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this week

Reform and Conservative movements oppose Netanyahu bids to annex territory page 6

An old-school Tel Aviv market has become a vegan haven page 12

inside Viewpoint Synagogues Life cycles

Let’s be Friends!

APRIL 1 9 , 2 0 1 9 | 1 4 NISAN 5 7 7 9 | V O L . 9 9 | NO . 2 7 | C a nd LELi g H ti ng | FRID AY , APRIL 1 9 , 7 : 5 0 P. M.


SuSiE norton JSS/JFS Board Member t’s that time of year... the snow has finally melted, birds are singing, and flowers are beginning to bloom. It’s also time for the Jewish Family Service (JFS) Annual Friends Campaign. For better or for worse, JFS is one of our community’s best-kept secrets. We may know that JFS has a food pantry, or that JFS provides mental health counseling, or that JFS provides assistance to Jewish families in need. But JFS is, and does, so much more. I’m a little embarrassed to admit that I didn’t learn about all the services JFS offers to the Jewish community AND the general Omaha community until I became a member of the board of Jewish Senior Services (JSS), the umbrella agency of JFS. The JFS Food Pantry is available to ALL Jewish Omahans, that it includes Kosher foods, and that it has recently been greatly expanded due to the generosity of the family and friends of Ruth Erman, of blessed memory. I’ve also learned that JFS expects to spend $15,000 this year, more than double two years’ ago expenditure, to keep the Food Pantry stocked, to meet the growing needs of our fellow Jews in need.

Let’s talk about wellness page 5

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SponSorEd bY tHE bEnjamin and anna E. wiESman FamiLY EndowmEnt Fund

The Schwalb Center in Japan

who was born to Jewish parents and dr. CurtiS Hutt and Lori ariaS On May 30-31 in Shizuoka, Japan, kicked out of his academic position at the base of Mt. Fuji, the Schwalb in Freiburg University just prior to the Holocaust Center together even though he with other parthad converted to ners from the a very secular University of Neform of Protesbraska at Omaha tant Christianity, (Religious Studwas a partner in ies, the Fried thought to JewAcademy, and ish thinkers like International H e r m a n n Programs) will Cohen, Max bring the study Scheler and Alof contemporary bert Einstein. His Jewish philosomost famous stuphy to East Asia. dents included With Shizuoka Edith Stein and University, loEdmund Husserl Emmanuel Levcated in Omaha’s sister city in Japan, the Schwalb Cen- inas, and second generation intellecter will sponsor unique new research tual progeny like Max Blumenberg on Edmund Husserl and twentieth and Jacques Derrida. Best known as century Jewish philosophy. Husserl, a challenging philosopher, for the first time, this international conference will devote itself to investigating Husserl and religion – in particular, Judaism and a special form of ethical and cultural renewal (hozer beteshuva) that he endorsed to Japanese readers 100 years ago. In a series of three articles in the Japanese journal, Kaizo (“renewal”), two of which were only published in Japanese, Husserl lamented the tragedies See the Schwalb Center page 2

JFS provides $30,000 annually in “direct financial assistance”—help with rent or mortgage payments, utility bills, grocery gift cards and more—to Jewish individuals and families in and around Omaha. But it’s not just the money that JFS provides. JFS offers both mental health counseling and, in response to our community survey, recently began vocational counseling and job search services, to continue to support those most in need. I’ve learned that incredibly dedicated, knowledgeable JFS staff members work tirelessly every year to apply for grants, both Jewish and non-Jewish, to support JFS programs, like a newly-updated Play Therapy Room for children, a comprehensive Suicide Prevention and Education curriculum, and continued programming for Jewish adults with developmental disabilities through the Yachad program. And JFS does so much more! JFS is known in Omaha as the go-to organization for the “Love and Logic” parenting class series. The JFS mental health counselors provide counseling services for students in the Millard Public Schools, that can’t get in to see their own school counselors because they’re so busy. See Let’s be Friends page 3

Join us at the Shuk for Israel’s Independence day

annEttE van dE kamp-wrigHt Editor, Jewish Press It’s time to mark your calendars for the annual Yom Ha’Atzmaut Celebration, wednesday, may 8 at the Jewish Community Center! Festivities start with the

carnival in the JCC Gym at 5:30 p.m. for families with young children not in religious school.There are Israel-related activities throughout the gym, a bounce house and food for purchase from Star See Yom Ha’atzmaut page 3

2 | The Jewish Press | April 19, 2019


Dr. Jonathan and Renee Fox honored by JAC

Former Omahan Dr. Jonathan Fox and his where Dr. Fox has provided orthopedic surgiwife Renee were honored by Jewish Arizonans cal care and Renee has served as COO for the on Campus during Comedy Night, March 6 past 35 years. They combine their Midwest upbringing, a shared in Scottsdale, Arizona. interest in health and JAC offers a home medicine and values away from home for and passion for helpJewish students at Ariing others. zona State University They are founding and the University of members of CongreArizona. The organigation Beth Tefilah zation affords Jewish and have held leaderstudents of all backship roles there over grounds an outstandthe last ten years. ing Jewish education They have been active to complement their in the greater Phoenix university studies towards the goals of Jewish community instemming assimilation cluding serving on the and building educated Phoenix Friends of Jewish families for the IDF Committee generations to come. and the boards of East Jonathan and Renee Fox As children, their Valley JCC and Har parents nurtured in them strong Jewish iden- Zion Congregation. Renee also co-chaired tities, with an emphasis on Jewish education. the Jewish Women’s Philanthropy Board FedJonathan and Renee married in 1984 while eration Luncheon and they have hosted many Jonathan was at the VA Hospital in Phoenix, events for Jewish organizations in their home. doing his orthopedic residency. Together, they Jonathan and Renee are the proud parents established Desert Orthopedic Specialists, of Joelle, Brian and Aaron.

See full digital issues at

The Schwalb Center Continued from page 1 befalling Europe in the wake of World War I. It was here that he laid out a strategy for overcoming the loss of faith in reason that had come to afflict European civilization. Eighteen scholars from around the world will attend this international conference in Japan, which will be presided over by President Kiyoshi Ishii of Shizuoka University and President Yasushi Kato of the Japanese Philosophical Association. Philosophy and Religious Studies specialists from some of the leading universities in Japan, South Korea, China, Germany, Belgium, England, Ireland and the United States will participate. UNO itself will send three scholars to the meeting. Dr. Curtis Hutt, the Director of Programming at the Schwalb Center and an organizer of the event, will give the international conference’s opening talk titled One World: Husserl, Japan, and the Ethics of Renewal. Dr. Mark Celinscak, the Director of the Fried Academy, will present a paper titled Christian Martyr, Jewish Victim: Edith Stein, Auschwitz and the Question of Identity. UNO Religious Studies Chair, Dr. Paul Williams, will explore Husserl’s legacy related to the University of Chicago’s famous school of the History of Religions. Representing his new academic home, Sogang University in Seoul, South Korea, the former UNO philosopher Dr. Halla Kim will present his work on Hermann Cohen and Edmund Husserl’s extremely influential concepts of the Other. In addition, special presentations will be made

by speakers from the Husserl Archives in Leuven, Belgium. The keynote talk will be given by Dr. Dermot Moran of University College Dublin and Boston College – The Unity of a Spiritual Life: Husserl on Cultural Phenomenology.

The University of Nebraska and Shizuoka University signed a sibling institution agreement in 1979. This year marks the 40th year that UNO will bring in approximately 15 Shizuoka University students for the annual Shizuoka Summer Tour. This three-week program in August features conversational English classes, homestays, Omaha tours, as well as a trip to Western Nebraska, Mt. Rushmore and the Badlands. UNO and Shizuoka University are proud to have exchanged approximately 1,800 faculty, staff and students over the past four decades. Many academic year scholarships offered by the Japanese government and by UNO are given to students annually. Multiple music and other group exchanges have helped grow this most active sister university relationship. Later this fall UNO will send representatives to celebrate this landmark anniversary year. Last fall, President Ishii from Shizuoka University and colleagues visited UNO to present a Philosophy lecture and to honor our long partnership.



Wednesday, May 1 | 7PM Temple Israel - 13111 Sterling Ridge Dr.

For more info, visit

Beth Israel Synagogue, Beth El Synagogue, Temple Israel, the Gertrude T. & Albert B. Newman Endowment Fund, the Morton A. Richards Youth Program Fund (both of the Jewish Federation of Omaha Foundation), Shirley & Leonard Goldstein Supporting Foundation, Murray H. & Sharee C. Newman Supporting Foundation Photo Credit: Cynthia J. Kohll Photography

The Jewish Press | April 19, 2019 | 3

Tritz Plumbing Inc. 402-894-0300 repair • remodel

downtown shabbat: Omaha’s Berkshire Weekend Tradition


GaBBy Blair Staff Writer, Jewish Press hroughout Omaha, preparations are underway for the annual Berkshire Hathaway meeting. The event, scheduled to take place in downtown Omaha’s CenturyLink Center over the first weekend in May, draws in thousands of shareholders, many of whom the journey to Omaha has become a much anticipated tradition. As in years past, the Omaha Jewish community is preparing to welcome Jewish visitors from around the world with Chabad’s annual Downtown Shabbat and Kosher Concierge service. Specifically designed for those seeking an island of calm in an otherwise frenetic weekend, Omaha’s Downtown Shabbat is always conveniently located in close proximity to the CenturyLink Center where many will gather over the weekend. This year, Chabad is pleased to announce that Shabbat dinner and services will be held on Friday May 3, at 6:30 p.m.

Yom Ha’Atzmaut

Continued from page 1 Catering, with one special detail: “Thanks to a brainstorming session with some of my JWRP sisters,” Cultural Arts Director Esther Katz said, “we decided to bring the Shuk to the JCC! Children will earn coins, ‘shekels’, at the various games, rather than tickets, and take those coins to the ‘shuk,’ where they can buy prizes with their shekels. The carnival is for toddlers through middle schoolers. There is something fun for everyone.” At 6 p.m., we will pause everything for the Yom Hazikaron ceremony. Clergy from all synagogues will lead a fifteen-minute ceremony to commemorate fallen soldiers. Afterwards, Carnival fun will continue with a dance party (there will be a DJ!) and more games. The Hebrew School schedule for all synagogues is as follows: 4-6: p.m. 3rd through 6th graders and Beth El 7th graders - Snack and Activities in JCC Auditorium 6-6:15 p.m. Yom HaZikaron Ceremony in JCC Gym 6:15-7:30 p.m. Carnival with parent supervision Hebrew High School 8th-12th grade and Temple 7th grade: 6-6:15 p.m. Yom HaZikaron Ceremony in the JCC Gym 6:15 p.m. head up to the JCC auditorium 6:30-7 p.m. dinner and group activity with Israeli teen delegation 7-8 p.m. Trivia contest JFO Shlicha Ron Lugasy said: “We’re all so excited to make this year’s celebration as educational as possible! We’ll be training the 3rd through 7th graders for the IDF. They will learn the spirit and values of the IDF, learn some Krav Maga and practice breaking a code. They will


B’nai B’rith BreadBreakers

Douglas County Treasurer John ewing now in his 13th year in office, has moved the county into the digital age and saved the county a whole lot of money. He’ll talk about the challenges and the changes on Wednesday, april 24, noon. For more information or to be placed on the email list call 402.334.6443 or bnai brith@jewish

Shabbat morning services will take place at 7 a.m., followed by a delicious kiddush brunch and an all-day open house at a soon to be announced location. Guests are encouraged to stop by for a schmooze, a snack and meaningful connections throughout the day. Exclusive details about a fabulous preShabbat reception will be announced soon! This event is open to locals and out-of-town visitors alike and is held in loving memory of the program’s founder, Forest Krutter. Krutter took much pride in this welcoming, Nebraska-styled hospitality initiative with heavy Jewish flavors. Exclusive content will be taught by renowned educators to commemorate Forest’s commitment to consistent Talmud ‘chavrusa’ with Rabbi Katzman. Please reserve a spot for you and a friend at ochabad. com/brk. Contact our office for more information or if you are interested in volunteering, hosting Jewish visitors from around the world or in sponsorship opportunities at 402.330.1800.

learn to work together during a relay race and there will be a mock ceremony at the end.” Helping out with the entire program will be the teen delegation from Israel. “Nine teenagers from the Western Galilee are staying with host families from May 6th through the 9th,” Ron said, “and they will join our Hebrew High students at the Trivia Contest.” There is no cost for community members to attend and everyone is welcome. Community members who want to participate in the Trivia contest, please RSVP to lsullivan@jewishoma The Yom Ha’Atzmaut celebrations are made possible through the generosity of the Herbert Goldsten Trust, the Murray H. and Sharee C. Newman Supporting Foundation and the Albert and Eleanor Feldman Family Israel Foundation.

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let’s be Friends

Continued from page 1 And maybe most importantly, I’ve learned that only about 45% of the JFS annual budget comes from the Jewish Federation of Omaha’s annual campaign. JFS relies heavily on private donations from generous individuals to be able to continue to provide the wide range of services to any and all of us, as Jews and as Omahans. The JFS Annual Friends Campaign is the primary means of raising these much-needed funds. We hope to raise at least $25,000 through this year’s Friends Campaign by June 30. Spring has sprung in Omaha, and it’s a new season. Although at JFS, need has no season; it’s all year-round. Please join me in becoming a Friend of JFS, to help meet the needs of those most vulnerable in our Jewish community and beyond. There are three easy ways to donate to JFS and become a Friend: By phone: Call Jewish Family Service at 402.330.2024; return your pledge card to Jewish Family Service with either your credit card information or an enclosed check; or by PayPal: Go to and look for the PayPal link.

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

4 | The Jewish Press | April 19, 2019

JCC 3 on 3 Basketball Tournament winners

JCC Predators On Sunday, April 7, the JCC Omaha Eddie Belgrade Memorial 3 on 3 Basketball Tournament hosted 48 teams. In all, 120 games were played! Congratulations to our division winners: JCC Predators (3rd-4th Boys), Hawks (3rd-5th Girls), Average Joes (5th-6th Boys), Noonan (7th Boys), All Stars (8th-9th Boys), and #Scrubs (Adult). A big THANK YOU to our Hawks sponsors: Belgrade Company, Broadmoor Development Company, Red H Nutrition, Scheels, Zios Pizzeria, Lawlors, Letsek LLC, Nannen & Harte Physical Therapy, Hy-Vee and Ideal Pure Water.


Four Cups of Freedom

Sunday April 7, community members came together in the JCC Auditorium to participate in ‘Four Cups of Freedom,’ a program started by Shaliach Yoni Doron in 2018. Our current Shlicha, Ron Lugasy, enthusiastically followed in Yoni’s foot steps and arranged an engaging program for those in attendance. The main question the forum posed was: Religious Freedom: Myth or Reality? With the help of moderators, participants examined the place of religion in the United States and Israel while enjoying light snacks and wine. Speakers were Dr. Max Perry Mueller, Assistant Professor of Religious Studies, University of Nebraska-Lincoln and the co-founder of and Dr. Curtis Hutt, Associate Professor of Religious Studies, Executive Director at the Goldstein Center for Human Rights, Director of Programming at the Schwalb Center for Israel and Jewish Studies, University of Nebraska at Omaha Max Perry Mueller (PhD, Harvard University) is a historian and theorist of race and religion in American history and culture. He is the author of Race and the Making of the Mormon People and the forthcoming Wakara’s America: A Native and American History of the West. Dr. Mueller talked about The Limits of American (Religious) Exceptionalism. Curtis earned his Ph.D. at Brown University in Religion and Critical Thought. His expertise is the history of Judaism and Christianity. He has studied and worked in a wide variety of institutions in Jerusalem since 1985. Dr. Hutt talked about Freedom from Religion in Israel.

Average Joes


All Stars

Let’s talk about wellness

The Jewish Press | April 19, 2019 | 5

Dorothy Kripke (z”l), the wonderful children’s book author, published a series titled Let’s Talk About... Her topics included G-d, the Sabbath, Right and Wrong. The JCC Wellness Committee is borrowing her good idea, with credit and respect, to talk about wellness. This article is the first in a series. Deborah Denenberg he new JCC Wellness Committee is examining the nutritional environment of the JCC, the CDC and other youth programming. What does wellness mean? It’s a broad term used to describe aspects of the public health. The University of Nebraska at Lincoln defines wellness as “an interactive process of becoming aware of and practicing healthy choices to create a more successful and balanced lifestyle.” Dr. Ayman El Mohandes, the founding Dean of the Nebraska School of Public Health at UNMC, outlined these wellness categories: • Food and Nutrition • Exercise and Mobility • Safety and Injury Prevention • Mental and Behavioral Health • Sexual and Reproductive Health While all these categories are important, our JCC Wellness Committee is urgently focused on food and nutrition. Why? Because the statistics are so alarming. Thirty percent of Nebraskans, including our children, are

overweight or obese, and obesity recently surpassed nicotine as the number one form of preventable death in America. We noted “preventable” and decided to take action. One could argue that many factors enter the obesity equation, including how much time we spend exercising vs. watching our screens. However, about 90 percent of childhood obesity is related to what children eat. Food and nutrition seemed an impactful place to start. We teach our children the story of the Jewish sage Zusya. On his deathbed, Zusya was visibly fearful. His students surrounded him.

“Why are you fearful, our teacher? Are you afraid when you meet your Maker, he will ask, ‘Why weren’t you more like Abraham or Isaac or Moses?’ “No,” Zusya responded, I am afraid He will ask, ‘Why weren’t you more like Zusya.’” This story teaches us to wholeheartedly be ourselves, and to use Gd’s resources to be the best we can be. Our JCC is an elite health and fitness facility. Let’s be who we are. Let’s create a nutritional environment reflecting the same excellence as our physical plant, programming and staff. Join our efforts, send comments or questions to:

This program is offered in five- or ten-week packages. Each package includes two 30-minute personal training sessions per week and two 30minute nutrition sessions per week. Cost for a five-week package is $482; a tenweek package costs $888. Packages can be purchased at Member Services. The JCC offers a wide variety of specialty classes to help you reach your fitness goals. For more information, please contact the Fitness Cen-

ter staff at 402.334.6423. Good nutrition doesn’t have to be boring! Knowing what foods can drag you down or get you ready can make a big difference in your workout. For additional tips and to read what our trainers have to say about nutrition, please visit “Trainers in the Kitchen” at jcc/fitness. Here, you will find easy-to-follow advice, trainer tips and healthy recipes, like ‘Beth’s African Peanut Stew’ or ‘Brussel Sprout Salad.’

New at the JCC: Food and Fitness Training Participants in the new Food and Fitness Training will work with Heather Bucksner, a certified Nutrition Counselor and Personal Trainer, to receive family friendly recipes and pre/post workout snack ideas, diet tips, workouts and accountability and motivation. Heather will teach you how to avoid the common nutrition setbacks and how to enjoy the foods you love without overdoing it. Combined with personal training, it’s a recipe for success!

community eko nova: The Forces Inside

The Omaha Chamber Music Society is presenting the final concert of its new music series, Eko Nova, on Monday, april 22 at 7 p.m. The performance, The Forces Inside, is part of a partnership with art exhibition and creative space KANEKO, and an opportunity to experience live 20th and 21st century music in a modern setting away from the concert hall. John Klinghammer, original creator of Eko Nova and 3rd/Bass Clarinetist for the Kansas City Symphony, is returning to Omaha for this series finale, performing works by Gilad Cohen, Erwin Schulhoff and Kevin Puts. He’ll be joined by friends and colleagues Stirling Trent, Maria Crosby, Katie Wychulis and Michael Compitello – violin, cello, harp and percussion respectively. Two out of three works on the program have been written in the last twenty years; Cohen’s Trio for a Spry Clarinet, Weeping Cello and Ruminating Harp was commissioned in 2010, and Kevin Puts’ And Legions Will Rise was finished in 2001. Complemented by Schulhoff’s Duo for Violin and Cello, the program illuminates the expressive forces inside creative artists who refuse to be silent and who, with their unique voices, share messages that transcend both personal crises and the great tragedies of the past and present. More information and tickets can be found at

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Featuring John Klinghammer

John Klinghammer returns to Omaha with Kansas City compatriots Maria Crosby, Michael Compitello and Stirling Trent, performing daring contemporary works alongside Omaha harpist Katie Wychulis. Tickets and registration at

JWRP Reflections: Michele Aizenberg Ansari

6 | The Jewish Press | April 19, 2019

community Cantor Shermet Celebration Service

CaSSaNdra HiCKS WEiSENburgEr Director of Communications, Temple Israel Make sure to mark your calendar for Temple Israel’s special service honoring Cantor Wendy Shermet on Friday, April 26 at 7 p.m. (please note later service time). Everyone is invited to this wonderful service where we will honor Cantor Shermet’s legacy and celebrate her retirement after 18 years with joy, music and a few surprises! A special oneg will follow. Cantor Wendy Shermet

Calling anyone over the age of 75 and family members...

KarEN guSTafSoN Executive Director, Jewish Family Service Jewish Family Service is facilitating a discussion about Suicide Risk in this age group. We will present some facts, warning signs and prevention strategies. We will also talk about protective factors and why we need to challenge the stigma of mental health so that we can help friends, family and community members. We are holding all age-specific discussions in smaller venues so that it lends to a more intimate discussion and helps to build connection... one of the greatest protective factors to prevent suicide. We hope that you don’t view this as “it doesn’t apply to me;” it applies to everyone. This discussion will be held on May 6 from 1:30-3 p.m. at the Rose Blumkin Jewish Home. RSVP’s are needed by May 3 to Maggie Conti at

MiCHElE aizENbErg aNSari people, throughout the world to unite and persevere, is truly Over the past three years, e Jewish Federation of impressive and ingenious. e result is one that surely will Omaha has collaborated with e Jewish Women’s Renais- engage me for the rest of my lifetime and be passed down. sance Project (JWRP) sending mothers from our commue human condition is complex and religious beliefs nity to Israel for an unforgettable trip of a lifetime. is oen dictate how we relate to each other. Unfortunately, reseries shares their stories and highlights their experiences. lations are oen negative and actions illustrate lack of den adult life, opportunities cency for another human being. to have a positive transOur visit to Galilee Medical Center formational experience was enlightening. We witnessed the may be sparse. e many positive impact that Partnership2 on goings of life’s joys Gether Central Area has in the reand many hardships gion. Additionally, the physicians oen prevail. is enat GMC treat a patient regardless of ables us to become encomreligious affiliation or background. passed by routine, isolation, is is truly humanitarian. patterns, and status quo. How can one not feel a sense of For me, the opportunity to go pride when it is our people who on the JWRP women’s group have stepped out of the box to trip (October 2018), was just demonstrate decency and virtue such an experience. Admittedly, for all? I know that I do. I was initially skeptical about the whole thing. As the date drew near, I developed some enthusiasm as I reluctantly le my family and work as I had never been away for so long. e experience provided me with more than words can adequately describe. e immediMichele aizenberg ansari ate and far reaching effects overlooking the Meditertouch virtually every aspect of ranean Sea at rosh my life. I have a refreshed perHaNikra. spective of self, as a partner, mother, friend, colleague, doctor, educator, daughter, sister, and Jew. Furthermore, the deep sense of community of the JewMichele aizenber g ansari and Es ish people is something that I never fully appreciated bether Katz at the novation & Tech birthright inno logy Center in Te fore, for a variety of reasons. To witness the developed l aviv. infrastructure (local and global) of the Jewish people, our

looking for a few Women: 2019 JWRP Women’s Trip gabby blair Staff Writer, Jewish Press You have read the stories of past participants in the Passover issue of the Press... now it is time to make some memories of your own! Do not delay; apply for the 2019 JWRP women’s trip today! Enjoy nine days in Israel, Nov. 4-12, 2019. Join women from all over the world for an unforgettable experience enjoying and exploring the sights, sounds and flavors of Israel. Be empowered through provoking classes led by

Passover We’re Happy In The Neighborhood! There’s something for everyone KHULWDJHFRPPXQLWLHVFRP 402-504-3111 |WK 3DFL¿FLQ2PDKD



world-class speakers and discover how to connect on a deeper level with yourself, your family and your community. Did we mention the trip is FREE!? Participants need only to cover their airfare, and nominal application and gratuity fees along with a fully refundable $500 trip deposit. Please contact Louri Sullivan, JFO Senior Director of Community Impact and Special Projects at 402.334.6485 or with questions and for more information about fees, requirements and deadlines.

The Jewish Press | April 19, 2019 | 7

Congregational Celebrations at Temple Israel


CAssAndrA HiCks Weisenburger Director of Communications, Temple Israel oin our entire Temple Israel community for a weekend of celebration honoring our confirmation class, our graduating high-school seniors and our beloved retiring Religious School Director Sharon ComisarLangdon. We invite and encourage you to be present for these sacred moments in the lives of our children and the life of Temple Israel. Join us for a special Shabbat service on Friday, May 3 at 6 p.m. where we will give tribute to Sharon Comisar-Langdon, who is retiring after four years as our Religious School Director. We will honor our outgoing OTYG board and Youth Advisor Jacob Kahn, and install the new 2019-2020 OTYG board. We will give special blessings for our graduating high-school seniors. Also, the Brandon Thomas Pursuit of Passion Scholarship will

be presented to Alec Feidman, son of Nancy Feidman and Ted Feidman, followed by an oneg in Brandon’s memory sponsored by Elly and Bob Gordman, Andie Gordman and Dan Fitzgerald, and Lindsey Thomas. On Sunday, May 5 at 10:30 a.m. our entire congregational community will come together to celebrate the confirmation of our 10th graders, as they affirm their place in the Jewish community and embrace our tradition as their own. Because our high-school students are role models to our younger children, this year’s confirmation service will include our younger students as participants along with confirmands. There will be a community brunch open to all following the service. Please RSVP to Temple Israel, 402.556.6536. In addition to celebrating our 10th graders, we will be dedicating new links on our L’dor V’dor sculpture outside our main doors. We look forward to seeing you there!

The Haggadah as a graphic novel

mAtt robinson that the Haggadah was able to deal with some JTA mature issues — slavery and inhumanity, for exAt Passover each year we are reminded that ample — in a way that was appropriate and apeven though the original story is generations proachable.“This book is for everyone,” Zadok old, we are supposed to engage with the nar- says, “but it would make me very satisfied to rative as if we were slaves in Egypt. Unfortu- know that a mature audience enjoys it as well.” nately, most Haggadahs are about as engaging While this is not the first collaboration beas a Maxwell House percolator. tween Zadok and Gorfinkel (who also coThis year, however, two Jewish artists have created the 3 O’Clock Club comic series), created a vibrant addition to the alternative Zadok says it was still difficult to orchestrate. Haggadah canon: a graphic novel version of the “This project was very challenging to illusPassover story that also takes readers through the seder. It’s the creation of Jordan B. “Gorf ” Gorfinkel, a former DC Comics editor (he oversaw the Batman franchise for a decade), and Israeli artist Erez Zadok. The pair met at a Lim- A page from the Passover Haggadah Graphic Novel Credit: Koren Publishers mud event in Britain. trate because we had so many restrictions,” he “When Gorf told me about his concept for says, noting that the multi-era illustrations this Haggadah, I was hooked,” says Zadok, a involved considerable research in order to enBezalel Academy of Arts graduate who is sure accuracy and authenticity. “We wanted known for his autobiographical series Bundle the readers to feel like the book was made esof Joya. pecially for them, regardless of their knowlThe Haggadah has traditional seder text on edge or religious practice.” Perhaps this is the right-hand pages, while the left-hand why Zadok is looking forward to spending pages contain an action-packed graphic novel Passover with family and friends and then rethat expands on the Passover story and alter- turning to other projects that may be more nates between modern and ancient times. personal in nature. Zadok suggests that the goal was to engage “I have nothing against illustrating other trareaders and seder participants of every age. ditional biblical stories,” he said, “but right now While many still see graphic novels as kid I prefer... to create worlds based on my own stuff, Zadok and Gorfinkel tried to make sure imagination. Let’s see what the future holds.”

Men on Boats coming to the omaha Community Playhouse Men on Boats opens at the Omaha Community Playhouse on may 3. Adventure, bravery and humorous absurdity—led by an all-female cast—Men on Boats is the “true-ish” story of ten explorers on four boats charting the course of the Colorado River in 1869. Guided by a one-armed captain, the outlandish but loyal crew encounters various disasters, conflicts and harrowing adventures along

the way. The Omaha Community Playhouse production will run from may 3 through may 26 in the Howard Drew Theatre. Tickets are on sale now and start at $30. Tickets may be purchased at the Omaha Community Playhouse Box Office, located at 6915 Cass Street, by phone at 402.553.0800 or online at

Class of 2019 HIGH SCHOOL SENIORS High School Seniors and Parents

We will be publishing our annual High School Graduation Class pages on May 17, 2019. To be included, email us the graduate’s name, parents’ names, current high school and the college you plan to attend, plus a photo to: by May 1, 2019.


8 | The Jewish Press | April 19, 2019

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(Founded in 1920) abby kutler President annette van de kamp-Wright Editor Richard busse Creative Director susan bernard Advertising Executive Lori kooper-schwarz Assistant Editor Gabby blair Staff Writer Thierry ndjike Accounting Jewish Press board Abby Kutler, President; Eric Dunning, Ex Officio; Laura Dembitzer; Candice Friedman; Jill Idelman; Andy Isaacson; Michael Kaufman; David Kotok; Natasha Kraft; Debbie Kricsfeld; Eric Shapiro and Amy Tipp. 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:; 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@jew; send ads (in TIF or PDF format) to: rbusse@jewishom 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 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. 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. Postal The Jewish Press (USPS 275620) is published weekly (except for the first week of January and July) on Friday for $40 per calendar year U.S.; $80 foreign, by the Jewish Federation of Omaha. Phone: 402.334.6448; FAX: 402.334.5422. Periodical postage paid at Omaha, NE. POSTMASTER: Send address changes to: The Jewish Press, 333 So. 132 St., Omaha, NE 68154-2198 or email to:

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yellow stars

anneTTe van de kamP-WRiGhT Editor, Jewish Press udaism does not believe in parental rights,” Rabbi Jeffrey K. Salkin wrote for “It believes in parental responsibility. The Talmud says Jewish parents are obligated to teach their children three things: Torah, a trade, and how to swim. “Swimming” is a metaphor. Parents need to teach their children how to avoid dangerous situations. Like, for example, infectious diseases.” The man in the photo on this page goes by the name Del Bigtree. He is the CEO of the group ICAN (an anti-vaccination outfit operating out of Los Angeles) and hosts his own radio show. Bigtree has a beef with certain vaccines, which he claims cause all kinds of medical side effects, including but not limited to autism. However, not vaccinating has its own side effects. “As of April 10, at least 285 people in New York City — mainly in Brooklyn’s Williamsburg and Borough Park neighborhoods — had fallen ill. In nearby Rockland County, 168 people have caught the virus. What’s notable here is that the affected communities are closely linked: Cases are occurring mostly among unvaccinated or under-vaccinated Orthodox Jews, particularly children. When asked why people are opting out of vaccines, the New York City health department said anti-vaccine propagandists are distributing misinformation in the community.” ( Officials in Rockland County, NY, last month attempted to ban unvaccinated non-adult teens and children from public spaces through an emergency declaration. The ban was quickly overturned by New York State Court, because the numbers of those who had fallen ill did not constitute an emergency. No matter what science proves, again and again, Bigtree and his friends continue to promote their anti-vaccination agenda. Never mind the measles outbreaks that result when people choose to listen to him, never mind the fact that not vaccinating your child puts others at risk. It seems very simple. I may not always feel like stop-

ping for a red light. I’m going to do it anyway, because if I don’t, I could end up hurt- and likely harm other drivers as well. If those other drivers also stop for red lights, we’ll all come home safe. Vaccines are not really that different. Not true, says the anti-vaccine movement. In fact, forcing them to get vaccinated by banning unvaccinated children from schools or other public places is akin to persecution. Like, you know, the Jews in World War II.

It is very hard today to not be political and to not take a side that others would oppose. In preparing to write this op-ed article, I have thought long and hard about this challenge and would like to say that the only side I want to be on is the side of humanity. scoTT LiTTky As the executive director Executive Director, IHE of the Institute for Holocaust Education, I continue to see examples in today’s world that echo the Jewish experience during the dark days of Nazi Germany. As a center for education and understanding, I feel it is our duty to teach human empathy and understanding and to not stand as a passive bystander and to speak out for the human rights of all people. The question we face today is how to do this and to not serve a political side but to serve on the side of Tikkun Olam and Gemilut Hassidim as we learn from our Jewish heritage. Let me explain further by providing examples of how we attempt to get our message across in Nebraska to both the Jewish and secular world. We look for opportunities to assist in programs both in the public and private sector. This year we are fortunate to be involved in two program areas with Creighton University. First we assisted in preparatory discussions with the cast of Kindertransport to help them understand the topic that they would be presenting in their play. We also were able to take part in a “talkback” after one of their performances with our staff, a local survivor and a member of the drama department. In the Law School we are doing joint programming to assist with their annual From Nuremberg to The Hague trip for law students. Each year we reach over 6000 students during

our Week of Understanding programming where Holocaust survivors from outside of Nebraska and our local survivors share their stories to help educate our youth to never forget and to make sure the tragic events of the Holocaust do not happen again. During this year’s Week of Understanding we held 20 programs in schools and two programs that were open to the community. Attendance at our community programs was at an all time high. Our Stories of Humanity exhibit at the SAC Museum in Ashland is visited by thousands of people each year, and we continue to offer programming to eighth-grade classes who spend a full day visiting the museum and learning from one of our local survivors. Through our Art in the Holocaust program and our annual essay contest, students are able to express themselves and gain insight into topics associated with one’s obligation to their fellow human beings. In each of these programs they see the personal and individual side of both survivors and rescuers. Through our partnership with Lutheran Family Services we have participated in the Stories of Survival program over the last two years. This past fall we presented three women’s stories: Kitty Williams, Holocaust survivor; Channy Chhi Laux, the Cambodian Killing Fields and Shireen Ibrahim, the Yazidi genocide. Each woman’s story was horrible to listen to and caused the audience to realize that in our world today we still have much work to do. Our work is not even close to being done. Each day in our news we learn of continued acts of hatred and violence to different minorities. As we do

To make that point, activists accompanied Bigtree at a recent rally in Austin, Texas and pinned yellow stars to their lapels. On it, they wrote “No Vax,” in Hebrew-styled letters. Because someone telling you to get vaccinated is exactly like being forced on the train to Auschwitz, apparently. Vaccine rules, they say, are just like state-sponsored genocide. "For all the Hasidic Jews in New York right now who never thought this moment would come, I am saying I stand with you!” Bigtree said. “I stand with a nation that said we will never oppress the minorities, we will stand for your religious convictions. We have seen that before and we will never let this happen in this beautiful country." Not sure what to say to that? You’re not alone. Even ADL’s national director Jonathan Greenblatt’s statement

Getting our message across

felt somewhat tepid. “It is simply wrong to compare the plight of Jews during the Holocaust to that of antivaxxers,” he told the Washington Post. “Groups advancing a political or social agenda should be able to assert their ideas without trivializing the memory of 6 million Jews slaughtered in the Holocaust.” Reading Greenblatt’s words, you can feel him rolling his eyes. Confronting this level of tone-deafness seems a bit pointless. A stronger condemnation came from Poland’s Auschwitz Memorial and Museum: “Instrumentalizing the fate of Jews who were persecuted by hateful anti-Semitic ideology and murdered in extermination camps like Auschwitz with poisonous gas in order to argue against vaccination that saves human lives is a symptom of intellectual and moral degeneration.” The neo-Nazis also piped in; one commenter on the Daily Stormer website suggested “every minor slight, insult and emotionally jarring event should now be symbolized with the gold star, Dilute the **** out of its meaning.” The question is, should we worry more about those stars, the cultural appropriation and inherent anti-Semitism, or about the vaccination story itself? Because the danger here is that we all become so distracted by the use of the stars that we forget the real issue. People are getting sick. “Vaccine refusal is having a real-world impact. Two decades ago, measles was all but eradicated from the U.S. Now, cases are skyrocketing, with more than 1,700 infections since 2010. In the first six months of 2018, more than 41,000 Europeans contracted measles and 37 died.” (Sarah Fecht, Columbia University, Earth Institute) Maybe it was Bigtree’s intention to distract and muddle the issue. Maybe I’m just paranoid. Perhaps it’s possible to do both: have an honest debate about vaccination, continue to explain the science and at the same time get the point across that using yellow stars as a weapon is most definitely not okay. 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.

continue to change our world to be more understanding, to show empathy and to rise up and help those in need, we will continue to remind ourselves that human decency overrides all and that we are each other’s keeper!

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Announcements may be e-mailed to the Press at 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: 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.

The Jewish Press | April 19, 2019 | 9

The Passover kitniyot argument isn’t worth a hill of beans ANdRew SIlow-CARRoll JTA Israel held elections under the cloud of its leader’s possible indictment. The world’s far right and its far left have found common cause in their hatred of the Jews. There is a measles outbreak among the Orthodox. And friends want to kvetch about kitniyot. Every year around this time, certain kinds of Jews begin to obsess over what they’ll be eating over Passover. The rules are complicated, but essentially during the weeklong holiday you can’t eat any leavened bread or even products, like certain kinds of grains, that could rise on their own. So no barley, oats, rye, spelt or wheat. Sorry, spelt fans. It’s symbolic, you understand: You eat matzah to remember how the Jews fled Egypt without time to let their bread rise. You deny yourself other leavened products to recall what they gave up to escape the bondage. You complain about the diet because, well, that symbolizes being Jewish. And if that weren’t enough, Ashkenazi Jews (those with roots in Eastern and Western Europe) add another level of stringency. Under the theory that you can’t be too careful, their rabbis also forbid corn, rice, beans and lentils, foodstuffs that sometimes mimic the qualities of the other forbidden foods. That’s kitniyot. Sephardic Jews, with roots in North Africa and the Middle East, are allowed to eat kitniyot during Passover under the theory that only a complete idiot can’t tell the difference between a loaf of bread and bag of lentils. Kitniyot is the designated hitter of Jewish life: a rule change accepted by the Sephardic League and rejected by the Ashkenazi League. The result among Ashkenazim is a paralyzing case of kitniyot envy. Even as the makers of kosher food add more and more products that are perfectly fine for Passover, and home chefs become more and more creative in the kitchen, many Ashkenazi Jews treat the rice, corn and bean ban like a personal tragedy.

And when I say “many Ashkenazi Jews,” I mean the minor- house of leavened products, eating odd foods at a festive meal, ity who a) observe Passover, b) follow the rules and c) talk to staring down at the pale tuna salad and tasteless matzah that is me at kiddush. otherwise known as lunch — is But it turns out the Ashkenazi for the faithful a physical embodkitniyot lobby was stronger than iment of the Passover message: a you might think. In 2015, the liberation from the self you were, Conservative movement’s raba taste of what your ancestors went binic authorities lifted the ban on through, an act of denial meant to kitniyot for non-Sephardim. They mark the season and your comreasoned that the ban was in Jewmitment to a higher power. ish historical terms fairly recent “Why is this night different (what’s 800 years among friends?) from all other nights?” is the cenand that modern concerns over tral question of the whole nutrition, finances and even Jew- Rice, lentils, chick peas, beans and other legumes shown Passover enterprise. It is supish unity outweighed whatever in a produce market in Netanya, Israel. posed to be different — a week Credit: David Silverman/Getty Images that makes you to stop and ask qualms led to the original ban. And apparently, the kitniyot prohibition was tearing apart questions. The memory of liberation becomes a physical and mixed marriages — that is, Ashkenazim married to Sephardim. spiritual sensation conjured up from the unfamiliar menu. Like God in Egypt, the rabbis heard the people’s plea. Think of that matzah as Proust’s madeleine, if “madeleine” But that only led to more angst. It’s one thing to complain were French for “this tastes like matzah.” when something is forbidden. But with choice comes responPassover doesn’t begin for me until I taste the first sprig of sibility: After all these decades, is the family ready for corn parsley dipped in saltwater on the night of seder. I taste spring, chowder at the seder? A lentil side dish? Rice with the brisket? and new beginnings, and maybe what it means to be a free Dare I eat a Pesach … risotto? person choosing to do something as strange and mysterious These aren’t culinary questions but essential questions as eat unfamiliar foods according to centuries-old rituals. about faith and tradition itself. Religious leaders of all faiths Sephardim react similarly to their distinct Passover restrichave long noted that there are at least two kinds of religious tions. But for Ashkenazi boomers like me, Passover is suptraditions: those that come down from above and those that posed to taste like the things we can’t eat. The less the merrier. percolate up from below. We call it rabbinic Judaism because So spare me your whining about kitniyot. The eight days of rabbis were the lawmakers, setting the boundaries for what is Pesach are shorter than the typical vacation, when you can and isn’t acceptable based on the Torah and the library of get used to eating all kinds of weird stuff. In fact, think of Pecommentaries that followed. sach as a vacation from yourself, your own private getaway to But Judaism is also the lived experience of its adherents. And Jerusalem, or the Red Sea, or, what the hell, Cancun. while the Passover diet is legally prescribed, it is also lived as a OK, don’t think of Mexico. I heard they do great things with profound spiritual act. The Passover rituals — clearing the rice, beans and corn in Mexico.

A Congratulate $36

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10 | The Jewish Press | April 19, 2019

synagogues B’NAi iSRAeL SyNAgogue

618 Mynster Street Council Bluffs, IA 51503-0766 712.322.4705 email:

Beth eL SyNAgogue

Member of United Synagogues of Conservative Judaism 14506 California Street Omaha, NE 68154-1980 402.492.8550

Beth iSRAeL SyNAgogue

Member of Union of Orthodox Jewish Congregations of America 12604 Pacific Street Omaha, NE. 68154 402.556.6288

ChABAd houSe

An Affiliate of Chabad-Lubavitch 1866 South 120 Street Omaha, NE 68144-1646 402.330.1800 email:

CoNgRegAtioN B’NAi JeShuRuN

South Street Temple Union for Reform Judaism 2061 South 20th Street Lincoln, NE 68502-2797 402.435.8004

oFFutt AiR FoRCe BASe

Capehart Chapel 2500 Capehart Road Offutt AFB, NE 68123 402.294.6244 email:

RoSe BLumkiN JewiSh home

323 South 132 Street Omaha, NE 68154

temPLe iSRAeL

Union for Reform Judaism (URJ) 13111 Sterling Ridge Drive Omaha, NE 68144-1206 402.556.6536

tiFeReth iSRAeL

Member of United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism 3219 Sheridan Boulevard Lincoln, NE 68502-5236 402.423.8569

B’NAi iSRAeL SyNAgogue

Join us for our monthly Shabbat Speakers Series on may 10, at 7:30 p.m. with guest speaker Ophir Palmon. Our service leader is Larry Blass, and as always, an Oneg to follow service. Everyone is always welcome at B’nai Israel! For information on our historic synagogue, contact any of our board members: Scott Friedman, Rick Katelman, Howard Kutler, Carole Lainof, Wayne Lainof, Sissy Silber, Nancy Wolf, or email

Beth eL SyNAgogue

Services conducted by Rabbi Steven Abraham and Hazzan Michael Krausman. FRidAy: Shacharit/Siyyum B’khorim, 7 a.m. followed by Biur Chametz; Kabbalat Shabbat/Ma’ariv, 5:30 p.m., early, so that you can enjoy your seder. SAtuRdAy: Shabbat Morning Service, 9:30 a.m.; Mincha following Shabbat morning services; Pre-Seder Warm Up, 5 p.m.; Mincha, 5:45 p.m.; Community Second Seder, 6:30 p.m. weekdAy SeRViCeS: Sundays, 9:30 a.m. & 5:30 p.m.; weekdays, 7 a.m. & 5:30 p.m. SuNdAy: Passover Shacharit with Kiddush to follow, 9:30 a.m. tueSdAy: Mahjong, 1 p.m. wedNeSdAy: Sing unto the Lord a new song, 6 p.m. with Hazzan Krausman. thuRSdAy: Morning Minyan with Breakfast and Brachot, 9 a.m. with special Passover breakfast. Synagogue Office Closed, Friday, April 26. Passover Day 7 services, Friday, April 26, 9:30 a.m. follwed by Congregational lunch. NE AIDS Coaltion Lunch, Friday, April 26, 11:30 a.m.– 1 p.m. Joan Marcus serves lunch once a month at the Nebraska AIDS Project, and she needs baked goods for dessert. Contact Joan if you can help by donating baked goods. Teen Yom HaShoah Program, wednesday, may 1, 5:30–7 p.m. at Temple Israel Yom HaShoah Community Commemoration, wednesday, may 1, 5:30–7 p.m.

Beth iSRAeL SyNAgogue

Services conducted by Rabbi Ari Dembitzer FRidAy: Last time to eat Chametz, 10:39 a.m.; Burning of Chametz, 11:30 a.m.; Candle Lighting, 7:50 p.m.; First Seder, 8:52 p.m. SAtuRdAy: Shacharit, 9 a.m.; Mincha, 7:35 p.m.; Congregational Pesach Seder, 8:15 p.m. To register contact the office at 402.556.6288 or email Kaitlin at executiveasst@ SuNdAy: Shacharit, 9 a.m.; Mincha, 8 p.m.; Ma’ariv, 8:40 p.m.; Havdalah, 8:54 p.m. moNdAy: Shacharit, 6:45 a.m.; Mincha/Ma’ariv, 8:45 p.m. tueSdAy: Shacharit, 6:45 a.m.; Mincha/Ma’ariv, 8:45 p.m. wedNeSdAy: Shacharit, 6:45 a.m.; Mincha/Ma’ariv, 8:45 p.m. thuRSdAy: Office Closed; Shacharit, 6:45 a.m.; Candle Lighting, 7:57 p.m.

ChABAd houSe

Office hours: Monday-Thursday, 8 a.m.-4 p.m. and Friday, 8 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. weekdAyS: Shacharit, 7 a.m. followed by coffee, treats, study and shmoozing. Moshiach Feast: Farewell to Pesach, Saturday, April 27 at 7:30 p.m. and Musical Havdalah Service at 9:15 p.m. All programs are open to the entire community. For more information call 402.330.1800 or visit

CoNgRegAtioN B’NAi JeShuRuN

Services conducted by Rabbi Teri Appleby. FRidAy: Erev Pesach/First Seder — No Services at Temple; Candlelighting, 7:52 p.m. SAtuRdAy: Pesach Day 1 — No Services or Torah Study at Temple; Community Passover Seder, 6 p.m.; Havdalah (72 minutes), 9:23 p.m.

SuNdAy: No LJCS Classes; Adult Hebrew Prayer Class, 11:30 a.m.; Feeding the Kids at the F Street Rec Center, 2:30 p.m. For more information, contact Aimee Hyten at; The Pickleball Group will not meet this week. The group will resume on April 28; Havdalah, 9:24 p.m. wedNeSdAy: LJCS Hebrew School, 4 p.m. at Tifereth Israel. Potluck Dinner and Game Night, Saturday, April 27, 6 p.m. Board of Trustees Meeting, Sunday, April 28, 1:30 p.m. As you start to make summer plans, consider sending your child to LJCS CAMP ISRAEL, July 22–Aug. 2, 9 a.m.–2 p.m. at Tifereth Israel. Light Kosher dairy snack and lunch included. Tuition for each week is $75 per camper. This program is open to children ages 5-14. We require ALL campers to be registered through the LJCS, therefore we cannot accept drop-in guests.

oFFutt AiR FoRCe BASe

FRidAy: Services, 7:30 p.m. every first and third of the month.

RoSe BLumkiN JewiSh home

FRidAy: First Seder, 6 p.m. led by Cohen and Dunning Families. SAtuRdAy: First Day of Pesach Services, 9:15 a.m. led by Jim Polack; Second Seder, 6 p.m. led by Jim, Susan, Max and Josh Polack. Services will be held in the Chapel. Members of the community are invited to attend.

temPLe iSRAeL

FRidAy: No Shabbat Service SAtuRdAy: Passover Breakfast and Study, 9:15 a.m.; Passover and Shabbat Service, 10:30 a.m.; Passover Family Seder, 6 p.m. SuNdAy: No Religious School tueSdAy: Board of Trustees Meeting, 7 p.m. wedNeSdAy: Religious School Grades 3-6, 4 p.m.; School Dinner, 6 p.m.; Grades 7-12, 6:30 p.m.; Family School, 6:30 p.m.; God After Auschwitz, 6:30 p.m. with Rabbi Stoller. thuRSdAy: The History of the Jewish People: The Weimar Republic and the Rise of Hitler, 10 a.m. with Rabbi Stoller. Shabbat Service Honoring Cantor Wendy Shermet, Friday, April 26, 7 p.m. (please note later service time) Join us for Temple Israel’s special service honoring Cantor Wendy Shermet. Everyone is invited to this wonderful service where we will honor Cantor Shermet’s legacy and celebrate her re-

tirement after 18 years with joy, music, and a few surprises! A special oneg will follow. Omaha Community Holocaust Commemoration, wednesday, may 1, 7 p.m. at Temple Israel. This year’s Omaha Community Holocaust Commemoration is hosted by Temple Israel, and all are welcome. Our annual commemoration is marked by readings and music from our local clergy, along with a candle-lighting ceremony honoring our Holocaust survivors and those who perished. This year, the keynote speaker will be Scott Miller, recently retired Director of Curatorial Affairs at the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum in Washington, D.C., who will speak about his book, Tracing The Fates of the St. Louis Passengers. There is a special program for Jewish teens in grades 8-12 at 5:30 p.m. that includes dinner and an educational component based on the short film Pigeon led by the staff of the Institute for Holocaust Education.

tiFeReth iSRAeL

Services conducted by lay leader Nancy Coren. Office hours: monday-Friday, 9 a.m.-1 p.m. FRidAy: Synagogue office closed; No Evening Service; Traditional Passover Seder, 6 p.m. and doors open at 5:30 p.m.; Candlelighting, 7:52 p.m. SAtuRdAy: Shabbat Pesach services, 10 a.m. Please note, due to the kitchen being closed for Passover, we will not have a kiddush lunch; Got Shabbat, 11 a.m.; A Child-Centered Seder, 6 p.m. and doors open at 5:30 p.m.; Havdalah (72 minutes), 8:53 p.m. SuNdAy: No LJCS Classes; The Pickleball Group will not meet this week. The group will resume on April 28. wedNeSdAy: LJCS Hebrew School, 4 p.m. at Tifereth Israel. thuRSdAy: Hebrew Reading class, 7 p.m. at the synagogue taught by Nancy Coren. Please let her know if you plan to attend and bring a pack of index cards with you. Our Jewish community Holocaust Memorial Service will be held on thursday, may 2, 5:30 p.m. at Wyuka Cemetery. This gathering affords those of us who would like to say kaddish on Yom HaShoah an opportunity to do so. In case of inclement weather, the gathering will meet at Tifereth Israel. This year's Nebraska State Holocaust Commemoration will take place on Sunday, may 5 at 3 p.m. in the Rotunda of the Nebraska State Capitol Building. Our legislative sponsor is Senator Megan Hunt, and our guest speaker is Mrs. Beth Dotan, Founder and First Executive Director of IHE. As you start to make summer plans, consider sending your child to LJCS CAMP ISRAEL, July 22–Aug. 2, 9 a.m.–2 p.m. at Tifereth Israel. Light Kosher dairy snack and lunch included. Tuition for each week is $75 per camper. This program is open to children ages 5-14. We require ALL campers to be registered through the LJCS, therefore we cannot accept drop-in guests.

Fighting anti-Semitism on the left

RoN kAmPeAS Brexit, Northern Ireland, NATO, acting boldly WASHINGTON | JTA on climate, protecting human rights, and the neRep. Nancy Pelosi, D-Calif., made combating cessity of forcefully confronting anti-Semitism & anti-Semitism on the left a centerpiece of her Islamophobia,” she tweeted. stop in London. The Speaker of the House, leading a European tour with senior Democrats, met Sunday with three members of Parliament who defected from the Labour Party in large part because they said its leader, Jeremy Corbyn, did not adequately address anti-Semitism within the party. She also met separately with Corbyn and raised the importance of fighting anti-Semitism in that meeting as well. Nancy Pelosi meets in London with Labour Party Leader Jeremy “Important discussion with former Corbyn on Sunday, April 14, 2019. Credit: Twitter Labour Party MPs @MikeGapes, @ChrisLeslieMP and @IanAustinMP to hear Pelosi has in recent months dealt with a contheir perspective on Brexit, why they left the troversy within her own party over remarks by a Labour Party, and the importance of standing freshman Democrat, Rep. Ilhan Omar, D-Minn., unequivocally against anti-Semitism wherever it that were perceived by Republicans and some is found,” Pelosi said in one of her London-date- Democrats as anti-Semitic. Pelosi has conlined tweets. demned anti-Semitism but also pushed back Pelosi reiterated the theme in a subsequent against some of Omar’s critics on the right, intweet. cluding President Trump, for what she said was “Pleased to have had a candid discussion with possible incitement against the Muslim law@jeremycorbyn today about the direction of maker.

The Jewish Press | April 19, 2019 | 11

lifecycles BIrth

arIElla aDara prIluCk

Anna and Joshua Priluck of Omaha announce the March 2nd birth of their daughter, Ariella Adara Priluck. She is named for her paternal grandfather, Ira Priluck. Grandparents are Sheila Priluck of Omaha, Boris and Allana Goldberg of Buffalo Grove, IL and Inna Goldberg of Deerfield, IL. Great-grandparents are Elaine Geller of Charlotte, NC, Galina Goldberg of Highland Park, IL, and Faina and Gregory Rayko of Niles, IL.



Sarah Craemer and Mendel Kurland were married Feb. 24 at The Vineyards at Chappel Lodge in Austin, TX. The outdoor ceremony was followed by an indoor reception in Chappel Lodge and was officiated by Rabbi Neil Blumofe. Sarah is the daughter of Julie and Ray Craemer of Los Angeles, CA. Her bridesmaids were her five sisters and sister-in-law. Flower girls were nieces of the bride and groom. Mendel is the son of Sandra and Allen Kurland of Council Bluffs and the grandson of Josephine Berg Simes of St. Paul, MN. His best man was his brother Ruvane Kurland and groomsmen were his brother-in-law and friends from Los Angeles, Colorado and Chicago. Ring bearer was the nephew of the groom. The couple recently returned from their honeymoon in Hawaii and will reside in Austin, TX.

Israeli scientists print 3D heart with human tissues

JERUSALEM | JTA Scientists in Israel made a 3D print of a heart using human tissue and vessels. It is the first time that an entire heart has been successfully printed that includes cells and blood vessels, the AFP news service reported, citing Tal Dvir of Tel Aviv University, who led the project. It will be a long time, however, before such a printed heart will be fully functioning and ready to be transplanted into a human patient, the scientists said. e next step is for researchers to teach the printed hearts to act like real ones.


Is Eli Cohen coming home?

marCy oStEr JERUSALEM | JTA Israel has neither confirmed nor denied reports that the remains of Israeli spy Eli Cohen, executed in Damascus in 1965, have been removed from Syria by a delegation from Russia. e rumors, which began April 14 and come less than two weeks aer Russia helped with the return of the remains of Israeli soldier Zachary Baumel. Baumel went missing in Lebanon 37 years ago; his remains were discovered in a refugee camp outside Damascus, and removed from Syria with the assistance of Russian troops.


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Israeli spy Eli Cohen is shown undercover in Syria during his mission there in the early 1960s. Credit: PMO Last year, Israel’s Mossad intelligence service retrieved the wristwatch Cohen wore in Egypt and returned it to his family. Posing as a Syrian nationalist and philanthropist who had returned to his country aer years of exile in Argentina, Cohen befriended the top brass of Syria’s army, traveling with them across the country, including in classified locales. Levi Eshkol, the late Israeli prime minister, credited the information provided by Cohen with saving countless Israeli lives and “having a great deal to do” with Israel’s victory in the 1967 Six-Day War. Among other information he supplied was that Syrian military installations were found, at his suggestion, in the shade of eucalyptus trees, allowing for a great improvement in target acquisition in Syria. On Jan. 24, 1965, Syrian secret police arrested Cohen. He was tortured, quickly tried and publicly hanged several months later. Cohen’s widow, Nadia, has appealed on many occasions to the Syrian government for the release of the spy’s remains. In 2008, a former intelligence bureau chief under the late Syrian leader Hafez Assad said no one knew where Cohen was buried, because the grave had been relocated aer officials feared that Israel would find it, Israel Hayom reported.

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12 | The Jewish Press | April 19, 2019


an old-school Tel aviv market has become a vegan haven

Karen CherniCK TEL AVIV | JTA n a city where eateries open and close with the frequency of the waves lapping at the nearby shore, this city’s Levinsky Market stands as a place where people have anchored their food businesses for decades. Chef Haim Rafael, for instance, still prepares Turkish tarama salad according to his grandmother’s recipe, whisking breadcrumbs and light pink fish eggs into the same spreadable paste the way she did when the family set up their delicatessen in 1958.Occupying a seven-block stretch of Levinsky Street in the south of Tel Aviv, the marketplace of dry goods, spices and delis founded in the 1930s by working-class Balkan Jews attracts shoppers looking for specialty items and the smoked and briny flavors of a bygone past. With its inclination toward kippered fish, cured meats and pungent cheeses, Levinsky Market might not seem at first glance like a logical place for a vegan invasion. But it was the market’s time-honored quality that recently attracted a surprising newcomer to the scene: the upscale vegetable-centric restaurant Opa. “I think that Levinsky Market is one of the last truly authentic places remaining in the city,” said Shirel Berger, chef and co-owner of Opa, about her choice to open a fine dining establishment there in 2018. “People have had their stores for generations, and I really like the vibe – it seems real and not like a mall, or anything new. It’s very raw and authentic.” Opa is the latest plant-based addition to the neighborhood, but certainly not the market’s first vegan establishment. Over the past few years, the number of Israeli vegans has swelled to 5 percent of the city’s population of approximately 400,000, ranking it high among the countries with the largest number of vegans per capita. Tel Aviv alone boasts 400 vegan-friendly eateries, and several have found a home in Levinsky Market. “Levinsky Market was actually always a place for vegans

without intending to be,” said Ori Shavit, a Tel Aviv-based food journalist and vegan advocate. “It has an abundance of pantry staples that are an inextricable part of vegan nutrition, especially anything related to the world of grains and beans, nuts, seeds, dried fruits and of course a range of spices.”

The market, which occupies a seven-block stretch of Levinsky Street in the south of town, was founded in the 1930s by working-class Balkan Jews. Credit: Karen Chernick Certain plant-based foods were always abundantly available through vendors in the market, such as the nationally beloved hummus and falafel. But Levinsky’s vegan menu has now grown to include items such as nondairy malabi (a vegan version of the traditional Persian milk pudding topped with rosewater syrup and crushed pistachios), cashew-cheese pizza, borekas and nondairy cheeses. ere is even an allvegan delicatessen resembling the style of Haim Rafael’s veteran establishment. e Taste for Life deli opened five years ago. Like many of its Levinsky Street neighbors, it makes all of its own spreads, producing pepper-corned pastrami made from walnuts, tart coconut-based yogurt and soy cheeses. “It just seemed necessary” to open a location in Levinsky Market, said Daniel Mikitas, co-owner of Taste for Life, “because there are regular delis, so we vegans deserve to have one, too.” “Today the vegan options around the market are very di-

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verse,” said Shikma Jacoby, a vegan blogger and advocate who found only two plant-based eateries in the market when she moved to the area three years ago. “You can have anything from incredible desserts to vegan shawarma.” ese options include the veteran street vendor permanently parked in front of the Eliahu Hanavi synagogue with signs advertising the rare homemade vegan malabi; Café Kaymak, which serves plant-based versions of traditional homecooked dishes; a tahini-based tapas restaurant with an entirely vegan menu section called Hatahinia; and an outdoor café, Tony ve Esther, offering elaborate vegan breakfasts that include almond-based labane cheese, tofu scrambles and vegan affogato (ice cream-topped espresso). Side streets off of Levinsky house Lila Pizza, which happily substitutes cashew cheese on any of its pies, and an artisanal coffee roaster, Cafelix, serving vegan desserts. ese eateries are certainly not the establishments that Levinsky Market was built upon, but they seem to easily coexist with the veterans. Opa sits midway on a block bordered by Fat Dog hot dogs on one corner and a cheese shop called Hahalban (Hebrew for “the milkman”) on the other. Berger has found ways to incorporate some of her neighbors into her kitchen. “All the dry goods are definitely from Levinsky Market, of course,” Berger said. “We have a small nut roaster right next door, so of course we work with him. I have relationships with everyone.” For the market’s old-timers, it seems to make sense to welcome the new vegan arrivals. Vegans mean business, fresh clientele and renewed interest in the historic market. Asked how long he’s been selling coconut-based malabi from his street cart, the vendor outside the Eliahu Hanavi synagogue answered “for years already. Everybody likes it.” “I think that Levinsky Market is extremely open to veganism and is embracing it,” Jacoby said. “It’s almost as if when you don’t offer vegan options, you are kind of out of the loop.”

Profile for Jewish Press

April 19, 2019  

Jewish Press

April 19, 2019  

Jewish Press