The Dayton Jewish Observer, September 2021

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for his dad After imbues NateinEbner’s storyform p. 26p. 22 DavidSon’s Mosslove designs Grace Meals comic book

THE DAYTON Published by the Jewish Federation of Greater Dayton

September 2021 Elul 5781/Tishri 5782 Vol. 26, No. 1



25 Years

The Miami Valley’s Jewish Monthly • tovfla

To a year

Free speech for all (yes, all)


Beowulf Sheehan

of sweetness & good health PEN America CEO Suzanne Nossel


The Abraham Accords: 1 year later


Karim Sahib/AFP via Getty Images

Sweet treat for the New Year

Address Service Requested

Jewish Federation of Greater Dayton 525 Versailles Drive Dayton, OH 45459


Ronnie Fein

‫שנה טובה ומתוקה‬ Turte, an eastern Romanian specialty



Beth Abraham Temple Israel rabbi emeritus Chabad Rosh Hashanah dinner Sisterhood’s to lead 4-week course Chabad of Greater Dayton

Rabbi David Sofian, Temple Richard Rubenstein, and Emil Israel’s senior rabbi from 2003 Fackenheim. until his retirement in 2015, will If time permits, Sofian will teach the course, 20thalso teach about Century Jewish Phithe philosophies of losophers, Tuesdays Theodor Herzl and at 5:30 p.m., Sept. 14, Ahad Ha’am (Asher 21, 28, and Oct. 5 at Ginsberg). the temple. Temple Israel is loThe class will excated at 130 Riverside plore the main ideas Dr., Dayton. of Milton Steinberg, To register for Abraham Joshua Hethe free class, go to schel, Martin Buber, Rabbi David Sofian or call Mordecai Kaplan, 937-496-0050.

The Resources of Goldman Sachs. The Independence of Artifex Financial Group. Combining local expertise with a proven process Artifex Financial Group is a fee-only independent wealth management firm headquartered in Oakwood since 2007. We provide a comprehensive solution for our clients including all aspects of financial planning, personal tax, estate and business planning, and investment management.

will present its annual Rosh Hashanah Community Dinner at 7:30 p.m., Monday, Sept. 6. The cost is $25 adults, $10 children 4-12 and college students. Chabad is located at 2001 Far Hills Ave., Oakwood. For reservations, go to chabaddayton. com or call Chabad at 937-6430770.

Cincinnati Jewish community kicks Sunset in Sukkah off bicentennial Beth Abraham Synagogue year celebrations Sisterhood will present its annual Sunset in the Sukkah, 6 p.m., Thursday, Sept. 23, with wine, hors d’oeuvres, and dessert. The Sisterhood Gift Shop will also be open for purchases. Beth Abraham is located at 305 Sugar Camp Cir., Oakwood. R.S.V.P. to 937-293-9520.

Beth Jacob arts & crafts in Sukkah

Beth Jacob Congregation will host Schmoozing in the Sukkah — A Blooming Good Time, at 11 a.m., Sunday, Sept. 26. Over refreshments, participants will design autumn table centerpieces. Beth Jacob is located at 7020 N. Main St., Harrison Twp. R.S.V.P. by Sept. 12 to 937-274-2149.

IN THE NEW YEAR Dinsmore attorneys are proud to serve Dayton’s legal needs and we support the vision of a prosperous and vibrant community in every season. Ralph E. Heyman Edward M. Kress

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The August issue’s From the editor’s desk incorrectly referred to Midrash Rabbah as part of the Talmud. Midrash Rabbah is rabbinic literature.

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Wishing You and Yours a Happy, Healthy New Year PAGE 2

Cincinnati’s Jewish community will begin its yearlong bicentennial celebration with the rededication of Chestnut Street Cemetery at 10 a.m., Sunday, Sept. 26. Elliot Grossman, who is assisting with the bicentennialyear celebrations on behalf of Jewish Cemeteries of Greater Cincinnati, told The Observer that Cincinnati’s Jewish community dates to the establishment of Chestnut Street CemJoseph Jonas etery in 1821, the first Jewish cemetery west of the Allegheny Mountains. According to Encyclopedia Judaica, Joseph Jonas is considered the first Jew to permanently settle in Cincinnati. Originally from Plymouth, England, the watchmaker arrived in Cincinnati in 1817. He and another member of Cincinnati’s small Jewish community purchased the land for Chestnut Street Cemetery. It was in 1828 when Jonas and other Jews drafted a constitution for K.K. Bene Israel, now Rockdale Temple, the oldest Jewish congregation west of the Allegheny Mountains. “The rededication follows major improvements this summer to the cemetery’s entrance plaza as well as the installation of technology at the site that will provide information about the cemetery and the people buried there,” Grossman noted. Chestnut Street Cemetery is located at 400 Chestnut St., Cincinnati. For more information, call 513-961-0178.

Arts & Culture.......................26 Calendar.............................19 Family Education.................27 Obituaries...............................31 O p i n i o n . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . .1 4 Religion..........................21



Importance of free speech opens JCRC Dismantling Antisemitism series By Marshall Weiss The Observer In her book, Dare To Speak: Defending Free Speech For All, Suzanne Nossel calls out intentional and unintentional actions that erode free speech in the United States wherever she sees it. She cites liberal politicians who have “wrongheadedly” endorsed bans and punishments “for offensive speech,” and “left-leaning students” seeking to shut down speech that is offensive to them. Nossel, CEO of PEN America — a nonprofit that protects free expression in the United States and worldwide — also calls out those on the right for “an enormous amount of hypocrisy.” “They wrap themselves in the mantle of free speech,” she says. “We have documented in America a whole series of developments that really expose this as fallacious. There have been dozens of bills introduced in Republican-controlled statehouses last year curtailing protesting assembly rights during Black Lives Matters protests, posing stiff penalties over where these protests can take place. “In the last few months, we’ve witnessed some truly serious bills and laws that bend the discussion and explanation PEN America CEO Suzanne Nossel will open the JCRC’s Dismantling Antisemitism series via Zoom at 4 p.m., Sunday, Sept. 19. Register for this free program at

Beowulf Sheehan

PEN America CEO Suzanne Nossel, author of Dare To Speak

of issues of racial justice, gender justice, America’s history of slavery, and a whole array of essential topics that need to be talked about.” Her solution: more speech, not less. A return to an appreciation of the free-speech protections enshrined in the First Amendment of the Constitution. And a refresher for all of us on why free speech is the undergirding value from which all other values of our free society flow. Nossel will talk about the importance of keeping free speech free and more inclusive in a conversation with Jewish Federation CEO Cathy Gardner, Sept. 19 as the first program of the Jewish Community Relations Council’s new series, Dismantling Antisemitism. The program is presented in partnership with the JCC.

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Before coming to PEN in 2013, Nossel served as COO of Human Rights Watch and executive director of Amnesty International USA. In the Obama administration, she was deputy assistant secretary of state for international organizations. With the Clinton administration, she was deputy to the U.S. Ambassador for U.N. Management and Reform. Since Dare To Speak’s publication in July 2020, “it’s being used by law students and professors,” Nossel says in an interview with The Observer. “It’s been read by administrators, by principals of schools. We’ve done workshops on campuses introducing the ideas in the book, engaging with students and faculty on grappling with speech when they have controversies, on the ideas in the book.” Part textbook on the laws of public communication in the new world of social media, part manual for how to speak and listen to others in our polarized society, and part her prescriptions for improving policies for protecting free speech and safeguarding against clear and present dangers of free speech, Nossel’s book firmly holds to the values Supreme Court Justice Oliver Wendell Holmes first articulated in a 1919 dissent: Continued on next page

From the editor’s desk I suspect we won’t know for certain if we’ll be together for holiday worship services until each of Marshall the holidays in September actually Weiss arrives. With that in mind, please be sure to check directly with each of the organizations in this issue that have listed in-person programs. We all hope for the best, but our local Jewish organizations have planned for the very safest scenarios necessary. That said, may we be open to the gifts of the new year, may we sustain the strength to endure the burdens that continue on from the old and any new ones that may come our way. Wishing you and yours the best of health, happiness, peace, wholeness, and fulfillment in the year ahead.

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HIGH HOLY DAYS All of us at One Lincoln Park wish you well as you reflect on the passing year while celebrating hope for the future.

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Free speech

Wishing you a very happy, healthy, sweet New Year! L’Shana Tova Tikatevu. • 937.277.8966 PAGE 4

Continued from previous page “...the ultimate good desired is better reached by free trade in ideas — that the best test of truth is the power of the thought to get itself accepted in the competition of the market, and that truth is the only ground upon which their wishes safely can be carried out. That, at any rate, is the theory of our Constitution...we should be eternally vigilant against attempts to check the expression of opinions that we loathe.” Dayton JCRC Director Marcy Paul asked Nossel to open the new series because Dare To Speak “offers tools needed to speak up and speak out against antisemitism.” The goal of the series, Paul says, is “to educate the Jewish and broader community on what antisemitism is, how it impacts our daily lives, and what we as individuals and our community can do to become upstanders to dismantle hatred toward the Jewish people.” Nossel says PEN’s mission encompasses not just the defense of free speech but also the commitment to dispel bigotry. “To me, what’s important is that as we build a robust defense against antisemitism — educating people about antisemitism and its roots, its manifestations, there are so many thorny questions about the intersection between antisemitism and criticism of Israel — that we do so mindful of free speech protections against being censorious, abandoning the principal of free speech in the name of protecting ourselves against antisemitism.” Since Nossel’s book came out last summer, the United States has navigated the contortions of President Donald Trump’s claim that the November 2020 presidential election was stolen from him — which a majority of Republicans did then and still believe — a claim that led to the Capitol insurrection of Jan. 6. Antisemitic acts across the United States have multiplied rapidly, fueled by social media and connected to Covid conspiracy theories and the May 2021 conflict involving Israel and Gaza. And approximately 454,000 more people in the United States have died from Covid because politicians at all levels have downplayed and outright denied the threat of Covid and shun safety procedures connected to it as a threat to individual liberty. When asked if any of this has changed how Nossel approaches balancing free speech and protection against damage to individual Americans and society, she says it’s reinforced her approach. “I believe that all of our government protections of free speech obstructed the government’s ability to ban and punish speech,” Nossel says. “And if we didn’t have that, I fully believe that all the phenomena you’re talking about over the last year would have been far worse: that the Trump administration could have been emboldened to arrest or jail journalists who criticized their response to the pandemic. The scientists who can’t toe the line, they fired some of them, they debated them, but it could have gone much further, I think, if the president hadn’t been somewhat constrained by the courts and by his advisors explaining that this kind of retaliation against different viewpoints is unlawful in this country. “To me, that underscores just how important it is to have these constitutionally enshrined safeguards to protect us in the event of a government that would suppress dissent. That doesn’t answer the very valid question of the manifest harms of speech. Defenders of free speech need to acknowledge the harms of speech that affect physical health, mental health, academic performance. The perils of speech online are intensified.”


OBSERVER Editor and Publisher Marshall Weiss 937-610-1555 Contributors Marc Katz, Candace R. Kwiatek, Rabbi Nochum Mangel, Bark Mitzvah Boy Advertising Sales Executive Patty Caruso, Proofreader Rachel Haug Gilbert Billing Sheila Myers, 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. 26, No. 1. 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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THE WORLD Poland ‘reviewing’ Israel’s annual school trips to former concentration camps Beata Zawrzel/NurPhoto/Getty Images

We Wish The Dayton Jewish Community A Very Happy New Year.

49 A participant in the March of the Living at the former Auschwitz Birkenau concentration camp in Oswiecim, Poland, April 12, 2018

By Cnaan Liphshiz, JTA Amid a growing diplomatic crisis between Israel and Poland, a senior Polish diplomat said his government is “reviewing” changes to the annual educational school trips from Israel to former Nazi death camps. Paweł Jabłonski, deputy minister of foreign affairs, called the trips “propaganda” on Aug. 16, Gazeta Prawa reported. Before the Covid-19 pandemic, tens of thousands of Israeli youths annually visited former death camps in Poland as part of programs overseen by Israel’s education ministry. Israel and Poland have since the weekend prior to Aug. 16 recalled their respective ambassadors to each other over a new Polish law that effectively blocks Holocaust-era restitution for Jewish-owned property. “This propaganda, also based on hatred towards Poland, is seeping into the heads of young people from the early school years,” Jabłonski said. “We are dealing with various kinds of school trips from Israel to Poland. The way in which these trips take place is clearly not the right way. We are reviewing this matter and we will make appropriate decisions.” The current spat follows a similar exchange in 2018, when Poland passed legislation that outlawed blaming the Polish nation for Nazi crimes. Critics, including Israel’s government and Holocaust scholars, opposed the law, warning it would limit research and discourse on the Holocaust. Polish nationalists have for years sought to disentangle war crimes by Poles and those committed by the occupying Nazi forces during World War II. Some call it revisionism that removes blame from Poles who collaborated with the Nazis and murdered Jews.

The Feldman, Moscowitz and Foster Families wish you a sweet New Year filled with good health and happiness.


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The Abraham Accords just turned 1. Here’s how each of the agreements is holding up. Andrea DiCenzo/Getty Images

‘We can’t let our cemeteries fall into disrepair.’ — Bob, Debby, Ted, William, and Alicia Goldenberg


osh Hashanah is an important holiday for members of the Jewish community. We take the time to reflect on our lives, think about our priorities and what are the most meaningful and important things to us. As he reflects on his work for the past several years, Robert Goldenberg says the Jewish Cemeteries of Greater Dayton continues to be a passion priority project and a proper way to respect his parents and those who came before him. “This fundraising drive is so important to me. The main reason I donate my time, energy, and money to the cemetery campaign is to provide the funding to maintain our three cemeteries in perpetuity. I want to guarantee that everyone can rest assured that their ancestors will be honored and taken care of in a Jewish way.” Whether virtually or in person, as we gather this year to celebrate the High Holidays, may you enjoy the sweet sensation of honey and apples, the cry of the shofar, and the harmony of a congregation of praying together.

L’Shana Tova. Jewish Cemeteries of Greater Dayton is an endowment organization created to maintain our three Jewish 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 525 Versailles Drive • Centerville, OH 45459 PAGE 6

Rabbi Levi Duchman talks with Sulaiman Qasim Al-Hammadi at a symbolic Passover ceremony at a hotel in Dubai, United Arab Emirates, March 26, 2021

By Ron Kampeas, JTA WASHINGTON — While most of the foreign policy world is focused on President Joe Biden’s moves in Afghanistan in the wake of the stunning turn of events there, the first anniversary of another important Middle East development has quietly taken place. The first part of the Abraham Accords, the historic cooperation agreements between Israel and several of its Arab neighbors, brokered in large part by the United States, has turned one year old. The United Arab Emirates signed a treaty to normalize its relations with Israel for the first time on Aug. 13, 2020, opening up collaboration on tourism, trade, technology sharing and more. Bahrain would soon follow suit, followed by Sudan and Morocco — all of whom never had formal relations with Israel. The Biden administration did not exactly call attention to the anniversary — in fact, the administration’s spokesmen still won’t even use the term “Abraham Accords.” That’s likely in part because the agreements were a foreign policy win for Donald Trump’s team, and because Biden is prioritizing other initiatives at the moment, such as combating the latest Covid-19 case surge and addressing the fallout in Afghanistan. “We welcome and support the normalization agreements between Israel and countries in the Arab and Muslim world,” a State Department official said responding to a JTA query about the status of the accords. ”The United States will continue to encourage other countries to normalize relations with Israel, and we will look for other opportunities to expand cooperation among countries in the region.” The degree to which the normalization agreements are thriving varies from country to country, and for the moment it doesn’t look like there are any imminent new members of the club. But the forecast by experts and peace-brokers is that the deals are here to stay. And Biden deserves some credit for that, a Trump administration official told JTA.

“The country is in a difficult moment in time and pretending that Republicans and Democrats are ideologically aligned right now on much of anything would be foolhardy,” said the Trump official, who asked not to be further identified in order to speak candidly. “And yet, here we stand with peace agreements, all with very intricate, complicated components to them, and they have really thrived in this last year and it’s important to say this administration deserves credit.” Still, not everyone is happy about the trajectory. Jonathan Schanzer, senior vice president for research at the Foundation for Defense of Democracies, a group that is critical of Biden’s Middle East policies, said the apparent failure to commemorate the deal is sending the wrong signal. “It’s not a deal-breaker, but it certainly does not seem terribly encouraging for the countries involved,” Schanzer said. Almost all of the individual agreements came with key incentives, or compromises, from the side of Israel and the U.S. Here’s a rundown of how those incentives are holding up, and a look at each country’s relations with Israel, one year later.

The incentives are in place — for now

The Trump administration negotiated incentives for three of the four countries that normalized relations with Israel: • The U.S. agreed to sell the UAE state of the art F-35 stealth fighter jets, which some — including (for a time) former Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu — believed could weaken Israel’s “qualitative military edge” in the region. • The U.S. agreed to recognize Morocco’s claim to rule over disputed territory in the Western Sahara. • The U.S. removed Sudan from listings identifying the country as a terrorism sponsor. Sudan had landed Continued on Page Eight


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Celebrate the Warmth of Traditional Judaism at Beth Jacob Synagogue for the High Holidays. High Holiday Services 2021/5782

Rabbi Leibel Agar

Rabbi Leibel Agar and Cantor Rami Isser will be leading us in prayers for the High Holidays. Beth Jacob Congregation invites and encourages the community to join us for Inspirational High Holiday Traditional services.

Monday, September 6

First Night Rosh Hashanah Minchah: 7:15 PM Followed by Ma’ariv Candle Lighting: 7:42 PM Tuesday, September 7

Rosh Hashanah I

Morning Service: 8:30 AM Torah Service: 10:30 AM Shofar: 11:15 AM Tashlich: 7:45 PM Minchah: 8 PM Followed by Ma’ariv Candle Lighting: 8:39 PM Wednesday, September 8

Rosh Hashanah II

Morning Service: 8:30 AM Torah Service: 10:30 AM Shofar: 11:15 AM Rabbi’s Class: 7 PM Minchah: 8 PM Followed by Ma’ariv & Havdalah Yom Tov ends: 8:37 PM

Cantor Rami Isser Isser

Saturday, September 11

Shabbat Shuvah

Morning Services: 9:30 AM Rabbi’s Class followed by Havdalah: 7:15 PM Shabbat ends: 8:32 PM Wednesday, September 15


Abraham Accords Continued from Page Six on the list after harboring the mastermind of the Sept. 11 attacks, Osama bin Laden. • Bahrain, the headquarters of the U.S. Navy’s 5th Fleet and its Central Command, already had a close relationship with the United States and required no apparent incentives. The human rights community immediately targeted all three of those incentives, lobbying to reverse them. Some supporters of the accords at first worried Biden — a champion for decades of a human-rights-oriented foreign policy — might accede to their demands. There were compelling arguments to reconsider the incentives: • The UAE has acted as a sometimes malign interventionist actor in the region, most recently joining Saudi Arabia in backing the Yemen government in a devastating war against Houthi rebels who are backed by Iran. • Recognizing Morocco’s claim to an area it has claimed by force was seen as undercutting efforts to counter other expansionist bids, for instance, Russia’s effective annexation of Crimea. • While the government of Sudan rejects everything its predecessors stood for, families of victims of the Sept. 11 attacks are still pressing for compensation. Biden has so far kept all of these intact. At first, he froze the UAE F-35s deal, but then recommitted to it, in part because the pro-Israel community, which had joined the opposition to the deal, dropped

Karim Sahib/AFP via Getty Images

An El Al plane flying the flags of Israel, the United Arab Emirates & the United States, & bearing the word peace in Arabic, English & Hebrew, arrives at Abu Dhabi airport, Aug. 31, 2020

its objections. (A number of Democrats in the Senate still hope to slow the deal down.) The Biden administration has said that reversing the Western Sahara recognition is off the table for now. And Secretary of State Antony Blinken has accepted the terms of the Sudan deal, accepting payment for victims of some acts of terrorism Sudan facilitated in the 1990s and preserving the right of victims of the 9/11 attacks to continue their quest for compensation.

The United Arab Emirates

The UAE deal is the biggest success of the four, and Israel and the UAE have already exchanged official ambassadors. This is not in any sense a lowprofile bromance: The UAE has rolled out the red carpet for top Israeli officials, including Israeli Foreign Minister Yair Lapid. Commercial ties are also thriving. A massive UAE investment in Israel’s offshore natural gas extraction is going ahead. Tens of thousands of Israelis visited the UAE in the months after the signing. A kosher

Erev Yom Kippur—Kol Nidrei Mincha: 6:40 PM Kol Nidrei: 7:30 PM Candle Lighting/Fast Begins: 7:27 PM Thursday, September 16

Yom Kippur

Morning Service: 9 AM Torah Service: 10:45 AM Yizkor: approx. 12:15 PM Minchah: 6 PM Neilah: 7 PM Shofar & Fast ends: 8:24 PM Ma’ariv & Havdalah: 8:25 PM

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Trust In Us. For Life.

food industry is blossoming in Dubai. The Trump peace broker said that the Emirates’ high-profile embrace of normalization is paying off with the dividend that the Trump administration sought: A street-level embrace of Israel as a natural neighbor. “When the Emiratis team has a rugby match in Israel, it gets covered by the UAE papers and the UAE papers are seen in Saudi Arabia and in Tunisia and in Egypt and in Oman and Bahrain and even in Iran,” the official said. “These things are changing people.” There is still one important point of tension: Israel’s military actions against the Palestinians. Before the latest round of fighting between Israel and Hamas in May, the UAE criticized Israel’s crackdown on Palestinians protesting evictions in eastern Jerusalem. Schanzer predicted that the issue will “require some time” to smooth over. “There is discomfort every time there’s a Gaza conflict, or whatever the issue is, some flare-up in Jerusalem or the West Bank, it makes it more difficult I think for the UAE to engage with the IDF. That’s going to be the final frontier,” he said.


Bahrain, which houses a Jewish community that’s more than a century old and which has had quiet relations with Israel and the pro-Israel community since the 2000s at least, did not need a lot of convincing to buy into the accords. Two months after the signing, Bahrain’s commerce minister was in Jerusalem formalizing already existing commercial ties. Bahrain has named an ambassador to Israel, but unlike the UAE has not yet established an embassy in Israel. Houda Nonoo, who in the 2000s made history as the first Jewish ambassador from an Arab country to Washington, said she expected the relationship with Israel to flourish. “As we embark on a new era in the Bahrain–Israel relationship, it is important to remember that at the core of this agreement is the desire to create a new Middle East, one built on peace and prosperity for all,” Nonoo, who is still working for the Bahraini foreign ministry and who attended last year’s signing, said in a message to JTA. “I believe that the growing partnerships


THE WORLD Shlomi Amsalem, Israel GPO

between Bahrain and Israel will lead to sustainable peace in the region.” Morocco Morocco was always seen as the easiest get: There’s a huge Moroccan Jewish community in Israel that has since the 1990s traveled back to the country on pilgrimages. And of the four countries in the accords, it has the largest remnant Jewish community. A number of Moroccan Jews are advisers to King Mohammed VI. Morocco and Israel have existing commercial and, reportedly, security ties. The countries have so far exchanged envoys and have launched for the first time ever direct commercial flights. But there have been some hiccups — a consequence, in part, of uncertainty for a period about how Biden would treat the recognition of the Western Sahara. “While the ideal situation for Moroccan decisionmakers would be a public statement of recognition (from Biden), the lack of a reversal in itself is a win,” said Yasmina Abouzzohour, a visiting fellow at the Brooking Center in Qatar who is an expert on Morocco. Another factor impeding a full-fledged mutual embrace has been the country’s elected government, which is more Islamist than the royal court. Abouzzohour said the pluses the media has played up are the economic ties, the concomitant strengthening of ties with the United States, and the potential for Morocco to have a bigger role in helping bring about a resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. But she said the average Moroccan citizen on the street was not thrilled about the relationship. “The Moroccan population is overwhelmingly pro-

Israeli Foreign Minister Yair Lapid (L) confers with Nasser Bourita, his Moroccan counterpart in Rabat, Morocco, Aug. 11, 2021

Palestine,” she said. “It will be extremely difficult, if not impossible, for this to change. Israeli violence in Jerusalem and Gaza in May 2021 did not help the matter and led to numerous protests across the country.” Israel’s foreign minister Yair Lapid landed in Rabat Aug. 11 and met with his counterpart. He made it clear Israel wants the deal to advance. “What did we achieve from all these years, during which the relations between our two ancient and proud nations were severed?” he said. “Nothing. What did our citizens gain? Nothing. Today, we are changing this. Today, we are changing this for the benefit of tourism and the economy, for trade and cultural exchange, for friendship and cooperation.”


Sudan is another country that has long had sub rosa ties with Israel; it played a critical role in the 1980s in

the wave of Ethiopian Jewish immigration. Right now, its deal with Israel is stuck, as the two sides hash out details — not because any of the parties are having second thoughts. Sudan’s government is contending with internal tensions as its transitions to democracy have frustrated its overall efforts to engage with the international community. “There have been a few delegations from Israel to Sudan, not the other way around; that’s been postponed and postponed and postponed,” said David Pollock, a fellow at the Washington Institute for Near East Policy who tracks public opinion in the Middle East. “There’s a lot of potential in Sudan, for technical cooperation in many different areas — water, agriculture, energy. But it continues to be of course a country that has many internal divisions, and a very fragile, kind of government. Although, it’s muddling through pretty well considering.”

Who’s next?

The big domino that could lead to a cascade of mutual recognition in the Arab and Muslim worlds is Saudi Arabia. But that’s not likely to happen soon: Lawmakers in Congress, mostly Democrats but a number of Republicans as well, see the country as toxic because of its human rights abuses, including its murder of a U.S.-based journalist in 2018, and because of its Yemen war interventions. Biden, even if he were inclined to deliver the incentives Saudi Arabia would demand to hop in, would face resistance domestically. That said, there are a number of countries that already have informal ties with Israel that could easily transition to full-blown ties, among them Oman, Mauritania, Indonesia and Qatar.

“To save one life is to save the world entire.” — The Talmud This High Holiday season, as we seek spiritual and physical renewal for ourselves and our loved ones, let us also remember those in Israel who nurture and renew life every day. Whether it’s treating civilians wounded in terror and rocket attacks or vaccinating them against Covid-19, no organization in Israel saves more lives than Magen David Adom. Magen David Adom is not government-funded. Its 27,000 volunteer EMTs and paramedics and 4,000 full-time professionals rely on support from people like you for the vehicles, supplies, and equipment they need to perform their lifesaving work. No gift will help Israel more this coming year. Support Magen David Adom by donating today at or call 888.674.4871. Shanah tovah.




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The Reform movement investigates itself over history of rabbinic sexual misconduct Rabbi Mary Zamore, executive director of the Women's Rabbinic Network

By Asaf Shalev, JTA After a series of high-profile revelations about sexual misconduct within its ranks, the world’s largest Jewish denomination has initiated three separate independent investigations into how it deals with allegations of abuse. In an unprecedented move, the Reform movement’s seminary, rabbinical association, and synagogue network have each hired different expert law firms to investigate allegations

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of cases of harassment and through official channels were abuse with a focus on policies often ignored or dismissed. She and practices that have failed believes they would be treated to ensure accountability. differently if they come forRabbis, cantors, synagogue ward now to participate in the congregants, rabbinical stuinvestigations. dents, and anyone else with “All three institutions have relevant information are being really committed to indepenencouraged to come forward dent investigations done by and speak to specially trained high quality, trauma-informed attorneys, who promise confilaw firms,” said Zamore, who dentiality and sensitivity. has been acting as an informal “Something historic is hapadvisor to Reform leaders in pening,” Rabbi Mary Zamore, their efforts. “They have all who has been pressing the indicated they will be engagmovement to make changes, ing in the process of teshuvah told the Jewish Telegraphic (repentance) and enacting Agency. “I never thought I changes.” would see this day.” The current wave of soul The investigasearching began ‘Something tions have the in late April and potential to bring early May after historic is long-buried misreports surfaced happening. I conduct to light about sexual abuse and to change the never thought by Rabbi Sheldon movement’s poliZimmerman, who I would see cies about how it was president of handles complaints this day.’ the Reform rabbiniabout its rabbis and cal school between employees. Some are seeing an 1996 and 2000 before resigning erosion of a culture of silence abruptly. The behavior dated around sexual misconduct that back to his time as a pulpit advocates and community rabbi in the 1970s and ’80s. leaders say has pervaded the The violations that led to denomination and sometimes Zimmerman’s resignation were prevented allegations involvnot fully disclosed at the time, ing rabbis from coming to light. and many observers were left As executive director of the with the impression that he Women’s Rabbinic Network, was guilty of nothing more a group that bills itself as the than having consensual affairs. “conscience of the Reform In fact, a Reform movement inmovement,” Zamore has long ternal investigation had found pushed for the #MeToo recka pattern of sexually predaoning that she says is now tory behavior by Zimmerman underway. including that he fondled and She said many of the roughkissed a teenager. ly 600 rabbis in her network With those findings obscured have observed for decades how from public view, he went on Continued on Page 12 survivors who complained




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Reform movement

when it decided to revise its and expert on clergy sexual ethics process. She said that abuse within the Reform moveContinued from Page 10 past updates had not produced ment. By 2000, a series of highto work as vice president of the a code that reflects current ethical standards and practices. profile cases across the Reform Birthright Israel program and “It was a system that was cre- movement and other denomirabbi of the Jewish Center of the ated for a different time, a quinations brought the issue back Hamptons. The investigation’s to the fore. findings were not revealed until eter time, before #MeToo, with Allegations of sexual harassthis year, when New York City’s different mores, in a pre-social Central Synagogue, where Zim- media world,” Person said in an ment against Rabbi Shlomo interview. “Historically, there’s Carlebach, the late Orthodox merman had been rabbi from been a lot of shame and relucmusician and spiritual leader, 1972 to 1985, investigated its tance of people not wanting to had come to light; a Reform own history. come forward and that’s really rabbi was convicted of hiring The revelation triggered changed in recent years.” assassins to kill his wife in an outrage and generated a new Meanwhile, at Hebrew Union effort to obscure an affair; and a call to action by activists in the College, officials declined to rabbi working at the Orthodox Reform movement. answer questions, saying that Union was accused of molest“Internal mechanisms have it would be inappropriate to ing youths. failed to bring justice and healcomment on details while the Susan Weidman Schneider, ing to so many victims and investigation is ongoing. then the editor of Lilith, a femiaccountability to the Reform “Earlier this year, HUC alum- nist Jewish magazine, said there Jewish community writ large,” ni shared accounts of inequitawas a palpable change in the Zamore’s Women’s Rabbinic wake of these revelations. Network said in a statement on ble and dismaying experiences at HUC and in the field over “The wall of silence around April 28. Within days, the movement’s the past decades,” the seminary clergy misconduct is being said in a statement. “We are taken down,” she said in a 2000 main organizations announced anguished and upset by what interview with JTA. that they were hiring outside we have heard, and take these But in the decades that follaw firms. accounts very seriously.” lowed, it turned out that the The movement’s seminary, wall had not been completely Hebrew Union College-Jewish A history of promises demolished, and was in some Institute of Religion, hired the It’s far from the first time cases propped back up by the law firm Morgan Lewis. The that the Reform movement has mishandling of allegations and Central Conference of Amerimade promises, formed comweak processes for ethical corcan Rabbis is working with rection. Alcalaw, and the congregational mittees, and launched overFor example, in 2015, the Fornetwork, the Union for Reform hauls of ethics codes. In the 1980s, CCAR convened ward revealed that CCAR had Judaism, has Debevoise & a task force of senior leaders botched an effort to hold a rabbi Plimpton for its investigation. that met for two accountable for In addition, two other major ‘Issues of sexual alleged sexual years and deReform congregations, Temple cided to promote harassment and misconduct toEmanu-El in Dallas — where discussion about ward numerous Zimmerman served as senior discrimination sexual misconwomen, includrabbi from 1985 to 1996 — and duct at confering a 17-year-old Stephen Wise Temple in Los are not unique ences and in the congregant. Angeles, have since launched group’s publica- to the Jewish The rabbinic their own internal investigations. organization tions. community nor But by the had expelled Each institution had acted to the Reform mid-1990s, the Rabbi Eric Siroka on its own accord but all three work of the task movement.’ for refusing to movement groups were reforce looked comply with an sponding to the same news, ethics investigaaccording to Rabbi Rick Jacobs, like a farce. Its members had privately referred tion but didn’t publicize exactly the president of the Union for to themselves as the “well-oiled why he’d been investigated in Reform Judaism, which reprezipper committee,” according the first place. So Siroka moved sents some 850 synagogues in his family to another state the United States and more than to a 1996 report by JTA. Complaints took years to be investi- where he was hired to teach 2 million congregants. gated and often resulted in only Jewish high schoolers in a com“The decision made by the symbolic or ineffectual punish- munity that had no understandURJ’s leadership to retain ments. ing of his past. outside counsel to conduct an Those who complained felt That community was outimpartial investigation was they were ostracized while ofraged to learn Siroka had been made independently, although accused, among other similar it is a response to the same pub- fenders remained welcome as lic reports of sexual misconduct their violations were often kept allegations, of forcibly kissing confidential. They were invited a congregant who was 17, mulwithin the Reform Movement to undergo a process of repentiple times. that have led the HUC-JIR and tance — an idea with deep roots Shortly afterward, the CCAR CCAR leadership to also have in Jewish tradition. began listing on its website the investigations conducted,” “There is a lot of leaning names of rabbis who were exJacobs wrote in response to pelled, suspended or censured questions from the Jewish Tele- toward giving the offending clergy the opportunity to reand what ethics code they had graphic Agency. pent, and sometimes premature violated, according to Person, Rabbi Hara Person, chief placement back in congregawho took over the organization executive of CCAR, also cited in 2019. the press reports but added that tional or other settings,” Rabbi Julie Spitzer said at the time, “That’s a huge change. And her organization had begun speaking as a leading advocate I think it adds a tremendous discussing the issue last fall


THE WORLD amount of integrity to the process,” Person said. But that change has not led to the transparency that many advocates seek. In a case that made headlines only a few years later, a woman accused her rabbi at Judea Reform Congregation in Durham, N.C., of sexual misconduct in a complaint to CCAR. The organization censured Rabbi Larry Bach, but the congregation did not find out about the allegation or investigation until the woman notified them of what happened. In an interview with JTA, Sarah Hoffman, the woman in that case, said she recently spoke to the lawyers hired by CCAR for two hours about Bach and her experience of seeking accountability.

A problem for all movements

Rabbinic ethics committees across denominations — not just Reform but also Conservative, Reconstructionist and Orthodox — at times have seemed ill-equipped to police their own members. Indeed, the Reform movement is not alone in its array of scandals or its history of institutional failures, said Elana Wien, the executive director of the SRE Network, a Jewish advocacy group focused on equity and workplace safety issues. “Issues of sexual harassment and discrimination are not unique to the Jewish community nor to the Reform movement,” Wien said. “Whenever you don’t

have healthy culture and policies and training reporting mechanisms, inappropriate behavior is able to continue.” Zamore and other advocates have hope that this round of reckoning will be meaningful. They point out that all three investigations are examining not just cases of wrongdoing but are also studying how improper behavior had been handled by those in power. What’s helping inspire confidence, for them, is that the Reform movement has for the first time outsourced the investigatory work to expert law firms with reputations for integrity. “Here you have three organizations that have affirmatively reached out for new information and they are investing the resources — it’s not cheap to find out the truth of what happened over decades,” said Chai Feldblum, a lawyer who served on the federal Equal Employment Opportunity Commission under presidents Barack Obama and Donald Trump and was responsible for enforcing laws against workplace discrimination. After her second term on the commission ended, Feldblum went on to do private investigations into misconduct as part of her work for Morgan Lewis, the law firm hired by HUC. She has since left that role and now provides pro bono advice to the Women’s Rabbinic Network. She outlined how these types of Continued on Page 31


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We asked people about their experiences as Jews of color. Here’s what they told us. Jews of Color Initiative By Ilana Kaufman Racism connected to our comJewish culture is deeply rooted munal institutions and our individin traditional core values, strucual actions has caused harm, and tures, and norms often held by our this harm has sometimes pushed American Jewish organizations. At away Jews of color and detached the same time, today’s American them from Jewish identity, from Jewish community is more diverse Jewish community and ultimately and represents more backgrounds from what should be an unobthan ever. structed pathway to Torah. Yet this diversity is not equiOn the other hand, we now have tably reflected in our communal the gift of knowledge and perspaces. Based on national and local spective. Leaders used to ask how population studies, my organizamany Jews of color there are — and tion found in 2018 that one in seven in 2018 we answered that question. Jews in the United States identifies But our communal conversation as a person of color. needs more than a demographic Other recent estimates have count to understand how to move varied, but one thing is clear: Jews forward to a place of equity and of color are underrepresented in justice. With Beyond the Count, we organizational boardrooms, execuhave a new set of knowledge that tive leadership teams and even in Learners take part in a Zoom gathering of Ammud, the Jews of Color Torah Academy can guide us there. those groups whose explicit aim is These findings, beyond serving to engage in the work of justice. at Stanford University. A majority of its as a starting point for important converTaken together, these findings reveal This absence of Jews of color, and members are Jewish and Jews of color. sations in our community, must actively where our community can and must do by extension the absence of knowledge Along with the efforts of the Jews of and thoughtfully inform community better. about our experiences and perspecColor Initiative, which commissioned and organizational missions, visions, Jews of color feel scrutinized for tives, shapes — in truth, distorts — not the study, that team garnered responses their race in some settings and their strategies, spaces, resource allocations only organizational missions, visions, from more than 1,000 Jews of color repand pathways to leadership. Jewishness in others. As a result, many values, and programs, but how we see resenting 47 states and Puerto Rico. The Jews of Color Initiative will point to gatherings of Jews of color as our Jewish world. These community members reflected now begin to engage in conversations unique opportunities to experience the With the newly released on Jewish identity, engagearound these findings with communal sense of belonging and solidarity that study Beyond the Count: ment in Jewish communipartners and leaders. These conversais unavailable to them in other areas of Perspectives and Lived ties, systemic racism in tions are one important way we can Jewish communal life. Many described Experiences of Jews of Color, Jewish spaces, and the ensure our ecosystem of organizations, such gatherings and relationships built our community and our moments in which they day schools, synagogues, program with other Jews of color as profoundly leaders have new tools to feel the deepest sense of partners, and funders hear directly from healing. inform, shape, and move safety and belonging. They Jews of color. Despite experiences our community toward shared their experiences, Beyond the Count isn’t a of being othered and one that authentically and views, perspectives and panacea for making our eschewed, Jews of color powerfully engages the pain points. community more inclusive have still found connecdiversity of all Jews. The findings, which are and less racist. But it does tion to their greater Jewish Just as important, Beyond captured in the study, are help us understand what communities, particularly the Count includes selfrevealing, troubling, and has kept people away from through a sense of shared reflections by Jews of color hopeful all at the same Jewish communal spaces history, collective memory, — 1,118 to be exact — that Ilana Kaufman time: and helps to identify the and Jewish values. offer insights about their Two-thirds of survey tools not only to inform When the environment experiences, both positive and negative, respondents say they have felt disconand educate, but to adis open and welcoming, in Jewish spaces. nected from their Jewish identities at dress serious obstacles to Jews of color are able to As a longtime advocate for Jews of times, and nearly half have altered how community engagement. actively contribute to the continuity color who now runs the Jews of Color they speak, dress or present themselves Working together, we can retire the of Jewish tradition and peoplehood in Initiative, I found the experiences to conform to predominantly White old paradigms and structures that marways that are powerful and meaningful described by many of those we talked Jewish spaces. ginalize and sometimes harm Jews of to them and the larger Jewish commuto resonant of my own. My ambition is The vast majority of Jews of color (80 color. Informed by Beyond the Count, we nity. that when reading this study, Jews of percent) have faced discrimination in are the ones to build the new strategies, Jews of color feel very connected to color will feel seen, reflected, affirmed Jewish settings, particularly in spiritual the new structures to ensure unencumJudaism, and want to be connected to, and validated. or congregational environments. bered, inspired access Jewish life — a engaged in and part of Jewish commuBeyond being the first large-scale Slightly over half of respondents sense of belonging, a shared communities and Jewish communal life. examination of the lived experiences have felt a sense of belonging among nity, and a sustainable path forward for For anyone who cares about susand perspectives of Jews of color in White Jews, and 41 percent say they our people. taining and building a strong Jewish the United States, Beyond the Count is have found opportunities to express all community, the data in Beyond the Count noteworthy for being led and authored sides of themselves in predominantly Ilana Kaufman is executive director of the should be both concerning and energizby a multiracial research team housed White Jewish spaces. Jews of Color Initiative. ing.

These findings reveal where our community can and must do better.

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Steve Markman and his great-grandson Colton, enjoyed making giant bubbles together during the PJ Library Park Pop-Up. Twenty-three families came together for fun and friendship at Iron Horse Park in Centerville on July 25th.

A Series of Education, Advocacy & Action Series Goal: To educate the Jewish community on what antisemitism is, how it impacts our daily lives, and what we, as individuals and our community can do to become upstanders and dismantle hatred toward the Jewish people. Sunday, September 19 @ 4-5PM Dare to Speak: Defending Free Speech for All with author Suzanne Nossel

Sunday, October 3 @ 10-11:30AM Words Matter — We don’t know what we don’t know…and then some with Marcy L. Paul, PhD, Senior Director, JCRC & Tara Feiner, Senior Director, JFS

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Sunday, October 10 @ 5:30-8:30PM, No cost. 3229 Ferry Rd. Bellbrook, OH 45305 Wander through the straw maze, watch the farm animals and run around in the children's play area. Bring a flashlight to explore the 6-acre corn maze at sundown. After a hayride through the farm, roast s'mores by the campfire! Hayrides are from 6-7PM. Each person will receive a pumpkin to take home. RSVP requested at

Wednesday, November 3 @ 7-8:30PM Not only a Jewish State – Historical Context and Central historical moments from pre-state to present times Thursday, November 18 @ 7-8:30PM Multiple narratives with Israeli Society and the Diaspora

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David Page Food Americana

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Yishai Sarid The Memory Monster


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Beth Jacob Virtual Classes: Sundays, 2 p.m.: Conversions w. Rabbi Agar. Tuesdays, 7 p.m.: Weekly Parsha w. Rabbi Agar. Thursdays, 7 p.m.: Jewish Law w. Rabbi Agar. Email Tammy at bethjacob1@ Temple Israel Classes: Saturdays, 9:15 a.m.: Torah Study via Zoom. Tues., Sept. 14, noon: In-person Talmud Study. Tues., Sept. 14-Oct. 5, 5:30 p.m.: 20th-Century Jewish Philosophers w. Rabbi Emeritus David Sofian. 130 Riverside Dr., Dayton. 937-496-0050.


Temple Israel Prayer & Play in the Sukkah: Sat., Sept. 25, 10 a.m. At Temple Israel, 130 Riverside Dr., Dayton. 937-4960050.

Community Events

JCRC Dismantling Antisemitism Series presents PEN CEO Suzanne Nossel: Dare To Speak: Defending Free Speech For All. Sun., Sept. 19, 4 p.m. Partnering w. JCC. Free. Register at events.

Rosh Hashanah

Chabad Rosh Hashanah Community Dinner: Mon., Sept. 6, 7:30 p.m. $25 adults, $10 ages 4-12 & college students. 2001 Far Hills

Ave., Oakwood. R.S.V.P. to or 937-6430770.

centerpiece. 7020 N. Main St., Harrison Twp. R.S.V.P. by Sept. 12 to 937-274-2149.


Chabad Sukkot Family Dinner: Sun., Sept. 26, 5 p.m. 2001 Far Hills Ave., Oakwood. R.S.V.P. to or 937-643-0770.

Temple Israel Pizza in the Hut: Mon., Sept. 20, 6:30 p.m. Dinner & service. 130 Riverside Dr., Dayton. R.S.V.P. to 937496-0050. Beth Abraham Synagogue Sisterhood Sunset in the Sukkah: Thurs., Sept. 23, 6 p.m. 305 Sugar Camp Cir., Oakwood. R.S.V.P. to 937-2939520. Chabad Men’s Night In The Sukkah: Thurs., Sept. 23, 6 p.m. 2001 Far Hills Ave., Oakwood. R.S.V.P. to or 937-6430770. Beth Jacob Congregation Schmoozing in the Sukkah: Sun., Sept. 26, 11 a.m. Refreshments, design a fall

At the High Holy Days, Remember the Past, Share Joy in the Present. Rosh Hashanah starts at sundown Monday, Sept. 6. Yom Kippur starts at sundown Wednesday, Sept. 15.

Simchat Torah

Temple Israel Simchat Torah: Mon., Sept. 27, 7 p.m. 130 Riverside Dr., Dayton. 937-4960050. Beth Abraham Synagogue Simchat Torah Live: Tues., Sept. 28, 6:30 p.m. With ice cream sundae bar. 305 Sugar Camp Cir., Oakwood. 937-2939520. Chabad Simchat Torah Rockin’ Hakafot: Tues., Sept. 28, 8 p.m. 2001 Far Hills Ave., Oakwood. R.S.V.P. to or 937-6430770.


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Beth Abraham, Dayton’s only Conservative synagogue, is enthusiastically egalitarian and is affiliated with the United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism. For a complete schedule of our programs, go to

MAZEL TOV! Scott Halasz has been promoted to managing editor of the Xenia Daily Gazette, Fairborn Daily Herald, and Beavercreek News-Current. Scott has been with the Greene County News Group since February 2014, covering local government, schools, courts, sports, and

Bark Mitzvah Boy breaking news, and in The Dayton Jewish Observer, wrote the Mr. Mazel column. Scott will oversee the editorial side of the Greene County News Group’s three papers.

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Sisterhood’s Sunset in the Sukkah

Thursday, Sept. 23, 6 p.m. Socializing, friendship & Sisterhood. Hors d’oeuvres & dessert. The Gift Shop will be open. R.S.V.P.

Simchat Torah LIVE! Tuesday, Sept. 28, 6:30 p.m. Dancing & singing with the Torahs followed by an Ice Cream Sundae Bar.

305 Sugar Camp Circle Dayton, Ohio 45409 937•293•9520 PAGE 20

Gulf Coast: A Journal of Literature and Fine Arts, published a short story by Masha Kisel in its Summer/Fall 2021 issue. Fallout is a dark, coming-of-age work of fiction set in the Soviet Union during the Chernobyl disaster. Masha is an English lecturer at the University of Dayton. She’s also written a column for The Observer, A Bisel Kisel. You can read Masha’s writing at


To A Sweet New Year Join us for in-person services led by Interim Rabbi Melissa Crespy & Cantor Andrea Raizen. See our full schedule at

Laurie and Ed Leventhal have been named Outstanding Volunteer Fundraisers by the Greater Springfield Association of Fundraising Professionals, which will honor them via Zoom, Nov. 10, National Philanthropy Day.

Selling a business is often the most important financial decision in an owner’s life, which is why you need experienced business brokers you can trust. Sunbelt Business Advisors of Southwest Ohio will assist you every step of the way with exceptional integrity, professionalism, and confidentiality, to build value and allow you to exit at the right time and with the Call today for right price. “Sunbelt Business Advisors helped me reach my desired goal. You can trust them with your company.” B. C., Recent Seller

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Because of Covid-19, 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 Interim Rabbi Melissa Crespy Cantor/Dir. of Ed. & Programming Andrea Raizen 305 Sugar Camp Circle, Oakwood. 937-293-9520. Beth Jacob Congregation Traditional Rabbi Leibel Agar Sundays & Wednesdays, 7:09 p.m. Saturdays, 9:30 a.m. 7020 N. Main St., Dayton. 937-274-2149. BethJacobCong. org Temple Anshe Emeth Reform Rabbinic Intern Chloe Zelkha 320 Caldwell St., Piqua. Contact Steve Shuchat, 937-7262116, Temple Beth Or Reform Rabbi Judy Chessin Asst. Rabbi/Educator Ben Azriel 5275 Marshall Rd., Wash. Twp. 937-435-3400. Temple Beth Sholom Reform Rabbi Haviva Horvitz 610 Gladys Dr., Middletown. 513-422-8313. Temple Israel Reform Senior Rabbi Karen BodneyHalasz. Rabbi/Educator Tina Sobo Fridays, 6:30 p.m. via Zoom. In-person worship Sats. July 10 & 24, 11 a.m. Registration required. 130 Riverside Dr., Dayton. 937-496-0050. Temple Sholom Reform Rabbi Cary Kozberg 2424 N. Limestone St., Springfield. 937-399-1231.


What sets your clock?


By Rabbi Nochum Mangel Chabad of Greater Dayton Not so long ago or so far away, a community council decided to redesign its town center. It wanted to create a plaza where people could congregate, socialize, relax, and enjoy the beauty of their neighborhood and nature. The architect came up with a beautiful plan that featured scattered benches, winding trails, and splashing fountains. At the very center of the plaza, they planned for an iconic tower: a focal point and an emblem of the town. But while it represented their town,

rely on them even to be off a month of Tishri is filled to the predictable amount. brim with holidays. It is a time In response, the council to focus on deep and holy matlaunched an investigation and ters, a holy month filled with staked out the plaza to see if opportunities for advancing in they might observe something spirituality, a time to reset and that would give them a clue as re-synch with the core of our to what was going being. wrong. As the month It didn't take unwinds, we them long to see progress through what the problem a series of imporwas. They noticed tant resets. On that townspeople Rosh Hashanah, would look to the we commemorate clock to see the creation, and we time and then look call to mind and down at their own celebrate that the watches. Creator is involved Since the times in our lives. rarely precisely On Yom Kippur, agreed, they we celebrate the Rabbi Nochum Mangel would reach over gift of forgiveness, it also had to reflect a sense of and adjust the hands so the that our errors do not doom us personal identity and belongclock agreed with their watch. forever, but that instead, we ing. In the end, they decided This happened time and again; can make amends, turn over a to build a monumental clock very few, it seemed, could new leaf, and attain atonement. tower with four large clocks refrain from correcting the On Sukkot, we celebrate the perched at the top, each facing town’s new clocks. gift of protection, God’s guara different direction. Hearing the investigaantee that we will survive and But there was some resistors’ report, the town council outlive all our oppressors. And tance to the initial idea, so decided to remedy the situaon Simchat Torah, we celebrate much so that in response, the tion by raising the clocks up the gift of the second set of architect offered to lower the out of reach. When the fix was Divine tablets, which brought clocks to just about eye level. more gifts than the first ones. The majority felt that would be completed, the investigators went back to observe, and they Although we received the more welcoming, and it would saw strikingly different behavWritten Torah along with the also make it easier to see. No first tablets, we only received one would need to look up into ior. The passers-by still would look at the clock and still notice the Oral Torah with the gift of the bright glare of a sunny day a discrepancy the second tablets. to catch the time. It is only with the second At the grand The month of between the clock and their own time- tablets, then, that we can celdedication of the Tishri marks piece. ebrate the full range of Divine new plaza, most But with the wisdom and its relevance to evof the town turned the time when town clocks out of ery aspect of our ever-changing out, and everyone we reset our reach, the people lives, continuously unfolding seemed impressed souls. resolved the differas the Oral Torah deepens in and happy. But ence by adjusting every generation. after only a week, their own watches. The town We can use the Torah in difpeople noticed that the clocks clocks were spared, and moreferent ways. We can use Torah were breaking down and the over, everyone in the city now to inform our values, to show hands of the clocks were bent all shared one standard time. us how to live, to teach us what out of shape. The Jewish calendar marks is right and wrong. Many people reported out the holiness of time, and Or we can use Torah to jusas well that the clocks were the month of Tishri marks the tify and rationalize our preconalways off, sometimes too fast, time when we reset our souls. ceived notions of what is right sometimes too slow, and they Continued on Page 30 Our sages tell us that this were upset that they couldn’t

Rosh Hashanah Jewish New Year

Sept. 7-8/1-2 Tishri Celebration of the beginning of the Jewish calendar year. Begins the Days of Awe, a 10-day period of repentance and prayer that ends on Yom Kippur. Celebrated with festive meals, including apples dipped in honey.


Yom Kippur

Day of Atonement

Sept. 16/10 Tishri The holiest day on the Jewish calendar, marking the end of the Days of Awe, spent fasting and in prayer. The sounding of the shofar, the ram’s horn, signals the end of the holiday.


Festival of Booths

Sept. 21-27 15-21 Tishri Named after the huts the Jews lived in while wandering in the desert after the Exodus from Egypt. Marked by building sukkot to eat meals in during the festival, and in the synagogue by processions with the lulav (palm branches with myrtle and willow) and etrog (citron fruit).

Shemini Atzeret

Eighth Day of Assembly Sept. 28/22 Tishri Historically, it allowed an extra day in Jerusalem for Jewish pilgrims on their journey to the Temple. Tefillat Geshem (the prayer for rain), Hallel (Psalms of thanksgiving and joy), and Yizkor (memorial prayers) are recited.

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. Yellow Springs Havurah Independent Antioch College Rockford Chapel. Contact Len Kramer, 937-5724840 or

Candle Lightings Shabbat, Sept. 3: 7:46 p.m.

Torah Portions

Shabbat, Sept. 17: 7:23 p.m. Erev Sukkot, Sept. 20: 7:19 p.m.

Erev Rosh Hashanah Sept. 6: 7:41 p.m.

First Eve Sukkot, Sept. 21: 8:15 p.m.

First Eve Rosh Hashanah Sept. 7: 8:38 p.m.

Shabbat, Sept. 24: 7:12 p.m.

Shabbat, Sept. 10: 7:35 p.m.

Erev Shemini Atzeret, Sept. 27: 7:07 p.m.

Erev Yom Kippur Sept. 15: 7:27 p.m.

Erev Simchat Torah, Sept. 28: 8:03 p.m.

Simchat Torah

Rejoicing of the Torah

Sept. 4, Nitzavim (Deut. 29:9-30:20)

Sept. 29/23 Tishri Annual cycle of reading the Torah is concluded and a new cycle begun. Celebrated in the synagogue with singing, dancing, and Torah processionals.

Sept. 11, Vayelech (Deut. 31:1-30) Sept. 18, Haazinu (Deut. 32:1-52)




welcoming in


We join together in person and online to usher in a new year filled with hope, gratitude, and love.

New children’s books for the Jewish New Year By Penny Schwartz, JTA Challah-eating Australian kangaroos and the welcome second-in-a-series chapter book about a young girl with a magical sense of smell are among the highlights of this year’s crop of Jewish children’s books for the High Holy Days. Kids named Max will be tickled by two books with their name in the title. And the prolific master storyteller Jane Yolen offers up a fun-to-read-aloud story that young kids no doubt will ask for again and again.

September 6 & 7

Yom Kippur September 15 & 16

In-person congregational services Online children’s service Healing service Educational session

Sukkot & Simchat Torah September 20 & 27

In-person congregational services Visit for all of the details. Temple Israel • • 937.496.0050 130 Riverside Drive, Dayton, OH 45405 A Reform Synagogue open to all who are interested in Judaism. PAGE 22

Happy 'Roo Year: It’s Rosh Hashanah

By Jessica Hickman; illustrated by Elissambura. Kar-Ben; ages 1-4. Young kids will be hopping to welcome Rosh Hashanah with a fun-loving family of kangaroos in this lively book in rhyming verse. At the synagogue, they hear the blowing of the shofar, a ram’s horn, along with their Australian friends the koalas, wombats, and wallabies. “Here everyone belongs” is a welcoming message.

Something New for Rosh Hashanah

Rosh Hashanah In-person congregational services Online children’s service

honey. Her cartoon-style illustrations match the joyful verse and present a family with varying tones of skin color, a refreshing portrayal of the diversity of the Jewish world.

The array of colorfully illustrated books will enliven the High Holy Days, which begin this year with Rosh Hashanah on the evening of Sept. 6. Jewish families can bid farewell to the summer and usher in the Jewish New Year by cracking open these engaging new holiday books.

By Jane Yolen; illustrated by Christine Battuz. Kar-Ben; ages 4-8. The kids will find a kindred spirit in Becca, a spunky girl who insists that she does not like anything new. In Jane Yolen’s delightful rhyming story set at the start of Rosh Hashanah, Becca declares “Never” to tasting her bubbie’s brisket and turns down kugel and even sweet honey cake. But will something new on the New Year’s table attract Becca’s curiosity? Yolen, the acclaimed author of more

Rosh Hashanah with Uncle Max

By Varda Livney. Kar-Ben; ages 1 to 4. Who wouldn’t love a Rosh Hashanah visit from Uncle Max, who arrives in a pink car with balloons and a large bakery box tied to the roof? In this delightful board book, a trio of siblings and their adorable dog greet the start of Rosh Hashanah, enjoying a festive meal and hearing the shofar at synagogue. Varda Livney’s simple text is sprinkled with Hebrew words that are translated into English, such as dvash for

than 400 books for children and dubbed “America’s Hans Christian Anderson,” delivers a charmer with playful language and repeating phrases that are perfect for reading aloud. Christine Battuz’s vibrant illustrations match the fun.

Not So Fast, Max: A Rosh Hashanah Visit with Grandma

By Annette Schottenfeld; illustrated by Jennifer Kirkham. Kalaniot Books; ages 4-8. When Emily and Max’s grandmother, whom they call Savta, visits from Israel for Rosh Hashanah, they look forward to their favorite tradition — making caramel apples. But Max is impatient when Savta’s plan to visit an orchard to pick tapuchim, Hebrew for apples, will delay the process. Max wants no part of the fun until his spunky, youthful Savta surprises him with basket-shooting


RELIGION pointers and juggling lessons. Annette Schottenfeld deserves praise for featuring an active, lively grandmother. Jennifer Kirkham’s large, expressive illustrations glow with the colors of fall. Back pages include a note about Rosh Hashanah, a glossary of Hebrew words, and recipes for Savta’s apple cake and Max’s caramel apples.

Starlight Soup: A Sukkot Story

By Elana Rubinstein; illustrated by Jennifer Naalchigar. Apples & Honey Press; ages 7-10. Just in time for Sukkot, Saralee Siegel is back in a chapterbook series about the endearing, spunky school-age girl whose magical sense of smell saves the day in the original, Once Upon an Apple Cake: A Rosh Hashanah Story. Saralee’s grandfather, Zayde, the patriarch of the family’s popular Siegel House restaurant, asks her to create a zippy new recipe to excite customers for the seven-day fall festival, when Jews eat in small, open-roofed huts and welcome guests. Standing in her family’s large sukkah, Saralee’s senses waft up to the starlit skies and fill her with the fragrant aromas. Magically the flavors transform pots of boiling water into Starlight Soup — it tastes like everyone’s favorite food. Meanwhile, Saralee’s best friend, Harold, whose family owns a rival Jewish restaurant, is plotting his own Sukkot celebration. Trouble stirs the pot when Saralee’s soup overpowers everyone’s taste buds and ruins their appetites. What will Saralee do to make it all better? The book’s school setting is Jewish with racially diverse kids. Jennifer Naalchigar’s black-and-white, cartoon-style illustrations enliven the pages.

Beef Brisket for Your New Year’s Observance!

Fresh tomato soup for the holidays By Ronnie Fein, JTA You hear it every year: The High Holy Days are either early or late, never on time. This year is an early one — very early. Rosh Hashanah starts at sundown Sept. 6, the night of Labor Day for Americans. Fortunately it’s also the peak of tomato season, so why This Tomato Soup is tasty served hot or cold not include some in pepper to taste your holiday meal? 6 Tbsp. uncooked white rice This soup, made from fresh 1 cup dairy or nondairy milk or tomatoes, has lots going for it: cream, optional You can make it ahead by four Garnish (fresh herbs or or five days; you can enrich it croutons) with dairy or nondairy milk or cream if you wish; and it’s deliHeat the olive oil in a soup cious either hot or cold. pot over medium heat. Add While it is lovely as a first course for dinner on the first or the scallions and cook, stirring occasionally, for two minutes. second night of Rosh Hashanah, I’ll be serving this at room Add the garlic and cook for about another minute. Add the temperature in juice glasses to tomatoes, stock, basil, and salt my break-the-fast guests as we gather after services and need a and pepper. Bring the soup to a simmer, little nosh before our post-fast cover the pan and cook for 10 dairy meal. minutes. Add the rice, cover You can warm it up, too, for the pan and cook for another 20 Sukkot for those chillier nights minutes. in the sukkah. Blend the soup in a blender or with an immersion blender. 2 Tbsp. olive oil Serve hot or let cool. Stir in the 3 thick scallions, chopped milk if desired. Chill com2 large cloves garlic, chopped pletely. 2 lbs. ripe tomatoes, chopped Serve garnished with fresh 4 cups vegetable stock basil, parsley or Italian bread 2 Tbsp. chopped fresh basil croutons. Makes eight servings. Salt and freshly ground black

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Wishing You A Happy New Year.







Braised Short Ribs with Honey & Thyme for a sweet new year

May you enjoy the fruits of a good new year.

By Ronnie Fein, JTA Some people think of short ribs as rustic fare. But they are an ideal choice for the High Holy Days – and not just because of the honey representing a sweet New Year. Serve them with a thick and glossy gravy: They look impressive and substantial, keeping with our hopeful and festive feelings. And there’s a bonus: Short ribs taste even better a day or so after cooking, so you can make them ahead, skim the fat, and just reheat. The addition of honey in this recipe adds just a hint of sweetness to the dish, a good balance to the spicy chili sauce and tangy Balsamic vinegar. I serve these on cooked egg noodles, but mashed potatoes would be welcome, too. 4-5 lbs. boneless short ribs all-purpose flour 6 Tbsp. vegetable oil, approximately 2 large onions, sliced 2 cloves garlic, chopped 11/2 cups red wine 11/2 cups stock or water 1 cup bottled chili sauce 1/4 cup honey 3 Tbsp. Balsamic vinegar 2 tsp. fresh thyme leaves salt and freshly ground black pepper to taste

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Dredge the meat in some flour and shake off the excess. Heat three tablespoons of the vegetable oil in a large sauté pan or oven-proof casserole

The addition of honey to this recipe adds a good balance to the spicy chili sauce and tangy Balsamic vinegar

over medium heat. Add the meat a few pieces at a time and cook them for three to four minutes per side or until lightly browned. Add one to two more tablespoons of vegetable oil to the pan as needed to prevent sticking. When the meat has browned, remove the pieces to a dish and set aside. Pour the remaining one to two tablespoons of vegetable oil into the pan. Add the onions and cook, stirring occasionally for two to three minutes or until slightly softened. Add the garlic and cook briefly. Return the

meat to the pan. Pour in the red wine, stock, chili sauce, honey, and Balsamic vinegar. Bring to a boil, lower the heat, and let simmer for three to four minutes. Sprinkle with thyme, salt and pepper. Cover the pan, turn the heat to low, and cook for about three hours or until the meat is tender (or place in the oven at 275 degrees). For best results, when the meat is tender, separate the meat and sauce and place in the refrigerator. When chilled, remove the fat that rises to the top of the sauce. Place the meat in an oven-proof serving dish, cover with the sauce and reheat (about 30 minutes in a preheated oven at 325 degrees). Makes six servings.

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This sweet treat is like baklava By Ronnie Fein, JTA During the High Holy Days, I always make my family’s recipe for a dessert called turte, which is similar to Greek baklava. Rather than walnuts, however, it’s made with almonds and drenched with a thick sugar syrup instead of honey. Turte is a specialty from the eastern part of Romania called Moldavia, where my Turte is an eastern Romanian specialty grandparents were born, 2-3 tsp. freshly grated and is sometimes made with orange peel thin pancakes. My grandma 1 tsp. cinnamon made it with strudel dough. 1/4 tsp. freshly grated I recall watching her make nutmeg her own dough for this dish, as well as her fabulous potato For the syrup: strudel, laying the paper-thin 3/4 cup sugar dough across the entire kitchen 3/4 cup water table. I did that once, then 1 tsp. orange flower water switched to store-bought. or 2 Tbsp. orange-flavored There was a time when I brandy or 1/2 tsp. orange could find authentic strudel extract dough, but these days I use phyllo, which is not exactly Make the cake: Prethe same (it’s thinner heat the oven to 350 and more papery), degrees. Layer half but still absolutely the phyllo dough fine. And it’s a in a 9-inch square whole lot easier. baking pan (or This is such a use a 9-by-13-inch wonderful treat. pan), brushing with It’s sweet, crumbly half the melted butter and tender, and the and scattering crumbs fragrance of cinnamon between layers. is enchanting. The original In a bowl, combine the recipe did not include orange chopped almonds, two tablepeel, but I think it gives the spoons sugar, orange peel, cake a refreshing quality. cinnamon, and nutmeg. Place the nut mixture over the layers For the cake: of dough. 1/2 lb. phyllo dough Cover the nut mixture with 1/2 lb. melted butter the remaining phyllo leaves, Cookie or cake crumbs or separating them as above with ground nuts melted butter and crumbs. 11/2 cups finely chopped Brush the top layer with the almonds last of the melted butter. Score 2 Tbsp. sugar

the dough with the tip of a sharp knife into squares or rectangles. Bake for 30 minutes. Raise heat to 400 degrees. and bake for another 15-20 minutes, or until the top is golden brown. Remove from the oven and set aside. Make the syrup: Combine the 3/4 cup sugar and the water in a saucepan. Bring the mixture to a boil, stirring only until sugar dissolves. Cook at a boil for a few minutes until the liquid has thickened, but do not let it become caramel colored. Remove the pan from the heat and stir in the orange flavoring. Pour the syrup over the warm cake. Let the cake cool and cut it into pieces where you have scored the top. Makes eight to 12 servings.

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Congregation Anshe Emeth Reform Congregation in Piqua • Organized 1858 All are welcomed to services led by Rabbinic Intern Chloe Zelkha Photo: Mike Feinstein, longtime Anshe Emeth awesome shofar blower

All services also available by Zoom* • Monday, Sept. 6, 8 p.m. Erev Rosh Hashanah at Temple. • Tuesday, Sept. 7, 10 a.m. Rosh Hashanah outside services at The Hollow park shelter. • Wednesday, Sept. 15, 8 p.m. Kol Nidre service at Temple. • Thursday, Sept. 16, 10 a.m. Yom Kippur outside services at The Hollow park shelter. Yizkor service follows at our cemetery. 5 p.m. Afternoon & Concluding services at Temple. No Break the Fast. Masks required at Temple, no onegs. Social distancing encouraged, masks optional at the park. * or text Steve at 937-726-2116 for Zoom link or location questions. • • Like us on Facebook

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Together Again

High Holy Days 5782 with Temple Beth Or


Son’s love for his dad imbues Nate Ebner’s story Finish Strong: A Father’s Code and a Son’s Path

By Nate Ebner and Paul Daugherty • Penguin Press • 266 pages • $27

Temple Beth Or invites you to join us for the High Holy Days. We offer in-person and live streaming services for Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur.

Erev Rosh Hashanah, Monday, Sept. 6 8:00 p.m. In-Person and Live Streaming

Rosh Hashanah, Tuesday, Sept. 7

10:00 a.m. to 11:30 a.m. In-Person and Live Streaming 11:30 a.m. LIVE Parking Lot Shofar Service 12:00 p.m. to 12:30 p.m. Food Trucks 12:30 p.m. Family Interactive Outdoor Service Visit for service times & updates

Kol Nidre, Wednesday, Sept. 15

8:00 p.m. In-Person and Live Streaming Service

Yom Kippur, Thursday, Sept. 16

10:00 a.m. In-Person and Live Streaming Service 11:30 a.m. LIVE Outdoor Family Service 4:30 p.m. Yizkor In-Person Service In-Person Ne’ilah Visit for service times & updates Temple Beth Or 5275 Marshall Road Dayton, Ohio 45429 937-435-3400

Today...and for Generations PAGE 26

By Marc Katz, Special To The Observer Tucked in a 266-page book about the loving relationship he had with his father — and his rise from walk-on status with the Ohio State football team that led him to three Super Bowl championships with the Patriots — is Nate Ebner’s reference to his Jewish lineage. “My great-great-grandfather Nathan Ebner came to America from Austria in 1883,” chapter four of Finish Strong begins, “when he was 27 years old. He didn’t speak English. He didn’t know where he would go once he got here, or what he would do. In the final minutes of his boat passage across the Atlantic, Nathan stood at the bow of a steamship packed with would-be Americans. The ship neared Castle Garden, the immigration station at the southern tip of Manhattan. “’Where are you going?’ Nathan asked the man standing next to him. They’d developed a friendship during the journey, bonded by religion. Both were Orthodox Jews. “’I’m going to Springfield, Ohio,’ the man answered. There was an Orthodox Jewish community in Springfield. “Nathan said, ‘I think I’ll go to Springfield, Ohio, too.’” That’s how Springfield landed the Ebner family — some of it is still there — although the Orthodox Jewish community is gone. Nate Ebner’s book is a story about a boy and his dad, the late Jeff Ebner, who instilled in his son the mantra to “finish strong” doing any task, and the feeling that if somebody else has done it, why can’t we? Ebner’s writing companion is the fine Cincinnati columnist Paul Daugherty. Ebner’s story is about bonding with his dad and how, from toddlerhood on, he navigated his family after his parents divorced, moving him to nearby Mason, where his mother lived. Jeff Ebner still worked in the family junk/salvage/scrapyard business in Springfield, which continues as Ebner and Sons today. Despite the breakup, Ebner’s mother, Nancy, encouraged full visitation for father and son. Jeff Ebner was murdered at his Springfield junkyard in 2008 during an attempted robbery. He was 54. Nate had just informed his dad he was going to try to walk on the Ohio State football team as a conduit to playing in the NFL. Most dads would have scoffed at that idea, but Jeff Ebner had been encour-

aging. Jeff Ebner had multiple skills himself; he was principal at Temple Sholom’s Sunday school in Springfield and participated in Israel’s Maccabiah Games, honing his love of rugby. Nate followed his dad so closely, he had passed on playing football at Hillard High School near Columbus to play rugby as well, becoming good enough to participate in the Olympic Games. His bond with his father and path to the NFL are the essence of his story, but not the only part of it. “I really don’t talk about religion unless it’s something we’re talking about,” Ebner said in a phone conversation from his Columbus home. “I went to temple as a young kid; I’m not a super-religious person. I did not have a Bar Mitzvah. “My dad and my grandparents and that side of my family are Jewish. I’ve always celebrated Jewish holidays. My mom’s side was Christian so I kind of had a perspective of both and essentially, in terms of being super religious, that was never anyone in my family, but if I had to say what I practice, I would say I’m more Jewish than anything else in what I believe.” He has given some thought to how he would bring up children with his Christian wife, Chelsey. “At the end of the day, it’s not so much that they choose, it’s how they carry themselves and daily lessons of character and work ethic and the type of person you are,” Ebner said. “That, you learn through religion, whether that be Judaism or any religion.” In 2019, Ebner took a trip to Israel, one of the many New England Patriots’ owner Robert Kraft initiated. “You don’t need to be Jewish (to take the trip),” Ebner said. “A lot of guys (players) who are super religious want to go to Bethlehem and Jerusalem and things of that nature. And going with Robert Kraft was super. We went everywhere, for a week. What took me back was how beautiful the country was.” Ebner left the Patriots as a free agent in 2019, played a year for the Giants and currently is rehabbing an injury that precluded him from a second Olympics bid in rugby. He should know his 2021 playing fate by fall. He said he thinks about his father every day. “Something comes up. Those weight room moments, those conditioning moments, pushing through. All the years of doing that with him. You spend a lot of time in those moments. He’s always on my mind, always has been and I think he kinda always will be.”



Attitude adjustment

sequence of events, Noah is not reported as saying a single word. Instead we read, four times, of his silent obedience.” But after the Flood, we can imagine Noah’s puzzlement. Despite his meticulous fulfillment of God’s commands, his friends and relatives drowned, ourselves are God, the center his home disappeared, and the and sovereign of the universe. world was laid waste. “‘Of every tree in the garden Which sovereign was supyou are free to eat; but as for posed to reign? Certainly not the tree of knowledge of good God. In Noah’s mind, his and bad, you must not eat of obedience should have steered it…(Gen. 2:16-17).’” God to a perfect outcome — by And yet, seeing that the Noah’s standards. A disillutree’s fruit was beautiful and sioned Noah, quite literally out luscious and a desirable source of control, drank himself into of wisdom, Eve defied God’s oblivion. command and ate the fruit, as One final story illustrates the did Adam. Which sovereign same pattern. As people moved reigned? Certainly not God. eastward they settled in the When beset by anger and land of Shinar (Sumer), where jealousy, Cain didn’t listen to they discovered that baking God’s advice: “...if you do not mud bricks made do right, sin is The early tales them as durable the demon at as natural stone, the door, whose of Genesis a significant urge is toward suggest that our technological you.” But God encouraged, misdeeds...mirror advancement. “And they “Surely, if you our attitudes said, ‘Come, let do right, there us build us a city, is uplift. (Gen. toward God. and a tower with 4:7).” its top in the sky, Disregarding to make a name for ourselves; God’s guidance, Cain killed his else we shall be scattered all brother Abel. Which sovereign over the world (Gen. 11:4).’” reigned? Certainly not God. In the minds of the people, What about Noah? Although who was sovereign? Certainly God contemplated blotting out not God — who wasn’t even a all humankind for its wickedfactor. “As God is completely ness, “Noah was a righteous man; he was blameless in his age; Noah walked with God (Gen. 6:9).” As God planned for the Flood, tasking Noah with building the ark and gathering the animals, Noah did exactly as God commanded him. In fact, Rabbi Jonathan Sacks noted, “During the whole

Considering Creation

Each year, many Jews practice the custom of tashlich, a symbolic “casting away” of sins by tossing bread crumbs, cracked corn, or birdseed into the flowing water of streams or lakes. This tradition finds echoes in an award-winning

Candace R. Kwiatek version of a Chasidic legend called Gershon’s Monster by Eric Kimmel. Every Friday, Gershon the baker would thoughtlessly sweep his sins from that week into the cellar, until eventually his behavior became a habit. Then on Rosh Hashanah, he would stuff all his little monsters into an immense sack and throw it into the sea. Each year was no different from the one before: no introspection, no regret, no repentance. Until one day, the monsters returned, and they were immense. What was in that sack? According to the storyteller, it was common ordinary things, like a broken promise, a lost temper, and a little untruth. But the early tales of Genesis suggest that our misdeeds — from minor missteps to major transgressions — mirror our attitudes toward God: defiance, disregard, disillusionment, or dismissiveness. Their source? The subconscious belief that we

absent, they recognize nothing higher than themselves to bring glory to,” notes biblical commentator Dennis Prager. Their dismissive attitude toward God is further amplified by the people’s unwillingness to scatter and realize the biblical command to “fill the earth.” And then comes Abraham, who trusted in God and dedicated himself to God’s covenant. He obeyed God’s call, lech lecha, to leave everything behind and move to an unknown, faraway location. He gave due regard to God’s advice to be patient for the long-awaited son with Sarah. He didn’t become disillusioned when giving up Ishmael or when challenging God’s sense of justice over Sodom. Nor did he dismiss God when commanded to sacrifice his beloved son, the child whom God had promised would be the father of a nation. Who was sovereign? In Abraham’s mind, there was no question: it was always God, never himself. The early chapters of Genesis offer a panoramic view not only of God’s handiwork, but also of the possible relationships between humans and God. And precisely because we are created in the image of God, are capable of free will, and know good and evil, our relationships with God are infinitely complicated.

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Literature to share The Beast That Crouches at the Door: Adam & Eve, Cain & Abel, and Beyond by Rabbi David Fohrman. Do you often find yourself puzzled or uncomfortable with a biblical text? Do you ever wonder if there might be a deeper meaning behind the stories, descriptions, commandments, and genealogies? Do you wish there was a reader-friendly book that would invite you to ask questions, challenge the text, and then demonstrate how those very acts could help you unearth unexpected meaning and ideas? This is the book for you: engaging, though-provoking, and filled with the kinds of questions you want to ask (and many answers you’ve been seeking). You will never look at a Torah text in the same way again.

They don’t have to be. Why do we disobey God’s rules, like Adam and Eve? Why do we disregard God’s warnings, like Cain? Why do we become disillusioned with God, like Noah? Why do we dismiss God outright, like the tower builders? Because, at times, we think we are God. All those times you missed the mark this year? You gossiped? You blamed another? You were too busy to call a lonely friend or drop off some soup to a sick neighbor? You gave up on God because your prayer wasn’t answered? Who was at the center of your world — you or God? Think again. We are not God. Maybe it’s not just the common ordinary things like a broken promise, a lost temper, or a little untruth that need to be cast away this season. Maybe we need an attitude adjustment.

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L’Shanah Tovah PAGE 27

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Continued from Page 21 or buzzwords with no core, no and wrong, what is noble, and organic unity, then what is the what is shameful. source of its authority? We can invite the Torah to Its power is as a Divine teach us or we can find someteaching, infused with comprething in the 3,300-year tradition hensive and sovereign wisdom. of Torah that can be used to Only so conceived does it have justify any point of view one authority. might favor. In one of the most famous Responsible study always parts of the Oral Torah, the Ethstrives to see things in their ics of Our Fathers, the Mishnah context, as the Torah intended, cautions us not to co-opt the rather than fastening on isolated Torah for selfish purposes. words or ideas because they apWe should not use it to furpeal to one’s own bias. ther our own cause but rather This has been and remains to clarify what we should be the role of the Oral Torah, clari- standing for, the larger cause fying our understanding of the in which our life is united with text of the Written Torah into those of our people and God’s the great context of its Author purpose in creation. and Teacher. The Torah is our It traces what The Torah is clock. We don’t Torah means in want to our clock. We really all the particubreak its arms and larities of life from don’t really compromise its the time of the usefulness. Torah Mishnah, then of want to break is not there to justhe Gemarah, then its arms and tify our opinions of Geonim (heads but to mold and of the ancient Tal- compromise shape our views mudic academies its usefulness. and character so of Babylonia) and that they are at of all the followone with God’s ing sages of the earlier and later intention in creating us. generations. This is the sweep of the The constant testing of the holidays through this powerful Talmudic method works to month of Tishri. It brings us to keep us alert to the real needs of recognize that there is a God, each time and place and helps that there is right and wrong, to keep our vision true and un- that we are protected, and that clouded by egotism and bias. we have been given a Torah It points us away from selfwhose infinite qualities open up congratulation and gives us the to us the infinite wisdom and resources of soul to recognize blessing of the Creator in our and disarm partisan divisivelives. ness. Let us value that gift. The Look at the Torah as an Torah is here to help us change integral whole. If it is merely for the best, moving ever higher a random collection of ideas in active partnership with God.

OBITUARIES Philip S. Rubin, age 85, formerly of Dayton, passed away peacefully July 22 in Flower Mound, Texas, where he had been living for the past several years. He was a graduate of Springfield High School and the University of Miami, Fla. He was the son of Jacob and Mary Rubin. Mr. Rubin worked with his father in the carpet business after graduating from the University of Miami. He then followed his lifelong interest in electronics and technology and opened LecTronics, owned Borger Office Machines, and rounded out his career as a computer systems and software consultant. Mr. Rubin had a love of photography. He enjoyed being behind the camera as well as developing the photos he took. Mr. Rubin was a HAM, an amateur radio operator. He helped Springfield, Ohio firstresponders with communication needs during winter storms, and he connected with other ham radio operators globally. Mr. Rubin married Suzanne Segal in 1961. They were married for 57 years until her death in 2018. The couple raised their family in Springfield for 20 years. They moved to Dayton in 1981. Mr. Rubin is survived by his son, David Rubin; and daughter, Elaine (Mark) Spaulding; three grandchildren, Zachary Spaulding, Alexandra Cockrum, and Sarah Rubin. Interment was at Riverview Cemetery. Memorial contributions may be made to the charity of your choice.

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Reform movement

truth than a fiction designed to satisfy the client. “Law firms Continued from Page 13 have reputations to uphold,” Feldblum said. Sylvia Cohen “Syl” Sapinsley, investigations tend to play out Sometimes the lawyers are age 91 formerly of Dayton, and why they are likely trustasked to make recommendapassed away July 14. Mrs. worthy. tions. Then it’s up to the clients Sapinsley moved to Cincinnati After the client — in this to decide what findings to make where she had lived for the last case, agencies of the Reform 20 years. Mrs. Sapinsley was a movement — defines the scope public and what to change. If the effort lives up to the top-selling and award-winning of work, the lawyers have the expectations of advocates like salesperson at Elder-Beerman autonomy to act. Zamore and Wien, it could have in Dayton and Macy’s in They try to gather as much Cincinnati. She took great pride relevant information as possible implications across the Jewish world and beyond. in helping people select just and are able to promise confi“There is an opportunity for the right outfit. Mrs. Sapinsley dentiality for nearly all cases. the Reform movement to model was preceded in death by her The lawyers are trained to inhusband of 43 years, Sandy, terview people who are relating what it looks like to reckon with sexual harassment and discrimiin 1996. She is survived by traumatic events. her three sons, Tom (Deni) of “An investigator can be kind nation,” Wien said. Jacobs, the head of URJ, said Cincinnati, Michael (Rachel) and empathetic while still being it’s still early in the investigaof Chicago, and Jeff of Atlanta; neutral and seeking out the tion but promised there would six grandsons, Aaron, Zachary, truth,” Feldblum said. be a public component to its Andrew, Sandy, Ari and Josh; An image begins to emerge. nieces and nephews, and her The type and severity of allega- process and that the URJ would many lifelong friends in Dayton tions become clear. Then there’s heed the advice of the lawyers it and Cincinnati. Interment the matter of what, if anything, had hired. “Key findings of the investiwas at Riverview Cemetery. happened in response to comgation will be shared with the Memorial contributions may be plaints. community and the URJ will act made to Temple Israel or to the According to Feldblum, on the recommendations from charity of your choice. with the caliber of law firms the Debevoise investigative involved, the result of this team,” he said in an email. Lita B. Saul rejoined her process is more likely to be the beloved husband, Irving, on July 21. For 89 years and 359 days, the world was a kinder, brighter, and more joyous place because she was in it. Mrs. Saul had vast knowledge and a ceaseless hunger for more. She could name that classical music piece and its LICKLER composer in three notes. She knew every possible three-letter UNERAL word, so heaven help you if you became her opponent in OME a game of Scrabble. Mrs. Saul & taught music at Temple Israel REMATION Religious School and for 30 years shared the melody of her ERVICE soul with the residents and Larry S. Glickler, Director staff at Covenant House with Dayton’s ONLY Jewish Funeral Director monthly sing-alongs. She was 1849 Salem Avenue, Dayton, Ohio 45406-4927 the silent (well, not very silent) machinery that drove Irving (937) 278-4287 I. Saul, attorney at law, to the greatness that he achieved. Not only was she his partner in life, but she very naturally and gracefully assumed the role of his paralegal. She is preceded in death by her true love, husband Irving, also by her beloved parents, Rose and Robert (Brownie) Brown and sister, Estelle Pearlstein. She is survived by her daughters, Joanne Renkert and Sandra Saul, and granddaughters, Amanda and Karley Holdeman, who remember her in every kind act and in laughter shared with loved ones. Interment was at David’s Cemetery. Memorial contributions may be made to WDPR, Dayton's classical music station, or the organization of the contributor’s choice.

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