Rabbi Sheryl Nosan, MAHL, MAJE, RJE, learned to sing prayers and light Shabbat candles with her family in small-town Central Michigan. She and her family later moved to Southern California, where she studied Psychology in the University of California graduating with honors. She studied in Hebrew Union College in Jerusalem, and Los Angeles, gaining Masters’ degrees in both Hebrew Letters and in Jewish Education. In 1993 Sheryl received her ordination from the New York campus of Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion. In 2002 She became a member of the Institute For Jewish Spirituality’s “Hevrayah.” Her honorary PhD for 25 years of Rabbinic Service was presented to her in May 2018 from HUC-JIR in Los Angeles.
Sheryl has known the unique blessings and challenges of being a “ground-breaking-first-female-rabbi” for congregations. She is the only female Rabbi currently in Western Australia and the Northern Territories. Rabbi Sheryl has treasured teaching Torah, and enriching Jewish Communities from New York to San Diego and Juneau to Sydney. Currently Rabbi Sheryl fosters Jewish Life and cultivates spiritual growth through Jewish Spirituality Australia. Dedicated to peace and understanding, she is committed to interfaith and social-justice collaborations, teaching and modeling “the more understanding, the more peace.” In addition to teaching and mentoring through traditional modalities, Rabbi Sheryl employs new technology to support students and seekers affiliated with the World Union for Progressive Judaism – from Tasmania to Thailand.
“I wanted to become a rabbi to spend my life learning and teaching something I love: Judaism. I hoped to gain a deeper understanding of the Holy One…I’ve surely gained a deeper connection between my soul and it’s Source. I’ve been blessed to guide others on their paths, and through the wisdom of Judaism, to help enhance joys and ease losses. I still yearn to learn, teach, and reach towards G-d.” Rabbi Sheryl says “While the Institute for Jewish Spirituality has inspired my Rabbinate, my greatest Jewish influences were my parents. My parents showed me a path of mitzvot and menchlikite, laughter and love. I continue to treasure each Shabbat that we celebrate together.”
Today Rabbi Sheryl celebrates with fabulous family, including her recently Bar Mitzvah 14 year-old son and soon to be Bat Mitzvah 11 year-old daughter. The family enjoys parks, beaches, bike rides, board games and day-trips. When the children are asleep, Sheryl enjoys studying Jewish Mystical Texts, reading good novels or delving into higher maths. Sheryl has a reputation for writing poetry as well as telling good stories and bad jokes. In the wee hours before dawn she loves a good session of yoga or metabolic conditioning – compensating for the chocolate and chi lattés which she also loves!