Prell, our Chicago Community Director, and two Rukin Rabbinic Fellows in Chicago, Rabbi Steven Philp and Rabbi Todd Zinn, to support you.

Tani is here to connect couples looking to engage with Jewish life and each other through casual events around the city and Rabbi Todd runs events for interfaith/intercultural couples to socialize and discuss relevant issues and workshops to reflect on your backgrounds, differences and similarities and discuss your hopes, plans and dreams for the future. Rabbis Todd is also available for one-on-one consultations and to refer you to local Jewish clergy and organizations that welcome interfaith/intercultural couples and families. Contact them at chicago@18Doors.org 

Our Events


Nov 13

Making Menorahs & Memories (Chicago)

November 13 @ 7:00 pm - 9:00 pm CST
Join 18Doors' Tani Prell and make holiday memories as a couple by creating your very own Hanukkah menorah (a hanukkiah). You'll get to mold the clay in whatever shape of hanukkiah you'd like, paint your hanukkiah as a couple and enjoy a socially distanced dinner. We will also celebrate Havdalah (the closing of Shabbat) as a group before diving into our memory making. All multi-faith, multi-tradition, multi-cultural couples welcome!
Nov 18

Gratitude Without the Attitude: Healthy Communication During Thanksgiving (Chicago) – Online

November 18 @ 7:00 pm - 8:00 pm CST
Thanksgiving: the holiday filled with gratitude, food, and family. While it’s great to connect around the table with loved ones, sharing stories and having laughs, Thanksgiving can also become a holiday of heated debates, hurtful remarks, and let’s face it... sometimes even tears. Join 18Doors' Tani Prell and SHALVA's Jordyn Scorpio to learn some helpful tips for handling conflict during the holidays.
Nov 18

What To Do in December: A Live Q&A for Grandparents Balancing Hanukkah and Christmas (National) – Online

November 18 @ 8:00 pm - 9:00 pm EST
Hanukkah and Christmas can be a joyful time, but let's be honest: It can also be incredibly challenging for grandparents with grandchildren in interfaith families. Join moderator Linda Silberman, board member of 18Doors, and panelists Rabbis Robyn Frisch and Malka Packer-Monroe from 18Doors, who will answer the questions they hear the most from grandparents around the December holidays.
Nov 30

The Real Story of Hanukkah: Finding Meaning for Interfaith Families (National) – Online

November 30 @ 7:00 pm - 8:00 pm CST
Curious how the holiday of Hanukkah came to be what we celebrate today? First there was a war. Next there was a myth. But before both were thousands of years of humanity's reckoning with the mysteries of the world. 18Doors' Rabbi Michal Woll will explore universal, spiritual and moral interpretations of Hanukkah that can be meaningful for every member of an interfaith family and/or community.
Dec 01

FaithFULL: The Theology of Hanukkah and Christmas (National) – Online

December 1 @ 7:00 pm - 8:00 pm CST
Hanukkah and Christmas: two very different holidays that share an overlap of timing, food, some gifts, and anything else? What exactly is at the heart of both of these holidays? 18Doors' Rabbi Steven Philp of Mishkan will lead this workshop with a pastor to explore the theological differences between Hanukkah and Christmas.
Dec 02

Couples & Conversation (National) – Online

December 2 @ 7:00 pm - 8:30 pm CST
Being part of an interfaith/Jew-ish/multi-faith/however-you-define-yourself couple can be challenging, but you don’t need to find the answers alone. This online workshop offers a safe environment to work on creating your religious/cultural lives together. It is intended for couples who are expecting and those with children under the age of two.
Dec 02

Making Mochi Doughnuts: A Multicultural Hanukkah Workshop (National) – Online

December 2 @ 8:00 pm EST
Join us for a Hanukkah workshop that celebrates all multicultural, interfaith, Jewish+ families and couples! 18Doors' Rabbi Malka Packer-Monroe will lead us as we light our Hanukkah candles together and then Nourish Co.'s Kristin Eriko Posner will lead us in a step-by-step workshop to make mochi doughnuts.
Dec 07

2021 Ignite the Light Celebration

December 7 @ 7:30 pm - 8:30 pm EST
Join us for an evening celebrating the work and impact of 18Doors. Are you part of a Jewish-interfaith family? Then we want to celebrate YOU! This free event will feature wonderful speakers, complimentary drink recipes for you to make at home, giveaways, and a portion that will feature photos and stories from real interfaith families. Anyone […]
Dec 09

What To Do in December – A Live Q&A for Parents Balancing Hanukkah and Christmas (National) – Online

December 9 @ 8:00 pm - 9:00 pm EST
Hanukkah and Christmas can be a joyful time, but let's be honest: It can also be incredibly challenging for those of us in interfaith families. All kinds of issues can arise when it comes to what and how to celebrate; how to share and stand by your decisions with grandparents and other extended family members; and so much more. Join moderator Lauren Schreiber Sasaki from Jewish& and panelists Rabbis Robyn Frisch and Malka Packer-Monroe from 18Doors, who will answer the questions they get asked the most from parents around the December holidays.
Dec 14

To Tree or Not To Tree: December Decisions (National) – Online

December 14 @ 8:00 pm - 9:00 pm EST
The December holiday time can and should be joyful, but it can also bring up tensions with our partners and immediate or extended families. Join Rabbi Denise Handlarski from 18Doors and Lauren Schreiber Sasaki from Jewish& along with other interfaith couples to get tools for navigating this time of year in a safe and supportive space.
Tani Prell

Meet Tani Prell

Tani is dedicated to fostering inclusive Jewish spaces. As the Chicago Community Director, she loves partnering with couples, families, and individuals to bring sparks of Jewish joy into their lives. Tani’s career has been centered on education, Judaism, and the arts, with a commitment to inclusion and belonging present throughout. In her spare time Tani enjoys spending time with her partner, Charles, and her cat, Winston. They are a family of sci-fi enthusiasts, Chicago outdoor brunch connoisseurs, and lovers of all things art. Contact her at tani@18doors.org.

Meet Rabbi Steven Philp

Steven Philp is an Associate Rabbi at Mishkan Chicago. He was ordained by the Jewish Theological Seminary, where he was a Wexner Graduate Fellow. Steven earned an M.St. in Jewish Studies from the University of Oxford and an M.Div. and M.S.W. from the University of Chicago. Steven grew up in California and Hawaii, as a Roman Catholic with a strong Protestant heritage. He became passionate about interfaith work while in college, a path that eventually led him to convert to Judaism. Steven is excited to work with 18Doors, helping others find communities that affirm their whole selves. He currently lives in Lakeview with his husband Toby, cat Miso, and dog Momilani. Contact him at rabbistevenphilp@18doors.org.

Meet Rabbi Todd Zinn

Rabbi Todd Zinn is a Rabbi at Chicago Sinai Congregation in Chicago, Illinois. In his work, he focuses on dynamic educational programming, meaningful social action work, impactful social justice campaigns, developing deep relationships with other faith communities and engaging individuals and families. Rabbi Zinn was ordained at the Hebrew Union College in Los Angeles, California. Before coming to Chicago, Rabbi Zinn worked with college students at the University of Southern California, at Beit T’shuva—a residential addiction treatment facility, and in congregations throughout Southern California. Contact him at rabbitodd@18doors.org.