What are the stories you tell?

Welcome to heart of the “Sharing our Stories” project.

Central Synagogue and StoryCorps are partnering to give our community the opportunity to record meaningful conversations and archive the recordings at the Library of Congress and at Central Synagogue. These recordings will become an archive of us—an oral history mosaic that captures who we are, as a Central Synagogue community, at this moment in time.

Recording a StoryCorps interview couldn’t be easier: You invite a loved one, or anyone else you choose (they do not need to be a Central member), to share a 40-minute conversation. Conversations can be recorded in two ways, facilitated by a trained fellow Central member, or you can do it on your own using the StoryCorps App or StoryCorps Connect. Please see below for our suggested questions, tips for a successful interview, and the link to sign up for a facilitated conversation. We can’t wait to hear your story!

Resources

Suggested Conversation Questions

Prepare for Your Interview Tips

Suggested Conversation Questions

Your “Central Story”

Why did you first come to Central?

Tell me about your earliest memories of Central. What do you remember about the first time you visited?

Can you describe a moment when you knew that Central was “home”?

What do you appreciate the most about the Central community?

Great Questions for Anyone

Can you tell me about the community where you grew up?

What is your earliest memory?

Who has been the biggest influence on your life? What did they teach you?

What is the best piece of advice you’ve received or given? Who gave you this advice/Who did you give advice to?

What do you feel most grateful for in your life?

What are you proudest of?

What are the most important lessons you’ve learned in life?

How has your life been different than what you’d imagined?

How would you like to be remembered?

What does your future hold?

Jewish Life

What is your first memory of being Jewish? What sights, sounds or tastes come to mind?

How do you describe your faith? What does your faith mean to you?

Are there important lessons that your religious/spiritual life has taught you? Can you tell me about them?

What cultural or religious traditions do you observe in your family? Can you tell me a story about those traditions?

Do you have a favorite Jewish holiday? Describe a memorable time you celebrated it.

Are there objects you associate with ritual in your life – religious or not? Could you describe that object? What does it look like? Feel like?

Is there a place you associate with deep spiritual connection? Tell me about that place. What have you experienced there/what do you feel when you’re there?

Is there a time when your Jewish faith was put to the test? What was that like? What did you learn about yourself in the process?

What has been the most important moment in your Jewish journey so far?

Family & Community

What do you know about your family’s history and heritage?

What traditions have been passed down in your family?

Do you remember any of the stories your family used to tell?

What foods or recipes have been passed down in your family?

Do you have any favorite family stories/songs/jokes?

Are you named after anyone? Do you know anything about them?

How did your family of origin shape who you are?

What stories do you think are important to pass down to the next generation of your family or community?

What does community mean to you?