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Page 52 THE JEWISH PRESS  Friday, September 21, 2012

Community Currents Upcoming events… Just One Life is holding Rabbi Yissocher Frand’s 23rd annual Kinus Teshuva at the Young Israel of Flatbush on Sunday, September 23, at 8 p.m. The proceeds from the event will go directly to help needy young mothers in Israel. For tickets and information, go to, call 212-6836040, or e-mail *** On Sunday September 23, CHAZAQ will feature a lecture by Rabbi Ben Zion Shafier. Titled, “Looking Back at Another Year Passed,” the lecture is scheduled for 8:30 p.m. at the Young Israel of Kew Gardens Hills, 7011 150th St, Flushing, NY 11367. For more information, call 866-613-Torah or e-mail *** A festive Jewish Music Festival in celebration of Sukkot will take place on Thursday, October 4, at 6 p.m. at the Chabad Center of Northwest New Jersey. The festival will feature Jewish music icon Gershon Veroba and will include “Dinner in the Sukkah.” The festival and dinner are open to the greater community. Reservations can be made by calling 973-625-1525, ext. 202, or by e-mailing rabbib@ *** The Holocaust Memorial and Tolerance Center of Nassau County will host a special reception and program on Sunday, October 14, at 2:30 p.m. with distinguished scholar Dr. Fariborz Mokhtari, author of In the Lion’s Shadow: The Iranian Schindler and His Homeland in the Second World War (History Press, 2011), to honor Abdol-Hossein Sardari,

the Iranian envoy stationed in Paris who rescued thousands of Jews from the Nazis. In addition to Dr. Mokhtari, program participants will include relatives of Mr. Sardari and children of Jews that he rescued. A photographic exhibit and artifacts will be on display at the center’s museum from October 14 through December. For further information, e-mail or call 516-571-8040 x 105. *** Yachad/The National Jewish Council for Disabilities will open its Yachad/NJCD Counseling Center on Monday, October 15, as an expansion of its already existing clinical services. Counseling and support services will now be available at two locations: 11 Broadway in Manhattan and at 1122 Coney Island Avenue in Brooklyn. For further information or to set up an appointment, e-mail or call 212613-8172.

In recent news…

Golfing For The IDF Over $250,000 was raised in a golf outing put on by the Friends of the Israel Defense Forces (FIDF) NY Real Estate Division on Monday, September 10, bringing together 200 of New York’s most prestigious real estate professionals. The event took place at Glen Oaks Country Club in Old Westbury, New York, and began with a golf tournament in the morning and concluded with a dinner presentation featuring IDF soldiers. Three active duty IDF soldiers traveled to New York to attend the event and share their stories with FIDF supporters: Major Eliran Avnaim, a professional golfer and an operational officer for the 93rd Battal-

Wearing A Kippah In Jakarta, Indonesia By Dr. Les Glasman I had the honor of representing Israel at the World Stamp Championship exhibition held at the main convention center in Jakarta, Indonesia this past June. Stamps know no boundaries. They cross oceans and deserts. Thus this year’s theme: “Bridging the World of Peace Through Stamps.” I felt this bridge on many levels. Even though Indonesia, the most populous Muslim country in the world, does not have diplomatic relations with Israel, I was invited to be the official Israeli representative. In the official bulletin and on the website, the Indonesian Organizing Committee featured my picture, along with the flag of Israel. Commissioners were required to arrive on the Saturday prior to the exhibition in order to clear customs. However, because I observe Shab-

bat, an exception was made for me. Prior to arriving, I had been warned by friends not to wear my kippah in Jakarta. Actually, one embassy official suggested that if I did, I might end up with the same fate as Ron Arad. And so, when I arrived at the Exhibition Center I was wearing a cap. After a few moments, however, I removed it and put on my kippah. To my surprise and delight, everyone I came in contact with made me feel welcome and comfortable. Most Indonesians had never met an Israeli or someone wearing a kippah before. They were fascinated and very curious to learn more about the Holy Land.

Visiting Holocaust Survivors It has been over 60 years since the Holocaust ended, and yet its horrors still resonate deeply in our hearts. Recognizing the long-lasting effects of the event, the Connect2 program of the JCC of Greater Coney Island tries to support survivors by sending “Friendly Visitors” to meet them at their homes. Since many of the survivors live alone and have few, if any, friends or relatives living nearby, Connect2 considers this service to be extremely valuable to their well-being. The meetings, however, are often equally nourishing to the volunteers, as they get to know their hosts and learn more about their pasts. Certainly, survivors’ stories are worth hearing and repeating; they are the last oral history accounts of a period that must never be forgotten. The following are the stories of some of the Holocaust survivors that Connect2 volunteers visit: Mr. Abraham comes from Czechoslovakia and fondly remembers his father’s cheese business and his mother’s favorite recipes. The Jewish population did not realize the danger that was facing them; even in 1943, at the age of 20, Mr. Abraham said

he could still learn Torah freely without any German opposition. However, in 1944, things changed drastically and he and his family were taken to a ghetto. Eventually, everyone was shipped off to different concentration camps, never to be together again. Mrs. Ribner comes from Poland. She has two children, but they do not visit her often because they live far away. After Mrs. Ribner’s release from the concentration camps, she returned home to discover that her entire family had perished. She lived as a nomad in Europe trying to find food and shelter until she married another survivor and settled in Warsaw. After immigrating to America in 1972, her husband passed away leaving her alone to raise two children on her own in a strange new country. Mr. Herman was born in Hungary in 1930 to a prosperous family. He was a typical boy learning in yeshiva until hostilities broke out; he could not even celebrate his bar mitzvah when he reached 13. The Nazis rounded up the Jews on Pesach, kept them in a synagogue, moved them into a ghetto, and finally packed them into cattle cars for three

ion (Kfir Brigade); Cpl. Zev Simcha Grushka, a tank commander originally from Long Island and one of three sons in his family to make aliyah and serve in the IDF; and Cpl. Hadar Reisin Tzur, who is a Lone Soldier serving as a simulator instructor in the IDF. The FIDF NY Real Estate Division was started in 2006 by a group of successful business and philanthropic leaders who were passionate about uniting members of the real estate community in support of Israel’s soldiers. The division has supported several capital projects including a wellbeing center at Revaya Base for Battalion 71 of the 188th Bridage, as well as other FIDF wellbeing programs to benefit soldiers.

Thousands Gather In Shiloh Three thousand women from across the spectrum of Israeli society gathered at Shiloh on Wednesday for an evening of song, music, and spirituality in advance of Rosh Hashanah. Shiloh was the site where the biblical Chana’s prayers for a child were answered. The evening included an arts fair and music by Aron and Efrat Raziel. A special women’s prayer session was followed by a lecture from famed teacher Rabanit Yemima Mizrachi, who invited the huge group of women to join in a silent moment of reflection on the year ahead. Avi Roeh, head of the Binyamin Regional Council, also addressed the assemblage. Yechiel Leiter, strategic advisor to the Shiloh Renewal Project, which helped organized the event, commented, “Bringing thousands of women together from all backgrounds for a chance to reflect is a powerful example of Jewish peoplehood. It was not only an exciting evening, but also a very meaningful occasion. There can be no better venue for this event than here at Shiloh, where Chana illustrated the strength of prayer.” (See photos on page 54) I had many opportunities to mingle and socialize with representatives of other Arab and Muslim countries. During the F.I.P. Congress I found myself sitting next to an Iranian colleague, and the interaction was wonderful; we spoke openly on a variety of topics. As a matter of fact, the daughter of the head of the Iranian delegation even approached me to ask how I was managing to keep kosher in Jakarta. When I rose to accept my award at the closing ceremony, I was greeted with warm applause. I am very happy that I did not listen to the advice of my well-wishers, concerned for my safety in Indonesia. I am happy and proud that I wore my kippah.

long days without food or water. Mr. Herman was moved from Auschwitz to Dornau, where the Nazi in charge shot five prisoners every morning before breakfast. He later survived a death march to Bergen Belsen in freezing weather without shoes or a coat, thanks to the generosity of three other prisoners who carried him. His only regret is that these three died, and he could not thank them. He is grateful to the Vishnitzer Rebbe who was with the survivors for a year and a half in a DP camp, making sure there was kosher food and daily minyanim, where Mr. Herman served as chazzan. Mr. Herman tries to stay active, but he cannot shake off the sorrow he feels by the loss of his family and friends. The remembrances of survivors can, and do, fill volumes. Many have a need to tell their stories and not be forgotten. Many are quite lonely and crave company. Connect2 tries to provide that company with volunteers who visit or call weekly. Volunteers also help set up doctors appointments, teach computer skills, pick up food staples for shut-ins, etc. For more information about Connect2 or to volunteer, call 718-449-5000, ext. 2257, or 347-2680030. You can also e-mail

Friday, September 21, 2012 THE JEWISH PRESS  Page 53

Community Currents

At a recent community board meeting in Boro Park.

(Photo credit: JDN) Charles and Naomi Steinberg recently sponsored a fishing trip for HASC Center in memory of their son Steven.

Mr. Wakslack and Mr. Steinberg. Assemblywoman Grace Meng, the Democratic candidate for Congress in New York’s 6th District, visited the headquarters of Queens Tomchei Shabbos in Kew Gardens last week. Meng witnessed Tomchei Shabbos in action as volunteers boxed food for local delivery to over 400 families in Queens.

(L-R) Israel (Izzy) Tapoohi, president and CEO of Israel Bonds; Israeli Finance Minister Yuval Steinitz; and Israeli Minister of Public Diplomacy Yuli Edelstein at a reception organized by Israel Bonds in New York. (Photo courtesy of David Karp)

(L-R) Chief rabbi of the Syrian Jewish community, Chacham Saul Kassin, and Rabbi Yehoshua S. Hecht of Beth Israel of Westport/Norwalk, CT at a recent Igud Harabonim event at the Sephardic Home on Cropsey Avenue, Brooklyn, NY. Chacham Kassin blessed Rabbi Hecht on the building of a new mikveh to serve the growing Jewish community of mid Fairfield County, CT. (Photo courtesy of M. New)

Page 54 THE JEWISH PRESS  Friday, September 21, 2012

Community Currents

A pre-Rosh Hashanah gathering in Shilo. (See article on page 52). Instead of receiving presents on her birthday, Assemblywoman Helene Weinstein decided to give a little back by volunteering at the Masbia Soup Kitchen on Coney Island Avenue.

Preparing for Sukkos.

As per tradition, the Young Israel of Long Beach held a breakfast in support of Mesivta Tiferes Yerushalayim on the first Sunday of selichos. Rabbi Reuven Feinstein addressed the assemblage.

(Photo Credit: JDN)

Khal Bnei Shlomo Zalman celebrates the chanukas habayis of a new building and sefer Torah. The shul was founded more than 70 years ago in Crown Heights by Rav Benzion and Rebbetzin Chaya Frankel. Today the shul is headed by their son, Rav Yosef Frankel, the Vyelipoler Rav.

On Sunday, September 2, over 100 alumni and hundreds of community members gathered at WITS to celebrate the completion of Shas.

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