You may have seen on our site or on other Jewish educational websites a program or title called para-rabbi. This is a lay Jewish leader who provides similar support in a congregation as a rabbi, with the exception of weddings and some other ritual activities. It is not, however, an official title in Judaism such as cantor or rabbi.

Our Darshan training program provides para-rabbinical training as well as a stronger emphasis on Biblical knowledge, Torah and homiletics (sermon writing and delivery). The title of Darshan is a title that extends back to the Middle Ages, in contrast to the term para-rabbi which has an unknown origin. Darshanim (those who complete the Darshan Training Program) are welcome to call their time in Darshan Yeshiva para-rabbinical training or Darshan Training as both terms fulfill the same idea. 

For people interested in rabbinical learning online, we recommend Pluralistic Rabbinical Seminary, a project of several rabbis at Darshan Yeshiva. Please note, however, that these websites are ran independently and that becoming a Darshan does not in any way impact the likelihood of becoming part of PRS's rabbinical program. You can learn more about PRS here.