Community Conversations series p. 2 David MossJCRC designs Grace After Meals in comic book form p. 22
THE DAYTON Published by the Jewish Federation of Greater Dayton
February 2021 Shevat/Adar 5781 Vol. 25, No. 6
The Miami Valley’s Jewish Monthly • daytonjewishobserver.org Amy Dolph
Navigating emotional health during Covid NON-PROFIT ORGANIZATION U.S. POSTAGE PAID DAYTON, OHIO PERMIT NO. 59
JCC Book Club participants raise a glass of tea on a recent Zoom session
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Sen. Chuck Schumer
Of plagues & ‘black weddings’
Poppy-filled challah for Purim
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Chabad deli Intro to DNA testing dinner to go & speaker
Local genealogist Diana Nelson will lead the Zoom session Introduction to DNA Testing at 10 a.m., Sunday, Feb. 14 for Miami Valley Jewish Genealogy & History in partnership with Beth Abraham Synagogue Men’s Club Speaker Series and Temple Israel’s Ryterband Lecture Series. Nelson is the education chair of the Greene County Chapter of the Ohio Genealogical Society, and a member of the Miami Valley Jewish Genealogy & History Advisory Committee. She’s worked on her Diana Nelson family history for 30 years. Nelson became interested in using DNA testing a dozen years ago and now manages five kits for her family and five for her husband’s family. For this session, she’ll discuss the different types of DNA tests, what consumers can learn from them, and their limitations. Miami Valley Jewish Genealogy & History is a project of the Jewish Federation of Greater Dayton. Support for this free program is provided in memory of Marcia Jaffe. Register at jewishdayton.org/events.
Rabbi Matisyahu Devlin will share his story, From Altar Boy to Rabbi, via livestream as part of Chabad’s Deli Dinner To Go at 7 p.m., Tuesday, Feb. 9. The son of a Jewish mother and devout Catholic father, Devlin was featured in National Geographic’s documentary, Only For Rabbi Matisyahu God, Inside Devlin Chasidism. He and his wife, Nechama, are directors of the Chabad Jewish Student Center of University of California, Riverside. Kosher boxed deli dinners Kenneth S. Stern, director of the Bard Center for the Study of will be available for pickup at Hate and former longtime director of the American Jewish ComChabad on Tuesday afternoon. mittee’s division on antisemitism and extremism, will talk about The cost is $25 per dinner his new book, The Conflict Over The Conand includes a deli sandwich, flict: The Israel/Palestine Campus Debate, at 7 knish, matzah ball soup, cole p.m., Wednesday, Feb. 10 via Zoom as part slaw, pickles, babka and ruof the Jewish Community Relations Coungelach. cil’s Community Conversations series. R.S.V.P. to chabaddayton. In The Conflict Over The Conflict, Stern com or 937-643-0770 ext. 1. writes about each side’s attempts to censor the other. The approach he champions: “Innovating ways to increase knowledge, while protecting and promoting academic freedom and free speech.” Kenneth S. Stern Stern was the lead drafter of the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance’s working definition The Max May and Lydia May of antisemitism, which has been adopted by the U.S. Department of State, dozens of nations, and 51 of 53 Memorial Holocaust Art and members of the Conference of Presidents Writing Contest is now acceptof Major American Jewish Organizations. ing submissions for 2021. Moderating the program with Stern will In commemoration of the be Kayla Rothman-Zecher with University 76th anniversary of the liberation of concentration camps and of Dayton’s Human Rights Center. Partners for the program are the JCC, Jewish death camps in Europe, this year’s theme is: How Holocaust Book Council, University of Dayton, and study can help us reduce bully- Hillel at Miami University. C-SPAN Director of Communications ing, prejudice, and hatred. The annual contest is named Howard Mortman will discuss his book, after the grandparents of Renate When Rabbis Bless Congress: The Great Howard Mortman American Story of Jewish Prayers on Capitol Frydman, director of the DayHill, via Zoom for the Community Converton Holocaust Resource Center. sation at 7 p.m., Thursday, Feb. 25. MortStudents in grades five man chronicles the more than 400 rabbis through 12 who attend public, who have offered 600-plus prayers to parochial, or home school in open sessions of Congress since the Civil the Miami Valley are eligible to War. On the program with Mortman will enter. be Rabbi Gary P. Zola, executive direcThe deadline for submissions tor of the Jacob Rader Marcus Center of is Friday, March 19. For details the American Jewish Archives; they’ll be and an entry form, go to jewinterviewed by Dayton native Rachel Katz, ishdayton.org/program/holoaffiliate relations manager of C-SPAN. caust-art-and-writing-contest or Register for both free programs at jewcontact Jodi Phares at jphares@ ishdayton.org/events. Rabbi Gary P. Zola jfgd.net.
JCRC Community Conversations series
Holocaust writing & art contest for students
BETTER WATER BETTER LIFE PAGE 2
Calendar..............................9 Family Education........................20
Mr. Mazel..................................15 O b i tu a r i es. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22
Opinion..........................8 Re l i g i o n . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 0
THE DAYTON JEWISH OBSERVER • FEBRUARY 2021
Navigating emotional health during Covid
Absence of human touch hard to bear By Marshall Weiss The Observer Through a long fall and winter in which Jewish Family Services staff have worked to ease the anxiety, fear, and loneliness of clients sheltering against Covid, JFS Director Tara L. Feiner says she is starting to see signs of hope. “Clients are scheduling their first vaccinations and some of them are using us for transportation to their appointments,” she says. “But we’re still seeing some ongoing anxiety. We’ve had some clients say to us that they’re just constantly in a state of anxiety about the situation. And there is loneliness.” JFS provides transportation for its clients to medical appointments but is not yet able to meet with clients in their homes. “People are really feeling the toll of almost a year that they haven’t seen loved ones, grandchildren, nieces, nephews, family,” Feiner says. “You can see the lack of personal touch has had such an impact.” JFS and local Jewish clergy have been on the frontlines to help individuals feel as connected as possible — and gauging their needs for emotional support services — over the past 10 months of the pandemic. Contact Jewish Family Services at 937-610-1555. For local Jewish congregation listings, see Page 10.
While all agree there is no substitute for the human touch, in order to save lives, the human JCC Book Club participant Judy Schwartzman touch will have raises a glass of tea on a recent Zoom session to wait. “I’d love to say we’re doing Rabbi Joshua Ginsberg of all these great things, but Zoom Beth Abraham Synagogue says is so not the answer,” says that over the last three months, Temple Beth Or’s Rabbi Judy Covid has begun to directly afChessin. “Having people meetfect the community beyond the ing virtually is amazing but it’s emotional and spiritual toll. not the same. What I’m learning “More people have had to out of all of this is just the hug deal with it, themselves getting and the reaching out and seeing Covid or an immediate family someone face-to-face in person member,” he says. is far more therapeutic than I “One of the hardest parts of it Continued on Page Four would have ever dreamed.”
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One Lincoln Park residents reflect on WHAT THEY ARE THANKFUL FOR.
The life that I live here at OLP. I am totally independent yet I know if needed, there are people on staff to help me.
Asher Pachman’s outdoor Bar Mitzvah at Temple Beth Or with Rabbi Judy Chessin, Rabbi Ben Azriel, Marc Rossio, and via Zoom, Rabbi Ari Ballaban
Bark Mitzvah Boy
From the editor’s desk
Here’s the shpiel: mask up this Purim! One from Column A, One from Column B.
c O Menachem
It was Purim last year when Covid-19 began its devastation in this country. At the end of this month, Purim returns, and it’s too early to forecast when vaccinations will be fully distributed to all who want them. As Rabbi Joshua GinsMarshall berg told me when I checked in with Weiss local Jewish clergy for the story above, when you feel like there’s actually an end to the tunnel, but you’re not at the end yet, “it can become more stressful for people.” He also noted that his older congregants pride themselves on taking care of themselves as much as they can. “Especially as they physically become more dependent, they want to maintain a certain sense of their dignity by not having to initiate greater support.” Self-care under the best of circumstances doesn’t always come easy. We are a community of volunteers. We look for opportunities to help the other who is in need. Especially now, if you need to talk with a member of our clergy or professionals with Jewish Family Services, please make the call. They’re here for all of us.
Family, Friends, Faith, and the security of One Lincoln Park in these troubled times.
That my children are healthy, happy, financially secure, and that I am not a burden to them.
The kindness and thoughtfulness that OLP staff have shown during this difficult time.
Living with a new family of friends – gracious residents and capable, dedicated staff at OLP who leave me wanting for very little.
My family – the best!, great meals, lots of great times, support when needed, good neighbors, loves and laughs.
MAY WE ALWAYS HAVE SOMETHING TO BE GRATEFUL FOR. BEST WISHES FOR 2021! For information about One Lincoln Park call 937.298.0594 or visit LincolnParkSeniors.com
THE DAYTON JEWISH OBSERVER • FEBRUARY 2021
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‘If we Emotional health don’t Continued from Page Three is not being able to gather physically at the funeral itself in the numbers take care they would want, with the people they would want of our around them, and also, regardless of the length of the shiva, not cemeteries, having that gathering, being able to just who will?’ — Matt Arnovitz and have the presence of
n the 1920s, scores of Arnovitz family members left Poland and immigrated to the United States. They came to the Dayton area to create a new home and found success as merchants. Decades later, Matt Arnovitz and his aunt Beverly Saeks feel an emotional connection to their parents, grandparents, cousins and dozens of other family members who have found their eternal home at Beth Abraham’s cemetery. “I have so much history here,” said Beverly. “This cemetery is just so peaceful. I take great pride in how beautiful it looks.” “My family helped build the synagogue and community,” said Matt. “It’s up to us and our generation to take care of the cemetery for the future.” For Elaine Arnovitz, whose parents Fred and Ruth Scheuer are also buried at Beth Abraham’s cemetery, she believes “It’s a mitzvah when we work together for the benefit of our community.” Jewish Cemeteries of Greater Dayton is an endowment organization created to maintain our three cemeteries in perpetuity. Please join us as we strive to maintain the sanctity, care and integrity of these sacred burial grounds.
Preserving our Past Ensuring Our Future
Daytonjewishcemeteries.org Rgolden105@aol.com 525 Versailles Drive • Centerville, OH 45459 PAGE 4
through a political lens told her he thinks there’s more emotional damage happening from not gathering in person to hold worship services than he thinks would happen if people got the virus. “And I have to say I disagree entirely,” Bodney-Halasz says. “I don’t think it’s responsible, because there are things we can do online that are filling that need that are not as risky. “But for some people, they people in all the intanare feeling that is part of the gible ways in which problem. I don’t want to pretend people show their there aren’t people feeling that care, concern, and way. But they are a very small support. That’s been minority and we’re trying to really hard for a lot of Rabbi Joshua Ginsberg connect with them as much as people: as simple as we can through the phone to that hug that they just can’t have.” make sure they’re not feeling isoBoth Beth Abraham Synagogue lated.” and Beth Jacob Congregation have Congregations holding Shabbat suspended the practice of tahara — the services in person currently are Beth ritual cleansing of the deceased prior Abraham Synagogue, with only a minto a funeral — for the duration of the yan, the quorum of 10 required to perpandemic. form public services as well as with a Ginsberg says most people have livestream; Chabad, which reopened “wrapped their heads” around the in January after a month closed due to idea that there must be certain restric- clergy who had contracted Covid; and tions. Even so, it’s hard to bear. Beth Jacob Congregation. “We’ve lost a lot of people in the “We’ve been having in-person community this year,” Feiner says of services since June,” said Beth Jacob deaths that aren’t necessarily related Congregation’s Rabbi Leibel Agar. to Covid. “And some have surprised “We’ve actually had a minyan for us. Not everybody is sharing if some- 12 weeks in a one has passed, because the grieving row now. Not process is broken. No matter what early enough your religion is. But for us, it’s not to leyn (read being able to sit shiva or being able Torah), but for to say Kaddish for those you would Musaf (addiwant to as part of a communal prayer tional service). and with community.” People come Temple Israel’s Rabbi Karen Bodabout 10:30, 11,” ney-Halasz says congregants actively he said. “It’s reach out to gotten to the her for pastoral point that we Rabbi Leibel Agar care connected have enough to the panpeople that the only way to social demic. distance is to use the big sanctuary. It’s “Right now, not a huge crowd but it’s enough that they’re espethe small sanctuary isn’t big enough cially feeling to socially distance. If people weren’t disconnected responsible, we wouldn’t be able to because they do it.” aren’t in conWhen the pandemic began, congrestant contact gants tended to postpone their joyous Rabbi Karen Bodneywith some of lifecycle events such as Bar and Bat Halasz their friends, Mitzvahs. That was the case with the and so they feel like those relationBar Mitzvah for Ginsberg’s oldest son, ships perhaps are not as strong as Ranon. Now, nearly a year later, famithey had been, even though they are,” lies tend to go ahead with lifecycles, Bodney-Halasz says. albeit in restricted forms. She adds that politicization of the “We’ve had some Bar Mitzvahs, pandemic has led some congregants to and we were lucky enough to be able approach her for counseling. to do so even until the last one outside “We’re such a divided community. at our outdoor sanctuary, so we were Some people are taking these protoable to have more family members cols really seriously and others are there,” Chessin says. “They sat far not. And so rather than sometimes apart. We did an inside one (because engage in what turns into a conflicting of rain) and just had the family. What discussion, they’d rather talk to some- was kind of cool was that rather than one who’s willing just to hear it from having the rabbi and the kids on the their perspective than to help them bima (stage), we had the family on the process whatever it is they’re experibima and in essence the family did the encing. That’s what I’ve found.” Bar Mitzvah.” One congregant who views Covid “The mind-set began to change,”
OBSERVER daytonjewishobserver.org Editor and Publisher Marshall Weiss MWeiss@jfgd.net 937-610-1555 Contributors Rabbi Judy Chessin, Scott Halasz, Candace R. Kwiatek Advertising Sales Executive Patty Caruso, email@example.com Proofreader Rachel Haug Gilbert Billing Sheila Myers, SMyers@jfgd.net 937-610-1555 Observer Advisor Martin Gottlieb Published by the Jewish Federation of Greater Dayton Dr. Heath Gilbert President Bruce Feldman Immediate Past Pres. Mary Rita Weissman Pres. Elect/VP, Personnel/Foundation Chair Beverly Louis Secretary Neil Friedman Treasurer Dan Sweeny VP, Resource Development Cathy Gardner CEO The Dayton Jewish Observer, Vol. 25, No. 6. The Dayton Jewish Observer is published monthly by the Jewish Federation of Greater Dayton, a nonprofit corporation, 525 Versailles Dr., Dayton, OH 45459. Views expressed by columnists, in readers’ letters, and in opinion pieces do not necessarily reflect the opinion of staff or layleaders of The Dayton Jewish Observer or the Jewish Federation of Greater Dayton. Acceptance of advertising neither endorses advertisers nor guarantees kashrut. The Dayton Jewish Observer Mission Statement To support, strengthen and champion the Dayton Jewish community by providing a forum and resource for Jewish community interests. Goals • To encourage affiliation, involvement and communication. • To provide announcements, news, opinions and analysis of local, national and international activities and issues affecting Jews and the Jewish community. • To build community across institutional, organizational and denominational lines. • To advance causes important to the strength of our Jewish community including support of Federation agencies, its annual campaign, synagogue affiliation, Jewish education and participation in Jewish and general community affairs. • To provide an historic record of Dayton Jewish life.
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DAYTON Bodney-Halasz says. “You can’t push “For us to have off these important lifecycle events. You approximately have to find a way to do them anyway 18 screens, which and make the best of it. One couple usually adds up to I know has had a civil marriage and about 23 people on they’re going to do a big Jewish weda regular basis is ding celebration once everybody can get amazing, because together. They had a problem finding our Friday night someone to marry them civilly. They had regular minyan up a license, but nobody could marry them. until before this all Nobody wanted to take the risk. And started, we rarely Cantor Andrea Raizen they finally found someone, but it took cracked a minthem a really long time.” yan,” Raizen says. “We had three to five people there.” Keeping people connected She says the program is less about the Along with constantly calling and service and more about connecting. checking in with those on their member“It’s a delightful, wonderful group ship/client rosters, Jewish community of people who are so, so caring and organizations have shifted to a routine of keep up with each other,” Raizen says. livestream programs to help people stay “We’ve celebrated grandchildren and active and engaged. great-grandchildren that have come into “The key to our emotional and mental this during this time, and people check health is routines,” Feiner says. “Routine in, and people who have been sick. It’s is key for resilreally been heartening to me.” ience. And our “I think folks are really trying to be routines are defias patient as they can,” says Rabbi Cary nitely impacted by Kozberg of his congregants with Temple what’s going on. Sholom in Springfield. “We’ve had some The pivoting has of the older people that have actually enabled some peo- had the virus, but they’re really taking ple who weren’t it in stride. The ones who have had it, able to participate thank God, have recovered and are still in the past to join taking precautions. us. The flip side “This is actually when you see how is there are some much control we’re in and how helpless JFS Director Tara L. people who don’t we really are. We Feiner join. They’re either really do have to not tech savvy or not comfortable being be patient. I was on the screen.” part of a Torah “Their houses are probably very study class last clean, they’ve baked everything there night and we were is to bake, they’re getting to know their talking about how spouses once again,” Rabbi Haviva Hor- when Moses came vitz says of her congregants with Temple back to talk to the Beth Sholom in Middletown. people, everyone Along with the twice-a-month Shabthought redempbat services she offers on Zoom, Horvitz tion was going has added a Torah study session. to happen all at “That’s given them a strong social once. But it was a Rabbi Cary Kozberg outlet,” she says. “It’s just a lot of fun. process.” I’ll give them a homework assignCongregants’ biggest fear, Bodneyment where there’s a certain number of Halasz says, is being alone with Covid. parshiyot (Torah portions) to read, with “God forbid someone gets sick, knowinstructions to focus on people: who ing that, as some of the people in our are they meeting, what are they doing, congregation have experienced, that things like that. their loved ones have died, and they And number two haven’t been able to be with them. That’s is on language. been one of the hardest things. But really, Everybody’s it’s the fear of just not knowing if they’re translation may be being as careful as they need to be and if a little different. they get sick, who would they possibly Why is this word pass it on to?” being used instead Since the pandemic arrived, Bodneyof that word? They Halasz joins Dayton Mayor Nan Whalshould ask quesey’s Friday Zoom sessions with local tions. It’s perfectly clergy each week. Montgomery County Rabbi Haviva Horvitz OK to come to Health Commissioner Jeffrey A. Cooper Torah asking questions. also joins the sessions. “We started off like that, and they’re “I’ve found it very meaningful,” Bodreally coming out of their shells asking ney-Halasz says. “Being on there with questions they’ve never seemed to ask. other clergy, we begin with a prayer and That’s been kind of neat.” we end with a prayer, and we talk about Beth Abraham Synagogue’s Cantor the needs of our congregations and some Andrea Raizen says her Kabba-Lockedof us, our own needs, and watching our In Shabbat program to usher in the own clergy friends go through Covid in Sabbath has helped build and sustain their own homes. I feel like there’s been community since Covid hit. a lot of support in that network.”
2021 Purim Celebration (Party like it’s 2020!)
Thursday, February 25 6:00 p.m. Megillah Reading 6:30 p.m. Scavenger Hunt We’ll gather together on Zoom to hear the Purim story and then dive in to some family friendly fun with a special scavenger hunt. Wear your favorite costume that depicts the year 2020 to add to the festive atmosphere. Prizes will be awarded for the most creative costumes as well as the winners of the scavenger hunt. You will also have a chance to make your own carnival games at home to recreate the Temple Israel Purim Carnival experience. Zoom information available at tidayton.org A special thank you to TIDY for organizing!
Temple Israel • www.tidayton.org • 937.496.0050 130 Riverside Drive, Dayton, OH 45405 A Reform Synagogue open to all who are interested in Judaism. Childcare provided during Friday services and Sunday school.
THE DAYTON JEWISH OBSERVER • FEBRUARY 2021
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A major American Jewish coalition adopted the IHRA definition of antisemitism. What that means may vary for its members. By Ben Sales, JTA Nearly all of the members of the Conference of Presidents of Major American Jewish Organizations are adopting a common, but hotly debated, definition of antisemitism. The conference, an umbrella group of Jewish organizations, announced Jan. 26 that 51 of its 53 members have adopted the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance’s working definition of antisemitism, a 500-word document with a brief explanation of antisemitism followed by 11 examples of how it can manifest — most of which involve speech about Israel. The definition has been adopted by dozens of countries and a growing list of organizations and universities to help monitor, teach about and combat antisemitism. But its Israel provisions have also become a flashpoint for debate. And adoption of the definition can signify different things to different groups. Defenders of the definition say its Israel examples — which include comparing Israel to the Nazis, calling Israel racist, and applying a double standard to Israel that isn’t applied to other countries — are helpful in identifying where anti-Israel activity turns into antisemitism. Its detractors, however, say that the
examples can have the effect of branding all criticism of Israeli policy antisemitic. In a statement, the Conference of Presidents said the definition’s widespread adoption “reflects the broad support that exists for the most authoritative and internationally accepted definition of antisemitism as an educational tool, as well as the widespread view that it is critically important to define antisemitism in order to combat it successfully.” The two members of the conference that did not adopt the definition, Americans for Peace Now and the Workers Circle, are both progressive groups. Americans for Peace Now, a frequent critic of Israeli policy, told Haaretz in December that it would not adopt the definition because it is “already being abused to quash legitimate criticism and activism directed at Israeli government policies.” The Workers Circle, a Yiddish culture group that generally does not focus on Israel, had no comment on the announcement. Several of the Conference of Presidents’ largest members have already endorsed the definition — including the Anti-Defamation League, the Jewish Federations of North America, and the American Jewish Committee, as well
Its Israel provisions have also become a flashpoint for debate.
ing what may be legitimate activities with antisemitism.” On Jan. 25, the Reform moveas representatives of all three ment said something similar, major American Jewish denomi- endorsing the definition but nations. Other members of the saying it “should not be codified conference signed onto an open into policy that would trigger letter to Facebook from propotentially problematic punitive Israel groups, asking it to adopt action to circumscribe speech, the definition. efforts which have been particuBut William Daroff, the conlarly aimed at college students ference’s CEO, said the goal of and human rights activists.” the declaration was Other members to demonstrate unity of the Conference of among the groups on Presidents, includthe question of what ing the leadership of constitutes antisemithe conference itself, tism. signed onto a letter to “In the divided President Joe Biden world we live in, advocating that the where disagreements definition be used are often highlighted, in adjudicating civil we can focus on the rights complaints. great agreement that The definition, the exists in the Jewish letter said, “ought to William Daroff community from inform the enforceleft to right, from Reform to ment of Title IX throughout the Orthodox,” he said. “The fact government.” The letter also that 51 of 53 organizations in praised a 2019 executive order the Conference of Presidents are by President Donald Trump that coming forward with one voice essentially adopted the definito show solidarity is something tion as a reference for adjudicatthat in this day and age should ing civil rights complaints on be heralded.” campus. But “adoption” of the definiDaroff acknowledged that tion can mean different things groups were not all adopting depending on the organization. the definition in the same way. Earlier in January, 10 Jewish But he said they all share a groups with progressive posibaseline that the definition is a tions on Israel — including two reliable guidepost for identifyorganizations that signed onto ing antisemitism. the Jan. 26 announcement — “Consensus does not mean condemned attempts to codify unanimity,” he said. “It means the definition into law or regula- that there are organizations tions. The groups said “the efwho may agree or disagree with fort to enshrine (the definition) different parts of a policy, but in domestic law and institution- generally speaking, a consensus al policy…risks wrongly equat- exists.”
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Chuck Schumer is now the highestranking elected U.S. Jewish official ever. He wants to make more history. Sen. Chuck Schumer at a news briefing with new Democratic senators at the U.S. Capitol, Jan. 21
Jewish politician in American tion two weeks before, staged By Gabe Friedman, JTA by right-wing extremists, some Chuck Schumer could not let history. Ossoff was sworn in as of them antisemitic and White the moment pass without men- Georgia’s first Jewish senator — on a historic Hebrew Bible supremacist, and they called tioning its Jewish history. and carrying records from his for the immediate removal of Georgia’s new senators, Jon forebears’ arrival at Ellis Island. then-President Donald Trump Ossoff and Raphael Warnock, Doug Emhoff, Harris’ Jewish for instigating the horror. were sworn in Jan. 20, making For Republicans, while the Schumer the new Senate major- husband, became the country’s event forced a widespread reckity leader — the first-ever Jew in first “second gentleman.” In his short speech, Schumer oning for their party, more than that powerful role. borrowed a line that President 140 lawmakers combined in the Never afraid to reference his Joe Biden had used a few hours House and Senate continued to Yiddishkeit, Schumer recalled earlier to hail Harris’ glass back Trump’s false claims that his roots in an address in the ceiling-shattering milestone the election results were frauduSenate chamber. And he got and applied it to lent. biblical, too. Schumer is savvy Jews. If he can effectively corral “With the “As President his Senate troops, Schumer swearing in of about forming Biden said in his will have a chance to leave an these three senainaugural adoutsized mark on a range of istors, the Senate small groups dress: ‘Don’t tell sues that Biden has signaled he will turn to of like-minded me things can’t wants to tackle post-pandemic, Democratic conchange,’” he said. from climate change to immitrol ...under the Republican and The honeygration to health care. Schumer, first New York- Democratic moon likely a longtime moderate, has shown born majority lawmakers who won’t last long signs that he has been emboldleader in American history,” can connect over for Schumer, who ened by the Macchiavellian the slimmoves of his predecessor Mitch he said. “A kid noncontroversial helms mest of majoriMcConnell, who often departed from Brooklyn, issues. ties in the Senate from traditional protocols to the son of an — a 50-50 split ram through Congress everyexterminator of Democrats and Republicans thing from federal judicial apand a housewife, a descendant that Harris can break with a tie- pointees (and multiple Supreme of victims of the Holocaust. breaking vote — amid unprecCourt justices) to high-stakes “That I should be the leader bills. of this new Senate majority is an edented polarization. Democrats were outraged In his speech to the virtual awesome responsibility. Aweby the deadly Capitol insurrecsome in the biblical sense, as Continued on Page 22 the angels that trembled in awe before God. Today I feel the full Staffing Needs? Call The Professionals! weight of that responsibility.” In terms of strides for diversity, the headlining news of the day was Kamala Harris’ milestone moment becomMANAGEMENT RECRUITERS ing the first woman and first woman of color to serve as vice BUILDING THE HEART OF BUSINESS president. But Inauguration Day was also more quietly full of 228-8271 228-0060 Jewish history. Schumer became Jeff Noble • mridayton.com • email@example.com the highest-ranking elected
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We must have a deep We don’t have adequate tools national reckoning to combat domestic terrorism By Rabbi Sharon Brous When it became clear the Rev. Raphael Warnock, pastor of Ebenezer Baptist Church, had been elected the first Black senator from Georgia, he addressed the nation, quoting Psalm 30:6: “We may lie down weeping in the night, but joy comes in the morning.” That was hours before the violent insurrection at the Capitol building, incited by the now former president, designed to disrupt the certification process that would cement President Joe Biden’s win. We are deep in the dark night. Representatives hid under desks and prayed. Congressional staffers claimed they had never experienced anything more terrifying. Five people are dead. Our nation is reeling. We will not arrive at the joyous morning the Psalmist promises unless we’re honest about how we got where we are. No part of this fevered coup attempt was accidental, nor should it be surprising. Many Americans have been fed a steady diet of racist lies for generations. They’ve been raised on the heresy that God loves them more. They’ve been taught they will be diminished in a more just, equitable, compassionate America. They’ve become intoxicated by the lie of White supremacy, a spiritual cancer that’s metastasized at the heart of their movement. They’ve been taught that patriotism requires the suppression, criminalization, and dehumanization of fellow citizens. As the riots unfolded, I felt the weight of all these heresies bearing down on our nation’s soul. Watching Capitol police clear barriers to grant insurrectionists entry into the building, I felt a rising sense of fear; not the fear that they’d succeed. Everyone knew this was an illfated coup attempt. It was the fear we’d collectively move on too quickly once it ended. We can’t treat this as a dangerous anomaly. We can’t usher in the new dawn until we name, address, and eradicate the pernicious forces that normalized this toxicity over generations so it could erupt as it did. Who is responsible? Not only those who so brazenly threatened and stormed and broke glass, and not only those who
egged them on from the Senate floor, though they must be held accountable. But their culpability is shared by every person who silently stood by as the lies festered and the violence was fueled. By all those who dismissed the overt embrace of far-right groups by our former president, those who shrugged when terrorists stormed the statehouse and plotted to kidnap the governor of Michigan, those who demurred when children were separated from their families at the border, and those who cried “law and order!” when peaceful Black Lives Matter protesters were targeted and tear-gassed, beaten and brutalized. Those who engaged in homiletical acrobatics to muddy the abundantly clear “fine people on both sides,” and those who said, again and again, “I don’t like what he says, but I like what he does.” Those who justified, excused, obfuscated and pointed fingers at everyone but the architects of the machinery of fear and division that is breaking our nation. My fear was not that the insurrectionists would win, but that we’d all lose — because we lack the will to engage in a real reckoning, to write a new narrative, a shared redemption story for America. There’s no shortcut. It’s not only the recklessness, fecklessness, shocking criminality of the former president and his enablers that got us here. Silence and complicity are also sins. Either we work to dismantle oppressive systems, or our inaction becomes the mortar that sustains them. We can transform the tearful night into a joyous morning. I believe this to be possible. To bring on the new dawn, we’ll have to be visionary, steadfast and fiercely principled. We have to remember, the deepest darkness is the moment just before the dawn. The contours of the joyous morning we yearn for will be shaped by the boldest and most imaginative dreams we allow ourselves to dream from within the weepy night. This is no end; it’s a new beginning. Rabbi Sharon Brous is the senior and founding rabbi of IKAR, a synagogue in Los Angeles.
So, what do you think? PAGE 8
By Kenneth L. Marcus The Capitol riot should be a wake-up call for those who did not hear the alarm four years ago at Charlottesville. The riot wasn’t just an assault on the seat of America’s government, although it is surely that, but also a development that if not forcefully addressed may endanger Americans throughout the 50 states. Congress and the Justice Department are right to address the issue of insurrection first. It is now increasingly clear that many in the riot aimed to undermine American democracy. President Biden and Congress must also address the threat to all of us: The rioters clearly signaled they mean to harm not only elected officials but ordinary Americans. A proper response must protect all groups to whom the rioters intend harm. Many rioters were motivated by racial hatred and antisemitic beliefs. Several displayed known symbols of hate: Confederate flags, signaling anti-Black racism, or the White nationalist “Kekistan” flag, or a Three Percenters flag, reflecting hatred of Muslims and immigrants. One rioter even wore a “Camp Auschwitz” shirt. The Capitol riot, however, was just the tip of the iceberg. The latest FBI hate crimes report, issued in November, shows hate crimes in 2019 surged to their highest level in a decade: 7,314 hate crimes in a single year, including a record number of hate murders. These figures are too high. What do we do about it? Some argue for hate speech laws, but this would actually undermine our work. Richard Stengel, the transition team leader for the U.S. Agency for Global Media, has urged new legislation to curb Quran burning and misinformation about Russian election interference. Such speech laws raise multiple dangers, including political bias, governmental favoritism, and outright censorship. Some progressives may relish the idea of suppressing right-wing hate speech. But they should consider that future conservative governments, given the same weapons, may restrict progressive speech. Consider, for example, Poland’s use of hate-speech laws to persecute LGBTQ activists who criticize the Catholic Church. Instead, begin by beefing up police departments. Calls to “defund the police,” proliferating in the light of the Black Lives Matter movement, can undermine efforts to protect minority civil rights. Basic law enforcement is needed to protect all populations, including the most vulnerable, from physical violence. A recent report from the U.S. Commission on Civil Rights (which I directed over a decade ago), urged funding police departments to improve data reporting on hate crimes. Conservative commissioners dissented from the report, observing it overemphasized right-wing crimes. The dissenters are correct to insist on evenhandedness in a field that is too often politicized. But to adequately respond to hate crimes committed in this country, we have to understand where, why, and how often they are happening. Improved reporting is also needed at colleges and universities. Swastika vandalism, for example, has been underreported based on dubious guidance from federal bureaucrats. The
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Department of Education recently rescinded that guidance, but still permits colleges to rely on it. We also must do more to combat domestic terrorism. Last year, a joint report by the AntiDefamation League and the George Washington University Program on Extremism revealed the dearth of reliable data on domestic terrorism. The report’s primary focus is White supremacy, and the report noted that the National Counterterrorism Center, which was created to produce integrated, interagency assessments on terrorism issues, is troublingly not permitted to do so with respect to domestic terrorism. The report also urged the FBI to provide clear data on its efforts to understand White supremacist violence. If left unchecked, this hate can also fester within American higher education. A comprehensive response must address places at which young Americans are radicalized. This includes not only right-wing White supremacist organizations, but also left-wing university activities that promote violence. Consider, for example, that convicted hijacker Leila Khaled, a leader in the designated-terrorist organization Popular Front for the Liberation of Palestine, was just last year invited to speak at San Francisco State University, New York University and the University of Hawaii at Manoa (remotely). Khaled’s events were canceled only when Zoom refused to cooperate, understanding that allowing the events to be hosted on its platform could violate anti-terrorism laws. At Northeastern University, Students for Justice in Palestine announced an event to study the PFLP’s “strategies and theory.” At this event, students expected to learn how to conduct “armed struggle taking the form of guerrilla warfare at first and developing in the direction of the protracted people’s liberation war” against their “enemies.” Their enemies include the “world Zionist movement,” as well as Israel, Arab moderates and “world imperialism” (read: the United States and its European allies). They would learn that the proper response to political disagreement is not civil dialogue but “armed struggle.” What America needs, in the wake of the Capitol riot, is not for political dissidents — whether they come from the left or the right — to preach armed violence. We should not pretend such adulation of terrorism has no impact on real life any more than we can pretend that online White supremacy groups are harmless. At the University of Illinois, mandatory diversity training last year included praise for the terrorist Khaled. It is unlikely a coincidence that this campus has also experienced an uptick in antisemitic incidents. That the U.S. Department of Education’s Office for Civil Rights will investigate the university based on an antisemitism complaint backed by the Louis D. Brandeis Center for Human Rights. If the president is serious about combating hate crimes, his new attorney general cannot permit hate and terrorist activity to fester. After the Capitol riot, this must be priority No. 1. Kenneth L. Marcus is Chairman of the Louis D. Brandeis Center for Human Rights Under Law. He served as Assistant Secretary of Education for Civil Rights 2018-2020.
Views expressed by columnists, in readers’ letters, and in opinion pieces do not necessarily reflect the opinion of staff or layleaders of The Dayton Jewish Observer or the Jewish Federation of Greater Dayton.
THE DAYTON JEWISH OBSERVER • FEBRUARY 2021
Because of the Covid-19 pandemic, all programs below are presented virtually unless listed otherwise. For the latest information, check with the organizations via their websites, Facebook pages, and by calling them directly.
Beth Jacob Virtual Classes: Sundays, 2 p.m.: Conversations w. Rabbi Agar. Tuesdays, 7 p.m.: Weekly Parsha w. Rabbi Agar. Thursdays, 7 p.m.: Jewish Law w. Rabbi Agar. Email Tammy at firstname.lastname@example.org. Temple Israel Virtual Classes: Mondays, noon: Coffee w. the Clergy. Saturdays, 9:30 a.m.: Torah Study. For details, call 937-496-0050.
JCC Virtual Book Club: Fri., Feb. 19, 10:30 a.m. Info. at jewishdayton.org/events.
Children & Youths
JCC Virtual Winter Camp Shalom: Mon., Feb. 15, 10 a.m.
Register at jewishdayton.org/ events.
JFS Connects 2.0: Socialization & fellowship with JFS Social Worker Aleka Smith via Zoom. Tues., Feb. 2 & 16, 1 p.m. Contact Aleka Smith, email@example.com or 937-6101775. JFS Presents Planning Your Future, Part 1: W. attorney Brittany O’Diam Horseman. Wed., Feb. 24, noon. Free. Register at jewishdayton.org/ events.
JCC Virtual Cultural Arts & Book Series
Howard Blum, Night of the Assassins: Thurs., Feb. 18, 7 p.m. Free. Register at jewishdayton.org/events.
JCC Happy Hour Virtual Game Night: Thurs., Feb. 4, 7 p.m. Free. Register at jewishdayton.org/events.
What’s Your Coming Of Age Story?: Share your experiences via photography or writing w. peers from San Antonio & Western Galilee, Israel. Presented by JCRC. Sun., Feb. 7, 14, 21. Ages 14-20, 1 p.m. Ages 21+, 4 p.m. Free. Register at jewishdayton. org/events. JCC & PJ Library Tenement Museum Virtual Tour: Sun., Feb. 7, 4 p.m. Free. Register at jewishdayton.org/events. Chabad Deli Dinner To Go & Speaker: Tues., Feb. 9, 7 p.m. Rabbi Matisyahu Devlin, From Altar Boy to Rabbi. $25 per dinner. Pick up that afternoon at Chabad, 2001 Far Hills Ave., Oakwood. R.S.V.P. to chabaddayton.com. JCRC Virtual Community Conversations: Wed., Feb. 10, 7 p.m.: Kenneth S. Stern, The Conflict Over The Conflict: The Israel/Palestine Campus Debate. Thurs., Feb. 25, 7 p.m.: Howard Mortman, When
Rabbis Bless Congress. Free. Register at jewishdayton.org/ events. How to Organize Your Life Now for When You’re Not Around Later: Zoom session by Life & Legacy w. authors Abby Schneiderman, Adam Seifer, Gene Newman. Thurs., Feb. 11, 7 p.m. Free. Register at jewishdayton.org/events. Intro. to DNA Testing w. Diana Nelson: Sun., Feb. 14, 10 a.m. Presented by Miami Valley Jewish Genealogy & History, Beth Abraham Synagogue Men’s Club Speaker Series, Temple Israel Ryterband Lecture Series. Free. Register at jewishdayton.org/events. JFS Mitzvah Mission: Sun., Feb. 21, 10 a.m.-noon. Drop off prepared frozen unbaked macaroni & cheese casseroles for St. Vincent de Paul’s and school supplies from high-need list for Crayons to Classrooms. Drive-thru drop off at Boonshoft CJCE, 525 Versailles Dr., Centerville. For info., contact
THE DAYTON JEWISH OBSERVER • FEBRUARY 2021
Mindy Adams, 937-610-1555.
Beth Abraham Synagogue Corona Purim Via Zoom: Thurs., Feb. 25, 5:30 p.m.: Family Purim celebration w. costumes. 6:15 p.m.: Shpiel. Fri., Feb. 26, 8 a.m.: Full Megillah reading. Info. at bethabrahamdayton.org. Beth Jacob Congregation Purim - Torah, ‘Tashen & Trivia: Thurs., Feb. 25, 6 p.m.: Trivia. 6:30 p.m.: Mincha. 7 p.m.: Maariv w. Megillah reading. Light refreshments on departure. 7020 N. Main St., Harrison Twp. Email Tammy at firstname.lastname@example.org. Temple Israel Purim Celebration: Thurs., Feb. 25, 6 p.m.: Virtual Megillah reading. 6:30 p.m.: Virtual scavenger hunt. Info. at tidayton.org. Temple Beth Or Purim Carnival Drive-Thru Celebration: Sun., Feb. 28, 10 a.m-noon. 5275 Marshall Rd., Wash. Twp. Info. at templebethor.com.
Because of the Covid-19 pandemic, worship schedules have been adjusted and some services are offered virtually instead. For the latest information, check with the organizations below via their websites, Facebook pages, and by calling them directly.
CONGREGATIONS Beth Abraham Synagogue Conservative Rabbi Joshua Ginsberg Cantor/Dir. of Ed. & Programming Andrea Raizen 305 Sugar Camp Circle, Oakwood. 937-293-9520. BethAbrahamDayton.org Beth Jacob Congregation Traditional Rabbi Leibel Agar Saturdays, 9:30 a.m. 7020 N. Main St., Dayton. 937-274-2149. BethJacobCong.org Temple Anshe Emeth Reform Rabbinic Intern Tzvia Rubens Zoom service, Fri., Feb. 12, 7:30 p.m. 320 Caldwell St., Piqua. Contact Steve Shuchat, 937-7262116, AnsheEmeth@gmail.com. ansheemeth.org Temple Beth Or Reform Rabbi Judy Chessin Asst. Rabbi/Educator Ben Azriel 5275 Marshall Rd., Wash. Twp. 937-435-3400. templebethor.com Temple Beth Sholom Reform Rabbi Haviva Horvitz 610 Gladys Dr., Middletown. 513-422-8313. templebethsholom.net Temple Israel Reform Senior Rabbi Karen Bodney-Halasz Rabbi/Educator Tina Sobo 130 Riverside Dr., Dayton. 937-496-0050. tidayton.org Temple Sholom Reform Rabbi Cary Kozberg 2424 N. Limestone St., Springfield. 937-399-1231. templesholomoh.com
ADDITIONAL SERVICES Chabad of Greater Dayton Rabbi Nochum Mangel Associate Rabbi Shmuel Klatzkin Youth & Prog. Dir. Rabbi Levi Simon, Teen & Young Adult Prog. Dir. Rabbi Elchonon Chaikin. Beginner educational service Saturdays 9:30 a.m. 2001 Far Hills Ave. 937-643-0770. chabaddayton.com Yellow Springs Havurah Independent Antioch College Rockford Chapel. Contact Len Kramer, 937-572-4840 or email@example.com.
plorable exhibition of benighted “Typhus has already reigned superstition. We are told that here” or “Nobody is inside.” When these rituals failed, the the custom originated in Russia. It and the participants should community tried performing have been permitted to remain black weddings. there. Unfortunately, the publicOne such marriage joined ity given to the occurrence will Mendel and Susia, two of the convey to many people that this town’s mentally-ill bachelors, in marriage in hopes of atoning is a custom sanctioned and enfor the community's sins and to couraged by the Jewish religion. protect its members. Could this The people who do such things have been Judaism’s first same- do not know what Judaism means.” sex marriage? While we may think this When Jews came to the custom was a colorful relic United States, they brought of a bygone era, a the tradition with black wedding was them. Newspapers actually held in the The Jews hoped the wedding record several plague city of Bnei Brak in would fool the Angel of Death weddings during the March 2020. into thinking it had no power 1918-19 Spanish flu At the onset of over the celebrating community. outbreak. Covid-19 in Israel, In actuality, the wedding’s In Philadelphia’s participants hoped joy and anticipation may have Cobb’s Creek Jewish that the ritual would had the side benefit of alleviatcemetery, Fanny stop the virus’ masing the townspeople’s crippling Jacobs and Harold sive spread throughfear of isolation, disease, and Rosenberg were out the ultra-Orthodeath. united in marriage in dox community. On the other hand, there may October 1918. Sadly, Two orphans were have been less generous imgenealogical research Rabbi Judy Chessin married in a cemepulses at work as well. Yiddish yields nothing else tery under a black chupah, with folktales describe gift-giving about the couple, so it is asscenes reminiscent of kapparot sumed that they may have died no social distancing. Unfortunately, we now know or scapegoat rituals, casting sins from the plague. that the custom did not avert off oneself and onto another. Not all Jews approved of the virus’ lethal spread in Israel. Each townsperson would such primitive superstitions. Alas, given that few couples hand a gift to the couple, loudly The Jewish Exponent of Philathese days wish to celebrate proclaiming, “From me to you,” delphia published the followtheir weddings in a cemetery, as if they released the plague ing editorial the week after we might do better to rely upon from themselves and onto the Fanny and Harold’s wedding: the tried and true methods of “sacrificial” couple. “The wedding held in a Jewish containing the disease through While black cemetery last Sunday for the social distancing, masks, and a weddings origipurpose of staying the ravages nated in Eastern of the epidemic was a most de- new safe and sure vaccine. Europe during the Black Death, the custom continued in the 20th Century. of one of the most tragic occurBy Ron Kampeas, JTA During the rences in the world’s history,” Ohio lawmakers have Spanish flu outbreak in 1918, launched a Holocaust education the state Senate said in nearly unanimously approving the bill commission for the state amid Polish Jews tried on Dec. 9. The state House of increased concern about Holoevery known protection, such Representatives followed suit a caust awareness in the United as shaving their hair, drawweek later in a 77-7 vote. States. ing black lines around houses, The 12-member commisThe Holocaust and Genocide sleeping with their pajamas sion, which includes top state Memorial and Education Cominside-out, nailing knives to educational officials, will mission would “help cultivate rooftops, or posting signs on “promote public awareness of knowledge and understanding the towns’ gates which read, issues relating to Holocaust and genocide memorial and education through public education programs.” Ohio Jewish Communities, the umbrella body for Torah the state’s Jewish organizations, Portions lobbied for the bill. “The lack of Holocaust February 6: Yitro (Ex. 18:1-20:23) Purim knowledge today is glaring,” Feast of Lots its director, Howie Beigelman, February 13: Mishpatim February 26/14 Adar said in testimony in December. (Ex. 21:1-24:18; Num. 28:9-15; Commemorates the rescue Ex. 30:11-16) “Not only are neo-Nazi groups of the Jews in ancient Persia. increasingly active, but recent The reading of the Book of February 20: Terumah research confirms that basic Esther, costumes, grogers (Ex. 25:1-27:19; Deut. 25:17-19) facts about the Holocaust are (noisemakers), and eating unknown by far too many while February 27: Tetzaveh hamantashen others are misappropriating les(Ex. 27:20-30:10) are part of this festival. sons of the Holocaust.”
Of plagues & ‘black weddings’ By Rabbi Judy Chessin Temple Beth Or Planning a wedding these days is a daunting proposition with the current Covid-19 restrictions. Wedding couples wonder if they will be allowed to invite guests or need imprinted masks to go along with their kipot. Only one wedding was designed for just such a moment as this.
Perspectives Jewish folklore had it that a shvartse khasene or black wedding could avert a plague or pandemic. A black chupah (wedding canopy) was erected in the middle of the town’s cemetery. The rabbi would then marry off two of the town’s most marginalized citizens, such as orphans, beggars, or those with physical disabilities. The schvartse khasene or mageyfe khasene (plague wedding) was a blend of people’s most altruistic impulses and their more base motives. On the one hand, the mitzvah of marrying off and supporting the town’s neediest citizens was an appeal to God to lift the epidemic.
It was a blend of people’s most altruistic impulses and their more base motives.
Shevat/Adar Shabbat Candle Lightings February 5, 5:44 p.m. February 12, 5:52 p.m. February 19, 6 p.m. February 26, 6:08 p.m.
Ohio lawmakers vote to launch Holocaust education commission
THE DAYTON JEWISH OBSERVER • FEBRUARY 2021
February JEWISH FEDERATION of GREATER DAYTON & ITS AGENCIES
UPCOMING EVENTS Connect with us! Check out our events. For more information, check out our calendar at jewishdayton.org.
A MESSAGE FROM THE CAMPAIGN CHAIR Dear Dayton Jewish Community, Everyone knows all too well how difficult the past year has been. The country grappled with the COVID-19 pandemic, social unrest, and natural disasters. It was a year of change and trial, but our Dayton Jewish Community remains strong.
Thursday, February 4 @ 7PM — JCC Happy Hour Game Night Sunday, February 7 @ 1PM — P2G International Book Club Sunday, February 7 @ 4PM — Tenement Virtual Museum Tour Wednesday, February 10 @ 7PM — JCRC Community Conversation: The Conflict Over the Conflict Thursday, February 11 @ 7PM — In Case You Get Hit By A Bus: How to Organize Your Life Now for When You're Not Around Later Sunday, February 14 @ 10AM — Introduction to DNA Testing with Diana Nelson Monday, February 15 @ 10AM — Virtual Winter Camp Shalom (President's Day) Thursday, February 18 @ 7PM — CABS: Night of the Assassins: The Untold Story of Hitler's Plot to Kill FDR, Churchill, and Stalin with Author Howard Blum Friday, February 19 @ 10:30AM — JCC Book Club Sunday, February 21 @ 10AM — Mitzvah Mission Wednesday, February 24 @ NOON — Planning Your Future, Part 1 Thursday, February 25 @ 7PM — JCRC Community Conversation: When Rabbis Bless Congress Upcoming Reoccurring Events Monday, February 1, 8 & 22 @ 7PM — Intro to Judaism Virtual Class Tuesday, February 2 & 16 @ 1PM — JFS Connects 2.0 Sunday, February 7, 14 & 21 @ 1PM — Coming of Age (Ages 14-20) Sunday, February 7, 14 & 21 @ 4PM — Coming of Age (Ages 21+)
For 2021, the Max May & Lydia May Holocaust Art & Writing Contest is going virtual! The submission process is open for students in grades 5–8 (Division I) and 9–12 (Division II), attending public school, parochial school, or are home schooled within the Miami Valley. For more information, contact Jodi Phares at firstname.lastname@example.org or visit jewishdayton.org.
Through the generosity of our incredible donors, we completed our 2020 Annual Campaign at 100% of goal. This was made possible because of the dedication and loyalty of this community, and I am sincerely thankful for your support of the Jewish Federation of Greater Dayton.
JCC Happy Hour Game Night Thursday, February 4 @ 7PM
I must also recognize our amazing professionals who work diligently every day on behalf of our Jewish community locally, in Israel, and around the world. Together, we fulfill our mission and will continue to do so. As a third generation Campaign Chair for the Jewish Federation, I am truly privileged and honored to be part of such an important and critical mission. Sincerely, Daniel Sweeny 2020 Annual Campaign Chair
Join us for a rousing game of Jeopardy with your friends! Test your knowledge on a variety of trivia topics with our very own version of America’s favorite game show. Compete to win – highest score gets the prize!
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THE DAYTON JEWISH OBSERVER • FEBRUARY 2021
February JEWISH FEDERATION of GREATER DAYTON & ITS AGENCIES
GET TO KNOW YOUR PJ NEIGHBORS! Meet The Siegel Family How many kids are in your family? 1 What are their ages? 3 (will be 4 on 2/26) How did you get involved in PJ Library? We got involved with PJ Library when Olivia was born. We love the books we get from PJ library. They are a great addition to our home library. They are really great for teaching Olivia about the Jewish Holidays and traditions. We also love going to all the events in Dayton that are run by PJ Library, The Jewish Federation, Chabad, and Temple Beth Or. It is important for us to make sure Olivia understands what it means to be Jewish and all of the history behind the religion. What is your family’s favorite PJ Library book? Two of our favorite books that we read often are: Thank You for Me by Rick Recht and Apple Days: A Rosh Hashanah Story by Allison Soffer. During the High Holidays, we made the applesauce recipe from the Apple Days book. It was very yummy! What brought you to Dayton? How long have you lived here? Carrie grew up in Dayton and her parents still live in Centerville. After Olivia was born, we decided to move to Dayton to be close to family. We also knew that Dayton is a great city to raise a child. What do you love about Dayton? We love that we are close to Carrie's parents and that Olivia gets to see them on a regular basis. We love being involved with the Jewish Community and participating in all of the events the community has to offer. We love exploring, hiking and discovering new things in and around the Dayton area. What are you looking forward to this season? We are looking forward to trying new restaurants (take-out), spending time together as a family and hopefully spend some time with friends on a hike or at a park. We want to learn about YOUR family! Our families are what makes the PJ Library program in Dayton so vibrant, and we want to showcase them! To participate, please contact Kate Elder, PJ Library Coordinator at email@example.com
Virtual Tenement Museum Tour Sunday, February 7 @ 4PM What might your life be like if you were a Jewish immigrant living in New York City 100 years ago? Experience a private virtual tour of the Tenement Museum in New York City’s lower east side just for the Dayton Jewish community. We’ll walk through the lives of the Rogarshevsky's, a Jewish American family from Lithuania, who lived at 97 Orchard Street in 1911 and balanced their home life with working in garment factories across the city. We'll meet the members of the family, see the rooms where they lived, and can ask questions about their lives. This program is for all ages, but is most suitable for children aged 8 through adult.
Register online at Jewish Community Center & OF GREATER DAYTON
Legacies, Tributes, & Memorials FEDERATION
UNITED JEWISH CAMPAIGN IN MEMORY OF › Claire Soifer Sylvia & Ralph Heyman › Oscar Soifer Judy Lipton CAROL PAVLOFSKY FUND IN HONOR OF › Gary Pavlofsky 60th birthday Mr. & Mrs. David Miller DOROTHY B. MOYER FUND IN MEMORY OF › Sheila Moyer on her 25th yahrzeit IN HONOR OF › Richard & Marci Moyer’s anniversary Janis Dodson LINDA RUCHMAN MEMORIAL FUND IN MEMORY OF › Marvin Crell Judy & Marshall Ruchman JCC
CAROLE RABINOWITZ CAMP FUND IN MEMORY OF › Harold Prigozen › Annette Goodman › Barbara Rabin › Steven Jacobs Beverly Louis › Harold Prigozen › Claire Soifer › Carol Levitan Bernard Rabinowitz
JOAN & PETER WELLS CHILDREN & YOUTH FUND IN MEMORY OF › Claire Soifer › Harold Prigozen Joan & Peter Wells IN HONOR OF › A speedy recovery for Mary Rita & Norm Weissman › A speedy recovery for Debby & Bob Goldenberg JOAN & PETER WELLS CHILDREN & YOUTH FUND IN HONOR OF › Marti Jacobs' writing class Lori Rosen Rubin JFS
JEWISH FAMILY SERVICES IN MEMORY OF › John Gelman Felice Shane › Winifred “Gwen” McConnell, Jodi Phares’ mother Gayle & Irv Moscowitz Cherie Rosenstein Rochelle & Mike Goldstein › Penny Spiegel › Claire Soifer Beverly & Jeffrey Kantor Elaine & Joe Bettman › Sam Lauber Barbara & Harry Gerla › Hyla Weiskind Randee & Tom Saldoff
THE DAYTON JEWISH OBSERVER • FEBRUARY 2021
February JEWISH FEDERATION of GREATER DAYTON & ITS AGENCIES
JCRC Community Conversations EDUCATE-ADVOCATE-ACT Wednesday, February 10 @ 7PM via Zoom The Conflict Over the Conflict: The Israel/Palestine Campus Debate with author Kenneth S. Stern No charge You are invited to a JCRC Community Conversation with Kenneth S. Stern, author of the passionate book The Conflict Over the Conflict: The Israel/Palestine Campus Debate. In his book, Stern examines attempts from each side to censor the other, at a time when some say students are being protected from difficult ideas and issues rather than being challenged by them. According to Stern, the campus is the best place to mine this conflict and our intense views about it to help future generations do what they are supposed to do: think and to think critically. The Conflict over the Conflict shows how this is possible. Moderated by Kayla Rothman-Zecher; Human Rights Center, University of Dayton
Introduction to DNA Testing with Diana Nelson Sunday, February 14 @ 10AM via Zoom No Cost
RSVP online at JewishDayton.org/events Presented by Miami Valley Jewish Genealogy & History, Beth Abraham Synagogue Men's Club Speaker Series, and Temple Israel's Ryterband Lecture Series. DNA testing is a popular tool for genealogy. TV advertising touts finding your ethnicity. You already know you are Jewish, so why would you test? And what test should you take? Local genealogist Diana Nelson will discuss the different types of DNA tests, what you can learn from them, and their limitations. DIANA NELSON
You can purchase The Conflict Over the Conflict through online retailers and in person at
JG&H Miami Valley Jewish Genealogy & History
This event is in partnership with the JCC, the Jewish Book Council, the University of Dayton, and Hillel at Miami University. DAY TO N
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Jewish Community Center OF GREATER DAYTON
Thank you to our sponsors
Support for this event is provided in memory of Marcia Jaffe.
In Case You Get Hit By A Bus How to Organize Your Life Now for When You're Not Around Later with Authors Abby Schneiderman, Adam Seifer, and Gene Newman
Thursday, February 25 @ 7PM via Zoom When Rabbis Bless Congress: The Great American Story of Jewish Prayers on Capitol Hill with author Howard Mortman No charge
PRESENTED BY LIFE & LEGACY™
Thursday, February 11 @ 7PM via Zoom Register online at JewishDayton.org/events
Congress opens each session with a prayer offered by a chaplain or guest chaplain. Among the guest chaplains are Rabbis. Howard Mortman’s book is about the rabbis who provided Jewish prayers in the literal and figurative center of American democracy. Mortman’s exhaustive research delivers a manuscript, written in approachable prose, that uniquely tells the story of over 400 rabbis offering over 600 prayers since the Civil War days. Author Howard Mortman will be joined by Rabbi Gary P. Zola, PhD of the American Jewish Archives, and interviewed by Rachel Katz, C-SPAN Affiliate Relations Manager.
The odds of getting hit by a bus are 495,000 to 1. But the odds that you’re going to die some day? Exactly.
When Rabbi’s Bless Congress is an important addition to our understanding of Congress and Jewish contribution to America. [Mortman’s book is] “Academically detailed yet esoterically fun.” - Kirkus Review
This event is open to the community and is free of charge.
In Case You Get Hit By A Bus will help even the most disorganized among us take control of our on- and off-line details so our loved ones won't have to scramble later. Breaking the task down into three levels, from the most urgent (like granting access to passwords), to the technical (creating a manual for the systems in your home), to the nostalgic (assembling a living memory), this clear, step-by-step program not only removes the anxiety and stress from getting your life in order, it's actually liberating.
This LIFE & LEGACY program is in coordination with the Jewish Book Council.
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JEWISH COMMUNITY CENTER of GREATER DAYTON
for more information and to register for JCRC events!
JEWISH FEDERATION of GREATER DAYTON
THE DAYTON JEWISH OBSERVER • FEBRUARY 2021
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JEWISH FAMILY SERVICES of GREATER DAYTON
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February JEWISH FEDERATION of GREATER DAYTON & ITS AGENCIES
A Women’s Seder
C E L E B R AT I N G O U R B E G I N N I N G S
Thursday, February 18 @ 7PM via Zoom Howard Blum, Night of the Assassins: The Untold Story of Hitler's Plot to Kill FDR, Churchill, and Stalin
Thursday, March 4, 2021 6:30 – 8PM via Zoom Join us as we celebrate the 7th Dayton Women’s Seder Celebrating our Beginnings
The New York Times bestselling author Howard Blum returns with a tale as riveting and suspenseful as any thriller: the true story of the Nazi plot to kill the leaders of the United States, Great Britain, and the U.S.S.R. during World War II. 2 0 2 0 -
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Please join us for the 7th annual Dayton Women’s Seder: Celebrating our Beginnings on Thursday, March 4, 2021. Together on Zoom, we will watch the film Esther Broner: A Weave of Women. This film was the inspiration for our first Women’s Seder in 2015. In addition to the movie, we will be sharing a couple of readings and a song featuring Courtney Cummings, Cantor Jenna Greenberg, and Cantor Andrea Raizen. Please RSVP by March 3, 2021 online at jewishdayton.org.
S P O N S O R S
Due to COVID, we will not be accepting food/item donations at the CJCE. If you would like, please consider making a donation to the Dayton Foodbank at https:// thefoodbankdayton.org/donate/ in honor of JCC Women’s Seder. This program is a collaboration of women from Beth Abraham Synagogue, Beth Jacob Congregation, Hadassah, Temple Beth Or, Temple Israel and The Jewish Community Center of Greater Dayton.
JCC CULTURAL ARTS PROGRAMMING IS MADE POSSIBLE BY COMMUNITY SUPPORTERS, COMMUNITY DONATIONS, OUR PARTNERSHIP WITH THE JEWISH BOOK COUNCIL. OUR JCC CULTURAL ARTS AND BOOK SERIES RECEIVES FUNDS FROM AN OHIO ARTS COUNCIL SUSTAINABILITY GRANT.
Jewish Community Center OF GREATER DAYTON
You can purchase books through online retailers
Or in person at Barnes and Noble on 725, across from the Dayton Mall (curbside pickup is available).
What’s YOUR "Coming of Age" story? A Bar or Bat Mitzvah, Quinceañera, beginning Salat, Baptism, Sweet 16, Seijin-no-Hi, Confirmation, Rumspringa, Upanayana for Dvija, Ritu Kala Samskara, or Acne, Dating, or the start of High School. Collaborate and share your unique experience over four zoom sessions (February 7, 14, & 21) through photography and writing with a group of peers from Dayton, San Antonio, Texas, and the Western Galilee, Israel. A Virtual Exhibit will be held for participants, their friends, and families on April 11, 2021.
For our full Cultural Arts & Book Series lineup and more, go to For questions or more information, contact Amy Dolph at firstname.lastname@example.org or by calling (937) 610-1555
Teen & Young Adult Group (Ages 14-20) Meeting Sundays in February (7, 14, & 21) from 1PM-2:30PM If you complete the first three Zoom sessions you will receive a $20 Amazon gift card!
Adult Group (Ages 21+) Meeting Sundays in February (7, 14, 21) from 4PM-5:30PM N OT E S
Monday, February 15 @ 10 - 11AM Camp Shalom gets ready for Purim! We'll team up with Jewish Family Services to do a mitzvah for Dayton area seniors. Then we'll make yummy hamentachen! Please RSVP by Friday, February 12. Register online at jewishdayton.org!
Virtual Exhibit Zoom session will be April 11 at 1PM for ALL PARTICIPANTS There is no cost to participate in this program. PARTICIPATE and sign up today at jewishdayton.org. DAY TO N
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Reminder! The scholarships (Residential Camp Scholarship, Travel to Israel Scholarship, Heuman Scholarship) and interest-free student loan application window is January 4 – April 5, 2021. If you have any questions, or would like an application, please contact Alisa Thomas at email@example.com or (937) 610-1796. THE DAYTON JEWISH OBSERVER • FEBRUARY 2021
THE MARVELOUS MR. MAZEL Neurologist Dr. Joel Vandersluis and the research division of his practice, Neurology Diagnostics, are participating in a clinical trial aimed at combating Alzheimer’s. The TrailblazerAlz trial, conducted by Eli Lilly, has had marked success treating patients with early symptomatic Alzheimer’s disease. Treatment is a monoclonal antibody, given
Scott Halasz intravenously, which attacks the proteins in the brain believed to be responsible. Eli Lilly recently shared preliminary data demonstrating a significant reduction in progression of the disease, Joel said. Participants who received the drug had a 32-percent deceleration in the rate of decline, compared with those who received a placebo, according to The New York Times. In six to 12 months, plaques were gone and stayed gone, Dr. Daniel Skovronsky, the company’s chief scientific
officer, told the newspaper. “We are excited to be a part of this success,” Joel said. “We have been recruiting patients for the Eli Lilly Trailblazer-Alz trial for a few years. Even more so, we are thrilled to continue to recruit for the follow-up Eli Lilly trial, Trailblazer-Alz 2.” The Neurology Diagnostics research division also studies Parkinson’s disease and Multiple Sclerosis. Dr. Miri Lader, a 2014 graduate of the Wright State University Boonshoft School of Medicine, became director of medical student education with the BSOM Department of Pediatrics in January. Miri is a pediatric hospitalist and director of continuing medical education at Dayton Children’s Hospital. “I was drawn to the position because the education that I received at BSOM needs to be carried on,” Miri said. As director of medical student education, Miri will design, manage, and evaluate the program, as well as communicate expectations of the pediatric clerkship to BSOM students, faculty, staff, and administration. “I would
be honored to be considered the link between students and faculty during the pediatric portion of their medical education,” Miri said. She said she fell in love with pediatrics while completing rotations at Dayton Children’s as a medical student. “Kids are all little miracles, and I wanted to spend my days watching miracles take place,” Miri said.
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Hillel Academy’s newly installed playground is dedicated in loving memory of Doris & Eugene Schear. This playground was made possible by the generosity of Hillel Academy families, staff, alumni, and community members. Special Thanks To Kim and Nick Schubert Debbie and Bruce Feldman The Vandersluis Family Dr. Michael and Amy Bloom Family The Jacobs, Waldman and Davis Families in loving memory of Steven Jacobs.
daytonhillel.org • 937.277.8966 • firstname.lastname@example.org THE DAYTON JEWISH OBSERVER • FEBRUARY 2021
A small but growing number of Orthodox rabbis are officiating same-sex weddings
David Perlman Photography
By Josefin Dolsten, JTA As a teen, Nadiv Schorer felt a deep sense of grief when attending his older siblings’ weddings. After he realized he was attracted to men, he thought there was no way for him to build a life in the Modern Orthodox community, where he had been repeatedly told there was no space for gay people. “I remember realizing I’m never going to have this,” he recalled. “And it was very difficult for me.” But last year, Schorer stood with his nowhusband, Ariel Meiri, under the chupah in a ceremony that didn’t look too different from the ones his brothers and sisters had. Officiating at the ceremony was Rabbi Avram Mlotek, an Orthodox rabbi who leads an outreach organization for young Jewish professionals in New York. It was Mlotek’s first time performing a same-sex wedding. “If the couple is choosing to live Jewish lives, build a Jewish
home, and raise Jewish children, our traditional rabbinate must seize the opportunity to welcome and work with these families at their most precious lifecycle moments,” Mlotek wrote in 2019 in announcing his decision to perform samesex weddings. “If we don’t, we risk further alienation and falling into an abyss of religious irrelevance by denying these couples their rightful place of belonging.” Mlotek is part of a growing cadre of Orthodox rabbis who are breaking ranks by performing wedding ceremonies that until recently had been unthinkable in the Orthodox Jewish world. JTA was able to identify 10 Orthodox-ordained rabbis who have performed or said they were open to officiating religious wedding ceremonies for same-sex couples. Though small, that number represents a remarkable change in the Orthodox community, which is defined by its strict
A decade ago it was impossible to find a single Orthodox rabbi willing to do so.
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EVENTS T H AT M AK E H I S T ORY
adherence to religious law and in which a decade ago it was impossible to find a single rabbi willing to do so. “I think for most Orthodox rabbis, the prohibition in the Bible and in subsequent halachic works was somewhat intractable,” said Jonathan Sarna, a professor of American Jewish history at Brandeis UniNadiv Schorer (R) married Ariel Meiri in 2020 with Orthodox rabbi Avram Mlotek officiating versity, referring to the biblical Lopatin, the other rabbis are of the same gender. prohibition on sex between Daniel Atwood, Elie FriedAttitudes toward same-sex men. “But what we do see, man, Gabe Greenberg, Steven marriage and LGBTQ accepwhich I think is very important, Greenberg, Daniel Landes, tance in general are similar in is a change of attitude.” Sarah Mulhern, Aaron Potek the more conservative haredi The rabbis identified by JTA and Shmuly Yanklowitz. Orthodox world, which maininclude prominent figures like Some of them were ordained tains a strict separation from Rabbi Asher Lopatin, the forat Yeshiva University, the the secular world. But in the mer head of the liberal OrthoModern Orthodox rabbinical Modern Orthodox community, dox rabbinical school Yeshivat school that recently rejected the where a religious lifestyle is Chovevei Torah, who said he formation of an LGBTQ student balanced with an embrace of would “seriously favorably group. Others were ordained the secular world, LGBTQ acconsider it” if asked to perform by Yeshivat Chovevei Torah, ceptance has accelerated. a same-sex wedding. which was embroiled in controThat has left some Modern “The Judaism that I believe versy in 2019 when it declined Orthodox-ordained rabbis conin, that I think God gave us, is to ordain a gay student. That cluding that prohibitions, such one that cares for people and student, Atwood, was ordained as the oft-cited passage from addresses their needs and is by Landes instead, as was Leviticus that has traditionally meaningful for them, so Jewish Mulhern, who had previously been interpreted as calling gay law and Jewish tradition needs graduated from a non-denomimale sex “an abomination,” to address this,” said Lopatin, national rabbinical school. need to be reevaluated. who leads a Modern Orthodox Orthodox Judaism is defined “I view that prohibition and synagogue outside Detroit as by its traditional interpretation set of related prohibitions as an well as the Jewish Community of Jewish law, which does not area of Torah law that is in tenRelations Council in Detroit. allow same-sex marriage or sion with other Torah values, In addition to Mlotek and sexual relations between people including the value of all life and the value of saving a life. Knowing what we know about suicide rates in the gay community, I think that’s highly relevant,” said Rabbi Gabe Greenberg, who officiated his first same-sex wedding in 2019. The number of Orthodoxordained rabbis performing same-sex weddings may be set to expand even further. Around 45 rabbis attended a series of sessions that started in 2018 to explore how a same-sex wedding might look in an Orthodox setting. The conversations were hosted through Torat Chayim, a progressive Orthodox rabbinic group led by Yanklowitz, who has not performed a same-sex wedding but says he is “very open” to doing so. “It’s been an issue that has really had a lot of movement within the Jewish community
THE DAYTON JEWISH OBSERVER • FEBRUARY 2021
Nyla Grey tional Jewish wedding and the Orthodox community. In the progresand we also wanted sive Orthodox world to pay homage to our there’s a lot of receptivqueer identities, and ity,” Yanklowitz said. queer culture. We didn’t Though the Orthowant to do the exact dox movement lags same things that we far behind the other would at a heterosexual Jewish denominations wedding but change the — all of which allow pronouns,” said Rabbi same-sex weddings and Daniel Atwood of his queer rabbis — LGBTQ 2019 wedding to huspeople are seeing more band Judah Gavant. acceptance at a comTo do so, the couple munity level, especially worked with their ofin Modern Orthodox ficiating rabbi, Gabe synagogues, said Rabbi Greenberg, drawing inZev Eleff, an associspiration from a model ate professor of Jewish created years earlier by history at Touro College Rabbi Steven Greenberg, Borison (R) and Michael Greenberg tried to who researches Ameri- Jeremy who came out as gay stick as close to tradition as possible for their wedding can Orthodox Judaism. after being ordained in “Twenty years ago, 1983 and in 2011 became a marriage contract for the when somebody came out of the first Orthodox-ordained couple that outlines the husthe closet, a man who wanted rabbi known to have performed band’s responsibilities to the to marry a man or a woman a same-sex wedding. (The two wife. Then, in the betrothal who wanted to marry a womrabbis are not related.) ceremony, known as kiddushin, an, if they came to that decision the groom “acquires” the bride In place of a ketubah, Steven they also came to that decision Greenberg’s ceremony conby giving her a ring and recitthey had to leave Orthodoxy. sists of a shtar shutafut, a legal ing a formula. During the marNow while they may never agreement that has historically riage ceremony, nissuin, seven become president of their synabeen used for business partblessings are recited over the gogues, at the same time they nerships. The idea to use such couple — including two that can make peace with their fama partnership for a wedding use language that refer specifiily lifestyle and finding outlets, was first proposed in 1999 by cally to a groom and bride. like certain Orthodox schools Rachel Adler, a Reform feminist Some same-sex Orthodox and certain Modern Orthodox rabbi who felt the language of a couples choose to hew as congregations,” Eleff said. typical ketubah was sexist. (In closely as possible to that temRecently, Rabbi Benny Lau, recent years, many heterosexual plate. Borison and his husband a prominent Israeli Orthodox couples have taken Adler’s lead Michael Greenberg wanted to rabbi released a statement that stay as close to tradition as pos- in trying to make their wedding seemed to offer a path forward ceremonies more egalitarian.) sible, only altering the Hebrew to same-sex couples looking to Steven Greenberg creates the text so that it referred to two build their lives in the religious document together with the grooms rather than groom and world. couple to fit their relationship bride and using two ketubahs Though the rabbi did not ofand it is read out loud dur— rather than one, since the fer a framework for a wedding ing the ceremony. In place of text is one-sided and talks ceremony, he said that the imkiddushin, which establishes about the husband’s responsipulse to marry and have one’s monogamy and where the bilities to the wife. relationship publicly affirmed Others are relying on alterna- husband gives the wife a ring, should not be ignored and that tive models, feeling like the tra- Greenberg has both partners Judaism does not forbid gay take vows to be exclusive to ditional wedding liturgy does couples from building families. each other. In place of the tradinot apply to same-sex couples. And though no American tional sheva brachot, Greenberg “We wanted it to be a tradiJewish Orthodox group has endorsed same-sex weddings, queer couples are finding support among friends and family. “Is the Modern Orthodox community ready for something like this? We had almost 300 people at our wedding, at least two thirds of whom were from the Orthodox communities in Cleveland, New York and Los Angeles. We know not everyone is this fortunate but clearly some in the Orthodox community are ready for this,” said Jeremy Borison, who wed his husband in an Orthodox ceremony officiated by Rabbi Elie Friedman early in 2020. For same-sex couples seeking to have an Orthodox wedding, one hurdle is how to navigate a ritual ceremony crafted for heterosexual couples. In a traditional Jewish wedding, two witnesses sign a ketubah,
Seize the day.
has friends and family come up and give the couple seven blessings of their choice. Sandy and Leana Tapnack had a similar vision for their 2018 wedding. “We wanted something that felt on a gut level like the Orthodox weddings we had been to and that felt traditional. We also didn’t want to mess with halacha. We didn’t want to pretend something was halachic when it wasn’t. That didn’t feel authentic to us, and we didn’t want to feel like we were inventing something for the first time necessarily,” Leana Tapnack said. Mulhern worked with the couple to craft a ceremony that used a “dual vow” mechanism — each woman promising to be monogamous with the other — rather than the traditional blessings said as part of kiddushin. Afterward, they
did a modified sheva brachot ceremony. “It really felt aesthetically like a traditional Jewish wedding,” Mulhern said. How couples design their ceremonies represents a tension about how change happens in the Orthodox world — whether tradition can be adapted or has to be rethought. “I respect people who do an alternative and everyone’s entitled to do what they’re comfortable with, but I view it as a step in the wrong direction because it’s separate but equal,” said Michael Greenberg, whose wedding ceremony to Borison stayed as close to tradition as possible. “It’s formally not acknowledging a gay wedding as a wedding, they’re saying it’s something else...They’re using the halachic mechanism of a partnership (shtar shutafut) to Continued on Page 18
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Continued from Page 17 give some sort of halachic validity or halachic mechanics to a gay wedding but it’s not a (traditional) Jewish wedding.” Friedman, the officiating rabbi, said the Jewish legal validity of the wedding is only one piece of what matters. “What we were saying was that the ceremony itself and the sense of commitment to each other and to God and to the people who were there was meaningful enough in and of itself,” said Friedman, who has spoken in Orthodox Jewish settings about his experience as a gay man. “Even if we left up to Hashem (God) the question of what its ultimate halachic meaning was, we still wanted to do it that way anyway.” Not all progressive Orthodox rabbis are on board with same-sex weddings, even as they believe that queer Jews should be included in Orthodox communities. Eleff, the professor at Touro College, says that while there has been increased acceptance of queer people in the Modern Orthodox world, weddings may be a step too far for many. “It goes beyond the boundaries of how the Modern Orthodox negotiate halacha in modernity,” he said. “What it messages outwardly is the decision to conform halacha to modern sensibilities and Modern Orthodoxy has really eschewed that. It really has not tolerated that aggressive halachic decision making.” Rabbi Gavriel Bellino’s congregation, Sixth Street Community Synagogue in downtown New York, welcomes queer members and has co-hosted a shabbaton with Eshel, a group for Orthodox Jews who are LGBTQ. Still, Bellino cannot see a way for Orthodox Judaism to offer a pathway to same-sex weddings. “I feel limited by the mechanisms of Jewish law and so I have no mechanism to perform such a wedding,”
Leana Tapnack (L) and her wife, Sandy, worked with Rabbi Sarah Mulhern to create a ceremony that felt similar to a traditional Orthodox one
he said. “So while the secular side of me and the progressive American in me is very much in favor of the legalization of same-sex unions, I don’t perform them in a religious context.” That means that some queer Jews who grew up Orthodox are looking to other denominations when they plan their weddings. “A lot of Orthodox LGBTQ Jews are finding their friends to conduct ceremonies or rabbis from other denominations. There are very few Orthodox-ordained rabbis who will do commitment ceremonies — very, very few. And while it’s nice to have a rabbi do it, I don’t think it’s necessary, and people have been doing it for decades without rabbis,” said Miryam Kabakov, the executive director of Eshel. Kabakov herself has officiated two same-sex weddings for Orthodox couples and consulted on others. Others choose to leave Orthodoxy entirely, conclud-
ing that fighting to carve a space for themselves is not worth it when other denominations have made that space already. Gedalia Robinson had a Conservative rabbi officiate his wedding to his husband Caleb last year. Though Robinson grew up deeply involved in the Modern Orthodox world — his father is Rabbi Menachem Penner, dean of Yeshiva University’s rabbinical school — he says he grew tired of having to constantly battle for acceptance. “It was just very draining. It was trying to throw a rope across a ravine, to create a bridge and just throwing a very, very heavy rope very far, and often just being met with a person who just did not even extend their hands,” he said. That fight has also pushed away some progressive Orthodox rabbis to leave the movement. “There are just so few folks who are really willing to address that fundamental core problem in the Orthodox world that I decided for me personally, I didn’t need that denominational affiliation to ultimately address the question that I care most about...which is how do we believe that God and Jewish law and values wants someone who is born gay to live out their life,” said Rabbi Aaron Potek, who was ordained at Yeshivat Chovevei Torah and announced publicly last year that he no longer identified with Orthodoxy. Potek said he had seen colleagues who sought to include LGBTQ people in their communities face pressure to “prove their Orthodoxy” after critics in the community accused them of having departed from Orthodox values. “I just didn’t care about that fight,” said Potek, who works at the nondenominational synagogue Sixth & I and is slated to officiate his first same-sex wedding this year. Others are feeling hopeful about creating more inclusive Orthodox communities. “A number of Orthodox rabbis are now feeling confident enough in the halachic and life-affirming system
Save the Date
BROADWAY November 6, 2021 After close consultation with our partners in the community, we’ve made the difficult decision to postpone RED Dayton, originally scheduled for April 24, 2021. RED Dayton will now take place on November 6, 2021, at the Dayton Masonic Center. Please visit reddayton.com for more details. Chairs: Virgilio J. Acevedo, Jr. and Donald Lee Geary II
CORONA PUR M An original shpiel by Rabbi Joshua Ginsberg & Cantor Andrea Raizen
Thursday, Feb. 25 on Zoom 5:30 p.m.: Interactive Family Purim Celebration with Virtual Costume Parade 6:15 p.m.: Shpiel — Corona Purim!
Friday, Feb. 26 on Zoom 8 a.m.: Full Megillah Reading Links available at our website & Facebook page. 305 Sugar Camp Circle Dayton, Ohio 45409 937•293•9520 www.bethabrahamdayton.org PAGE 18
THE DAYTON JEWISH OBSERVER • FEBRUARY 2021
of Orthodox Judaism that they can approach these issues with compassion and deep thought in order to come to resolutions of a heartbreaking situation,” said Rabbi Daniel Landes. Landes, the rabbi who ordained Atwood, the openly gay student who was denied ordination by Yeshivat Chovevei Torah, is in the midst of that shift himself. In July, he said he was not yet ready to officiate a same-sex wedding. By September, he had changed course. “I’m only doing weddings for students. The occasion for doing a same-gender wedding hasn’t yet arisen but — if we can agree on a proper liturgy — I can see it happening,” he said in an email. “I don’t turn my back on my students.” He says he is still in the process of figuring out what a ceremony and a legal ruling on the issue would look like. “Halachic rationale is needed and it’s also very possible because God cannot create a world that plunges certain of its members into sin that it cannot extract itself from,” he said. “How can we get there? I think I have a way.” That kind of thinking has meant that queer Jews like Schorer are able to get married and imagine a future in the Orthodox world. “Our wedding day was to me the most spiritually uplifting and emotional day that I have ever experienced in my life,” said Schorer, who belongs to an Orthodox synagogue with his husband. “And realizing that I was sort of being able to live my truth of who I am and marrying the man that I love in a way that is right for us — it was Jewish and traditional — it felt right.”
I got married during the pandemic. my wedding was perfect. By Devora Schacter, JTA NEW YORK — Last March, the man I was dating asked me to become his wife. Social distancing was a new phenomenon and Lysol wipes were still available for purchase at my local drugstore. However, the fear and uncertainty had begun to spread, and only about 15 people attended my engagement celebration. With the sparse knowledge that we had in early March, I wasn’t bothered by the slightly muted celebration, knowing my wedding day would come just a few months later, as is the standard in my Orthodox community. My fiance returned home to Florida, and I expected to see him again in the next week or so. But as the number of cases began to increase suddenly and shockingly, I soon began to realize that life as we knew it was about to be replaced by an unforeseen reality. The wedding I had expected would feature the usual aspects of a wedding and proceed as my siblings’ ceremonies had: flower arrangements, a beautiful hall, camera crews, catered meals, and hours of dancing with my friends and family. It was five weeks until I saw my fiance again. At first I thought we should push off our wedding to a time of more certainty. However, while deliberating in person, my future husband and I became increasingly aware that the only path to the wedding we envisioned and expected would require significant delay. Under Jewish law, a relationship is
not meant to be intimate until after marriage, and a marriage is generally not supposed to be delayed. Due to the travel restrictions that prevented us from seeing each other, FaceTime became our main means of communication. The allure of a “normal” wedding began to fade if it meant spending more time in this awkward reality. I asked my parents: “Is it possible to plan a wedding for two weeks from today?” After recovering from the initial shock, they were ready to hear my reasoning. I explained that waiting in limbo indefinitely wasn’t worth postponing the very much anticipated next stage of my life. After hearing me out, my ever-supportive parents were on board. With one call to the party planner, the chaos began. While we ran frantic errands and attended numerous appointments, our party planner transformed what was once a bare slab of backyard concrete into a draped and detailed outdoor wedding hall. Two weeks later the day arrived, and it was one that the people who were there will never forget. I’m the youngest of five married siblings, and we were all in agreement that my wedding had an element that was absent from any other we had attended: a pure joy created by the small gathering, allowing everyone to totally focus on the unification of two people. A positive mindset is one of the most powerful tools we have. Throughout this entire
ordeal, I never felt anything other than fortunate. I had been given what so many others hope and pray for — the opportunity to begin the rest of my life with someone who possessed qualities that far exceeded my expectations. While I understood that our wedding would not be “normal,” the essence of what we were trying to achieve on this monumental occasion would be exactly the same. A wedding itself is not the goal but a means to a much greater and higher purpose. It seems fairly easy to become entangled in and overwhelmed by the details that make up a typical wedding, and the significance of the journey on which the couple is about to embark may become muddled under the layers of other aspects that compete for their attention. In contrast, our wedding day was stripped down to the bare minimum: We were extremely limited in terms of guests, venue options and even the menu. To me, that “void” was filled with something worth so much more: meaning. The focus of my wedding was nothing other than me and my husband. When his foot broke the glass, we began the life we had long anticipated. My wedding, bereft of all frills and embellishments, was not a compromise — it was a gift. After a wedding and the excitement of the day has
70 Faces Media
passed, a couple is left with only themselves and the life they will build together. My husband and I had that mind-set since the beginning because we didn’t have a regular engagement period. In the weeks leading to the wedding, we focused on what we were about to embark upon and what exactly this next stage of life meant to us. It made the day itself and every day that followed that much more meaningful, knowing the foundation of our marriage was built on our relationship, not the details. We started our marriage focused on the core of what a marriage is truly about; that’s priceless. Although I originally felt only acceptance for my unconventional wedding situation, in time I began to feel grateful. I choose to see it as an opportunity I was given. My wedding was incomparable in its beauty and meaning because of its simplicity.
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THE DAYTON JEWISH OBSERVER • FEBRUARY 2021
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JEWISH FAMILY EDUCATION Boaz Eshkol/Israel 21C
Heaven on Earth Considering Creation
In 1928, settlers at Kibbutz Beit Alpha were draining the swamps in the Jezreel Valley when they spotted mosaic shards. Excavations unearthed a fifth-century synagogue complex with a nearly perfectly preserved floor mosaic. The middle panel was as unexpected as it was breathtaking: a zodiac wheel with the 12
Candace R. Kwiatek symbols labeled in Hebrew, a central sun figure driving a chariot among the moon and stars, and the four seasons as female figures in the corners. From synagogue imagery to the timing of festivals, holidays, and Shabbat, to the earliest verses of Genesis, the celestial bodies play a significant role in Jewish thought and tradition. “God said, ‘Let there be lights in the expanse of the sky to separate day from night; they shall serve as signs for the set times — the days and the years; and they shall serve as lights in the expanse of the sky to shine upon the earth.’ And it was so. God made the two
great lights, the greater light to dominate the day and the lesser light to dominate the night, and the stars. And God set them in the expanse of the sky to shine upon the earth, to dominate the day and the night, and to separate light from darkness. And God saw how good this was. And there was evening and there was morning, a fourth day (Gen. 1:14-19).” Long before modern science, the sages of the Gemara asked the obvious question: If light was created on the first day, how can it be that the sun, moon, and stars were set in the sky on the fourth day? Some concluded the divine light of the first day was not that of the sun but a different kind of light. Others asserted that the light was the same, but the luminaries themselves were not stabilized or suspended in their designated places in the firmament until the fourth day. The medieval philosopher Rashi added that all the potentials of heaven and Earth were created on the first day, but each was set in place on the day when it was so commanded. Despite their literary style, the early rabbinic explanations correlate remarkably well with today’s scientific knowledge.
Mosaic at the fifth-century Beit Alpha synagogue in northern Israel Modern cosmology’s widely From Earth’s vantage point, accepted Big Bang theory sughowever, the individual cegests the primordial elements lestial lights would have been of everything in the universe indistinguishable until chemiwere all there at the first mocal changes in the atmosphere ment. transformed it into a transparThe pattern of darkness ent sky, making it appear that followed by visible light in the sun, moon, and stars were the universe’s early ages was newly suspended in place. generated by changes in cosmic At first glance, the fourth temperatures, atomic strucday’s text seems only to explain tures, and radiation wavethe three roles of the Earth’s lengths, and only eons later luminaries as sources of light, by the formation of stars and visible dividers between day galaxies, according to science and night, and signs to indicate journalist Charles Choi. time. These functions certainly As our own solar system match the daily rhythm of light emerged, the primeval atmoand darkness, the annual cycles sphere of Earth was an opaque, of months and seasons, and the methane-dominated fog bathed timing of Jewish rituals. in both cosmic microwave But a second look unearths background radiation and light some revolutionary ideas. The from the sun and moon. text is clear: the sun, moon, and stars neither created nor control light or time. In the beginning, God created light and darkness, initiated and took control of time, and fashioned the celestial lights and their tasks. Earth’s luminaries function only as anonymous servants that provide light, signal the rhythms of life, and serve as
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humans’ timekeepers. Just like that, the ancient deities of the sky were dethroned. The limited roles of the sun, moon, and stars further stripped away the ancient belief that the celestial lights directed fate and fortune, events in the natural world, even a person’s life and character. “The stars in particular are practically ignored,” biblical scholar Nachum Sarna notes, “a silence that is a (clear) repudiation of astrology!” And yet, what about Beit Alpha, one of seven ancient synagogues in Israel with nearly identical floor mosaics? Abundant evidence suggests a mystical Jewish tradition, according to Israeli tour guide and author Walter Zanger. From the synagogue entrance, Jewish worshipers symbolically climbed upward: across a mosaic panel depicting the merit of righteous ancestors, through the vortex of pagan images interpreted as reflections of God’s omnipotence, and onto a final “synagogue mosaic” filled with Jewish symbols, positioned right at the base of the Ark, the dwellingplace of the Torah. Revolutionary ideas turned into ritual. A final revolutionary thought comes from Rabbi Joseph Soloveitchik. At a brit milah (ritual circumcision), the greater and lesser lights of Creation’s fourth day are invoked in the prayer, “May this small one become great.” Soloveitchik explains that, like the moon, the infant is small because it can only reflect what it receives from others. But we pray that the child will grow up to become great like the sun, an independent source of light who will enlighten others. That would be heaven on Earth.
Literature to share Can Robots Be Jewish? And other pressing questions of modern life by Amy Schwartz, ed. In this anthology of Ask the Rabbi columns from Moment Magazine, editor Amy Schwartz highlights the breadth, wisdom, and creativity of Jewish thinking about the modern world. Rabbis spanning 10 denominations from Humanist to ultra-Orthodox offer brief but substantive responses to questions about editing genes, using social media, racism, happiness, belief in God, and more. Read it all the way through or savor it question by question. Honey on the Page: A Treasury of Yiddish Children’s Literature by Miriam Udel, editor and translator. This children’s anthology offers engaging new translations of familiar and littleknown tales and poems from across the Yiddish-speaking world of the 20th century. Holidays and heroes, folktales and fools, and more can be found in this extensive collection, highlighted by delightfully whimsical illustrations. Children, families, and teachers will enjoy exploring Judaism’s unique Yiddish culture through its literature in this volume.
THE DAYTON JEWISH OBSERVER • FEBRUARY 2021
Shape it like a crown in honor of Queen Esther By Rachel Ringler The Nosher Every Jewish holiday has its rules and the foods you should eat. And Purim is no different. We’re expected to listen to its story during the reading of the Megillah. We are obliged to remember those less fortunate through tzedakah or righteous giving. We are told to enjoy a celebratory feast. And, finally, we are commanded to share our joy by sending festive food packages to at least one other person. Each of those packages should contain a minimum of two items, one of which is baked. It’s most traditional to find hamantashen in these little packages, but there is no rule that it must be, which is good news for those eager to try something else. Cookbook author and baker Katja Goldman prepares breads in the shape of a crown and stuffs them with foods both healthy and savory, referencing the crown worn by Queen Esther, the title character and heroine of this story. Katja’s stuffing is a reminder of the foods that tradition tells us Esther allowed herself to eat while living in the palace with her Persian husband, King Ahashverus. Esther was a Jew, but she kept her religion and true identity from her husband. She kept the laws of kosher eating, kashrut, by eating a vegetarian diet, one rich in seeds and beans. This savory bread recipe is a cross between a challah and a bialy, stuffed with onion and
How to fill the challah
Bake a Poppy Seed-Filled Challah this Purim
poppy seeds and topped with more beautiful poppy seeds. So if poppy-seed hamantashen aren’t quite your thing, this stuffed challah might be a delicious counterpoint. The recipe is excerpted with permission from The Community Table, Recipes & Stories from the Jewish Community Center in Manhattan & Beyond by Katja Goldman, Judy Bernstein Bunzl and Lisa Rotmil. For the bread 1 cup warm water (105 degrees) 1 package dry yeast 1 tsp. plus 2 ½ Tbsp. sugar 2 Tbsp. honey 2 extra-large eggs 3 to 3 ½ cups unbleached, all-purpose flour, as needed, plus more for dusting 2 tsp. kosher salt ½ cup grapeseed or safflower oil, plus more for oiling the bowl ½ cup white whole-wheat flour ½ cup bread flour 1½ Tbsp. of one or a
combination of sesame seeds, poppy seeds and za’atar (optional) For the filling 1½ cups very finely chopped yellow onion 6 Tbsp. olive oil ½ cup poppy seeds ½ tsp. kosher salt For the glaze 1 extra-large egg beaten with 2 Tbsp. water To make the bread: place the warm water in a large bowl and sprinkle the yeast and one teaspoon sugar over the water. Let stand until foamy, about 10 minutes. Add the honey, eggs, one cup of all-purpose flour, and the remaining sugar to the yeast. Beat hard with a bread whisk or stir vigorously with a wooden spoon until smooth. Add the salt and oil and continue to whisk or stir until the oil is incorporated. Stir in white whole-wheat and bread flour. Gradually add remaining all-purpose flour, starting one cup at a time. When you can no longer stir in the bowl, transfer to a lightly floured surface and continue to gradually add flour, kneading gently until dough is smooth, elastic, and no longer sticky. (The flour amount may vary depending on the age of the flour, the humidity, and the size of your eggs.) Form the dough into a ball. Oil a large bowl and add the dough, turning it once to coat it. Cover the bowl with a damp
cloth and place it in a warm, draft-free spot, such as in an oven that is turned off. Allow the dough to double in bulk, one to two hours. Poke the dough with two fingers; if the indentations remain, the dough has adequately risen; if the indentation fills in, cover the dough and allow it to rise 15 to 30 minutes more. While the dough is rising, combine the onion, olive oil, poppy seeds, and salt in a small bowl. Divide the dough portion into two pieces. Using your hands, roll one piece into a 26-inchlong strand. Then, using a rolling pin or your hands, flatten the strand into a 30x-4 inch rectangle. (If the dough is too elastic to hold the rolled out shape, let it rest for 10 to 15 minutes on the counter and roll it again.) Spoon half of the onion-poppy mixture lengthwise down the center of the dough. Fold one long edge of the dough to just cover the filling. Take the second side of the dough and fold it so that it overlaps the first side by a half inch. Pinch firmly to seal. Pinch the short ends closed. Repeat with the second piece of dough. Arrange the filled strands side by side, seam-side down. Beginning in the middle, cross one strand over the other to form an X-shape, being careful to keep the seams facing down. Starting from the middle cross, continue to cross the strands, one over the other in the same direction until you reach the end. Pinch the ends together. Repeat with the other end. Coil it into a ring and transfer it to a parchment-lined baking sheet, seam-side down. Tuck one end under the second and pinch to seal tucked end. Preheat oven to 350 degrees. Let the ring rise for about one hour in a warm, draft-free place, until doubled in size. Glaze with the egg wash and sprinkle with more seeds, if desired. Bake for 45 to 50 minutes. Rotate the baking sheet in the oven halfway through the baking. The bread should be golden brown and sound hollow when tapped. The internal temperature can be tested with an instant-read thermometer and should be 190 degrees.
THE DAYTON JEWISH OBSERVER • FEBRUARY 2021
Arts&Culture Bestselling author’s latest historical nail-biter
New York Times bestselling nonfiction author Howard Blum will talk about his latest book, Night Of The Assassins: The Untold Story of Hitler’s Plot to Kill FDR, Churchill and Stalin, Feb. 18 as part of the JCC Virtual Cultural Arts & Book Series. Blum brings to light the palpable Nazi attempt in 1943 to kill the three Allied leaders at their secret meeting in Tehran. Aware of the impending Nazi defeat, Hitler saw Operation Long Jump as a last-ditch effort to negotiate peace with a different lineup of Allied leaders. Elite Nazi commandos were parachuted into Iran with six days to complete their mission. Blum is the author Howard Blum of the New York Times bestseller American Lightning, Wanted!, The Gold of Exodus, Gangland, The Floor of Heaven, and In the Enemy’s House. Publisher’s Weekly said of Night Of The Assassins, “Ian Fleming himself could not have written such an improbable yet actual plot.” — Marshall Weiss The JCC Cultural Arts & Book Series presents Howard Blum via Zoom, 7 p.m., Thurs., Feb. 18. Free. Register at jewishdayton.org/program/ cultural-arts-and-book-series.
Maureen Keating/CQ Roll Call via Getty Images
tended Harvard as an undergraduate and law student in the late ’60s, where he felt out of place among its legions of WASPy and activist students. He dove right into politics without ever practicing law. He served in the New York State Assembly from 1974 to 1981, then in the U.S. House of Representatives, representing three different districts in Brooklyn and Queens through 1999, when he was elected to the Senate. Throughout his career, Schumer as a House rep in 1990 Schumer has been a staunch ally of Jewish communities in his home state and of Israel. In 2015 he was tortured over the Continued from Page Seven debate on the Iran nuclear deal, Democratic National Convenwhich pitted what he and many tion in August, Schumer said other Israel defenders saw as the that the Senate would “bring Jewish state’s security interests bold and dramatic change to our country” if Democrats won against the Obama administration’s good intentions. control of the chamber. Schumer eventually would be As for how he will make that happen, his former communica- one of a select few Democrats tions director Stu Loeser argued who opposed the deal. In a memorable moment that unlike many senators, on Jon Stewart’s Daily Show, Schumer is savvy about forming small groups of like-minded the host mocked an MSNBC reporter for trying to pin down Republican and Democratic Schumer on the Iran deal while lawmakers who can connect they chatted in a diner. over noncontroversial issues. “You brought an old New “So say there’s a Republican York Jewish man to a diner?” senator from, you know, PennStewart said. “You realize what sylvania, a Democratic senator this means — you’re never from Wisconsin, and all of us going to end up talking about have this same problem that we’re working on in New York. the Iran deal. You’re just going to end up talking about f---ing Say this is not the only place in the country that has this kind of diners!” That public image as a quintformer defense plant that needs a new use,” Loeser said. Schum- essential New York Jew has er’s approach is “‘we’re going to been fodder for his enemies and played into political rhetoric that build a coalition because we’ll some see as coded antisemitism. find out the other ones, and But Schumer has never shied we’re going to get these guys from his roots as a Jew or New to work on us on a bipartisan Yorker. Politico marveled on inbasis.’ “He is acutely aware of what auguration week at how Schumer, in the midst of his ascension drives the senators. It’s not like you approach it from the idea of and still dealing with the fallout from the insurrection at the U.S. I’m going to get people across Capitol, found time to appear party lines, which is toxic now. at a Queens community board But it’s I’m going to find (three meeting and an Upper West Side to five) Republicans who actuDemocratic club. ally have the same approach Loeser recalled how Schumer as the Democrats and get their and his family, longtime memsupport.” Becoming majority leader is a bers of Congregation Beth Elohim in Brooklyn’s Park possible climax to a career that Slope, spent a Christmas Eve in many have called extremely ambitious, even by Washington the early 2000s at a restaurant in Chinatown. When a terrorism standards. In a 1986 book, his threat came up that night, Losister, Fran Schumer, a journalist, wrote: ”Ever since he was 8, eser tried to reach him, but his my older brother has wanted to phone was off. So Loeser resorted to calling Chinese restaurants recreate in the world his posiacross Lower Manhattan, asking tion in our family — president of the Schumers, favorite son of if the senator was there. Loeser eventually found him, the United States.” It was a lofty goal for the kid but only after hours of trouble. The problem: He and his family from Marine Park, a neighbor“looked like everyone else” to hood deep in Brooklyn that in the 1950s and ’60s was crowded the restaurants. “They kept saying to me with Jewish, Italian, Puerto Rican, and Caribbean immigrants. that ‘no, there’s no U.S. senator After graduating from James here,’” Loeser said. “‘Just a Jewish family.’” Madison High School, he at-
OBITUARIES Marilyn Ruth Caden passed away Jan. 6. She was born Marilyn Ruth Stouffer on 7/16/1929 in Galion, Ohio. She was a graduate of Buchtel High School, Akron, and the University of Dayton. Mrs. Caden was married to Edward B. Caden Jr. from 1953 to 1992. Mrs. Caden is survived by her son Curtis, his wife Janice, Amy Houck, the mother of her grandchildren, granddaughter Jenny Hitzges (Mike) of Newfoundland, Pa. and grandson Robert Caden (Cher) of Weinan, Shaanxi Province, China; and her greatgrandchildren, Ming Yu Caden, Natalie Caden, Ronan Hitzges, and Brooke Hitzges. The thing people remember most about Mrs. Caden was she was always in a happy mood. She could be silly if not funny and always wanted to be around other people. Mrs. Caden loved playing bridge and played in various groups. As a patron of the arts in the Miami Valley, she frequently attended plays, art exhibitions, and musical performances. Traveling extensively around the United States and the world, she made sure to take each of her grandchildren on trips. While trained as a teacher, her life was more about love and attention to others. While she was a good business woman and ran a family business with her husband, her true passion was swimming. She was a pioneer in teaching infants to swim and in helping people with arthritis to benefit by water exercise programs. She was a Red Crosscertified water safety instructor since the age of 18. She taught at various pools in Dayton including the YWCA, until they changed their focus to women’s issues and day care. She then went to work for what is now the Jewish Federation of Greater Dayton until their facility on Denlinger Road was sold. She then went to work for the Kleptz YMCA in Englewood, where she taught swimming and water aerobics until she was no longer able to do so. Memorial contributions for Marilyn Caden may be made to Kleptz YMCA, 1200 W. National Rd., Englewood, OH 45315. Interment was at Greenwood Cemetery Willard, Huron County, Ohio.
Harley M. Ellman, M.D., 84, of Dayton died Jan. 15 in Naples, Fla. after a struggle with cancer. Dr. Ellman was born April 1, 1936 in Dayton to John and Ida Ellman. The family later moved to Richmond, Va., where Dr. Ellman grew up, going to school and working at his father’s shoe store. He graduated from Thomas Jefferson High School in Richmond. He stayed home for college, earning a bachelor of science degree from the University of Richmond in three years and Phi Beta Kappa honors. Dr. Ellman went on to earn a doctor of medicine degree from Medical College of Virginia and was selected to join the prestigious Alpha Omega Alpha Honor Medical Society. In 1966-68, he served in the U.S. Army as a captain, stationed at Ft. Bragg, N.C. In 1964, he met Marianne Sue Bernie. After a courtship, the couple married and settled in Dayton. They had four children: Jeffrey, Lori, Lynne, and Julie. Dr. Ellman specialized in rheumatology and internal medicine and had a successful medical practice for over 50 years in Downtown Dayton. Dr. Ellman loved his job, rising in the wee hours every day for years to go to the hospital for rounds. Even away from the hospital and the office, he read medical journals and talked to other doctors about the practice of medicine. Late in life, he continued to have lunch at the doctors’ lounge at the hospital, sharing camaraderie and listening to talks on the latest medical issues. He played golf whenever he could, and nervously watched sports. He had a longstanding interest in World War II, reading fiction and nonfiction books on the subject and watching the History Channel. It was fun to cook for Dr. Ellman because he appreciated it all, and eating was a pure joy for him. Dr. Ellman was kind and giving, and also liked to tease with his dry sense of humor. Dr. Ellman is survived by his wife of 56 years, Marianne Ellman; his children Jeffrey (Kelley) Ellman of Atlanta; Lori Ellman of Sycamore, Ohio; Lynne (Scott) Goldberg of Columbus; Julie (Ilan) Feuchtwang of Burlingame, Calif.; seven grandchildren (Lily, Sydney, Jessica, Jaden, Daniel, Jordan and Jake); his brother Leon
(Alice) Ellman of Bonita Springs, Fla.; and his sister Arlene (Allan) Zeno of Norfolk, Va. He held a special place for longtime family friend Beatrice Bolden. Interment was at Beth Abraham Cemetery. The family asks that donations in Dr. Ellman’s memory be made to The Arthritis Foundation (arthritis. org/donate) or The Cleveland Clinic (my.clevelandclinic.org/ giving). Daniel “Danny” Eylon passed away Dec. 22 at the age of 78 as a result of Covid-19 pneumonia at the Mayo Clinic Hospital, in Scottsdale, Ariz. Born on July 10, 1942 in Jerusalem, Israel (at the time it was British Mandated Palestine) to parents Zeev Eylon and Sarah Eylon (Schwartz), who had immigrated to Palestine a decade earlier, Danny was the oldest of three, including his siblings Yoav and Anat. Danny was known among his friends and family as a great storyteller, beginning with tales of a rambunctious child who was never afraid of risk, which probably shaped him into the renowned scientist and educator he would eventually become. He met his wife, Chaya, in 1963 while studying at the Technion -Israel Institute of Technology where he earned his bachelor, master, and Ph.D. degrees in materials science engineering. Chaya and Danny married in 1965 in Haifa and their first child, Amir, was born five years later. In 1972, upon completion of his Ph.D., he relocated his family to Dayton to work for the Air Force Materials Laboratory, Wright-Patterson Air Force Base. He was principal investigator and senior research associate, Air Force Materials Laboratory, Wright-Patterson Air Force Base, 1974-1985. Their second child, Orit Amy, was born in 1977 and they raised their family in the suburbs of Dayton where they lived until 2015. Following his passion for teaching, Danny began teaching at the University of Dayton from 1986 until his official retirement several years ago. He also taught courses at Wright State University as well. Daniel was the chair of the Graduate Materials Engineering program at UD. In addition, he was also a consultant for aerospace companies in the U.S., Japan and Europe on titanium alloy technology. Over the years, his titanium and
THE DAYTON JEWISH OBSERVER • FEBRUARY 2021
OBITUARIES titanium alloy research resulted in multiple patents and awards/ accolades, including being inducted as a member of the European Academy of Sciences and earning a faculty fellowship with Boeing to build the first 787 Dreamliner. His professional and academic honors also included being named a Fellow of the American Society of Metals as well as several teaching and research awards from the University of Dayton. In his spare time, Daniel enjoyed combining his professional skills with his hobby of history and archaeology in ways that included lecturing on the ancient art of sword-making, precious stones, and megalith, which even earned him several appearances in documentaries broadcast on the History Channel. Danny’s work also has left a legacy in both academia and education. He led research with the University of Dayton Research Institute and also chaired a program with support from the National Science Foundation, bringing interest for women in engineering programs to the public high schools, and in particular recruiting women into engineering programs (WINGES) and another program for doctoral students seeking education advancement in the field of material science. Despite his numerous awards and accolades, Daniel was actually a very humble man, never wanting to be called Dr. Eylon, but only “Danny” to his students and friends. When he retired from the University of Dayton several years ago, Chaya and Danny moved to Peoria, Ariz., where he taught adjunct at Arizona State University and online for the University of Dayton. At home, he led very popular talks at his STEM club in his community lecture series as well, drawing huge crowds as he always was an engaging speaker. He was a loving husband, father, and grandfather who believed in showing his children the world, and never missing an opportunity to take them along on his many travels. He enjoyed tinkering with woodworking and making titanium jewelry in his workshop in his garage. He was an avid lover of independent films, classical music, and discussing politics. His grandchildren were his life, often “kidnapping” them on visits and taking them on trips to museums, restaurants, and always letting them stay overnight with Chaya and himself in hotels and resorts.
He also served as treasurer of Temple Beth Shalom. In 1980, Dr. Linder received his private pilot license and enjoyed many hours flying single engine airplanes out of Middletown Regional/Hook Field. As a golf enthusiast, Dr. Linder enjoyed playing golf and volunteering for the Kroger Senior Classic tournament in Mason. In 2004, Dr. and Mrs. Linder relocated to Cincinnati, where both served as art docents for the Cincinnati Art Museum. Dr. Linder is survived by his sons, Craig Randal Linder and Mark David Linder; his daughter, Karen Beth Linder; and five grandchildren. A celebration of Dr. Linder’s life is being planned for the summer of 2021. For information, email email@example.com. Contributions in memory of Dr. Linder may be made to the American Macular Degeneration Foundation at macular.org/ how-donate.
natural resources, and to educate anyone within earshot of the importance of doing so. Understanding that change begins in your own backyard and driven by a passionate love and awe of nature, she pioneered the transformation of a vacant lot in her beloved Dayton View neighborhood into Marathon Commons, an educational wildflower and butterfly garden. Engaging and full of life, Mrs. Margolis had a magical and healing touch, a discerning eye, and a radiant smile. She created beauty and a sense of wonder whenever and wherever she could. She inspired those who knew her to embrace every day to the fullest and to seek knowledge, justice, beauty, and most importantly, lovingkindness. Mrs. Margolis was charming. She had a wonderful sense of humor and an easy laugh, and while she was tenacious about everything for which she was passionate, Audrey Hope Office Margolis, she never took herself seriously. 97, died Jan. 10. She was an Deeply loved by those who extraordinary woman who knew her, she warmed the surpassed the challenge each of “cockles of our hearts.” She us inherits upon birth — that was preceded in death by her of making our world better and husband John A. Margolis, son more beautiful for our being in Dr. John H. Margolis, parents it. A lifelong resident of Dayton, Louis P. Office and Sara E. Dr. Lawrence H. Linder, 1931Mrs. Margolis attended Steele Office, sister Margy L. Office. 2021. Dr. Lawrence (Larry) H. She is survived by her loving Linder, 89, of West Brandywine High School and went on to receive her bachelor of arts family; two daughters: Jane (Dr. Twp., Pa., passed away on Jan. degree from the University of Daniel) Miller, Cathy (Michael) 1 at Freedom Village. He was Illinois in 1945. She returned to Schwartz; daughter-in-law Jo the beloved husband of the Anne (Hugh) Margolis Sales; late Joan Hammes Linder, with Dayton where she married the love of her life, John A. (Jack) eight grandchildren: Scott Miller, whom he shared 62 years of marriage. Born Margolis. They delighted in each Michael Miller and Timothy other’s presence, drew strength Miller, Emily (Karl Goodman) in Dayton, from each other’s wisdom, and Margolis, Lorie (Adam Rejwan) he was the joy from each other’s laughter. Margolis, Elizabeth Margolis, son of the Mrs. Margolis was a tireless Alison (Blake) Waxler, Hope late Maurice (Jae Kim) Furst; four greatMilton Linder champion of the environment, justice, education, civility and grandchildren: Jack and Audrey and Celia her family. Throughout her life, Goodman, Charlie Waxler, Ethan Izenman she set out to tackle injustices, Rejwan; nieces and nephew: Linder. Dr. Susy Himelhoch, Connie Linder graduated from Fairview fight careless commercial development, protect our Bally, Audrey Himelhoch, High School in Dayton, where he played football and ran track. He attended Northwestern University and Northwestern University School of Medicine, where he met Joan and earned his doctor of medicine degree. From Generation To Generation. They were married on Dec. 23, 1956, in New Orleans, where Dr. LICKLER Linder completed his internship at Charity Hospital in pediatric UNERAL surgery and began his private surgical practice. In 1969, the OME family relocated to Middletown, & Ohio where Dr. Linder had a REMATION private surgical practice and was associated with Middletown ERVICE Regional Hospital, now Atrium Medical Center, for 26 years. Dr. Larry S. Glickler, Director Linder served as treasurer and Dayton’s ONLY Jewish Funeral Director later as the Ohio governor-at1849 Salem Avenue, Dayton, Ohio 45406-4927 large of the Ohio Chapter of the (937) 278-4287 firstname.lastname@example.org American College of Surgeons. Daniel was an active member in his faith, as a member of his congregation at Beth Jacob Congregation in Dayton, and served on the board of his daughter’s Jewish Day school, Hillel Academy. Once retired, he was also very active at Chabad in Dayton and Phoenix, where he never missed a Gemara class on Wednesday nights. He was a proud father of his daughter’s service leading, always attending and participating at her synagogue when visiting her in San Antonio, Texas (Agudas Achim) or livestreaming when the pandemic started in March 2020. Danny’s friends and family will always remember his sharp wit, passion for life, and enjoyment of a good debate on almost any subject! He is survived by his wife, Chaya Eylon, and his children Amir (Karen) and Orit Amy (Frank Pemberton) and his grandchildren Emily, Benjamin, Ethan, Joel and Gabriel. He was preceded in death by his parents, Zeev and Sarah Eylon, and sister Anat Anshel. Donations may be sent to jewishparadisevalley.com/ donate.
L’dor V’dor. G F H C S
THE DAYTON JEWISH OBSERVER • FEBRUARY 2021
Carol (Doug) Kadison, Albert Copland, Merrie Lyn Blackford and Cyr Daniel. The family is thankful for the loving and devoted care Mrs. Margolis received from her amazing caregivers, Teresa Craft and Carmen Jones. They demonstrated the power and beauty of lovingkindness every day. We also wish to thank all the exceptional staff at The Suites at Walnut Creek who loved and cared for Mrs. Margolis for over 12 years. These frontline caregivers went above and beyond to take care of Mrs. Margolis during this difficult and tragic Covid epidemic. Interment was at Riverview Cemetery. The family welcomes donations in Mrs. John A. Margolis’ memory to Aullwood Audubon Center or Cox Arboretum MetroParks. Jane H. Segal, age 83 of Dayton, passed away Jan. 8 at Miami Valley Hospital. Mrs. Segal was an active member in the Dayton Jewish community for many years, being a former member of Shomrei Emunah, attending Beth Jacob Congregation, teaching Sunday school at Beth Abraham Synagogue, and working at Covenant House. She was preceded in death by her beloved husband, Leon S. Mrs. Segal is survived by her sons, Yechezkel S. of N.Y., Ray A. of N.Y., Moshe E. and Chaim B. of Kettering; sister, Ellen Bendow Resnick of Conn.; brother, Bruce Bendow of British Columbia; grandchildren, Oscar and Hugo; and many other relatives and friends. Interment was at Beth Jacob Cemetery. Memorial contributions may be made to seeingeye.org in her memory.
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