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Seth Rich Memorial Camp Scholarship Fund Concert
Israeli artist workshops proved entertaining and enlightening pages 8 & 9
Artist in Residency in Nahariya: Yohay Neeman page 11
A Cuban pitcher gets a firm grip on life in Israel page 16
inside Viewpoint Synagogues Life cycles
12 14 15
ccording to the Foundation for Jewish Camp website, children with Jewish summer camp experiences are more likely to become adults who value their Jewish heritage, support Jewish causes, and take on leadership roles in their communities. To ensure that Omaha youngsters have the opportunity to add these essential connections to their lives, Beth El Synagogue presents Rising Stars of American Jewish Music: Banot and Noah Aronson. A Concert to Benefit the Seth Rich Memorial Camp Scholarship Fund. The event is scheduled for Sunday, March 26 at 4 p.m. at Beth El. See Seth Rich Scholarship page 3
Seth Rich (in light blue shirt) surrounded by friends at Camp Ramah in 2002
NCJW Mini Grants in action: Pollination Habitat Creation
The National Council of Jewish Women (NCJW) Omaha Section’s Mini Grants project under the leadership of Kate Kirshenbaum provides financial assistance to Omaha Public School (OPS) teachers for creative and innovative classroom projects that are not funded by school budgets. One of the ongoing projects that NCJW has supported for several years is Pollination Habi-
tat Creation under the supervision of OPS science teacher Shawn Graham. The objectives of this project are to assist and support students in exploring their career path through job shadowing and internships at many different places, including the Nebraska Academy of Science, University of Nebraska Medical Center, Arbor Day Foundation and Henry Doorly Zoo. NCJW is proud of its ability to financially support teacher projects that not only help the students, but also the community. We recently received the following email from Mr. Graham on the status of the pollination effort. The first crop of basil from NCJW Omaha Section and Cornhusker Motor Club Foundation is filling the lab! We have 127 basil plants that have been moved from the germination station to Nebraska Academy of Science and Nebraska See NCJW Mini Grants page 2
Reviving the Ben Gurion Society
Kari Tauber, left, Carrie Fingold, Laurie Epstein, Lisa Lucoff and Jaime Nogg
ANNETTE vAN dE KAMp-WRiGhT Jewish Press Editor The Jewish Federation of Omaha is reviving the Ben Gurion Society. The official kick-off is scheduled for Saturday, March 25 from 7:30 to 9:30 p.m. at the home of Danny Cohn and Andrew Miller. “We’re inviting current and potential Ben Gurion Society (BGS) members to an open house,” Danny said. “Not only will this evening celebrate our guests, it will give them and others in the community the chance to come and learn more about the BGS and the
benefits associated with membership. Plus, we’re serving cocktails!” The Ben Gurion Society is a national donor recognition society for young adults, ages 25-45, who make a contribution of $1,000 or more to their local Jewish Federation as a sign of their commitment to leadership in the community. “We are reaching a pivotal moment in Omaha’s Jewish Community. Dollars for the Federation are coming from aging sources and it is time for our generation not only to lead, but to raise funds and our See Ben Gurion Society page 2
2 | The Jewish Press | March 10, 2017
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LINDA POLLARD Endowment Assistant/Staff Writer, JFO Foundation he Jewish Federation of Omaha (JFO) Foundation announced that the Shirley and Leonard Goldstein Supporting Foundation Board of Directors awarded 24 grants during their November 2016 semi-annual meeting. Since the Goldstein Supporting Foundation’s inception in 2003, the board has allocated over one million dollars to charitable causes throughout the country, particularly to Jewish institutions and causes in metropolitan Omaha. “The Goldstein Supporting Foundation Board reviewed dozens of applications from many deserving organizations,” said Howard Epstein, Executive Director of the Jewish Federation of Omaha Foundation. “After careful consideration and deliberation, they awarded grants to the programs that they believed were likely to make the most impact and were wellaligned with the Goldstein Supporting Foundation’s mission.” The Goldstein Supporting
The following organizations and programs were awarded grants at the December meeting: • Anti-Defamation League/Community Relations • Committee – Facilitator Training • Beth El Synagogue – Welcoming the Stranger • BBYO – March of the Living • Chabad Lubavitch of Nebraska – Camp Gan Israel • Chabad Lubavitch of Nebraska – Chesed Program • Friedel Jewish Academy – Fine Arts Program • Halachic Organ Donor Society – Expandable Educational • Brochures • Healing Gift Free Clinic – 2017 Clinic Funding • Institute for Holocaust Education – A Week of • Understanding 2017 • Institute for Holocaust Education – Searching for • Humanity • Jewish Community Center – 2017 JCC Maccabi Games • Jewish Community Center – Yom Ha’Atzmaut • Celebration 2017 • Jewish Family Service – Financial Assistance • Jewish Federation of Omaha – CornerStones • Scholarship Fund • Jewish Federation of Omaha – Rabbi Telushkin • Community Lecture • Jewish Federation of Omaha – Young Jewish Omaha • Jewish Federation of Omaha – Teen Trip to Israel 2017 • Jewish Federation of Omaha – Jewish Women’s • Renaissance Project • Jewish Federation of Omaha Foundation – LIFE & • LEGACY Program-Year 4 • Jewish Press – New Copier/Printer • Jewish Senior Outreach – Older Adult Case Management • Nebraska Jewish Historical Society – Oral History/ • Education Program • Omaha North High Magnet School – Trip to Illinois • Holocaust Museum and Trip to the United Nations/ • Jewish Heritage • PKD Foundation – Research Grants
Ben Gurion Society
Continued from page 1 voices for programs that will impact the Omaha community now and for generations to come,” Danny said. “Joining BGS will cost you less than a Starbucks a day,” he added. “Giving is never easy and maybe you’ll have to go without that Starbucks, but the flip side is: if we don’t start to take responsibility, our community and institutions could disappear during our lifetime. No amount of Starbucks is worth that.”
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and have a dialogue throughout the year. This dialogue is so very important, it is the only way we can truly monitor what is essential to our generation and ensure the Jewish Federation of Omaha takes our voice into consideration.” To RSVP, email Louri Sullivan at lsullivan@jewishoma ha.org. If you need more information, please call 402.334.6485. Danny Cohn and Andrew Miller’s home is located at 11330 Pine Plaza; there will be extra parking available in the church lot in front of the house.
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Foundation considers requests for funds that support local projects and programs of the JFO and its agencies, synagogues and Jewish service organizations. They also consider applications from local and national Jewish and secular charities in the areas of medicine and medical research (with an emphasis on kidney-related diseases), education and current events of Jewish content, and human rights. “A supporting foundation is a separate legal entity with its own board of directors, which is created by a donor or family,” explained Epstein. “The JFO Foundation manages and invests the funds, administers operations and makes disbursements as directed by the supporting foundation board. This offers the board a level of independence to determine where to allocate donations to non-profit organizations it wishes to support. We truly appreciate the generosity of the Goldstein Supporting Foundation.” To learn more about establishing a supporting foundation with the JFO Foundation, contact Howard Epstein at 402.334.6466 or hepstein@ jewishomaha.org.
Adam Kutler, left, Chuck Lucoff and Jason Epstein Danny Cohn has agreed to chair and with the society claiming over a dozen members, he’s eager for others to join. He chaired the BGS in Cincinnati while he and Andrew lived there from 2009 to 2012. There are some clear benefits to being a part of this, such as the opportunity to make monthly payments toward your Annual Campaign Gift via bank card, get discounted tickets to the next FED event, serve on a new grant initiative board, as well as quarterly members-only invites to social events and special invitations to JFO major donor events. “The Society is really a group and a community,” Danny said. “Many people give their dollars and tell themselves, ‘Well, that’s done for the year.’ What we are offering with BGS is the sense of community with other donors - the opportunity to shape what the future looks like and come together
Continued from page 1 Environmental Trust Plant Laboratory to grow out for FEED 100 and Northwest High School food campaigns. As you can see, the lab is filling up fast. Per Home Depot if each one of these plants get to 4.5 inches they would sell them at $4.98 apiece at their stores. So if each one makes it to that stage it would be $632.46 of food plants. I want to thank again Cornhusker Motor Club Foundation and National Council of Jewish Women Omaha Section for their support and sponsorship of providing not only pollinator habitat resources for the state but lets us generate this food to help Omaha with more food security. Funds for Mini Grants are made possible by fundraising through events such as the Roll for the Kids Bunco Tournament and the Donor Fundraiser. For more information about Mini Grants contact Kate Kirshenbaum at email@example.com or 402.334.8541.
The Jewish Press | March 10, 2017 | 3
Seth Rich Scholarship
Continued from page 1 got in the way of a late-night salami cook-in Twenty-seven year old Seth Rich, a rising or a marathon grilled cheese-making sesstar in the Democratic National Committee, sion.â€? Ben Hofkin, Richâ€™s former counselor, was the victim of a still-unsolved homicide added, â€œSeth had a whole kitchen in the in Washington, DC, last summer. â€œWe are cabin. They had a fridge for the meat, a sephonored that Sethâ€™s memory is being recogarate grill for dairy, separate utensils. They nized with the Camp Scholarship Fund,â€? said his parents, Joel and Mary Rich. â€œSeth enjoyed his years at Camp Ramah in Wisconsin so much. He and his buddies were always scheming as to what they would do bigger and better next summer -planning fun, crazy events where everyone could be involved and have a blast. It was at camp that Seth learned to work with others and respect Above: Seth Rich, center, with his parents Mary and Joel Rich at and value their differences. Looking back on the twenty- Camp Ramah in 2002; right: Dina Saltzman, left, at Herzl Camp seven years we were blessed to with her friend Raleigh Moritz of St. Louis Park, MN. have with Seth, we smile when we rememwere very serious about keeping it kosher.â€? ber the pranks and summers that he spent in These anecdotes show that Judaism is camp. Camp helped make Seth who he was - more than a subject found in a textbook or - a young man committed to making a difa practice confined to the synagogue, the ference. Helping others became a natural seder table, or -- to quote Beth Elâ€™s Hazzan outgrowth of his Jewish camp experiences.â€? Michael Krausman -- â€œenjoyed at the Bagel A few days after Sethâ€™s death, reporter Ari Bin. At a Jewish Camp,â€? Krausman continFeldman wrote in The Forward, â€œFor Seth ued, â€œJudaism is a living, vibrant, evocative, Rich, passion for service started with kosher growing experience. Be it dancing, singing, cookouts at Camp Ramah. Strictly speaking, arts and crafts, meal time or even playing grilling food inside cabins has never been baseball, everything -- every part of life -- is allowed, but for Seth the prohibition rarely a Jewish experience. My wife Laurel and I
are both products of Camp Ramah. Our boys, Zev and Zach, have been â€˜Ramahnicksâ€™ since they were very young. Theyâ€™ll tell you that they get their Jewish energy at camp and then give it to everyone back home. If you speak to kids who have at-
tended a Jewish summer camp, they have a similar reaction and, like our boys, they canâ€™t wait to go back for a â€˜rechargeâ€™.â€? Jay and Allison Gordmanâ€™s sons Preston and Spencer are examples. Ten-year old Preston likes Camp Ramah, â€œbecause I meet new Jewish friends that I communicate with all year round. Going to camp makes me more connected to being Jewish. Itâ€™s an amazing place.â€? Spencer Gordman, aged 14, said, â€œI love being part of a family as close as Ramah. The relationships I make at camp with people around the world will stay with
me forever. Also, I think the community really enjoys what we bring home from camp. Our newfound Jewish knowledge, ruach and understanding is very special. There is a certain aura at camp that stays with people for the rest of their lives.â€? Other Beth El parents agree that Jewish summer camp experiences can be transformative. â€œHerzl Camp has been a life-changing place for our 13-year old daughter, Dina,â€? said Linda Saltzman. â€œCamp has strengthened her pride in her Jewish heritage, values and traditions. She and her camp friends share a connection that I firmly believe will be with them for a lifetime. Dina literally counts the days until camp from the moment she comes home.â€? According to Dina, â€œWhen I first see my friends at the bus stop, weâ€™re all so excited to see each other, itâ€™s like we were never apart. Thatâ€™s probably because we text each other every day. The environment at camp is comforting because you can relate to other Jewish kids, and Shabbat is really fun because the prayers are upbeat. Camp is also fun because we pull lots of pranks. This one time we tied our counselors rooms together so they couldnâ€™t open the door to get out. Herzl is one of my favorite places on earth. See Seth Rich Scholarship page 4
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Seth Rich Scholarship
4 | The Jewish Press | March 10, 2017
community Looking for a host family CCI Greenheart has offered cultural exchange programs in the United States that connect Americans with international students for over 30 years. This year they have a Jewish Brazilian boy that they are needing a host family for in the Omaha area. His name is Aviv and he is currently 15 years old. He is an A student with high English proficiency. He enjoys basketball, martial arts and reading. He looks forward to sharing his Brazilian culture with his host family. CCI Greenheart accept all kinds of families, children, no children, emptynesters, single parents, and so on. The mainrequirement is love, kindness and the willingness to learn about your student’s culture while sharing your own. Host families are responsible for providing meals to the student. Students may share a bedroom with the same gender sibling, within 4 years of age. The students come with their own spending money and medical insurance. Aviv will attend the public high school here, arrive about a week before school begins and stay for the academic school year. If you would like more information about hosting, please contact Kristin Babby at 360.213.5132 or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org. You may also complete the host family inquiry at https://www.cci-exchange.com/hostfamilies/long-term-hosting/apply/ Since 1985, CCI Greenheart has offered cultural exchange programs in the United States that connect Americans with international students. CCI Greenheart is currently granted full listing by the Council on Standards for International Educational Travel (CSIET) and is a member of the World Youth Student and Educational Travel Confederation (WYSTC), WYSE: Work Abroad Association, and the Alliance for International Exchange. CCI Greenheart is a branch of Greenheart International, a nonprofit that connects people and planet to create global leaders through personal development, volunteer service, environmentalism, fair trade, and cultural exchange. You can learn more about Greenheart online at https://www.cci-exchange.com/.
B’nAi B’Rith BReAdBReAkeRs
Mayor Jean stothert will explain why she should be reelected as the leader of our city on Wednesday, March 15, noon. (Her opponent spoke last week.) For more information or to be placed on the email list call 402.334.6443 or email@example.com.
Continued from page 3 encourage our youth to attend summer camps, and also proIt’s like having a second home with all your best friends.” vide resources so that every child in our synagogue family -Melanie Schwarz, 13-year old daughter of Wayne Schwarz regardless of need -- can receive a camp scholarship. Here at and Lori Kooper-Schwarz, is another Herzl fan. “SomeBeth El, the scholarship comes with a promise from the kids thing new happens to provide a service to every day,” Melanie the synagogue when said. “The activities they return -- reading schedule changes, Torah and leading and it’s fun to just go prayers, helping out with the flow. Everywith the Religious thing is so amazing, School, and assuming there’s no way you leadership roles in our could have a favorite USY and Kadimah part. I love everyYouth Groups. Last thing about Herzl.” year we granted scholPeyton Kelln was arships to over twentynine years old when five youngsters. The his parents, Heather monies raised at the and Mark Kelln, March 26 Rising Stars chose to send him to of American Jewish Camp Ramah. “In Music Concert will his first letter home,” help insure that our Heather said, “Peyyouth continue to reLeft: Unidentified and Preston Gordman at Camp Ramah; right: Brothers Zach, ceive pivotal Jewish ton wrote simply, ‘Dear Mom, I’m not left, and Alex Rich at Camp Ramah. camp experiences and dead. Love, Peyton,’ To us, few words equates to lots of fun. become ambassadors of positive Jewish living.” Peyton is twelve now, and Ramah continues to give him a Concert Chairs for Rising Stars of American Jewish place that encourages exploration of his Jewish identity Music, a benefit for the Seth Rich Memorial Camp Scholwhile he makes friends from outside Omaha.” arship Fund, are Mary and Joel Rich and Pam and Bruce For Jonathan Rich and his wife, Sheila, the March 26 Friedlander. Individual tickets and sponsorship opportuniconcert to benefit the Seth Rich Memorial Camp Scholarties are found at http://bethel-omaha.org. All giving levels ship Fund will be bittersweet. “Seth was my cousin,” include at least 2 concert tickets at no extra charge. DonaJonathan explained. “When we send our boys, Zach and tions are tax deductible. For more information, please conAlex, back to Camp Ramah this summer, the experience tact Hazzan Michael Krausman: hazzankrausman@beth will carry even more significance.” Sheila Rich admits that, el-omaha.org or call the Beth EL office at 402.492.8550. “I was not very excited to send my children away for two In addition to Beth El’s Seth Rich Memorial Camp Scholweeks their first year. The drop-off and saying goodbye was arship Fund, co-workers, associates and friends from very emotional for this mom. But each time we saw their around the country who knew Seth and admired what he pictures on the camp website, they were smiling, so I realstood for have established the Seth Conrad Rich Memorial ized we made the right choice. Now I know they’re having Endowed Scholarship at Camp Ramah in Wisconsin to asa great time and when they come home they’re going to be sist a first-time camper from a congregation of Beth El’s just a little bit more grown up, more able to express their size to attend camp. Judaism. After just a couple summers, their BESTT teach“Seth believed in making the most of each day and makers told us that Zach and Alex went from participating in ing the most of yourself,” Joel Rich said. “He wanted to creprayers to being leaders. Before going to camp, Alex said ate fun and laughter and to accomplish something that he didn’t really enjoy going to Shabbat morning services, would help people. To make a positive change in their lives. but now he’s more confident in his skills and enjoys partici- His motto was, ‘Go big, go bold or go home.’ Funding pating at Beth El. How great is that?” scholarships in Seth’s name is only possible through the Hazzan Krausman is quick to point out that, “Although we generosity of the members of our Beth El family, our can sing lively melodies, have outdoor services and hold Jew- friends in the Omaha Jewish community and the commuish experiential programs in our synagogues and temples -nity at large. Celebrating life is what Seth wanted to do. all of which are extremely valuable -- we cannot replicate that The hole will always be there, but when we can think back 24/7 love and strength of Jewish identity that comes naturally to the legacy Seth left, that will comfort us as time goes by. in a Jewish camp environment. It is therefore vital that we We treasure your support.”
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The Jewish Press | March 10, 2017 | 5
Purim in Persia
Tippi DeNeNberG urim in Persia comes to you this Sunday from 4-6 p.m. at the JCC in the auditorium. Come early, stay late. Don’t miss the festive decoration, delicious meal, and interactive entertainment. The entire community -- all ages -- is invited, free of charge. Like all things at Chabad, you’ll find the perfect mix of fun, love, and learning. Headliner Carlos Figueroa leads an interactive drum circle starting at 4:30 p.m. Carlos is a local celebrity drummer and inLa Toilette d’Esther, tapestry, Neilson, Jacques de Troy, Jean structor who played in the Francois Gobelins Credit: Center for Jewish History, NYC United States Air Force Band from 1977 to 2001 before moving to Omaha. own hamantaschen and fill your basket with goodies. Leave with treats to share. Participation in the ancient Persian drum Children can exercise their giving muscles circle builds positive interaction, and demonstrates the importance of community. at the tzedakah station. To honor Mordechai, check out the “We stand toLook around the room to find Esther in gether wall” for some Persian dress-up and the palace tent. She’ll be modeling her best photo fun. All of this to the background of traits and inviting you to hear her story. Hip to upcycling? Come to the mishloach exotic tunes. Come. You’ll be able to fully experience manot area to make an origami basket out Purim and its beautiful mitzvot. of newspapers. Then make and bake your
Please let the Jewish Press know in advance when you are leaving and when you are returning. Sometimes several papers are sent to your “old” address before we are notified by the Post Office. Every time they return a paper to us, you miss the Jewish Press and we are charged! Please call us at 402.334.6448 or email us at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The perfect book for history buﬀs
Omaha’s Durham Museum Beautiful architecture blends with memories of a time gone by at the historic Durham Museum. Opened in 1931, Union Station was built by Union Pacific Railroad as the showpiece to the city of its headquarters. Considered one of Omaha’s most unique treasures, and now an official National Historic Landmark, the station is one of the best examples of art deco architecture in the country. The Durham Museum offers unique, hands-on learning for people of all ages. Enjoy an extraordinary array of permanent exhibits including restored train cars, 1940’s storefronts, HO Model trains, numerous artifacts showing the history of the region and the Byron Reed collection, which includes some of the world’s rarest coins and documents. During your stay be sure to stop by the authentic soda fountain and enjoy a phosphate or malt. There are also impressive temporary exhibitions through The Durham’s affiliation with the Smithsonian and close ties with the Library of Congress, National Archives, and Chicago’s Field Museum. The Durham Museum
is located in Omaha’s Historic Old Market at 801 South 10th Street. The museum has a two-level parking deck that is FREE to all visitors. Join us this summer as secret agents, suspects and science converge for a family adventure unlike anything you’ve experienced! Top Secret: License to Spy, The Durham Museum’s summer 2017 exhibition, will put visitors’ skills to the test as they experience the science, technology and psychology employed in the intelligence field. Calling all Campers! Join The Durham Museum May 30-Aug. 4 for a one-of-a-kind summer camp experience that sparks the imagination! Half-day and full-day programs are available for 1st-2nd grades, 3rd-4th grades, and 5th-6th grades. All camps are led by certified teachers with additional staff to create an engaging camp experience. Camps will explore a variety of themes including science, art, history, and culture. The Durham Museum also offers a “Beyond the Camp” experience for campers who want to arrive early or stay late.
Personally inscribed copies are available for $35* Signed copies are $25* Call Thomas R. Hutson at 531-205-5090 or email email@example.com for your copy. *Includes shipping and handling
Now enrolling for 2017 – 2018 Learn more about our exceptional student experience at www.FriedelJewishAcademy.com.
6 | The Jewish Press | March 10, 2017
Steven Evans and the therapeutic research Institute
Coming publishing date | 04.21.17
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Week of Understanding is an annual program of the IHE that brings eye-witnesses of the Holocaust – both survivors and liberators – to speak in dozens of schools and public events in the greater Omaha metro area, and to other locales via distance-learning technology.
F O K E E W G N I D N A T S R E D UN
annEttE van DE KaMp-wrIgHt and start synthesizing this in order to get Jewish Press Editor this to more patients. However, the suppleteven Evans raised his sons ment is available now, which is why TRI is Micah and Jeremy at Temple Iscurrently spearheading the Autism Study, rael. He was a using this extract with member for phenomenal results.” about 25 years, Steven, with help from but when Temple moved long-time colleague Debra out West, since the family Fuller who moved to is located at 38th street, Omaha from Baltimore to the drive became too long. work with TRI, meets with “Although we were sad to families and asks them to end our membership,” fill out a questionnaire, inSteven says, “we try to stay dicating which behaviors connected to our faith.” He relate to their Autism and his wife Deirdre celeSpectrum Disorder. Once brate all the holidays and the patient begins taking Steven studies Torah each the supplement, which is Debra Fuller and Steven Evans week. We certainly miss free, the survey is filled the community with which we felt so conout monthly by a family member. That pronected all those years.” vides additional data, documenting results. Steven grew up in Texas, but didn’t return “Those results from our ongoing studies there after starting college. Today, he dedihave been remarkable,” Steven said. “In cates his time to the Therapeutic Research many cases, the problematic behaviors such Institute (TRI), at the present particularly as temper tantrums or the lack of emotional working with families who deal with Autism. response moved from severe to slight, or TRI was founded in 2001 as a Nebraska from moderately serious to no problem. We non-profit corporation with the mission to are so encouraged by these results, that now identify effective alternative health care far surpass what the researchers at Johns strategies as Protocols of Care for most Hopkins and Harvard found.” health care issues and provide them to interSince the phytochemical sulforaphane is ested individuals worldwide without charge. an over-the-counter supplement, and the As Senior Research Scientist, Evans has im- results it brings sound almost too good to plemented, for his Autism study, what he calls be true, there are of course nay-sayers. a “Grassroots Science Study,” based on dis“When a treatment doesn’t arrive in a coveries made at Johns Hopkins and Harvard. bubble pack,” Steven says, “it doesn’t always This is where things get a little technical: inspire confidence. But this is not alternative “Researchers from Johns Hopkins and Harmedicine; we are simply following up with vard Medical School provided a daily oral what the researchers at Johns Hopkins and administration of the phytochemical sulHarvard discovered. And what they discovforaphane (derived from broccoli sprouts) ered is that this broccoli sprout extract carfor 18 weeks to 29 young men with Autism ries oxygen to, and helps to detox, certain Spectrum Disorder, which subsequently im- parts of the brain. The research has been proved behaviors.” done; it’s out there. We are eager to find Wait; broccoli sprouts? more families to participate in the study.” “Yes,” Steven said, “we usually refer to it as To find out more about TRI, visit www.Co a ‘broccoli sprouts extract,’ because the ntrolAutismNow.org or contact Steven at name of the chemical is such a mouthful.” 402.551.1020 or email@example.com. This is where TRI comes in. Editor’s note: This is a human-interest “The research has been done,” Steven story about a member of our Jewish comsays. “Now we can wait 15 years for larger munity. The Jewish Press is not a medical studies, and then we can wait until the journal and does not underwrite medical pharmaceutical companies get on board procedures or treatment of any kind.
In the news
HOLOCAUST SURVIVOR, SPEAKER, AND AUTHOR
Marion Blumenthal Lazan Tuesday, March 28th | 7pm Countryside Community Church (8787 Pacific St.) For more information visit www.ihene.org or email firstname.lastname@example.org Presented by the Institute for Holocaust Education and the Center for Faith Studies
With generous financial support from the Omaha Public Schools, and the Shirley and Leonard Goldstein Supporting Foundation.
Bonnie and Steve Levinger’s daughter Jessica and several Camp Sabra friends met in Chicago recently for a reunion. They were at Sabra together for nine years. Back row: Molly Helm (Kathy Goldstein-Helm’s daughter), left, Jessica Levinger, Sara Carl, originally from Kansas City, Leah Baer, originally from Memphis, Carly Fein from Dallas, Samantha Blum from Dallas; Front row: Liz Wiznitzer from Florida originally, left, Jenn Jossie from Chicago, and Kylie Zacharia (Dick and Terri’s daughter). Kylie and Jenn were counselors for the rest of the girls during their final year as campers. This was in 2009 when the swine flu swept through Camp Sabra and they had to close the camp to sanitize everything. At Sabra, the final year for campers is highlighted by the two week “Masada Trip” to Colorado for a hiking, camping, backpacking experience. This particular year, they drove overnight on a bus to CO only to be called back to return to Sabra because they needed to send all kids home because of the outbreak. A week later, they assembled again in Missouri... loaded up the bus and headed to Colorado once again... this time without any hitches!
Visit from Rabbi Shefa Gold Scott Littky Program Director, Temple Israel Temple Israel is pleased to announce that on Sunday, April 2, at 10 a.m., there will be a workshop with Rabbi Shefa Gold titled, The Magic of Hebrew Chant: Healing the Spirit, Transforming the Mind, Deepening Love. The focus of the workshop will be to introduce those in attendance to the practice of sacred chant. Rabbi Shefa Gold is a leader in ALEPH: the Alliance for Jewish Renewal and received her ordination both from the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College and from Rabbi Zalman Rabbi Shefa Gold Schachter-Shalomi (z”l). She is the director of C-DEEP, The Center for Devotional, Energy and Ecstatic Practice in Jemez Springs, NM. She teaches workshops and retreats on the theory and art of Chanting, Devotional Healing, Spiritual CommunityBuilding and Meditation. Rabbi Shefa composes and performs spiritual music, has produced ten albums, and her liturgies have been published in several new prayer books. She is the author of
Torah Journeys: The Inner Path to the Promised Land, and In the Fever of Love: An Illumination of The Song of Songs, both published by Ben Yehuda Press. Her latest book, published by Jewish Lights, is The Magic of Hebrew Chant: Healing the Spirit, Transforming the Mind, Deepening Love. By combining her grounding in Judaism with a background in Buddhist, Christian, Islamic, and Native American spiritual traditions, Rabbi Shefa is uniquely qualified as a spiritual bridge celebrating the shared path of devotion. Rabbi Shefa Gold describes her workshop The Magic of Hebrew Chant: Healing the Spirit, Transforming the Mind, Deepening Love as follows: “It turns out that the magic words of creation, transformation, healing and the expression of our infinite depths have been hidden in plain sight in the words of our inheritance – words that lie sleeping on the page, just waiting for our love to arouse them. So many words, buried in books, seem all but dead. When I find the divine breath within me and resuscitate those words, they come alive and become vehicles of power and healing. They become incantations.” In this workshop, we will explore the power and magic of Hebrew Chant as we transform the words of prayer into spiritual practice. Rabbi Gold’s workshop on Sunday, April 2, is open to all who would like to attend. For more information, please contact Program Director Scott Littky, 402.556.6536.
Jewish summer camp for adults! nate ShaPiRo Director of Development, Jewish Federation of Omaha Young Jewish Omaha is excited to promote Trybal Gatherings, Jewish summer camp for adults! Get back to your roots at Jewish Summer Camp for Adults! Trybal Gatherings is hosting a series of weekend getaways throughout 2017 for Jewish young adults in their 20s/30s. The experiences are hosted at Jewish summer camps and include all meals, lodging, open bar, a live DJ, color war, arts 'n' crafts, ropes courses, a bar-mitzvah themed dance party, informal Shabbat
experiences, and a mix of traditional and creative camp activities. Federation is offering an exclusive $75 discount for the first 50 people who register by March 15. Register with the code OMAHASMORES to receive your discount! Learn more about the experiences at www.trybalgatherings.com. YJO is trying to get a crew together to attend the gathering in Wisconsin Sept. 1-4. Join us! If this sounds like something that you’re interested in, call me at 402.334.6440, or email me at email@example.com.
Class of 2017
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community Security Update Over the past several weeks there have been a significant number of bomb threats to Jewish Community Centers and schools, as well as vandalism to Jewish cemeteries around the country. To date, we have not received a bomb threat on our campus nor vandalism at any area cemetery. Please know we are taking these actions seriously. We have used these calls to evaluate our current policies and procedures which have been upgraded over the last few years with video surveillance, access control and expanded emergency preparedness training. We are also working with local and national law enforcement on this issue. From them, we have received guidance, training and further recommendations on how to respond in the event that we do receive a threat. In addition, our security team meets weekly to review security procedures and also when threats at other institutions are reported. We are in frequent communication with the parents of our Pennie Z. Davis Child Development Center and Friedel Jewish Academy students. Our campus is proactive and prepared. We take the safety and security of everyone on our campus and in our community seriously. Should you have any questions or concerns, please feel free to contact us. We have set up an email address dedicated to security concerns – email@example.com. Alan Potash, CEO, Jewish Federation of Omaha Bruce Friedlander, President, Jewish Federation of Omaha Mark Martin, Executive Director Jewish Community Center Jason Epstein, President, Jewish Community Center
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Israeli artist workshops proved entertaining and enlightening MArK KirCHHoFF Program and Communications Assistant n Feb. 22 and 23 the Partnership2 GETHER program of the Jewish Federation of Omaha welcomed visiting artists Batya Gil Margalit and Koby Sibony from the Western Galilee region of Israel Partnership for a gallery talk and community art workshops. This program provided a unique opportunity for Omaha to host these artists who were volunteering their time and creativity to collaborate and share their knowledge. This is one of many activities and programs through the Partnership program that fosters meaningful relationships between Israelis and Americans. Batya was born in Canada and immigrated to Israel as a child. She has been an artist for over 20 years, focusing her talents on glass art. Koby was born in Haifa, Israel and began fashioning objects from thin copper wire as a young boy. Currently he sculpts his creations using 1 mm wire. Their stop in Omaha is one of a number of locations they will be visiting on this Partnership experience. Upon arrival to Omaha, Batya and Koby were accompanied by Federation Staff members, Jennie Gates Beckman and Nate Shapiro, and taken to the Bemis Center for Contemporary Arts to meet with artists in residence and to tour the facility. After touring the Bemis, the artists met with manager of the Hot Shops Art Center and toured that facility.
husband moved to Clil, an ecological village in the Western Galilee. There they built their home and studio called “Jara,” where they create, teach and have raised their children. She related how early in her career she fell in love with working with glass, which is the main medium through which she expresses her art today. She said that she enjoys the fact that with glass fusing, for example, you are never 100% sure of what the final product will be until it comes out of the kiln. Some of her unplanned results have proven to be among her favorite works. Koby graduated in 2011 with a degree in Indus-
The artists were impressed with, not only the unseasonably gorgeous weather, but also the incredibly vibrant Omaha art scene. To round out their first day, the artists enjoyed a dinner with community members, and then presented a gallery talk at the Jewish Community Center. The 7 p.m. gallery talk took place in the Social Hall on Feb. 22. Batya shared that after graduating from Bezalel Art Academy in 1991 she and her
trial Design from the Bezalel Art Academy in Jerusalem. After graduation he opened an art and design studio on Kibbutz Lohamei HaGeta’ot (The Ghetto Fighters Kibbutz), a community in Western Galilee established by surviving fighters from the Warsaw Ghetto Uprising. He identifies himself a “designer/maker” – his creations being somewhere between art and design. Both Batya and Koby shared personal stories and challenges they have in making
a living with through their respective art forms. On Thursday morning, Feb. 23, Koby conducted a workshop on wire sculpting in the Kripke Jewish Federation Library. About 15 adult participants and nine students from Friedel Jewish Academy followed his skillful instruction in learning how to create a wire bird with a bit of imagination and some twists, turns, and snips of the wire. Many were amazed at what they were able to create in a morning’s session, and no two birds were alike. In the afternoon Batya conducted a workshop in glass fusing. Participants learned how to use window glass, colors, powders, copper wire and pieces of colored glass to create a piece to be fused in a glass kiln. The creations ranged from those who took a more minimalist approach to those who created designs with intricate details. The projects had a communal aspect to them in that the participants shared workspace and materials while sitting at round tables while creating the hoped-for masterpieces. From Omaha, Batya and Koby headed to conduct like workshops in Fort Worth, TX, another city in Partnership with the Western Galilee region. The final stop for the artists in the United States will be one of sight-seeing pleasure in New York. The Jewish Federation of Omaha extends its appreciation to all the volunteers involved in making this visit a success: Lisa and Gary Epstein, Kim Noddle, Ellie Novak, Julie and Eric Phillips, and Iris Ricks.
Pictured above top row from left: Koby Siboni instructs two workshop participants on manipulating 1 mm thick wire to create a two – dimensional bird; Director of Development Nate Shapiro, left, Artist Batya Gil, Director of Community Engagement and Education, Jennie Gates Beckman, and Artist Koby Siboni; and a participant in Batya Gil’s Glass fusing workshop paints one side of a glass disk, in preparation of kiln firing; middle row from left: Batya Gil provides guidance to participants in her glass fusing workshop; guests view the artists’ gallery lectures at a private reception in the home of Lisa and Gary Epstein; and Batya Gil, glass artist, looks on; bottom row from left: Friedel Jewish Academy’s Head of School, Beth Cohen, assists a student participant in Koby Siboni’s bird making workshop; participants in Batya’s glass fusing workshop work on their own unique art pieces; and Koby Siboni demonstrates his technique of twisting wire in his bird creation workshop.
10 | The Jewish Press | March 10, 2017
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Storytelling with Rita Paskowitz
Editor’s note: they were. During the week of Her father Feb. 6 through 10, owned a clothing Friedel Jewish shop in Schuyler. Academy fifth and One time it caught sixth graders, tofire. The building gether with was safe but the teacher Denise contents were Bennett, joined ruined. with residents Shirley always from the Rose loved to roller Blumkin Jewish skate. This was reHome to trade stoally hard to do, beries. Under the excause the streets pert guidance of were made of storyteller Rita bricks. The bricks Paskowitz, the stuwere very bumpy. dents interviewed She and her residents, wrote brother loved Eddie down what they Cantor. Eddie Canlearned and tor was an actor shared the results and a singer. They in front of an auliked listening to dience. Here are a Clockwise from top left: Rita Paskowitz, Helen Rotella and Denise bennett, Shirley Gold- him on the radio. few of their stories. stein and Jack cohen, and George meister and mendel Wright. Later on in life, Mrs. Goldstein went to Congress and helped thousands of Jewish people get out of Russia. I can tell that Shirley is a kind and caring person. I would like to thank Shirley for sharing her inspiring stories.
Swing and sway with Sammy Kaye
DeniSe benneTT Fifth and sixth grade teacher It was my pleasure to spend time visiting with the lovely Helen Rotella, whose charming smile was as cheerful as the red flowers decorating her dark hair. Helen grew up singing before she could talk. Even as a young girl, she enjoyed performing and she and her brothers and sisters put up a stage in their garage, where they would sing and dance, performing for each other. Her older brother Charlie particularly loved to hear Helen sing. When Charlie would come home on furlough from the army, he and his soldier friends would take Helen dancing at the Peony Park Ballroom. She was an excellent ballroom dancer and she and Charlie’s army buddies would dance the night away, enjoying the live music played by the big band orchestra. Helen also had the opportunity, once, to sing on a stage much larger and more prestigious than the one in her family garage. When the nationally famous bandleader Sammy Kaye brought his orchestra to Omaha to perform at the Orpheum Theater, he added local talent to his show. Yes, that’s right, Helen performed with the Sammy Kaye Orchestra, live on the Orpheum stage. Sammy Kaye recognized her talent and he offered to take her back to Hollywood with him as a regular member of the band. Can you imagine what her father thought of the idea? Yes, you may have guessed it, he said “No!” Helen didn’t mind. She wasn’t ready to leave her family either. Helen still likes to sing and she especially enjoys the song You’ll Never Know How Much I Love You. She sang a bit of it for me on Monday. And Helen, you’ll never know how much I loved it.
JacK coHen Sixth grade I was lucky enough to be paired with Shirley Goldstein. Shirley is a beautiful woman. She has icy blue eyes. They are the prettiest eyes I have ever seen. When Shirley’s parents came to America, they moved to Council Bluffs, Iowa. They had no idea where Iowa was. But who could blame them? If I were from a different country back then I wouldn’t know where Iowa was either. Her father was from Poland and her mother was from Lithuania. Although they had family in America, it must have been really hard to fit in. Shirley grew up in Schuyler, Nebraska. Whenever her parents were talking about something private, they would speak in Yiddish. As a child, when there were lightning storms, she and her brother would run under their parents’ bed. This was their hideout. Their parents acted like they didn’t know where
PeyTon KeLLn Sixth grade I had the honor of talking to Lydia Linde. When Lydia was a young girl, growing up in Russia, her name was supposed to be Lily. They sent the letter and the government changed it to Lydia, after an ancient city. Lydia’s father was a revolutionary. He was jailed twice by Stalin and sent to a concentration camp, where he was killed. Lydia’s mom was sent to a concentration camp where she was safe for a bit of time for her skills as a nurse. Lydia had to live with three of her aunts. She loved reading. Her family had a 3,000 book library! Instead of doing recess, Lydia read. Lydia grew up to be an economist. When Lydia tried to come to America, the Russian government took everything away. Her son’s name is Dimitri. He lives in Switzerland. Lydia is a beautiful woman with a soft voice and soft hands. She is friendly and kind. It was my pleasure to meet her.
a day in the life of George meister menDeL WRiGHT Sixth grade George was a normal boy and he spent the summer at his grandma’s farm. At the farm, he learned how to take eggs from underneath the chickens without moving them. He also grew potatoes at the farm and he would only sell the big spuds. During the summer, he mostly ate the tiny potatoes he couldn’t sell. For breakfast, he could have strawberries. The only catch was that he had to go outside and pick them himself. These were some of George’s favorite memories of living at the farm. Thank you for telling me these wonderful stories.
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Announcements may be e-mailed to the Press at jpress@jewish omaha.org; faxed to 402.334.5422, or mailed to 333 So. 132 St., Omaha, NE 68154. Readers can also submit announcements -- births, b’nai mitzvahs, engagements, marriages, commitment ceremonies or obituaries -- online at the Jewish Federation of Omaha website: www.jewish omaha.org. Click on “Jewish Press” and go to Submit Announcements. Deadlines are normally eight days prior to publication, on Thursdays, 9 a.m. Please check the Jewish Press, for notices of early deadlines.
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Artist in Residency in Nahariya: Yohay Neeman MARk kiRchhoff Program and Communications Assistant iving up is the only sure way to fail.” – Gena Showalter. “Every adversity, every failure, every heartache carries with it the seed of an equal or greater success.” – Robert T. Kiyosai. “When life gives you lemons, make lemonade.” Pick one of these and hold on to it. You will need it later. Yohay Neeman must be doing something right at the meat factory at kibbutz Yehi’am. He has been its General Manager for the past 22 years. Judging from the smile on his face, the enthusiasm he displays when talking about the plant, and the camaraderie that is evident when he walks through the factory, it is easy to imagine that he will continue to be the manager for many years to come. He was born on the kibbutz in 1954 of Hungarian parents, both of whom are now deceased. He has an older brother who also grew up on the kibbutz and who, after his service in the army, moved to Tel-‐ Aviv. A second brother works in the meat factory. His sister was recently awarded a scholarship to study at a university in the state of Iowa, in the USA. Yohay’s wife, Riki, is of Algerian and Moroccan descent. She is a tutor in the school. They have three children. Their oldest son is studying law at Haifa University. Their daughter, 26-year‐old Noa, is finishing her studies in the food industry at Tel-Hai College in the upper Galilee and has a goal to work in Tel-‐Aviv. Asaaf is 21 years old and serving his first year in the army. He has previously worked with the Ethiopian immigrants in Jerusalem. As a child on the kibbutz, Yohay’s schooling focused on education and learning – not on exams. He characterized the experience as one in which obtaining an education was more important than measuring the amount of time spent studying or in measuring achievement by tests. Participation in work on the kibbutz was incorporated into schooling. As children grew older they began agricultural work. At age 12 Yohay worked for about an hour a day, two days per week. When he reached high school, he worked on the farm at least two hours per day every day. As he progressed through school, the number of hours worked increased. He credits that experience with helping him develop good work habits and the ability to manage his time wisely. As is customary, following high school he entered the military. After fulfilling his military obligations he returned to the kibbutz and worked as a manager of the many volunteers
who would come to work in the banana operation. At age 30 he enrolled in a program for economics and accounting at the University of Jerusalem and was in the middle of a two year apprenticeship in 1993 when he was asked to return to the kibbutz to be the general manager of the meat operation. The plant was experiencing severe difficulties and it needed to make a change in management. Yohay paused in the conversation, “I didn’t know anything about running the plant, but I had a great deal of loyalty to the kibbutz and I was willing to learn.” He accepted the request and as he began the transition to his new job, he realized that he needed time to learn Yohay Neeman how the plant functioned. Yohay asked a former plant manager, then already in his 90’s, to return for a brief time to be the Acting Manager. This would provide Yohay with the time he needed to learn all he could about plant operations. The former manager agreed. Yohay went about learning in the best way he knew how. For three months he worked in the factory getting experience in all areas until he was sure he had a firm understanding of how the plant functioned. “That was just the best way to do it. There is no better way to learn a job than to do it, and to be a good manager, you have to know everything about the operation,” explained Yohay. He then set about the task of assembling a strong management team. He was able to convince five other former supervisors to return to the plant. They returned as employees, not as members of the kibbutz. “A manager can only be as good as the people he has working with him. These people had already shown that they were excellent at what they did,” said Yohay. The plant was soon highly productive, profitable, and was providing steady employment for many people. It was in 2006 that the catastrophic event occurred. Several employees had inadvertently left a large pot unattended on one of the factory’s cookers when they left for lunch. A fire broke out and a significant area of the plant was engulfed in
flames. Much of the building was totally destroyed. If not fatal, it was a crippling blow that threatened the demise of the plant. Yohay made it clear that they would not rebuild. They would take the opportunity to reinvent themselves, and the course of action was set. “Project H,” so named as to not divulge to the competition that a total revamp was taking place, was underway. A management team was assembled and they spent three weeks visiting many meat processing factories throughout Europe. They took what they believed to be the best from each of those and developed plans for reinventing the plant at Yehi’ama, and implemented them. Now would be the proper time to insert your favorite expression from paragraph one. As early as 2008 the plant won an industry “Best Product Award” for a new beef product they developed. “Project H” was a resounding success. To this day the plant continues to challenge itself with creative thinking and it continues to win industry awards. Today the plant has the most advanced methods of production, packaging, and shipping in the industry. It employs about 150 people and produces over 450 tons of top quality cold cuts, sausages and meat products – chicken, turkey, beef, goose -‐ on a monthly basis. Managers and employees at the plant represent a broad spectrum of ethnic and religious groups. They include Muslims (24%), Druze (32%), Christians (4%), and Jews (40%). In addition to a broad customer base in Israel, the company exports products to the United States, Europe and Canada and is looking forward to exporting to Russia. While many meat producing companies on other kibbutzim have sold a portion or all of their operations to larger conglomerates, Maadaney Yehiam remains totally owned by the kibbutz. “There is no magic in what we have done,” offers Yohay. “The magic is in making something happen when it is believed you cannot, and in approaching the impossible with systematic dedication until it becomes possible.” Stated another way, “When life gives you lemons, make lemonade.” In 2015 seven photographers from the United States and one from Budapest, Hungary, met in Nahariya, Israel, to participate in the “Artist in Residency” project conducted through the Partnership2GETHER program. The goal for the week was for each photographer to photograph and interview four people each in order to document the richness and diversity of the people living in the Western Galilee region of the country. The photos and narratives in this fourpart series are the work of Mark Kirchhoff, Program and Communications Assistant for the JFO.
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(Founded in 1920) Eric Dunning President Annette van de Kamp-Wright Editor Richard Busse Creative Director Susan Bernard Advertising Executive lori Kooper-Schwarz Assistant Editor Thierry Ndjike Accounting Jewish Press Board Eric Dunning, President; Andy Ruback, Past-President; Sandy Friedman, Treasurer; Andrew Boehm; Paul Gerber; Alex Grossman; Jill Idelman; Mike Kaufman; David Kotok; Debbie Kricsfeld; Abby Kutler; Pam Monsky; Paul Rabinovitz and Barry Zoob. The mission of the Jewish Federation of Omaha is to build and sustain a strong and vibrant Omaha Jewish Community and to support Jews in Israel and around the world. Agencies of the Federation are: Community Relations Committee, Jewish Community Center, Center for Jewish LIfe, Jewish Social Services, and the Jewish Press. Guidelines and highlights of the Jewish Press, including front page stories and announcements, can be found online at: wwwjewishomaha.org; click on ‘Jewish Press.’ Editorials express the view of the writer and are not necessarily representative of the views of the Jewish Press Board of Directors, the Jewish Federation of Omaha Board of Directors, or the Omaha Jewish community as a whole. The Jewish Press reserves the right to edit signed letters and articles for space and content. The Jewish Press is not responsible for the Kashrut of any product or establishment. Editorial The Jewish Press is an agency of the Jewish Federation of Omaha. Deadline for copy, ads and photos is: Thursday, 9 a.m., eight days prior to publication. E-mail editorial material and photos to: avandekamp@jewish omaha.org; send ads (in TIF or PDF format) to: rbusse@jewishomaha. org.
letters to the Editor Guidelines The Jewish Press welcomes Letters to the Editor. They may be sent via regular mail to: The Jewish Press, 333 So. 132 St., Omaha, NE 68154; via fax: 1.402.334.5422 or via e-mail to the Editor at: avandekamp@jew ishomaha.org. Letters should be no longer than 250 words and must be single-spaced typed, not hand-written. Published letters should be confined to opinions and comments on articles or events. News items should not be submitted and printed as a “Letter to the Editor.” The Editor may edit letters for content and space restrictions. Letters may be published without giving an opposing view. Information shall be verified before printing. All letters must be signed by the writer, but the name can be withheld at the writer’s request. The Jewish Press will not publish letters that appear to be part of an organized campaign, nor letters copied from the Internet. No letters should be published from candidates running for office, but others may write on their behalf. Letters of thanks should be confined to commending an institution for a program, project or event, rather than personally thanking paid staff, unless the writer chooses to turn the “Letter to the Editor” into a paid personal ad or a news article about the event, project or program which the professional staff supervised. For information, contact Annette van de Kamp-Wright, Jewish Press Editor, 402.334.6450.
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ANNETTE vAN DE KAMP-WRiGhT Editor of the Jewish Press ore than a week ago, we heard the news about the vandalism at the Chesed Shel Emeth Jewish cemetery in St. Louis, followed by similar destruction at Philadelphia’s Jewish Mount Carmel cemetery. It’s painful, it’s horrifying and it’s worrisome, but there’s also something bizarre playing in the background. When these things happen, there seems to be reluctance on the part of certain authorities to call it what it is: “Police are investigating the incident,” Kayla Epstein wrote in the Washington Post: “Detective Lt. Frederick Lemons II told the St. Louis Post Dispatch, ‘There’s nothing to indicate it was any type of hate crime.’ But for Jews, the act of desecrating cemeteries recalls a dark history of prejudice and intimidation against Jewish communities.” Epstein is correct; there is a horrible precedent for grave desecration and none of us can see this as an isolated act. My first thought when I see Lt. Lemon’s comment is: What do you mean it’s not a hate crime? My second thought is: Why are you reluctant to call this quacking, swimming thing a duck? I’m not the only one who’s asking. In a 2015 essay, Major Kamal S. Kalsi wrote: “Inderjit Singh Mukker, a Sikh man who sports a beard and turban as part of his faith tradition, was driving to a grocery store in the suburbs of Chicago when he was brutally assaulted and beaten unconscious by a man who called him ‘Bin Laden,’ and yelled, ‘Terrorist! Go back to your country!’ The DuPage County State’s attorney Robert B. Berlin originally charged the accused teen with felony aggravated battery, but not with a hate crime, which fueled outrage among Sikh Americans. [...] Why does it take an entire community to demand justice for one of their own?” (Source: Time.com) The Federal Bureau of Investigation has defined a hate crime as “a criminal offense against a person or property
motivated in whole or in part by an offender’s bias against It’s the real elephant in the room, isn’t it? We are all mema race, religion, disability, sexual orientation, ethnicity, gen- bers of a variety of communities, based on our nationality, der or gender identity.” our hometowns, professions, gender, sexuality, friend According to Lt. Lemon, it is up to the prosecution to des- groups, likes and religious affiliations and so forth. When ignate a hate crime. “You have to know motivation,” Lt. we see victims and we consider ourselves members of the Lemon also said. Without having anyone in custody, one same community, we empathize and are much more likely can’t know the criminal’s intent. In that case, it logically to stand by them. When, however, we see someone and we follows that ‘hate crime’ is a legal term a Police officer should not be using while talking to the press, before the crime in question has been designated as such by the prosecution. Got it. Besides, I do not have a law degree nor have I ever worked in law enforcement, so maybe I should not get upset. And yet, it chafes. Against a backdrop of countless bomb threats to Jewish Community Centers, including day schools, as well as two Anti-Defamation League offices in recent weeks and a bullet hole in a classroom at an Indiana synagogue, I really want someone in a position of authority to use the words “Hate crime.” Maybe because it might make me feel like people are taking this seriously, maybe A visitor to the vandalized Jewish Mount Carmel Cemetery in because what’s happening makes me angry Philadelphia views some of the toppled tombstones, Feb. 26, 2017. Credit: Dominick Reuter/AFP/Getty Images and impatient and I want more of our public officials to mirror that outrage. don’t feel that affiliation, we declare them the “other” verGregory Herek, Roy Gillis and Jeanine Cogan wrote about sus “us” and we look away. the Psychological effects of hate crimes on Lesbian and Gay When I hear someone say: “we have no proof that this is victims in a 1999 edition of the Journal of Consulting and a hate crime,” I feel like the “other.” I feel that person has Clinical Psychology. Their conclusions can easily be applied little empathy and places him or herself outside our commuto other minority groups: victims of crimes with an antigay nity. We need to remember that at the end of the day, rebias experienced higher levels of depression and anxiety gardless of our color, religion, nationality, sexuality or than victims of crimes where that bias was not present; in gender, or any other way in which we separate ourselves addition, those psychological effects can spread to the tar- into micro-communities, we must declare ourselves members geted group to which the victim belongs, other vulnerable of the human community. groups and the community as a whole. More “us,” less “other.” It’s the only way we can make Interesting phrase: ‘the community as a whole.’ this better.
When Jews were illegal, and turned to others for sanctuary ElANA KAhN MILWAUKEE | JTA I was privileged recently to participate as the sole Jewish voice at a news conference with Latino leaders, community activists and faith groups at which we spoke loudly and clearly in support of compassionate immigration policies. I told the people gathered about a piece of Jewish history I had only recently discovered -- one that illustrated a strong parallel between our peoples and sharpened the moral imperative for a Jewish voice on behalf of immigrants. In 1921 and 1924, Congress passed laws strictly limiting immigration according to nation-based quotas. The controversial laws dramatically reduced the number of Europeans allowed to enter this country and made permanent an already existing, near-total ban on Asian immigrants. These people, it was understood, presented political, racial and cultural threats to the United States. Three of my four grandparents had arrived several years previously, entering this country before the gates closed. But if they hadn’t, perhaps they would have been among the estimated tens of thousands of European Jews who entered this country illegally – by sailing into the ports of New York with fake German passports, by arriving in Florida by hiding in boats from Cuba, by sneaking across the Canadian border or crossing by foot from Mexico. Or perhaps they would have been among the millions who were murdered as part of the Nazi genocide of European Jews. Until recently, I had no idea that Jewish immigrants had entered the United States illegally. That was not our story. Unlike the “illegals” of today, our people arrived to the “goldene medina,” the golden land, only through proper channels, we have been told. But Libby Garland’s research, described in her book “After they Closed the Gates: Jewish Illegal
Immigration to the United States, 1921-1965,” takes a lid off the smug distance we are able to keep from the issue of illegal immigration. We are not better. We, too, were strangers. Illegal strangers.
Protesters demonstrating at the Northwest Detention Center in Tacoma, Wash., Feb. 26, 2017. Credit: Jason Redmond/AFP/Getty Images The story of seeking asylum, of being refugees and immigrants, of entering this country through both legal and illegal means, is a deeply American story and, as it turns out, an American Jewish story. But it serves only to bolster what is an eternal Jewish value, repeated throughout our texts: to welcome the stranger: “When strangers sojourn with you in your land, you shall not do them wrong. The strangers who sojourn with you shall be to you as the natives among you, and you shall love them as yourself; for you were strangers in the land of Egypt.” (Leviticus 19:33-34) While the American Jewish community includes support for a range of political positions, it has been driven by a vision of America as a beacon of hope, a nation with shoulders and heart big enough to welcome people fleeing persecution and to absorb the hopeless seeking their second chance.
That is why our community has stood shoulder to shoulder with communities of newer immigrants as we call for policies that reflect our shared values. With allies from many different religious, ethnic and national communities, we have spoken at news conferences, issued statements, urged policymakers and advocated on certain issues with a simple but important call: Our nation and its inhabitants deserve compassionate immigration policies that balance national security with adherence to our higher value of welcoming the stranger. The pursuit of such policies -- characterized by rule of law, national interest and compassionate treatment -- is not simply a moral imperative for the Jewish community. It is also entirely pragmatic and self-interested: We know that a nation that shuts its doors to immigrants will be less kind to those already here. With other minority groups, we can envision the outcomes of nativist policies that divide rather than unite. At a recent gathering, “Milwaukee Gathers in Unity for Human Dignity,” we listened to the stories of refugees from Africa, Asia, Central America, the Middle East and Europe. Such events are not only symbolic. They draw a community closer around shared values while giving elected officials an opportunity to clarify their positions. At this event, Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett signed a resolution expressing opposition to the Presidential Executive Order 13769, the “travel ban.” He voiced a clear promise that local police officers would not act as immigration enforcement agents. This work is essential to Jewish community relations, driven by enlightened self-interest through vigorous and strategic relationship building. We stand with allies, protecting them when necessary, and we ask them them to stand with us, interrupting hatred and linking arms See When Jews were illegal page 13
The Jewish Press | March 10, 2017 | 13
Four Jewish takeaways from Trump’s big speech to Congress ROn KamPeas WASHINGTON | JTA President Donald Trump’s speech to a joint meeting of Congress is getting rave reviews for the subdued, “presidential” style of his delivery, and positive feedback from the Jewish community for opening remarks denouncing antiSemitic acts as examples of “hate and evil.” But there ensues the inevitable Trumpian conundrum: What did he actually mean? Here are four takeaways from the speech and what it says about bias and the Jews: 1. What did he condemn exactly? From the very first paragraph: “Tonight, as we mark the conclusion of our celebration of Black History Month, we are reminded of our Nation’s path toward civil rights and the work that still remains. Recent threats targeting Jewish Community Centers and vandalism of Jewish cemeteries, as well as last week’s shooting in Kansas City, remind us that while we may be a Nation divided on policies, we are a country that stands united in condemning hate and evil in all its forms.” That second sentence – the one that’s been getting the plaudits – gets thorny once it’s held up to the light. According to the logic of the sentence, it is the “recent acts” that “remind us that ... we are a country that stands united in condemning hate and evil in all its forms.” But what actually reminds us that we are united are the responses to such acts, like the thousands of dollars raised by Muslim activists to rebuild a vandalized Jewish cemetery, a labor union’s pledge to pitch in to fix damaged gravesites, a strongly worded statement from the White House. It was the lack of the last item that had riled Jewish groups in the weeks after the first spate of JCC bomb threats and the first cemetery attack. In both instances, combined with Trump’s failure to comment for six days on what appears to be the bias killing last week of an Indian worker in Kansas, it was Trump’s failure to respond at first – indeed, his hostility to reporters who asked him to respond to the spike in anti-Semitic incidents – that raised hackles. 2. What’s not in the passage A mosque near Tampa, Florida, was set ablaze last week. Another in Texas was burned down in January and one in Florida, where the killer in the Orlando massacre had occasionally worshipped, suffered a similar fate in September. Why not include a reference to bias crimes against Muslims? It would be especially apropos given Trump’s overarching theme of unity because Muslims have indeed raised funds to refurbish vandalized Jewish cemeteries and Jews are contributing to the rebuilding of the Tampa mosque. (Speaking of the Orlando massacre, why not a reference to the LGBTQ community? Trump at the time held up the massacre as emblematic of the protections that gay Americans needed and he would bring as president.) A reference to the mosques may have allayed concerns that his travel ban is aimed at Muslims, although it targets seven (or, as of this week, six) Muslim-majority countries, as well as refugees. Further along in the speech, Trump mentions Muslims in a positive way, as allies against radical Islamic terrorism.
But he was talking about moderate Muslims in the Middle East -- an alliance that is far afield from the highways and byways traversed by American Muslims. 3. What’s the plan? Jewish community statements praising the president for his remarks condemning anti-Semitism were almost uniform in asking for a specific government and law enforcement response to anti-Semitic and other hate incidents.
and Latino children. These families should be free to choose the public, private, charter, magnet, religious or home school that is right for them.” That’s a proposal he campaigned on, and it has raised concerns among Jewish precincts that favor church-state separations, but also has garnered praise among Orthodox groups and other supporters of Jewish day school education. On March 1, the Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations of America welcomed Trump’s call for federal policy to support school choice. “We believe there are several ways in which parental empowerment should be pursued to achieve educational opportunity, in the tax code and elsewhere, and we look forward to working with the administration on this priority issue for our community and American society at large,” the O.U.’s Washington director, Nathan Diament, said in a statement.
Message of support
President Donald Trump addressing a joint session of Congress in the House of Representatives chamber, Feb. 28, 2017. Credit: Win McNamee/Getty Images “I was very pleased, that was an important message,” Sen. Ben Cardin, D-Md., said at a meeting March 1 of the Helsinki Commission, the body that monitors human rights overseas and in the United States. “But we need to do more.” “Powerful for @POTUS to note anti-Semitism at top of speech,” tweeted Rabbi Rick Jacobs, president of the Union for Reform Judaism. “Key now is to investigate and end terror campaign.” Calls for a plan came as Bloomberg News reported that the Trump State Department was considering doing away with the post of anti-Semitism monitor. Granted, the position studies developments overseas, but Jewish groups worry that its elimination would suggest that the administration is not taking the issue seriously. The American Jewish Committee on March 1 asked its activists to write the president and urge him to preserve the office. Cardin told JTA, walking out of the commission meeting, that if anything the office of the anti-Semitism monitor needed bolstering. “Strengthen it, elevate it, give it more resources,” he said. 4. The other stuff • Trump mentioned Iran and Israel: “I have also imposed new sanctions on entities and individuals who support Iran’s ballistic missile program, and reaffirmed our unbreakable alliance with the State of Israel.” He did not mention the Iran nuclear deal he once reviled, nor did he speak of the Israeli-Palestinian peace deal he has said he would like to achieve. • He did go into some detail on his plans to expand school choice: “I am calling upon members of both parties to pass an education bill that funds school choice for disadvantaged youth, including millions of African-American
Our dear brothers and sisters, The last few weeks, we follow with great concern the news coming from the states, We cannot stop thinking about you and all that you are going through. The stress, tension and anxiety penetrating your life are sadly known to us. The Jewish people are strong when together. Please know that we are with you. We wish to embrace you and to let you know that you are not alone, Please let us know if there is something we can do to help. Together with you Your friends from Israel. Orit Katzenstein Guri, Yona Fleischer and the friends of the Partnership group.
When Jews were illegal
Continued from page 12 with us when we need their support. Those of us who feel safe in this country cannot absent ourselves from this renewed debate about the nature of this country as a patchwork of ethnicities. That is the blessing of living in community, knowing our neighbors -learning about their stories and concerns, and recognizing that they, too, were created in the image of God. Elana Kahn is director of the Jewish Community Relations Council of the Milwaukee Jewish Federation.
14 | The Jewish Press | March 10, 2017
synagogues B’nai israel synagogue
618 Mynster Street Council Bluffs, IA 51503-0766 712.322.4705 email: CBsynagogue@hotmail.com
Beth el synagogue
Member of United Synagogues of Conservative Judaism 14506 California Street Omaha, NE 68154-1980 402.492.8550 bethel-omaha.org
Beth israel synagogue
Member of Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations of America 12604 Pacific Street Omaha, NE. 68154 402.556.6288 BethIsrael@OrthodoxOmaha.org
An Affiliate of Chabad-Lubavitch 1866 South 120 Street Omaha, NE 68144-1646 402.330.1800 OChabad.com email: email@example.com
Congregation B’nai Jeshurun
South Street Temple Union for Reform Judaism 2061 South 20th Street Lincoln, NE 68502-2797 402.435.8004 www.southstreettemple.org
offutt air forCe Base
Capehart Chapel 2500 Capehart Road Offutt AFB, NE 68123 402.294.6244
rose Blumkin Jewish home
323 South 132 Street Omaha, NE 68154
Union for Reform Judaism (URJ) 13111 Sterling Ridge Drive Omaha, NE 68144-1206 402.556.6536 templeisraelomaha.com
Member of United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism 3219 Sheridan Boulevard Lincoln, NE 68502-5236 402.423.8569 tiferethisraellincoln.org
B’nai israel synagogue
Join us for our monthly Shabbat Speakers Series on march 10, at 7:30 p.m. with guest speaker David Alloy who will discuss The resurgence of the UNL Chapter of the Jewish fraternity Sigma Alpha Mu. Oneg to follow service. Everyone is always welcome at B’nai Israel! Our services are led by lay leader Larry Blass. For information on our historic synagogue, please contact any of our board members: Scott Friedman, Rick Katelman, Carole Lainof, Marty Ricks, Sissy Silber, Nancy Wolf and Phil Wolf.
Beth el synagogue
Services conducted by Rabbi Steven Abraham and Hazzan Michael Krausman. friday: Lunch at Nebraska AIDS Coalition, 11:30 a.m.; Kabbalat Shabbat, 6 p.m. saturday: Morning Service, 9:30 a.m. Dessert Kiddush is sponsored in honor of Wendy Berenson’s birthday; Junior Congreation, 10 a.m.; Mini-Minyannaires, 10:45 a.m.; Mincha/ Ma’ariv, 6 p.m.; Megillah Reading, 7:15 p.m.; Adults-Only Purim Party, 8:15 p.m. Childcare available by reservation only. weekday serViCes: Sundays, 9:45 a.m. & 5:30 p.m.; weekdays, 7 a.m. & 5:30 p.m. sunday: BESTT & Torah Tots Breakfast, 9:45 a.m.; Family Megillah Reading & Costume Parade, 10:15 a.m.; USY/Kadima Purim Carnival, 11:30 a.m. tuesday: Rabbi Abraham’s A Wisdom Tradition -- An Inside Look at Ethical, Moral and Spiritual Lessons of Judaism, noon at Whole Foods. wednesday: BESTT Classes, 4:15 p.m.; USY Zen Lounge Night, 5:15 p.m.; Rabbi Abraham’s A Wisdom Tradition -- An Inside Look at Ethical, Moral and Spiritual Lessons of Judaism, 6:15 p.m.; Hebrew High Classes, 6:45 p.m.; Hazzan Krausman’s Echoes & Reflections -- A Multimedia Approach to the Holocaust, 7:30 p.m. BESTT Grade 3 Siddur Celebration, sunday, march 19, 11:15 a.m. Sunday Scholar Series, sunday, march 19, 11:15 a.m., featuring Marty Shukert Musical Midrash. All classes and programs are open to everyone in the Jewish community.
Beth israel synagogue
Office hours: Monday-Thursday, 9 a.m.-4 p.m. and Friday, 9 a.m.-2 p.m. Services conducted by Rabbi Ari Dembitzer. friday: Shacharit, 7 a.m.; Mincha/Ma’ariv & Kabbalat Shabbat, 6:07 p.m.; Candle Lighting, 6:07 p.m. saturday: Shacharit, 9 a.m.; Bat Mitzvah of Hanna Stein, 9:30 a.m.; Kiddush Luncheon, 11:30 a.m.; Insights in the Weekly Torah Reading, 5:05 p.m.; Mincha/Seudah Shlishit, 5:50 p.m.; Ma’ariv, 7 p.m.; Havdalah, 7:08 p.m.; Megillah Reading, 7:15 p.m.; Ice Cream Social, 8 p.m.; Late Megillah Reading, 8:30 p.m. sunday: Shacharit, 9 a.m.; Megillah Reading, 9:30 a.m.; Bagels and Beit Medrash, 9:45 a.m.; Megillah Reading, 2 p.m. at Rose Blumkin Home; Megillah Reading, 3 p.m. at Sterling Ridge; Megillah Reading, 5:30 p.m.; CAPOW!, 5:30 p.m.; Mincha, 5:45 p.m.; Purim Seudah, 6:30 p.m.; Purim Costume Parade, 6:45 p.m.; Purim Class “Unlocking the Secrets of the Universe with Wine” with Rabbi Ari, 7:15 p.m. monday: Shacharit, 7 a.m.; Eye on Israel with Rabbi Shlomo, noon at the JCC; Reb Nachman Class with Rabbi Shlomo, 1 p.m. at the JCC; Hebrew America Class-Level II, 7:30 p.m. with Rabbi Shlomo. tuesday & wednesday: Shacharit, 7 a.m. thursday: Shacharit, 7 a.m.; Ethics Class with Rabbi Ari, 7:45 a.m.; Woman’s Class with Rabbi Ari, 9:30 a.m.; Learn with Rabbi Shlomo, noon at UNMC.
Office hours: Monday-Thursday, 9 a.m.-4 p.m. and Friday, 9 a.m.-2 p.m. Services conducted by Rabbi Mendel Katzman. friday: Shacharit, 7 a.m. followed by coffee, treats, study and shmoozing. saturday: Shabbat Morning Service, 9:30 a.m. followed by a festive kiddush luncheon; Purim Megillah Reading: Megilat Esther, 7:30 p.m. sunday: Shacharit, 8:30 a.m. followed by Sunday Secrets: Jewish Fun Facts class at 9:15 a.m.; Purim in Persia, 4 p.m. at the JCC. (See full story on page 5.) weekdays: Shacharit, 7 a.m. followed by coffee, treats, study and shmoozing. monday: Personal Parsha class, 9:30 a.m. with Shani.
tuesday: Women’s Workshop: Women who Changed the World, noon. wednesday: New Tanya Series -- The Anatomy of Your Soul: Who Are You?, 9:30 a.m. with Rabbi Mendel Katzman. thursday: Advanced Talmud Class, noon with Rabbi Mendel Katzman; Women’s Workshop: Women who Changed the World, 7 p.m. Family Passover Seder, monday, april 10, 7:30 p.m. All programs are open to the entire community.
Congregation B’nai Jeshurun
Services conducted by Rabbi Craig Lewis. friday: Candlelighting, 6:10 p.m.; Pre-neg, 6 p.m.; Shabbat Evening Service, 6:30 p.m. saturday: Shabbat Morning Service, 9:30 a.m.; Torah Study, 10:30 a.m. on Parashat Tetzaveh; Havdalah (72 Minutes), 7:41 p.m. sunday: No LJCS Classes; LTYG Purim Carnival, 1:30 p.m.; Purim Spiel, 3 p.m. featuring the music of Elton John; Winter Lecture Series, 7 p.m. at Unitarian Church: Reversing Extreme Inequality: Changing the Story and Fixing the Future with Chuck Collins, Senior Scholar from Institute for Policy Studies in Jamaica Plain, Massachusetts. tuesday: Kochavim Rehearsal, 6:45 p.m. wednesday: No LJCS Hebrew School. thursday: Choir Rehearsal, 7 p.m. SST is partnering with "We Can Do This" to provide weekend meals to the children of the F Street Community Center. Join us as we provide lunch on the third Sunday of every month. Food/monetary donations, meal preparation and assistance with setting up, serving, and clean-up are needed! We will serve our next meal on march 19 at 2:30 p.m. For more information, email Sarah Beringer at firstname.lastname@example.org. LJCS CAMP ISRAEL, July 10–July 21, 9 a.m.–2 p.m. at Tifereth Israel. Kosher lunch and snack provided. LJCS enrolled students entering. Tuition for each week is $75 and if you are enrolling two or more children, the cost is $50 per child, per week. This program is open to children entering kindergarten through sixth grade. Please send tuition checks payable to LJCS to Andrea at Tifereth Israel no later than July 1. Camp registration is required through LJCS. President’s Office Hours, sunday mornings, 10 a.m.– noon at SST. If you have any Temple business you would like to bring before the Board of Trustees, potential programs, or new ideas, please let us know! Call for an appointment at the Temple at 402.513.7697. Or if you prefer, email David Weisser at email@example.com.
offutt air forCe Base
friday: Services, 7:30 p.m. every first and third of the month.
rose Blumkin Jewish home
saturday: Services, 9:15 a.m. led by Alan Shulewitz. Services will be held in the Chapel. Members of the community are invited to attend.
friday: Shabbat Comes to You at Remington Heights, 4 p.m.; Shabbat Service with Grades 1 and 2, 6 p.m.
saturday: Torah Study, 9:15 a.m.; Shabbat Morning Services, 10:30 a.m.; Women’s TiYPE Afternoon: Our Purim, 2 p.m. at Create Craft Studio. It will be a full night of crafting, laughing, and fun. Depending on the craft you would like to make, please bring between $20-$40 dollars for your project. Snacks will be provided. RSVP required. sunday: Grades PreK-6, 10 a.m.; Grief Support Group with Marla Cohen, MS, NCC, LMHP, 10 a.m. For those who have suffered the loss of a loved one; Temple Tots Sunday, 10:30 a.m. Program for children 4 and under. Enjoy stories, songs, crafts (and bagels) with your child, while connecting with our Temple Israel community; Purim Celebration, 10:30 a.m. Annual Purim Spiel and Service followed by the Purim Carnival and lunch of kosher hot dogs, chips and Hamentashen. wednesday: Grades 3-6, 4 p.m.; School Dinner, 6 p.m.; Grades 7-12, 6 p.m.; Family School, 6 p.m.; Cantor-In-Residence Cantor Patti Linsky: Mom, A Wife and a Cantor walk into a Bar, 6:30 p.m. Cantor Linsky performs songs and stories from her acclaimed one woman show Altar EGO. thursday: Cantor-In-Residence Cantor Patti Linsky: God’s Perfect Child, 10 a.m. Cantor Linsky reads her essay about second chances from the published collection Shades of Blue, edited by renown author and playwright Amy Ferris. Cantor in Residence - Cantor Patti Linsky, The Spirituality of Recovery, friday, march 17, 6 p.m. Meanings within Meanings, Stories within Stories: Uncovering the Wisdom of the Torah, thursdays, march 23 & 30 and april 6 at 10 a.m. with Rabbi Crystal.
Services conducted by lay leader Nancy Coren. Office hours: monday-friday, 9 a.m.-1 p.m. friday: Services, 6:30 p.m. saturday: Shabbat Morning Services, 10 a.m. followed by a Kiddush Luncheon; Purim Extravaganza, 6:15 p.m. at the Coren Home. Join us for a light dinner followed by a reading of the Megillah for adults and teens and entertainment for the younger children and pre-teens (starting at approx. 7 p.m.) The evening will end with storyteller, Pippa White, (8-8:30 p.m.) joining us all. Please RSVP by calling the office 402.423.8569 if you are able to join. Wear a costume...bring a noisemaker (if you want) ... sunday: No LJCS Classes. wednesday: No LJCS Hebrew School. The date of the Tifereth Israel Annual Meeting has been changed from June 4 to may 21 at 3 p.m. Please mark your calendar and plan to attend. Join us for a communal seder at Tifereth Israel on monday, april 10 at 6 p.m. A Passover seder for all ages or tuesday, april 11 at 5:45 p.m. for families with children ages 0-13. Reserve a Place Now for yourself and your family! This is a free event to all but donations to help defray expenses may be contributed to the Lay-leader Discretionary Fund. Please RSVP to the office at 402.423.8569 to say you're coming or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org. LJCS CAMP ISRAEL, July 10–July 21, 9 a.m.–2 p.m. at Tifereth Israel. Kosher lunch and snack provided. LJCS enrolled students entering. Tuition for each week is $75 and if you are enrolling two or more children, the cost is $50 per child, per week. This program is open to children entering kindergarten through sixth grade. Please send tuition checks payable to LJCS to Andrea at Tifereth Israel no later than July 1. Camp registration is required through LJCS.
New York’s iconic Katz’s Deli to open Brooklyn outpost
NEW YORK | JTA was changed to Iceland & Katz and, in 1910, Katz’s Delicatessen, a fixture on New York’s when Willy’s cousin Benny bought out the IceLower East Side since 1888, is opening its first lands, the deli oﬃcially became Katz’s Delioutpost -- in downtown catessen. Brooklyn. While the menu in e old-school deli, Brooklyn will be smaller famous for the legthan at the deli’s original endary When Harry Met location on Houston Sally scene “I’ll have and Ludlow streets, prowhat she’s having,” will motional fliers and open an oﬀshoot at the hashtags on social DeKalb Market Hall in media indicate that cusApril, AM New York retomers can expect Katz’s ported recently. classics like pastrami, Credit: Andrew Burton/Getty Images hot dogs and salami. e deli opened in Manhattan’s iconic Jewish neighborhood in the In January, Katz’s operated a temporary poplate 19th century as Iceland Brothers. When up restaurant at the Only You Hotel Atocha in Willy Katz became a co-owner in 1903, the name Madrid, Spain.
The Jewish Press | March 10, 2017 | 15
Hofit and Ran Tsabari of Israel, announce the Jan. 23 birth of their son, Gev. Grandparents are Eadie and Eitan Tsabari of Omaha, and Fanny and Menash Pinhas of Ashkelon.
jacK moRTon scioli
Jack Morton Scioli, son of Andee and Anthony Scioli, will become a Bar Mitzvah on Friday, March 17, at Temple Israel and Saturday, March 18, at Beth El. Jack is a seventh-grade honors student at Westside Middle School and is a participant in the Duke University Talent Identification Program. He will receive state recognition from the Duke TIP this spring for his 7th grade ACT scores. Jack plays baseball with the Omaha Pacesetters and is a member of Westside Connection Show Choir. For his mitzvah project, Jack taught baseball to a good friend with special needs. He has a brother, Joe. Grandparents are Pam and Bruce Friedlander, and Frank Scioli and the late Judith Scioli.
Sheri and Gary Green announce the engagement of their daughter, cari Green to Kevin hagemoser. The bride-to-be graduated with a Bachelor of Science in Education from Bradley University and a Masters degree in Special Education from the University of Nebraska-Omaha. In addition, Cari is currently pursuing a Masters degree in Counseling from University of Nebraska-Omaha, She works in the Millard Public School district as a Behavorial Disorder Special Education Teacher. She is the granddaughter of Phyllis Roffman and the late Normand Roffman, and the late Evelyn and Harry A. Green, all of Omaha. Her fiancé earned his Bachelor of Science-Business Administration from the University of Nebraska-Lincoln. He works as an Information officer for Encounter Telehealth in Omaha where he helps Retirement Communities and their patients stay connected to health care providers via the internet. He is the son of Dorianne and Bret Harpster of Lincoln, and Tim and Manuel Hagemoser of El Paso, TX., and the grandson of Bonnie Hagemoser and Patsy Harpster. A wedding is planned for May 2017 in Omaha.
donald e. TawzeR
Donald E. Tawzer passed away Feb. 19 in Lincoln. Services were held Feb. 23 in Council Bluffs and officiated by Rev. E. Jon Benson. He was preceded in death by his parents, John and Carrie Tawzer, motherin-law and father-in-law, J. Neal and Ardith Sweeney; brothers, Leo, Darrell, Jim, Floyd, Lloyd, and Warren Tawzer. He is survived by his wife of almost 62 years, Dorothy, of Lincoln; daughters and sons-in-law, Sandra and Joel Bleicher of Council Bluffs, and Kathy and Jim Niemann of Omaha; son, John Tawzer of St. Louis, MO; grandchildren: Alison Eggers of Boston, Katherine Eggers of Omaha, Sarah Bleicher of Boston, Aaron Bleicher, Kyle Niemann, both of Omaha; brother and sister-in-law, Chuck and Lottie Tawzer of Council Bluffs; many nieces and nephews. He was a graduate of Creighton University and served in US Army. Memorials may be made to Gateway Sertoma in Lincoln, NE or American Cancer Society.
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Congressman Bacon denounces acts of religious persecution
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WASHINGTON, D.C. Congressman Don Bacon (NE-02) made the following statement denouncing acts of religious persecution: “In light of the recent attacks of desecration at Jewish cemeteries and bomb threats at Jewish Community Centers, I strongly denounce all acts of violence against religious groups that are happening across America. These cowardly acts have no place in our great nation and must be strongly rejected. As Americans, we must stand together to help eradicate persecution in any form and embrace the freedom of religion we all hold so dear.”
Rally against hate crimes
JTA NEWS STAFF Hundreds of protesters attended a demonstration against hate crimes in Philadelphia following the recent vandalism at a Jewish cemetery and hate crimes across the country. e Jewish Federation of Greater Philadelphia organized the rally under the banner “Stand Against Hate” following the toppling of over 100 headstones that were discovered at the Mount Carmel Cemetery on Feb. 26. It was the second of three such incidents in the United States in less than two weeks. Separately, last month saw two more strings of bomb threats called into Jewish community centers, schools and institutions across the country, representing the fourth and fih waves of such harassment this year. Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf said the cemetery vandalism was “the desecration of the values we all hold dear” and called the bomb scares “threats against each and every one of us and our common humanity,” e AP reported. Naomi Adler, CEO of the Jewish Federation of Greater Philadelphia, said she was “incredibly heartened by the outpouring of so many people who come out in the cold to stand against hate.” e incidents were discovered as police in New York reported that anti-Semitic incidents during the first two months of 2017 were up 94 percent in New York City over the corresponding period last year, part of a 55% increase overall in the number of hate crimes. Some critics of President Donald Trump have blamed his divisive rhetoric during and aer the campaign of causing or inspiring the uptick, though others reject the claim. In an recent interview published by the Forward, Abraham Foxman, the former longtime head of the Anti-Defamation League, said pressure on Trump to speak out was misguided, even though he himself had joined the calls last month. Foxman also said the situation following the hate crimes is “serious but not critical.” e ADL on ursday oﬀered a $5,000 reward for information leading to the arrest and conviction of those responsible for the desecration of a Jewish cemetery in Rochester, New York. Five headstones were found toppled that morning at the Waad Hakolel Cemetery, also known as the Stone Road Cemetery. “Although it remains unclear if the attack was motivated by anti-Semitism,” the ADL wrote in a statement, “We are deeply disturbed by the vandalism.” New York Gov. Andrew Cuomo ordered state police to launch a full investigation. Also last month, more than 100 headstones were damaged in vandalism at a St. Louis-area Jewish cemetery.
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16 | The Jewish Press | March 10, 2017
A Cuban pitcher gets a firm grip on life in Israel said he met Eskenazi at the Maccabiah Games in HIllEl KuttlEr TEL AVIV | JTA 2013 and during a visit to Cuba and came away nlike the dangerous maritime esimpressed. capes attempted by some of his fel“He’s a hard-working, honest, good kid. My parlow Cuban baseball players, the ents worked to get refuseniks out of Russia. This worst Alejandro Eskenazi endured was my refusenik moment – helping someone get to leave the island nation was a to Israel,” he said. mountain of paperwork. Eskenazi had visited Israel on a Birthright trip in The documents he gathered and the forms he 2009, as a Birthright leader in 2011 and as a player completed took eight months to process, delaying on Cuba’s softball team at the Maccabiah Games the Havana native’s arrival in Israel until last Aufour years ago. The last trip cemented in his mind gust. But coaching Israeli youngsters in baseball the plan to move to Israel. and playing in a league here made the wait worth “I’d finished my degree, so I was prepared. I reit for Eskenazi, who is participating in a professional alized I wanted to make aliyah,” he said. internship organized by the Masa Israel Journey Eskenazi lived in an apartment in this city’s hip program. Florentine neighborhood with seven other young Eskenazi, 27, came here on a one-year student men doing Masa internships, and is now staying visa and is now a citizen. In flawless English, Eskewith friends nearby nazi explained that he did not flee Cuba and can He acknowledges missing his mother and father, return for visits or to live. He also said his parents whom he calls weekly. Via Facebook, Eskenazi – father Jaime is a mechanical engineer and stays in touch with baseball-playing friends who mother Juanna teaches in a boarding school – face Alejandro Eskenazi demonstrates to an Is- escaped to the United States and the Dominican raeli youngster the proper grip to throw a Republic. no repercussions from their son’s departure. Credit: Hillel Kuttler “One day, I’d like to see them or play with them Jewish Cubans, Eskenazi said, can travel abroad change-up. fairly freely. again,” he said. “I miss my family, friends, neighbors and the Jewish commu“I didn’t want to risk my life. I know how many people died at sea,” he said. nity. But I’m living a new life. It’s fine. Even here, struggling, life is better.” “Being in Israel is a connection with my roots. I want to help Israel in baseball.” Baseball officials here said that they became enamored with Eskenazi’s Eskenazi is the first Cuban athlete to participate in Masa, and teamwork personality and love of coaching. Envisioning him pitching for the Israeli nainvolving American donors and Canadian and Israeli diplomats was needed tional team didn’t hurt, either. for Eskenazi to reach Israel this time -- he had been there three times. With Eskenazi played and coached in a Havana baseball academy, and wants to Israel and Cuba lacking diplomatic relations, Canada’s embassy in Havana and continue on those paths in Israel. He turned his phone to display photographs Israel’s embassy in Ottawa served as intermediaries. of two friends: Arizona Diamondbacks outfielder Yasmany Tomas, his teammate “We thought, what a wonderful way to give him opportunities outside on a Havana youth club, and a Toronto Blue Jays’ prospect, infielder-outfielder Cuba,” said Tony Kahan, a Chicago real-estate developer who with four friends Lourdes Gurriel. Eskenazi hopes to interest them and other Cuban baseball-playcontributed $10,000 toward Eskenazi’s flights and living expenses. Kahan ing friends in the United States, none of them Jewish, in coaching in Israel, too.
Eskenazi wants to spread the baseball gospel by visiting schools across the country and interesting administrators in the sport. He’d like to create a program to train Israelis as coaches and building a baseball infrastructure in a country with only a handful of baseball fields. “I’m just a simple coach. It’s not about me. It’s about collaborating as a group,” Eskenazi said as he bit into a hamburger two hours before leading a biweekly practice session with Israeli youngsters. “There is not baseball [in Israel] like in America, but it has the support [of people] in America.” As for Cuba, he added: “I love my country. If I could have gotten hired with a good salary, I would stay. The environment is good. The government respects us, the Jewish community.” After graduating with a degree in physical education from Havana’s Manuel Fajardo University of Physical Culture and Sports Sciences, Eskenazi worked as a personal trainer. Following major league games was difficult because of poor internet access, so Eskenazi and his friends downloaded video clips when possible and passed them around on flash drives. His favorite players, both now retired, were Greg Maddux, then of the Atlanta Braves, for his ability to mix pitches, and Yankees shortstop Derek Jeter. As a pitcher, Eskenazi is “a huge addition” to the Israeli national team, said Ophir Katz, director of development for the Israel Association of Baseball. The squad will play in a European tournament next summer. “He’s a few levels above the others in the [Israeli] league. He is a dominant starting pitcher, so for short tournaments, that’s huge,” said Katz, who called the slider Eskenazi’s best pitch. As to coaching, Katz said Eskenazi “teaches baseball well and knows the fundamentals of the game. The kids really like him and bond with him, and that’s half the work.” On a warm January evening in this city’s Yarkon Park, Eskenazi led a group of 25 youngsters in runs and throwing drills. They trained on the blacktop of two illuminated basketball courts because the vast park’s sole baseball field lacks lighting. Later, he taught players the grip for throwing a change-up. “He’s more of a professional baseball coach and player. He’s a great pitcher and gives us great tips,” said Uri Shani, 13, of Tel Aviv, a beneficiary of the change-up tutorial. “His level is much better than other coaches in Israel.”