HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY The Voice of the Lehigh Valley Jewish Community
MAY 2016 | NISAN/IYYAR 5776
Remembering the Holocaust starts with our own family stories By Stephanie Smartschan JFLV Director of Marketing
Muhlenberg Hillel transforms into an Aroma Café. See page 12.
Sal Villano’s “Kristallnacht, Tree of Life” to be on display at Mayfair. See page 20.
those memories that she had,” he said. “The first place you start is with your family. That’s the number one place to start,” said Shari Spark, Holocaust Resource Center coordinator. In fact, it was Spark who tipped Hakim off that there was information about his relatives out there when she cross-checked a list of names he provided to be read at last year’s Yom HaShoah ceremony. This year’s commemoration will focus on the theme of memory and discovery and stories like Hakim’s. “What I want it to be is a reminder that we have to preserve these names,” Spark said. “You can discover things about your family and what their lives were like.” The Yom HaShoah Community Holocaust Commemoration will be held on Wednesday, May 4, at the Jewish Community Center of the Lehigh Valley. A reading of names will take place at 6 p.m. and the program begins at 7 p.m. To learn more, visit www.jewishlehighvalley. org.
EDWIN A. DAVIS PHOTOGRAPHY
Harvey Hakim always knew that his father survived the Holocaust and that his mother was born in the last months of the war, but he never knew what happened to the rest of his family in Greece. “Many of our family lived in northern Greece, it’s an area called Thrace … and the Bulgarians occupied that area of northern Greece as part of a deal they made with Nazi Germany,” said Hakim, a member of Congregation Keneseth Israel and a board member of the JCC and Jewish Family Service. “The Nazis allowed the Bulgarians to annex that northern section of Greece and in return, the Bulgarians actually helped the Germans round up the Jews and deport them all from that area.” Close to 12,000 Jews from that area, in a matter of two weeks, were sent by train from northern Greece to a concentration camp in Bulgaria, Hakim said. From there, they were rounded up and put on boats and
sailed up the Danube to Vienna, and from there by cattle cart to Poland to Treblinka where they were killed. Through talking to relatives and researching on the Yad Vashem website, Hakim learned that many of his relatives were among them. His father and his parents lived in a town called Larissa just south of there. With the help of the underground Greek partisans who were fighting the occupation, the family was able to escape. His mother’s family escaped Alexandroupolis in the annex and fled to the island of Evia where they hid and survived. They were the sole Jewish survivors out of 140 Jews who resided in Alexandrouplois prior to the war, he said. His mother was too young to remember, but her aunt – his grandmother’s sister – proved the best resource when researching his extended family. “She was able to provide me with a lot of information and that was very cathartic for her to be able to talk to me and to relive some of
Above, Harvey Hakim at last year’s Yom HaShoah commemoration. Below, a page of testimony about Hakim’s family from the Yad Vashem archives.
Jewish community responds to earthquakes in Japan and Ecuador Planting season is here. Don’t miss our special Homes & Gardens section.
No. 387 com.UNITY with Mark Goldstein 2 Women’s Division
Jewish Family Service
Jewish Day School
Jewish Community Center
On April 15 and 16, strong earthquakes devastated Japan’s Kyushu Island and Ecuador’s northwestern coast. Hundreds were killed, thousands injured, and many caught under the rubble. As local authorities struggle to cope with the extent of the damage, groups such the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee (JDC) and IsraAID were quick to respond. The JDC, an overseas partner of the Jewish Federation of the Lehigh Valley, quickly began assessing needs and Non-Profit Organization
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coordinating relief efforts with the Ecuador Jewish community and Heart to Heart International focusing on medical care, medical supply provision and water purification efforts. IsraAID sent a relief team immediately to assist the victims of the quake in Ecuador, showing their solidarity to the people of Ecuador and helping to treat the tens of thousands injured and homeless. In Japan, a $25,000 JDC grant for emergency supplies including food and non-food items was made to JDC’s long-
standing partner, the Japanese humanitarian agency JEN, to aid people impacted by the earthquakes in the Kumamoto province. The IsraAID team distributed much-needed supplies and psychological first aid to the victims. The group provided child-friendly open spaces in the affected area to offer safe places for women and their children. “Our response in Ecuador, and in Japan, are proud expressions of the Jewish value
Lehigh Valley prepares for Passover Congregation Brith Sholom and Bnai Abraham Synagogue hold a model seder for religious school children on April 17. For more pre-Passover event coverage, see pages 14-15.
of tikkun olam, repairing the world, and are fortuitous as we lead up to the Passover holiday when we celebrate our redemption from great odds,” JDC CEO Alan Gill said. “May all those impacted by these crises experience the same solace and strength that can be found in family and community.”
FROM THE DESK OF MARK L. GOLDSTEIN
Executive Director | Jewish Federation of the Lehigh Valley email@example.com
Standing still never gets you anywhere Anyone who knows me knows that I am not a “stand still” kind of person. I don’t stand in one place for a long time. I don’t think about one thing for a long time. And I certainly don’t like standing still because I am boxed in. Perhaps it is related to how my father taught me to drive. “Never focus on the car in front of you,” he would say. “Focus on the car or cars in front of the car in front of you.” Spring in the northeast is a great time to address not standing still. The winters here can certainly make you appreciate the warmer weather of the spring and the feeling that we can do so much more. The weather is less inhibiting; the greening of the lawns, the colors of the flowers and the greater daylight hours call to us to move forward. While my days used to end earlier, I feel much more motivated to “do” with the sun giving me a few extra hours of daylight. This time of year also has its excitement as we begin planning for the coming year. Everybody knows about our Annual Campaign for Jewish Needs. Everybody knows the Federation raises money. But, spring also means the Federation’s annual allocations process. For, what would fundraising be were it not for the fund distribution process. We have an excellent committee
hensive volunteer program providing screening, training, supervision and evaluation of direct service volunteers. Our Hillels are planning new and expanded ways to grow their engagement of college students into campus Jewish life. The outreach and engagement is less about the Hillels and more about enabling the students – as individuals and not as their parents’ children – to explore and define their own Jewish adulthood. Several Lehigh Valley congregations are joining together to plan a multi-synagogue shabbaton in the Poconos. Our Jewish Education Services initiative seeks to provide teacher training to enhance the capacity of our synagogue-based education system and strengthen adult Jewish learning in the Lehigh Valley. And the past few years have reminded us that our efforts to address anti-Semitism, prejudice and anti-Israel propaganda cannot be lessened. And I could go on. For our community to move forward, we need the right amount of several things. We need visionary leadership at our agencies, organizations, and synagogues – the front-line of service delivery in our community – to call our attention to how we can improve Jewish life in the Lehigh Valley. We have that. We need responsible agencies and synagogues able to
COMING THIS FALL …
JUNE/JUL Y 2015
Loving th Locavore e
Summer in the ValleFun y
of community volunteers, chaired this year by Gary Fromer, who review the funding requests from our beneficiary agencies, synagogues and organizations. They do a marvelous job ensuring the accountability of the entire fundraising and fund distribution process. Invariably, the requests from our beneficiaries far exceed the available funds in our allocations process. And when we don’t have enough funds for new programs or to expand existing programs, we start to stand still. And where do you go standing still? The Jewish Day School has asked for increased funding to improve their educational offerings particularly to students requiring additional learning resources. The school wants to better accommodate all students, those who are learning challenged as well as those who are learning gifted. The Jewish Community Center has a growing afterschool enrichment program, in partnership with the Jewish Day School. But they need transportation to make the program accessible to more students. The JCC also seeks additional funds to grow their “PrimeTime” adult programming and to offer a Valley-wide Jewish book and authors’ series. Jewish Family Service plans to strategically grow its programming with a compre-
KIDS ACTIV THIS SUMM E ER
A sweet new publication for the new year.
deliver effective programs. We have that. We need a communal vision and leadership able to distribute funds to emerging priorities while addressing the efficacy of funding existing services. We have that. But, without raising more money, we, at best, will stand still. At worst, we cut programs and services and step backward. And no one really wants that. Especially not the people who benefit from the services we fund, or the people who need the services we fund. If you have not yet made your commitment to our 2016 Annual Campaign, please do so now so we can include your pledge in this allocations
cycle. We need you. We need you now. In more ways than one, without your support, involvement and generosity, we become a “stand-still” community. And I know this community won’t “stand” for that.
HAKOL STAFF Stephanie Smartschan
JFLV Director of Marketing
HAKOL is published 11 times per year for the Jewish communities of Allentown, Bethlehem, Easton and vicinity by the Jewish Federation of the Lehigh Valley.
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JEWISH FEDERATION OF THE LEHIGH VALLEY MISSION STATEMENT
JEWISH FEDERATION OF THE LEHIGH VALLEY We gratefully acknowledge those individuals who have offered expressions of friendship by requesting that trees be planted in the Yoav--Lehigh Valley Partnership Park. IN MEMORY SARA BRECHNER (Mother of Mariel Brechner) Israel and Valeska Zighelboim MYRON “MIKE” LERNER (Father of Jim Lerner and Karin Lechner) Elaine Lerner MIRIAM SILVERBERG (Mother of Bruce Silverberg) Lisa and Barnet Fraenkel
TO ORDER TREES, call the JFLV at 610-821-5500 or visit www.jewishlehighvalley.org. 2 MAY 2016 | HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY
In order to unite, sustain, and enhance the Lehigh Valley Jewish community, and support Jewish communities in Israel and around the world, the Jewish Federation of the Lehigh Valley is dedicated to the following core values:
• Supporting Jews in need wherever they may be. • Supporting Israel as a Jewish homeland. • Supporting and encouraging Jewish education in the Lehigh Valley as a means of strengthening Jewish life for individuals and families. • Supporting programs and services of organizations whose values and mission meet local Jewish needs. To accomplish this mission the Jewish Federation of the Lehigh Valley is committed to the following operating guidelines: • Raising and distributing funds to support the core values. • Developing Jewish leaders. • Building endowments to support implementation of core values. • Committing to ongoing Jewish community strategic planning. • Fostering cooperation among organizations and community building. • Evaluating all decisions with respect to fiscal responsibility. • Identifying unmet needs and investing in community initiatives to help get them started. • Coordinating and convening a community response as an issue or need arises. • Setting priorities for allocation and distribution of funds. • Acting as a central address for communication about events, programs and services of the Jewish community as a whole. Approved by the JFLV Board of Directors on November 15, 2000
Bus bombing rocks Jerusalem, at least 21 injured
Israeli radio correspondent offers perspective on ‘new intifada’ By Barry Halper JFLV Community Relations Council
Jewish Telegraphic Agency At least 21 people were injured in a bus bombing in Jerusalem on April 18, police said, in the first such attack in Israel in years. A city bus exploded and went up in flames on a major thoroughfare in the southern end of the capital. The blast set a second bus and a car nearby on fire. Two people were seriously injured in the attack, with seven moderately injured and 12 lightly injured. An explosive device was planted in the rear half of the bus, which was stopped on the major thoroughfare at the time of the explosion, according to the Israel Police. Police are examining the possibility that a suicide bomber committed the attack and was among the injured. Or Bondy was aboard the No. 12 bus on Moshe Baram Road near Hebron Road when it blew up. He had just sent his father, Tzadok, a text saying “What’s up, dad?” The newly married 25-year-old, who was on his way home after a day at
work, received burns on his face, arms and legs. Two hours later, Or Bondy was entering a CT machine barely able to talk. “I always pushed it aside,” Tzadok Bondy told reporters regarding Jerusalem’s terror attacks. “Now it’s infiltrated my family.” The attack follows a six-month wave of stabbing and shooting attacks in Jerusalem, the West Bank and across Israel. The rate of those attacks had declined to normal levels, though Israeli officials remained concerned about a flare-up in violence surrounding upcoming religious holidays, including Passover. Israel experienced a wave of bus bombings during the second intifada in the early 2000s. The bombings killed hundreds of people and deterred many Israelis from riding buses. Bus bombings declined following an Israeli military operation in the West Bank and the construction of Israel’s West Bank security barrier. In recent years, most Palestinian terror attacks have come in the form of either stabbings, shootings or car rammings at public transit stops.
From October through March, Israelis experienced 133 stabbings, 26 car rammings and 48 shootings. All random with the intent to inflict as much pain, anguish and uncertainty as possible. What was going on? On March 27 at Congregation Sons of Israel, we had the opportunity to gain some understanding of this horrific situation occurring in Jerusalem and the rest of Israel from Eran Singer, a correspondent for the Israeli Public Radio station "Reshet Bet" who reports on issues about the Arab world. In addition to providing an insider's perspective on the current situation in Israel, Singer also gave us his highly knowledgeable insight on the Palestinian mindset and the thinking in the Arab world. More than 80 people attended the breakfast program, sponsored by the Community Relations Council of the Jewish Federation of the Lehigh Valley and the Congregation Sons of Israel Men's Club. Singer, who has significant knowledge and expertise in Arabic language, culture and religion, provided the necessary background when he spoke about the Arab Spring, uprisings that failed to create any
democracies, and created a vacuum of control that was quickly filled by Shiitte Iran, which now controls Baghdad, Syria, Lebanon, Yemen and Hezbollah in Southern Lebanon. And because of the Iranian hegemony, Israel is now beginning to work more closely with Jordan, Egypt and Saudi Arabia, in their common concern regarding Iran. Singer spoke proudly of Israel’s humanitarianism; more than 2,000 wounded Syrians have been treated in Israeli hospitals. With this backdrop came the destabilization of the Palestinian leadership, leading to what some term as “The Intifada of Jerusalem.” Singer feels strongly that Israel has taken the proper approach to the situation. Instead of curfews, Israel is providing more work permits to the Palestinians. Singer believes that the random acts of violence are instigated by high unemployment and economic uncertainty as well as the diatribes from the Palestinian leadership. This is a selffueled intifada that is being worked through social media, he said. The Palestinian youth want to emulate the Islamic terrorists; they feel they having nothing to lose. Singer presented a very thoughtprovoking program, and the audience appreciated his candor and knowledge.
HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY | MAY 2016 3
WOMEN’S DIVISION OF THE JEWISH FEDERATION OF THE LEHIGH VALLEY
Women’s Division to see ‘Woman in Gold’ By Gracie Gottlieb JFLV Intern and Jewish Telegraphic Agency On June 6, the Jewish Federation’s Women’s Division is traveling to New York to see the painting “Woman in Gold” by Gustav Klimt at the Neue Galerie. The painting was the subject of the recent movie “Woman in Gold” starring Helen Mirren and Ryan Reynolds. As seen in the movie, the story of the “Woman in Gold” dates back to before the Holocaust. Maria Altmann, the story’s protagonist, grew up in Vienna, Austria, in a wealthy Jewish family. As she grew up, Altmann would often go visit her aunt and uncle’s house where the ”Woman in Gold” portrait hung. The “Woman in Gold” is a portrait of Altmann’s aunt Adele Bloch-Bauer. Adele and husband Ferdinand loved art – their grand house was covered in some of the most expensive paintings of all time. The art was a big part of the family’s heart and identity; however, everything was taken by the Nazis in 1938 as Hitler rose to power. After the war, Austria came under increasing international pressure to return or compensate its former Jewish citizens for their confiscated property. In 1998, the country’s parliament passed a
restitution act, which included compensation for looted art. Altmann was informed of the new law and advised to hire a first-class lawyer. Her first call was to Schoenberg, then a rising 32-year-old Los Angeles attorney. The movie focuses on the relationship between Altmann and Scheonberg and how they went to great heights to take on the case. Ultimately, Altmann won the case and the paintings were returned to her. She sold “Woman in Gold” for $135 million in 2006 and it has been displayed at the Neue Galerie ever since. At the time, this was the most money for which a painting was ever sold. The Women’s Division will have an incredible opportunity to see this painting
in person. “I knew about this artist and I went to see the movie ‘Woman in Gold’ and I was very taken by the movie,” said Eva Levitt, Women’s Division president. “I just thought it would be very timely and very appropriate to have a bus trip to see the actual painting since we’re fortunate enough to have it so close.” As the women travel to New York, they will be able to watch the movie on the bus to understand the painting’s full history. “I just thought it would be beneficial for Women’s Division to have a trip that involves learning and beauty,” added Levitt. Limited space available. To learn more or register, call 610-8215500 or visit www.jewishlehighvalley.org/women.
Susan Wild and Sherri Bassner chosen ‘Women of Influence’
SPONSORED BY THE JEWISH FEDERATION OF THE LEHIGH VALLEY’S WOMEN’S DIVISION
welcoming new babies to the Lehigh Valley If you’re expecting, know someone who is, or have a new baby, PLEASE LET US KNOW! Contact Abby Trachtman, 610-821-5500 | email@example.com 4 MAY 2016 | HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY
Each year, Lehigh Valley Business’s Women of Influence awards honor women business leaders for their contributions to their companies, industries and communities. This year, we are privileged to have two of the winners as members of our community, Susan Ellis Wild and Sherri Bassner. Both women are powerhouses in their companies and our community. Wild is a partner at Gross McGinley, LLP. She has been in the Lehigh Valley practicing law since 1988. In January 2015, Wild was appointed city solicitor for Allentown. She is a member of the Board of Directors of the Jewish Federation, a mem-
ber of the Community Relations Council and has been an active community member for years. Bassner is the vice president of chemical services at Intertek. She focuses on helping clients with chemical testing and investigative needs during product development. Bassner is an active member of Temple Beth El as a board member and one of the Chesed Committee chairs. Both women are great role models and leaders in our community and we want to wish them mazel tov on this prestigious honor. The awards will be presented on May 11 at 12 p.m. at Cedar Crest College.
Handmade Afghans BY EVA LEVITT
All proceeds benefit projects in Israel:
Food Banks in Israel Neve Michael Youth Village
For prices or to place an order, call Eva 610-398-1376.
All payments are made payable to the Jewish Federation of the Lehigh Valley
Jay Leno raises $50,000 in one minute for Israel EMS organization, donates ambucycle
MAIMONIDES 30 YEARS: By Laura Rigge Special to HAKOL
PHOTO CREDIT: YADIN GOLDMAN
At a special concert fundraiser for Israel’s largest volunteer EMS service held at the Jazz at Lincoln Center in New York on April 10, United Hatzalah was honored by Jay Leno, who performed a long comedy set and offered on the spot to donate a $36,000-fully equipped ambucycle for the EMS organization to use to save lives in Israel. The former Tonight Show host called Eli Beer, founder and president of United Hatzalah, to the stage after his act to tell him. “What you guys are doing is so special I am so proud to be here and be part of it,” Leno said. “I have 117 motorcycles in my collection but none of my motorcycles save lives. I want to donate an ambucycle with all of the trappings.” The ambucycle, once it is outfitted and adorned with Jay Leno's name, will join the fleet of over 400 ambucycles used to provide free treatment to anyone who needs it while cutting down emergency response time throughout the country to under three minutes. The Maimonides Society of the Jewish Federation of the Lehigh Valley is currently raising money to donate its own ambucycle to join the fleet through sponsorships of the society’s 30th Anniversary Gala on June 9. Leno, who traveled from Los Angeles specially for the concert, also challenged the audience to join him in sup-
porting lifesaving in Israel by donating on the spot to the organization and offering that anyone who donated $1,000 would receive a free tour of his garage to see his large car and motorcycle collection. Leno’s rare car and motorcycle collection is considered to be one of the finest in the world. Thanks to Leno, an additional $50,000 was raised on the spot to support saving lives in Israel. The concert took place at the Jazz at Lincoln Center in midtown Manhattan and featured performances by musical entertainer Lipa Schmeltzer and the rock band 8th Day. The event also featured Neshama Orchestra and was hosted by Jewish radio personality Nachum Segal. The venue, which can seat close to 1,300 people, was a complete sell-out. Leno got a first-hand look at the ambucycles of United Hatzalah as he made his grand entrance onto the stage rid-
ing one of the organization’s ambucycles and wearing an EMT vest identifying him as a supporter of the organization. After receiving a miniature silver ambulance from United Hatzalah to add to his collection, Leno told the crowd “See you next year in Jerusalem.” This statement both invoked a famous Jewish refrain and hinted at Leno continuing his yearly visits to host big events in Israel. In 2014 and 2015, Leno hosted the Genesis Prize award ceremony in Israel, following which he was attacked on social media for his support of the country. Leno brushed off the attacks and kept coming back to support the Jewish state in spite of the chastisement.
Before becoming a dentist, Ian Carlis was just a kid from Wilmington, Delaware, who wasn’t sure what he wanted to be when he grew up. He knew he didn’t want to follow in his father’s footsteps and join the retail business, and he knew he had a knack for the sciences, but he wasn’t keen on becoming a physician. Thanks to a relationship with his family’s dentist, a new path opened to him. “Unfortunately, as a kid I made many trips to the dentist,” Carlis joked. “We were very friendly, and our relationship ultimately inspired me to pursue dentistry as a profession.” Carlis went on to complete his undergraduate studies at the University of Delaware. He then attended the University of Pennsylvania School of Dental Medicine and upon graduation pursued advanced training in a general practice residency at Albert Einstein Medical Center in Philadelphia. Carlis helped found the Maimonides Society as a way to get more involved. “We were looking for a way to make healthcare
professionals connect more with the Federation and with Israel beyond just the Annual Campaign,” Carlis said. “We made sure that we had medically directed projects to work on both here locally and in Israel.” Carlis is proud that the Maimonides Society is not only functioning and serving its original purpose, but also that it has been adopted as a model across the country. He hopes that the society will continue to grow, especially in Israel. “I would like to expand the service to our sister hospital in Galilee and create more connections in Yoav,” Carlis said. “But mostly, I want the Maimonides Society to continue its mission.” Carlis is a member of Congregation Keneseth Israel. He was a past president of the Bethlehem Dental Society. Currently, he is a member of the dental staff of Lehigh Valley Hospital, where he serves as a clinical instructor and as a member of the Continuing Dental Education Committee. He and his wife Patty have three sons, Jay, Scott and Ben, and four grandchildren, Isabel, Jonah, Noah and Juniper Rose. In his spare time, Carlis enjoys reading a good book and the company of his family.
To learn more about sponsoring the Maimonides Society 30th Anniversary Gala to raise money for an ambucycle, visit www. jewishlehighvalley.org/gala30.
HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY | MAY 2016 5
A look into Germany’s Jewish past, and its future By Iris Epstein JFLV Campaign Chair My most recent JFNA National Young Leadership Cabinet (NYLC) Study Mission to Berlin and Israel was about a journey from dark to light, from degradation to dignity and from complete despair to hope for a future where we can all live in peace. When a Jew thinks about Germany and especially Berlin, images of Hitler, the Third Reich and the atrocities that occurred during the Shoah come to mind. Walking around the heart of Berlin, I can easily picture SS soldiers lined up in front of Hitler pledging their allegiance to him. I was filled with a sense of disbelief and numbness as I walked around Sachsenhausen Concentration Camp where more than 200,000 people were imprisoned and although not a death camp, more than 50,000 people died from torture and execution between 1936 and 1945. I was horrified to hear that prisoners were used to find and “diffuse” bombs, shot on a whim, froze to death during row calls and that over 400 people were forced to live in barracks built to hold 150. I was filled with complete darkness and dread as I walked through Station Z where prisoners were shot in the execution trench and bodies disposed of in the crematory. With memories of the atrocities that happened at Sachsenhausen and other camps fresh in my mind, I then visited a magnificent lakefront villa that should have been a place of beauty. Instead, it will forever be tainted as the site where the 1942 Wannsee Conference was held. In a meeting that lasted 90 minutes, the mid-level attendees discussed the Final Solution and its implementation. The invitation was sent by Adolf Eichman, head of the Jewish sector Gestapo by the order of Reinhard Heydrich, head of the secret police and SS security
6 MAY 2016 | HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY
Principal Christa Niclasen, Iris Epstein and students of the Locknitz Elementary School in Berchtesgadener, Germany. On the wall behind them are names of Jews in the community who died in concentration camps. services, to discuss the solution to kill 11 million Jews. Minutes taken by Adolf Eichman were sent to all the participants and when it became apparent that the war would be lost, all the participants were given an order to destroy the documents. Fortunately and ironically, one of the participants, Martin Luther, was at Sachsenhausen being tortured and did not get the order. His copy was found after the war and was used during the Nuremberg trails. I also visited the Track 17 memorial at Berlin Grunewald railway station, one of the three main deportation stations of 55,000 Berlin Jews between Oct. 18, 1941, and March 27, 1945, to ghettos and starting in 1942, directly to Auschuwitz and Theresienstadt concentration camps. Located just outside of the city, it was picked for its distance so locals could turn a blind eye and ignore that Jews were disappearing from the city. The memorial contains a single track surrounded by 183 steel platforms that documents in detail each and every transportation in chronological order: dates of the transports, the number of deportees as well as the trains’ routes. Some of the plates are empty to remember those undocumented. My journey through darkness turned brighter when I visited the Berlin Jewish Museum. There, I was reminded that the history of German Jews is not confined to the 12 years that is upmost on most Jewish minds and hearts when they think of Germany. It's much, much more: it's 2,000 years more. And it is this and hope for a bright future that propels the community today to rebuild. As stated by Kimberly Emerson, U.S. Ambassador John Emerson’s wife, while attending a cocktail reception at their home, the German “Jewish communities are not defined by their fear of the past but by their hope for the future.” I then spent some time at Locknitz Elementary School in Berchtesgadener, the site where the local synagogue once stood. The school is deeply committed to creating empathy and preventing discrimination and violence due to race. A true believer that “people who are forgotten die a second time,” principal Christa Niclasen created innovative, age-appropriate projects to teach the children about the Holocaust. Another bright moment was meeting Margot Friedlander, a survivor of Theresienstadt who has dedicated her life to sharing her story, feeling it important to speak out for the ones who cannot speak for themselves. So moved by all of these experiences in Berlin and after learning that of the 100,000 to 130,000 Holocaust Survivors living in the United States, 25
percent of them live in poverty, each member of NYLC pledged to donate a minimum of $360 to the Fund for Holocaust Survivors to provide much-needed services for health and dental care, emergency supplemental rent assistance and food. As a group, survivors are at risk for poor physical and mental health, depression and social isolation. The ability to age in place in their own homes and communities is critical, as institutionalization can trigger traumatic memories of experiences during the Holocaust. I hope you will join me and my fellow Cabinet chevre to provide survivors with food and other vital support by donating to the Fund for Holocaust Survivors. Learn more at www.jewishfederations. org/helping-holocaust-survivors. From Berlin, I traveled to Israel and I immediately felt happy and whole. After meetings with members from Unit 8200, a highly acclaimed Intelligence group, Yossi Vardi, an Israeli entrepreneur and investor, and Director General Eli Groner from the Prime Minister’s office, I felt more reassured of Israel’s future. As JFLV’s campaign chair, I was proud to see our dollars at work when I participated in two different programs working with at-risk youth in Israel’s periphery. Using different techniques, one through surfing and the other through community service, both programs aim to empower at-risk youth by giving them the confidence to do well in school and life and secure better futures by helping them gain better placement in the IDF. It was also a joy to visit an Accessible Health Zone (AHZ) facility, another program funded by campaign dollars. Close to 1 million people in Israel within prime working age suffer from disabilities. AHZ gives people with disabilities the tools and support they need for a healthier lifestyle. While at the facility, we got to experience what it is like to have a disability when we played basketball in a special wheelchair with Lior Dror, a top player in Europe, danced with our hands or feet tied together, and were led through an obstacle course while blindfolded. By empowering people with disabilities, these programs help enhance their lives and boost Israel’s productivity. I am honored that I was able to represent the Lehigh Valley on NYLC’s study mission. I return with many meaningful memories and stories to share and with renewed energy and dedication to close a successful campaign. Please answer the call and donate to JFLV’s Annual Campaign so that we can continue to build community and care for the most vulnerable locally, overseas and in Israel.
‘Throwaway’ items hold reams of history
Left, Fre Cohen at work, as seen in the book “Fre Cohen 1903-1943: The Life and Work of an Artist Moved.” Right, A piece of a brochure that Fre Cohen designed for the Department of Transportation for the City of Amsterdam that Susan bought at an antiquarium book store. By Susan Warshaw Berman Special to HAKOL I am an ephemera dealer and collector specializing in art deco graphics. The definition of ephemera, is “something that is not made to last,” like brochures, advertising and trade cards. However, ephemera dealers, like me, do the opposite. We collect and keep these historical documents so people remember them. I started this “hobby” 20 years ago with bridge tallies, bridge pads and art deco playing cards, all related to the game of bridge which I don’t play. But the graphics on them were phenomenal and there are thousands of different designs. I traveled frequently, particularly to Europe, and I was always looking, no matter where I went. I’ve sold some of the thousands of items I have found over the years, on eBay and at trade shows mostly, but I wasn’t in it for the money. It was all about the hunt. A number of years ago, I went to Amsterdam in search of inventory. In doing so, I went into an antiquarian bookstore and inquired if they had any original art deco graphics. The owner handed me a beautiful, colorful brochure that was made for the Department of Transportation for the City of Amsterdam. I asked about the artist and he told me her name was Fre Cohen. She was a young, Jewish, graphic designer and illustrator who died in the Holocaust. He also had a book about her, and even though it was in in Dutch, I quickly bought both the brochure and the book. Fre Cohen was born in Amsterdam, the oldest daughter of Levie Cohen, a diamond cutter, and Esther Sarlie Cohen. She always showed an interest in drawing, even as a young girl. She also grew up in a working class socialist family and was a member of the Workers Youth Center. Her first job was at Draka, a wire company, where she designed ads. In 1923, she got a job at the SA Development, predecessor of Workers Press. Here, she designed book covers, stickers, pamphlets and
other materials. Fre worked in her own personal style, which was influenced by art deco and art nouveau. Mostly decorative and romantic, her style was also influenced by “Wendingen Style.” “Wendingen” was a very popular monthly architecture and design magazine, designed by H. Th. Wijdeveld. It had its own typographic style and was used widely in Holland from 1918 until 1932, when it was no longer published. Fre Cohen continued to use it until 1940. In 1924, when Cohen was 21, she started to take classes at the Quellinus Art School in Amsterdam. She graduated in 1929 with the first ever Medal of Honor. From 1929 to 1932, she was employed by the Stadsdrukkerij Amsterdam, the printing firm for the city of Amsterdam. Cohen designed the piece that I have while she was working there. She designed most of the common printing for municipal services. She was a very energetic and active worker, who also designed bookbindings, tickets, flyers, bookmarks, bookplates, birth and wedding cards, certificates, calendars, woodcuts, three-dimensional packaging and scale models. Fre also did portraits, posters, songbooks and advertisements for other companies as well as working for the city. She was so energetic and prolific, her nickname was “Saartje Seesaw.” Her appeal was charming and she was the most prolific female designer of pre-1940 Holland. She used photomontage, architectural ornament and arts and crafts. Cohen also designed her own font called FRECO. She alternated between all these modes and the others I have listed above. Her diversity was amazing. Her signature, Fre Cohen, or FC, can be seen on most of her work. Fre’s philosophy was that culture had to be part of the working man’s daily life. She was an idealist, who with art and simple expression could indicate the pursuit of freedom, self-fulfillment and a sense of community. Unfortunately, Fre Cohen
had to leave Amsterdam to flee from the Nazis. She was hidden by friends in the country, but was betrayed. When she saw the Nazis coming, she took poison that she had with her and died in a hospital in Hengelo at the age of 39. Her sister survived her and she managed to save a lot of her work that wasn’t destroyed by the Nazis. The Stedelijk Museum in Amsterdam houses a collection of her work. Peter van Dam and Philip van Praag brought together 900 items for an exhibition of her work at the Amsterdam Historical Museum in 1993. They also published the book for the exhibition, “Fre Cohen 1903-1943: The Life and Work of an Artist Moved.” Susan Warshaw Berman is a vice president of the board at Jewish Family Service and the author of “Affordable Art Deco Graphics” published in 2002.
HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY | MAY 2016 7
More than 90 percent of the House urges Obama to reject biased UN moves on Israel Jewish Telegraphic Agency An overwhelming majority of the U.S. House of Representatives, including Rep. Charlie Dent and Rep. Matt Cartwright, signed a letter urging President Barack Obama to reject any actions by the United Nations that are biased against Israel. The letter, undersigned by 394 House Republicans and Democrats — more than 90 percent of the 435 representatives — was sent to Obama on April 14 amid reports that the Palestinian Authority might revive a draft resolution against Israel’s policies in the West Bank, similar to the one vetoed in 2011 at the Security Council by the United States. Rival pro-Israel groups praised the letter, with the older lobby, the American Israel Public Affairs Committee, emphasizing the letter’s placing much of the burden of returning to negotiations on Palestinians, and J Street, a liberal group, noting that the letter does not appear to preclude U.S.-led bids to revive the talks. The U.S. should “maintain its indispensable role of mediator” by closely coordinating its moves with “our democratic ally Israel” and by refusing “to support counterproductive efforts aimed at imposing a solution,” read the letter, initiated by Democrat Nita Lowey of New York and Republican Kay Granger of Texas, the two top lawmakers on the foreign operations subcommittee of the House Appropriations Committee. It also said the signatories were “deeply troubled by reports that one-sided initiatives may arise at the UN in the coming months concerning the Israeli-Palestinian conflict. Such efforts dangerously hinder the prospects for resuming direct negotiations.” In a recent interview, Palestinian Authority Foreign Minister Riad Malki expressed hope that Obama would let the Security Council vote on a resolution against Israel because the U.S. president is about to leave office. “We share your frustration with the lack of significant progress toward a lasting peace between Israelis and Palestinians,” the letter to Obama reads, but “only the parties themselves can agree to end their conflict through a negotiated resolution.”
8 MAY 2016 | HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY
IN MEMORY HOWARD EPSTEIN (Husband of Linda Epstein, brother of Midge Sokol) Aliette and Marc Abo Ross and Wendy Born Roberta and Jeff Epstein Erica and Nat Hyman Rae Epstein Kaplan and Family Norman Moses Marc Nissenbaum Martha and Ron Segel Donald and Randi Senderowitz Fred and Barbara Sussman BENJAMIN FISHER (Father of Harry Fisher) Robby and Laurie Wax Vicki Wax SALLY GLASCOM (Mother of Gary Glascom) Ross and Wendy Born ESTHER HIRSHBERG (Aunt of Don Lipson) Marlene and Arnan Finkelstein GOLDIE KURTZ (Mother of Susan Futerfas) Marla and Brian Strahl MYRON “MIKE” LERNER (Father of Jim Lerner, Karin Lechner, and Terri Buganski) Donald and Randi Senderowitz JILL FORMAN LESSARD (Sister of Ellen Hof) Ross and Wendy Born JOSEPH SAVITZ (Stepfather of Lynne Shampain) Ross and Wendy Born EDWARD SHAPIRO (Husband of Sally Shapiro) Wendy and Ross Born Joan Brody Martha and Ron Segel
MIRIAM SILVERBERG (Mother of Bruce Silverberg) Penny, Adam, Alex, and Nikki Roth SUSAN SINGER (Mother of Rabbi Michael Singer) Aliette and Marc Abo STANLEY WAX (Husband of Vicki Wax, father of Robby Wax and Nancy Wax Goldman) David and Ann Packman IN HONOR HELENE AND STANLEY BENZEL Bat Mitzvah of their granddaughter Sarah Elaine and Leon Papir AUDREY AND JEROME CYLINDER Happy Anniversary Penny, Adam, Alex, and Nikki Roth LEON DUBIN Happy 95th Birthday Fred and Barbara Sussman LISA AND BARNET FRAENKEL Birth of their grandson, Emmanuel Louis Feldman Arthur and Jane Kaplan Elaine and Leon Papir Vicki Wax HAROLD KREITHEN Happy 80th Birthday Marlene and Arnan Finkelstein EVA LEVITT Kipnis-Wilson/Friedland Award Joan Brody Marlene and Arnan Finkelstein Arthur and Jane Kaplan Vicki Wax AMY AND RICHARD MORSE Marriage of their daughter Emily to Brittany Vicki Wax
DAVID PACKMAN Happy 80th Birthday Marlene and Arnan Finkelstein SELMA ROTH Happy ‘Special’ Birthday Audrey and Jerome Cylinder GAIL SCHWARTZ Best Wishes Elaine and Leon Papir MARTHA AND RON SEGEL Happy 50th Anniversary Vicki Wax DIANE AND PHIL STEIN Matthew’s Graduation Recital Arthur and Barbara Weinrach MICKEY AND EILEEN UFBERG Marriage of their son Matt to Dana Marlene and Arnan Finkelstein Beth and Wes Kozinn Audrey and Arthur Sosis Jeri and Len Zimmerman Zachary’s Bar Mitzvah Jeri and Len Zimmerman VICKI WAX Bat Mitzvah of her granddaughter, Samantha Beth and Wes Kozinn SUSAN YORK Speedy Recovery Marc Nissenbaum We gratefully acknowledge those individuals who have offered expressions of friendship through recent gifts to the Lehigh Valley Jewish Foundation. The minimum contribution for an Endowment Card is $10. Call 610-821-5500 or visit www. jewishlehighvalley.org to place your card requests. Thank you for your continued support.
Jewish Family Service to host self-care workshop For 25 years, Ann Friedenheim, M.S., L.P.C., has worked with adults, teens and children living through many difficult circumstances to offer a safe and nurturing place to explore situations or problems that are causing distress. Friedenheim is also a registered yoga teacher and practitioner who has been teaching Kripalu and LifeForce Yoga® since 2002. Friedenheim will be this year's featured speaker at Jewish Family Service’s annual Phyllis Ringel Memorial Lecture on Sunday, May 15, at 10 a.m. at Congregation Keneseth Israel. She will discuss "Self-Care During Family Challenges or Transitions." The program will be interactive. To give a taste of what the program will cover, HAKOL asked Friedenheim a few questions. What do you define as a transition? Simply defined, the concept of life transition refers to a period of change that requires our emotional, mental and often physical energy to adjust to a new way of life. A life transition may be a new job or losing a job, the birth of a child or death of a loved one, major illness or the period of recuperation. Sometimes we make choices to move into a life transition, sometimes these transitions are imposed upon us and sometimes they come to us unexpectedly. What are some of the reactions you’ve seen to transitions like these? Certainly, some people are very resilient regarding life transitions and other people are more vulnerable and may feel the stress and strain of change in a more profound way. It may seem funny to think of it in this way, but the characters from Winnie the
May 6-22, 2016
Pooh give us a glimpse into the various ways people handle life challenges. The way we meet the challenge of life transitions can depend on so many factors. Some of these are history of previous change and coping skills during those times, family and friend support, personality, attitude, spiritual beliefs, current life practices and the number of transitions that are occurring simultaneously. Why is it important to take care of yourself during such a time? This is a good question; however, I think it is really important to take of ourselves all of the time! In fact, if we are committed to good self care as part of our lifestyles, then we may find that the things we do for self care help sustain us during challenging times. What are some ways to go about that? There are so many options from which to choose: yoga, journal writing, exercise, breathing techniques, meditations, prayer, setting intentions, good sleeping, good nutrition, connecting with loved ones, being in nature, looking at or making music or art, singing, finding spirituality, laughing, and on and on … These are ways of “doing,” but there is also the question of self care as a way of “being.” How do we talk to ourselves? Can we cultivate kindness toward ourselves and self-acceptance? This is another aspect of self care. Most important is for each individual to find what makes sense for her or his own self care. There is research about certain practices, but the bottom line is for each individual to take the time to find out what works and what can be implemented
C I V I C T h e at r e P r e s e n t s
realistically into a daily or weekly practice. This may translate into some things to “do” or perhaps some ways to “be.”
Music & Lyrics
John Weidman Stephen Sondheim William Sanders
love of learning
IGNITE A T H AT W I L L L A S T A L I F E T I M E
What will you focus on in your workshop? In addition to what has been said thus far, I would like for participants to understand how important it is to put themselves at the top of their “to do” lists (or at least close to the top). I hope to help people assess their self care practices of the past and to acquire some simple practices that they can do each day that will enhance their self care. I also hope to share the idea of self-compassion and consciously increasing joy as a part of self care. Brunch will be provided and RSVPs are appreciated. Call 610-821-8722 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Free and open to the community.
LEARN MORE ABOUT HOW A MORAVIAN ACADEMY EDUCATION CAN BENEFIT YOUR CHILD > Exceptional and passionate faculty inspire and shape interactive,
project-based learning at all grade levels. > Students experience extraordinary offerings including STEAM programs, global languages, fine and performing arts.
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PLAN YOUR VISIT TODAY 610-691-1600 W W W. M O R AV I A N A C A D E M Y. O R G
HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY | MAY 2016 9
l a v i t s e fof the arts
4 Days 7 Music Festivals 100 Artist Booths Plus: KidSpace, Art Gallery, Food, Beer & Wine
May 27–30, 2016
Allentown Fairgrounds MayfairFestival.org
All new ‘Bubby’s Kitchen’ returns to the Lehigh Valley Mixing three cups of wisdom for every two cups of matzo meal, singer/ songwriter/cantor Shira Ginsburg proudly presents her one-woman musical “Bubby’s Kitchen.” This touching and tuneful production is directed by Schele Williams, with musical direction by Rick Bertone featuring music by Jonathan Comisar and lyrics by Shira Ginsburg and Jonathan Comisar. “Bubby’s Kitchen” will play a oneperformance-only, limited engagement on Sunday, May 8, at 7 p.m. at the JCC of the Lehigh Valley. “Bubby’s Kitchen” is the true story of one young woman’s struggle to live up to her grandparents’ incredible legacy. The struggle of one cantor/ aspiring Broadway star/ granddaughter of a Holocaust survivor cuts straight to both the heart and the funny bone like a Ginsu knife. Ginsburg shares songs and stories from her journey in this onewoman show, depicting her ties to her family's past, her financially unstable present (including odd jobs like selling Ginsu knives) and her aspirations for a musical future. This one-woman production holds a poignant and heartfelt mirror up to anyone who has ever sat around the kitchen table and been filled with the richness of relatives and recipes. Having grown up in a family of partisan resistance fighters and Holocaust survivors, Ginsburg shares bittersweet memories that illustrate
Shira Ginsburg the balance between new and old, responsibility and desire and life and love. These moving moments are woven together on a sparse stage, through a box full of familiar kitchen items, the magic of monologue, Yiddish humor and musical theatre songs. Whether struggling to find real happiness in life or discovering the key to the “svelt” Ginsburg figure, the answers overflow like mandel bread and rugelach in “Bubby’s Kitchen.” The show first came to the Lehigh Valley in 2011 and delighted the audience at the Jewish Federation’s Women’s Division Spring Event. This performance will benefit the Jewish Day School of the Lehigh Valley. “’Bubby's Kitchen’ has changed in some dramatic ways since I last
performed in Allentown,” said Ginsburg, who is a first cousin of Tama Tamarkin, president of the Jewish Day School. The show now features all new original music composed by Cantor Jonathan Comisar, a revised script with some new family stories and new direction by Broadway performer and director Schele Williams, whose credits include “Motown” the musical, “Aida” and “Rent.” “These changes have all happened over the course of the last four years in response to audience feedback and a desire to enhance the universal messages of the show in the most organic ways possible,” Ginsburg said. “Composer Jonathan Comissar and I worked together on music and cowriting lyrics for two years and the result is some of the most beautiful music I have ever had the honor to sing.” “Having music written expressly for ‘Bubby's Kitchen’ is an incredible addition to the range of expression of the show, and it carries the story forward with a musical through-line that had been absent before,” Ginsburg added. “I'm so excited to share ‘Bubby's Kitchen’ with the Lehigh Valley audience, many of whom experienced the show in its previous form, and to hear and experience the emotional responses people have to the new material.” To purchase tickets for “Bubby’s Kitchen” or to learn more about sponsorships, visit www. jdslv.org/springevent or call 610-437-0721. All proceeds support the Jewish Day School of the Lehigh Valley.
10 MAY 2016 | HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY
What do we do with 'peoplehood?'
STUDENT RABBI SHELLEY GOLDMAN Congregation Am Haskalah
In mid-April, I was privileged to attend a fabulous conference in Philadelphia called “Wrestling with Jewish Peoplehood” put on by the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College and several universities. “Peoplehood” is a term that gained traction after a similar conference of movement leaders and engaged Jews in the summer of 1942. Rabbi Mordecai Kaplan and his circle were trying to find a word to express the identity of the Jewish people. They
admired and also struggled with the nationalist frame of the day and wanted to acknowledge that Jews were not simply a “nation,” especially since at that point the State of Israel had not yet been created. And, there is always the question of the Diaspora and the Jews who have lived outside of the biblical land for so long. Within the nationalist frame, what do you call the Jews who have not lived on the biblical land for millennia? When an audience member suggested “peoplehood” it sounded strange to all involved, but eventually it took off as the way that we Jews define ourselves. The question of the conference, however, is that in 2016 most Americans now think about their own identity in very different ways than folks did nearly 75 years ago. Now most Jews acknowledge that their identities are multifaceted including many other commitments and communities. I, for example, identify as a woman, queer person, progressive and someone who was born in the Midwest, just to name a few. The Jewish
community has this concept of “peoplehood” which is most closely related to an outdated bundle of considerations to define who we are today. So, what do we do with the term? University of Washington professor Noam Pianko suggests that there are three responses to this quandary: double down on the concept of “peoplehood,” acknowledge that it emerged at a specific moment in time and throw out the concept for today or find a new term or concept which better expresses our current reality. Pianko argued
both at the conference and in his 2015 book “Jewish Peoplehood: An American Innovation” that we should be engaged in a process of re-imagining our identities. He suggests that we think about “neighborhood” not “nationhood,” what we Jews do as opposed to who we’re descended from, and not simply focus on the idea that Jews are connected, but “what it is that connects us?” Quite simply, he suggests that we focus on our collective project of “Jewishness” as opposed to policing the boundaries of who is “in” and who is “out” of the project.
As the student rabbi of Congregation Am Haskalah: The Lehigh Valley’s Jewish Reconstructionist Congregation, I have proudly spent this past year focusing on the “what” of our Jewish project. I have led creative sacred Hebrew chanting services, spiritual writing sessions and deep intellectual conversations. I invite everyone who lives and learns in the Lehigh Valley, our neighborhood, to come and explore how your mind and soul might be enriched by an encounter with our Reconstructionist ways. All are welcome.
Rachel Feinstein May 19 | 8 pm
DON HENLEY August 10
Sands Steel Stage on PNC Plaza
sponsored by Bank of America, Capital BlueCross, Pennsylvania Housing Finance Agency, 69-WFMZ-TV and 99.9 The Hawk
musikfest.org 610-332-3378 BETHLEHEM
June 2 | 7:30 pm
A Full Evening Length Cinematographic Solo Choreographer Nicole Wolcott and Sound Designer Omar Zubair
SteelStacks.org | 610-332-3378
HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY | MAY 2016 11
Muhlenberg celebrates Israeli Independence Day with Aroma Café By Or Adi Muhlenberg College Hillel Israel Fellow Muhlenberg College Hillel celebrated Israeli Independence Day a bit early with a special virtual visit to a beloved Israeli restaurant, Aroma Café. Led by Israel Fellow Or Adi and student leaders, the group’s goal was to bring an authentic Israeli environment to Muhlenberg and give the students an opportunity to experience what it feels like to be an Israeli for a day. Upon entering the Hillel building, students were greeted by Israeli music blasting and blue and white decorations covering the walls. They made their way toward the Hillel kitchen where they grabbed delicious Aroma-style sandwiches and famous iced coffees (with signature Aroma chocolates!) made by student volunteers. In the Hillel Shabbat Dining Room, students had a variety of stations set up with different activities modeled after different cities in Israel. In Jerusalem, students had the opportunity to write notes to put in the Kotel that our Birthright group will take this
summer. They also wrote letters for lone soldiers serving in the IDF. In Tel Aviv, there was a matching game where students could test their knowledge about culture in Tel Aviv. At the Tzfat table, students had fun decorating hamsas and making their own Hebrew name necklaces. In Be’er Sheva, students were making the desert bloom by planting their own mint plants and decorating flowerpots. To honor kibbutz life, an integral part of Israeli society, students had a blast playing Ulpan Twister and learning the Hebrew words for different places on the kibbutz. At each station, there were information cards where students could learn more about what that city had to offer. The students loved a table of delicious Israeli snacks and free giveaways from a variety of partner agencies. Grants from Israel on Campus Coalition, Hineinu from Hillel International and JNF on Campus helped make the event possible. The Israel Fellow program at Muhlenberg College Hillel is made possible by an alumni gift and a partnership between the Jewish Agency for Israel and Hillel International. This event had a wonderful turnout of both Jewish and non-Jewish students, as well as faculty members and members of the local Jewish community. For two hours, Muhlenberg was able to bring Israel to Allentown, and everyone kept saying how much they really felt like they were in Israel. This event was truly a highlight of the year at Muhlenberg College Hillel.
12 MAY 2016 | HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY
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Israeli students join JDS for global model seder By Sara Vigneri Special to HAKOL The multi-purpose room at the Jewish Day School was crisp and clean and smelled faintly of paint, with a large U-shaped table set with white tablecloths and flowers. As the middle schoolers filed in that Tuesday morning wearing T-shirts of their own design, teachers Dana and Nati Kind poured small glasses of grape juice and distributed haggadot that were created by the students. Meanwhile, 5,000 miles away in the Yoav Regional Council in Israel, students were returning to their school campus in the early evening to get ready for their seder. They too had tables set, T-shirts on and homemade haggadot at the ready. Then two seders on opposite sides of the world came together. They were connected on a large screen via Skype and the seder began with a L'Chaim (over grape juice) to celebrate the partnership between the two schools. "This is the second year of our partnership with Yoav," said Dana Kind as she started the seder. "Last year we had 20 students at JDS and 22 in Israel. This year, we have 32 students and 43 in Israel." The principal of the school in Yoav also addressed the students in Hebrew, while Dana Kind translated. She thanked the teachers for all their hard work and remarked on the special connection between the schools. Reading from their haggadot, the students discussed the unique Passover traditions they celebrate at their own family seders, addressed their thoughts on topics such as freedom versus comfort, acted out a skit and sang songs together. The JDS students often spoke in Hebrew and the Yoav students made remarks in English, allowing for both schools to show off their foreign language skills. "In the twinning efforts of Partnership2Gether, our teachers have created a curriculum where our kids learn together, and most importantly, interact with each other," said Aaron Gorodzinsky, director of outreach and community relations for the Jewish Federation, which oversees the partnership. "They now see each other as a family, so, in the future, when our kids visit Israel, the first place they will want to visit is Yoav." The seder ended with an emphatic "L'Shana Haba Beyerushalim!"
Day school students create Passover decorations for seniors Right around Easter, Carol Wilson got a call from a resident of the Bnai Brith Apartments. Her neighbors’ doors were all decorated, the caller said. Shouldn’t she have something for the Jewish holidays? Wilson, clinical coordinator of older adult services at Jewish Family Service, quickly contacted the Jewish Day School and a partnership was born. The 3rd and 4th grade classes created artwork that will hang on the doors of older adults across the Lehigh Valley this Passover. Before the artwork was delivered, Wilson had the opportunity to speak to the students to let them know the impact their creations would have. Day School students had also created notes for seniors over Chanukah, and Wilson reminded the classes how meaningful that project also was for the approximately 75 Jewish seniors living in residential facilities that received them. “For some of them, it was the only time that somebody thought about them in a Jewish way and maybe the only way they celebrated Chanukah,” Wilson said. “You brought the spirit of Chanukah to them.” “We are going to the do same thing for Passover,” she said. Wilson promised to bring back photos of the artwork hung on the seniors’ doors. 14 MAY 2016 | HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY
PJ program explores science behind Passover plagues Both kids and adults gathered around the “livestock” table, straining to see as Da Vinci Science Center educators dissected a cow’s eyeball. It was just one of the stations set up by Da Vinci at the JCC of the Lehigh Valley on April 17 for a unique program designed just for Passover and PJ Library. After a reading of Passover stories by special guest Aaron Gorodzinsky, director of outreach and community relations for the Jewish Federation, the Da Vinci staff members created lightning using electric conductors and turned dry ice into fog to represent the plague of hail. After the eyeball demonstration, the kids had the opportunity to explore other stations on their own. They looked at bugs under microscopes, “dissected” plastic frogs and combed salt out of fur to represent lice. “I thought it was a wonderful event,” said Abby Trachtman, PJ Library coordinator, who organized the program. “It gives us an opportunity to reach out to families with kids of all ages and provide them with a venue to hang out with other Jewish parents and children, learn a little and have a good time.”
Covenant of Peace hosts interfaith women’s seder By Eleanor Bobrow Special to HAKOL On Sunday, April 17, the Rosh Chodesh Group of Temple Covenant of Peace came together with 65 members of the community to celebrate the 16th Annual Rosh Chodesh Women’s Seder. We came together to celebrate our womanhood, our mothers, our daughters, our grandmothers and our sisters. We came together to tell the story of our people, our grandparents, our journey – from slavery to freedom. Joining us for our celebration were women of the Muslim community, as well as women and men of the Christian community. We were led in song by our own Miriam – Rabbi Melody Davis – with her guitar at her side. The Passover tables were beautifully decorated by Cindy Daniels. The Rosh Chodesh Group is deeply grateful for the support of the Jewish Federation of the Lehigh Valley and the Easton Leadership Council for making this memorable event possible. We are also grateful for the amazing photos by Edwin Davis. All who attended came away with hi-nei ma tov u-mah-na-im shevet na-shim gam ya-chad. How good and pleasant it is to be together in peace (and harmony and respect for one another).
Women and men of many faiths joyously celebrate the role of women in the Passover story.
PHOTOS COURTESY OF EDWIN A. DAVIS PHOTOGRAPHY
(L-R) Elaine Berk, a guest, Rabbi Melody Davis and Judy Cohen participate in the the Rosh Chodesh Women’s Seder at TCP.
A student removes a drop of wine for each plague.
Dr. Tamar D. Earnest and Patricia Price lead the women in song and dance.
ALL OF THE PHOTOS ON THESE PAGES WERE TAKEN BEFORE PASSOVER BEGAN. HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY | MAY 2016 15
JDC: Making Passover possible in Eastern Europe Passover symbolizes freedom and hope for Jews around the world. For decades, Federation partner the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee (JDC) has provided hundreds of thousands of Jews in need throughout the former Soviet Union with the essentials of the Passover seder. As conflict continues to breed political and economic turmoil for Ukraine's 300,000 Jews, our support continues to mean so much to so many. Your donations to the Federation’s Annual Campaign for Jewish Needs help ensure this life-saving, spirit-renewing work can continue.
Above, Though conflict ravages the country, JDC volunteers are working hard to ensure all of Ukraine’s Jews experience the liberation of Passover.
Top, Though 9,000 have been caught up in the conflict and over 3,000 displaced, JDC makes sure every Ukrainian Jew can taste the “Bread of Freedom.” Bottom, JDC hosts special Seders for elderly Jews, who often don’t have family to celebrate with.
16 MAY 2016 | HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY
Above left, From post-war recovery through Communism, JDC helped Eastern European Jews in need come together to celebrate the springtime holiday. Above right, Today, JDC volunteers continue to personally deliver matzah and other essentials to those in need, especially the sick and infirm.
HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY | MAY 2016 17
18 MAY 2016 | HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY
School legacy wall celebrates JCC history By Sheryl Block Jewish Community Center The Early Childhood Department at the JCC is comprised of infants beginning at six weeks of age, young and older toddlers, preschoolers, pre-kindergarteners and a full-day academic kindergarten. Each of the age levels offer before and after care to extend the day. The staff is comprised of teachers who are warm and nurturing. There are so many children who have attended the school at the JCC over the years. The children of the JCC are our legacy. They are part of our rich history. For many years, their pictures were in boxes and were not available for families to see, but that has now changed. I hope you have had the pleasure to see them hanging in a full access area for everyone to enjoy in the hallway between the JCC lobby and the side entrance. Some of our current and alumni families have already generously sponsored a decade, and more sponsorship opportunities are available. In looking back at our history in these photos, I took the opportunity to talk to some of the families that have enjoyed our school over the years. “When I returned to work after being at home with my daughter, I was very concerned about how she would adjust to her new routine,” said Kristen M. Armstrong, whose daughter attended school from 2011-12. “However, the teachers and staff at the JCC made the transition easy for all of us. After only a week of teary goodbyes, our daughter ran into the classroom anxious to see what she would be
doing that day. She loved her teachers, her classmates and all the fun they shared together! I was impressed by how much she learned and how independent she became. I would highly recommend the ECE program at the JCC!” “The JCC has been a second home to our children since we moved to the Lehigh Valley. All three of our boys have attended the preschool and they have all loved it,” said Ilene Ringold, whose children attended school at the JCC between 2002 and 2013. “The JCC has nurtured and loved our children at every different age from what used to be known as playcare, all the way through kindergarten. It has been a home away from home for our children. It is a place of happiness, feeling safe, and meeting other terrific kids and their families.” “I remember the JCC having after school programs that were a ton of fun,” said Beth Lalak, who attended from 1984-86. “Cooking, swimming and sports of all sorts were a great way to let loose after a long school day. It was great to enjoy the
company of my preschool friends. Since the JCC is for all ages, I always enjoyed bumping into family members!” “I enjoyed the holidays at nursery school. To this day, I remember the fun during Presidents’ birthday week,” said Jana Baker, an ECE alumna, 1970-72. “My teachers, Miss Judy and Miss Pearl, made a big tree with cherry lollipops
hanging from the branches. It was the best treat to go over to the tree and pull a delicious cherry lollipop off to enjoy with my friends. Purim was another highlight. Miss Judy shared her hamentashen recipe with her classes. To this day it is the only recipe I use. Best of all, around two years ago, I became reacquainted with one of my school friends. I had come to town for an
event at the JCC, and we found ourselves looking at the school pictures from the 70s. I will always have fond memories of my JCC school experience.” For more information, please visit the picture area in the main hallway as you enter the JCC from the parking lot. Decade sponsoring flyers are available in pockets on the wall.
HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY | MAY 2016 19
All that jazz
Tree of Life representing Kristallnacht to be on display at Mayfair By Sara Vigneri Special to HAKOL
Ron Sunshine and his 10-piece orchestra teamed up with world-renowned ethnomusicologist Dr. Judah Cohen on April 3 for a showcase of 1930s Jewish jazz. Many attendees showed off their swing dancing skills while others swayed in their seats with smiles on their faces. Dr. Cohen discussed the music in between numbers, even drawing some laughs with his commentary. The event was sponsored by the Lehigh University Philip and Muriel Berman Center for Jewish Studies, the Jewish Federation of the Lehigh Valley, the Jewish Community Center of the Lehigh Valley and the Lehigh University Swing Dance Club.
Sal Villano, a sculptor based in Coplay, has a fascination with trees. "Even as a small child, I always loved to observe and draw trees," says Villano. "When I was in grade school and my art teacher would say 'draw whatever you like,’ I always chose a tree." Since then, he has created thousands of tree sculptures. He bends, twists and shapes wire to make trees of all shapes and sizes, including wind swept trees, bonsai trees, beaded trees, small two-inch-high trees and trees sprouting from plaques that can hang on a wall. The beauty of these tree sculptures is appreciated worldwide – he has customers as far as Japan and India. Two years ago, he was inspired to create a tree infused with meaning and purpose. After watching a television program about Kristallnacht, the violent anti-Jewish pogroms that swept through Germany and Austria in 1938 and lined the streets with broken glass, he felt profoundly affected and decided to explore this emotional moment in history in his studio. What emerged is a piece called “Kristallnacht, Tree of Life,” made of copper wire and hundreds of pieces of broken glass of various shapes and sizes, some of which are etched with a Star of David. "Although I view Kristallnacht as something terrible and destructive," says Villano, "I also am amazed how the Jewish people survived that night and are surviving today." He used copper to represent the copper mined by Jewish slave labor in Bor, Yugoslavia, and cradled 12 pearls inside a nest on one of the branches to represent the 12 tribes of Israel. The tree, made of twisted wire, gracefully emerges from the shards of glass. "The tree represents the fact that no matter what is done to the Jewish people,
they will be strong, grow, and survive," says Villano. Villano's piece will be exhibited at The Gallery during the Mayfair Festival of the Arts from May 27-30. Mayfair’s transition from its former outdoor location at Cedar Beach to the western end of the Allentown Fairgrounds building three years ago allowed the festival to create a substantial juried fine art gallery. "We still have plenty of outdoor space for the festival," says Arlene E. Daily, executive director of Mayfair, "but adding indoor space allows us to showcase works of fine art, like ‘Kristallnacht, Tree of Life,’ which we could not do otherwise." While Villano’s current piece will be on display at Mayfair, you can view his other tree sculptures on his website, salvillano. com. He is currently working on a tree scuplture called “Strange Fruit” based on a song of the same title about the lynching of two African American men in Marion, Indiana, in 1930.
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In Ukraine, a Jewish wunderkind becomes prime minister
8th graders visit Holocaust museum
Vlodymir Groysman is Ukraine’s first openly Jewish prime minister and its youngest.
A group of eighth graders from Congregation Keneseth Israel, Temple Beth El and Temple Covenant of Peace traveled to Washington, D.C., on April 10 to visit the U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum. The annual trip is sponsored by the Holocaust Resource Center of the Jewish Federation of the Lehigh Valley.
Like many Ukrainian mayors, Vlodymir Groysman used to visit his local synagogue on Rosh Hashanah and Chanukah. But unlike most of them, Groysman, the former mayor of Vinnytsia, did not visit the synagogue as a political gesture. He was going in his private capacity as a member of his central Ukraine city’s Jewish community. Groysman’s Jewishness is not very unusual, even for a mayor and senior politician in Ukraine, where 360,000 Jews live. But his openness about it was not customary in a country where anti-Semitism and decades of Communist repression once made it undesirable for politicians to be seen as too Jewish, said the local rabbi, Shaul Horowitz. Last year, his reputation as an honest and effective administrator earned Groysman the title of speaker of the Ukrainian parliament. And this April, he was appointed prime minister by President Petro Poroshenko, making Groysman the first openly Jewish person to hold the country’s second highest post and, at 38, the youngest person to have the job. Groysman’s nomination followed the resignation of Arseniy Yatsenyuk over his seeming failure to fight corruption and implement economic restructuring measures. “I understand that we are in extremely difficult condition, that the government has a huge responsibility and the challenges it faces are simply enormous,” Groysman said of Ukraine’s $17 billion debt to the International Monetary Fund, a financial crisis that has halved the national currency’s value against the dollar and the conflict with Russia. “I also know that with Ukrainian citizens’ support, we’ll strive to end the crisis.” Horowitz is among those who believe Groysman will succeed where others have failed. The rabbi points to Groysman’s record as mayor in his native Vinnytsia. “He’s a man of action who doesn’t talk too
much but gets a lot done,” Horowitz said. When Groysman, a lawyer with a background in business, became mayor in 2006 – at 28 he was the country’s youngest mayor ever — “the place looked like a Third World city,” Horowitz recalled. “The roads were [in] disrepair, there were no street lights, fires broke out regularly,” he said. But today, Vinnytsia, a sprawling city of 370,000, has a reliable tram system, one of Ukraine’s best-functioning train stations, street lights everywhere and three new hospitals. Using international connections and attracting oligarchs to set up shop in the city, Groysman nearly doubled its budget from 500 million hryvna in 2007 (approximately $100 million) to nearly 1 billion hryvna in 2010. “If Groysman does for Ukraine what he did for Vinnytsia, then he will have done something truly great for this nation,” said Koen Carlier, a Belgian national who lives in Vinnytsia, where he heads the operations of the local Christians for Israel group. Endeavoring to jump-start his city’s economy, Groysman has made use of his ties in Israel. He has family in the city of Ashdod, which his 69-year-old father, Boris, visits regularly. In 2012, Groysman welcomed Israeli Foreign Minister Avigdor Liberman to Vinnytsia for the opening of a state-of-the-art medical diagnostic center that Israel built there. In interviews with the Ukrainian media, Groysman spoke of his grandfather Isaac’s survival during the Holocaust, when he pretended to be dead after being dropped by Nazis into a mass grave. On Jan. 27, International Holocaust Memorial Day, when Groysman was the chairman of the Verkhovna Rada, the parliament, he asked other lawmakers to stand for a minute’s silence in honor of the victims of the Jewish genocide. It was the first time such a gesture took place in parliament. “Unlike many who either try to hide their Judaism or just not talk about it, Groysman is a warm and open Jew because he’s part of a new generation in a new country,” Rabbi Horowitz said.
V RIATIONS ENIGMA
By Cnaan Liphshiz Jewish Telegraphic Agency
HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY | MAY 2016 21
The streets of our ancestors
The Seven Cardinal Principles of the Aleph Zadik Aleph By Sam Ringold Allentown AZA In the Aleph Zadik Aleph (AZA), a Jewish youth group for young men in 8th through 12th grades, we adhere to seven cardinal principles which essentially define how we should act as men. On April 2-3, our local chapter Allentown AZA had an overnight sleepover coordinated by Andrew Fine and myself where we had programming relevant to these Seven Cardinal Principles. The goal here is to teach our members the importance of the principles. The Seven Cardinal Principles can be easily remembered through the acronym “PPCCFFJ” standing for patriotism, purity, charity, conduct, fraternity, filial love and Judaism respectively. Our first principle is patriotism. As Jews of good moral character, we owe our allegiance not only to our homeland of America but also to our spiritual homeland, Israel. We are to follow their laws, ethics and principles as well
as live proudly for these lands. The second principle, purity, encompasses keeping a pure soul, active mind, and healthy body. We should always be pure both physically and mentally. This principle tends to be subjective, though, and is interpreted in many different ways. Third, we have charity. We as Jews have an obligation to assist those who are less fortunate than us. Unfortunately, poverty is a prevalent problem in society and AZA makes an effort to fundraise and be active in the community to help those in need. This principle calls for giving time and substance to all those in need, regardless of race or color. Conduct is our fourth principle. We gentlemen of AZA are supposed to conduct ourselves as such. This calls for us to be ever so humble, never too bold and never too forward. We behave like gentlemen because we are gentlemen. Our fifth principle, filial love, calls for the utmost
respect of our superiors. People older than us including parents and elders gain our respect and we treat them with such. Sixth, we have fraternity. As brothers, it is imperative that we have fraternity together. We are a cohesive group bonded by this fraternal element of having something in common: our Judaism. Fraternity encompasses a spirit of sociability, cooperation and friendship toward all Alephs. Finally, there is Judaism, arguably the most important Seven Cardinal Principle, as this is what our organization is founded upon. All of our events and programs are based around this cardinal principle. We are to observe the tenets of Judaism, to do it justice and to love and walk humbly with the Lord our G-d. As proud members of the Aleph Zadik Aleph, it is our duty to stick to these principles not only during events, but at all times. They delineate good morals and remain the centerpiece of our organization.
On the first Sunday in April, Shalshelet teens learned about Jewish immigration during a walking tour of the Lower East Side. Sights such as old tenements and the Eldridge Street Synagogue brought the stories of our ancestors to life. After lunch at a kosher deli, they finished their day with an emotional experience at the 9/11 Museum at Ground Zero. For more information about Shalshelet, visit www.TBEshalshelet.org.
PJ LIBRARY Family of the Month: THE LACHTERS
“’The end,’ one of my parents says and closes the book, and my sister and I go to sleep. This is our going-to-bed-story routine. The majority of those books come from PJ Library. I am Zoe Lachter. I am 10 years old, and for the past couple of years or so, every month a PJ Library book arrives at my home. I’ve grown out of some of them, so now me or my parents read them to my sister Mollie, who is six, and has always enjoyed them. Even though I don’t always read them anymore, they are still very engaging and nice to read. On a day when you are tired, it is so perfect to sit down with some of the best Jewish books ever. I can literally read 10 of them at a time. I think that it is important that all Jewish kids can learn about their religion and history, and PJ Library is perfect for this. The books are fun, interesting, and by far the best Jewish kids’ books ever.” - ZOE LACHTER, AGE 10 To learn more about PJ Library and register to receive free Jewish-themed books for children from 6 months through 8 years, visit www.pjlibrary.org.
22 MAY 2016 | HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY
GIVE A MITZVAH, DO A MITZVAH
Animal lover connects passion to bat mitzvah Faith Lettire and her family adopted their dog, Rosie, from Common Sense for Animals. Faith loves all animals, and dogs in particular, so it was only natural that she decided her mitzvah project would benefit the no-kill shelter in Washington, New Jersey. Faith will be called to the Torah as a Bat Mitzvah on June 25 at Temple Covenant of Peace in Easton. A student at Stewartsville Middle School in Stewartsville, New Jersey, Faith enjoys playing in the band and making art. The mission of Common
Sense for Animals is to promote animal welfare through education and community service. They strive to educate all people, particularly children, as to what constitutes proper care and the importance of protecting our environment, wildlife, habitat and endangered species. Their goal is to bring people together who share a certain common sense or fundamental principles regarding heritage and freedom of choice regarding food producing animals, companion pets, wildlife, research animals and the environment. Faith will be collecting dog and cat food, puppy and kitten food, cleaning supplies, blankets, towels and, of course, money for the shelter. If you would like to help Faith in her efforts, you can drop off items at Temple Covenant of Peace in Easton. There will be a large blue container in the main common room. You may leave donations of cash or checks made out to Common Sense for Animals in the office that will be forwarded to the organization. There are envelops in the container where you may place coins and dollars. “We are so incredibly proud of Faith for seeking truth and understanding and wanting to learn more about her Jewish heritage, “ said Faith’s mom, Meryl Lettire. “She chose to join Temple Covenant of Peace and convinced us, her family, to come along with her. She is the driving force behind her bat mitzvah – she does this not for the party, presents or attention, but because
she desires to grow closer to her roots and to G-d.” “Faith is one-of-a-kind, an original, talented, bright and unique individual,” said David Lettire, Faith’s father. “She has been a joy to parent and we have seen her grow and blossom over the years from a child who began life with challenges to a highly successful, confident beautiful young lady who continually amazes us.” In addition to her mitzvah project, Faith has made her first adult gift of tzedakah to the Jewish Federation of the Lehigh Valley’s Annual Campaign for Jewish Needs.
Bat Mitzvah presents ‘Dessert and a Dog Show’ Sarah Berger has always been a dog lover. Sarah, a 7th grade student at ReadingFleming Intermediate School in Flemington, New Jersey, participates in 4H and attends animal events through her 4H club, P.A.W.S. Sarah will be called to the Torah as a Bat Mitzvah on Saturday, Sept. 16, at Temple Covenant of Peace in Easton. When planning her mitzvah project, it was only natural that Sarah would want to do something to help animals,
especially dogs. 4-H is the nation’s largest positive youth development and youth mentoring organization, empowering six million young people in the U.S. 4-H’s dog club, P.A.W.S., stands for pride, achievement, wisdom and service. It is a dog training club that meets weekly to train dogs in obedience, rally and agility. In addition to competing in 4-H venues, several of the members are excelling outside of 4-H with their dogs against adults in competitions, and do agility demonstrations throughout the community. Many of the members have earned therapy dog certificates and the club visits local nursing homes monthly with the dogs. On Sunday, June 5, Sarah will be hosting “Dessert and a Dog Show.” Families are invited to come and watch Sarah’s 4H club present their dogs. For an $18-per-family donation, your family can watch the dog show and sample yummy desserts. The event will be held at Temple Covenant of Peace in Easton and begins at 2 p.m. Proceeds from the event will be donated to several different animal shelters in the Lehigh Valley. If you would like to attend the event, please RSVP to LBERGER12345@ yahoo.com. Donations may be made by sending a check to the Temple office at 1451 Northampton St., Easton, PA 18042, with a note indicating that you are supporting Sarah Berger’s mitzvah project. Please make checks out to Lauren
Berger. “Sarah has always loved animals,” Sarah’s mom Lauren said. “For her seventh birthday, she asked that people donate to the animal shelter instead of giving her gifts. She raised several hundred dollars, and was so proud when she presented them with the funds. She has a lot of compassion and patience for animals. Most of our pets have been rescues. Sarah wanted to do an event so she could share with her dog, and raise the most money she can to help them since they cannot help themselves.” In addition to her mitzvah project, Sarah has made her first adult gift of tzedakah to the Jewish Federation of the Lehigh Valley’s Annual Campaign for Jewish Needs. For help developing your mitzvah project, contact Abby Trachtman, program coordinator, at abbyt@jflv. org or call her at the Federation office at 610-821-5500.
HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY | MAY 2016 23
Beth El to honor Shari Spark at dinner dance By Marla J. Melman Temple Beth El Dedicated to Judaism since childhood, an inspirational leader of prayer, devoted to Jewish education, passionate about Jewish music, a talented musician and a master at everything she undertakes, Shari Spark has enhanced the lives of the Temple Beth El family ever since she arrived in Allentown in 2002. It is hard to imagine what Temple Beth El would be like without Shari, who is involved in most aspects of Temple Beth El religious and educational life. Whether it is hearing her beautiful chanting of Torah or Haftorah, participating in Wednesday morning Minyan or Torah services or High Holiday traditional services led by Shari, experiencing her creative Jewish Family Education and Dor l’Dor programs or Torah study sessions on Shabbat, participating in the N’imah Choir, or being her Hebrew School student, the lives of our members have
surely been forever enriched in the process. Shari’s interest in leading Jewish prayer was sparked in childhood, and fortunately for her Temple Beth El family, was inspired by Cantor Bernard Glusman in Nashville, Tennessee, where she grew up. Trope was not taught to girls when Shari became a Bat Mitzvah, but was when Shari’s younger sister was studying to become one. Shari seized upon the opportunity and accompanied her sister to her bat mitzvah lessons where she studied with Cantor Stanley Weinberger. Shari proudly became the first woman to read from the Torah at her synagogue in Nashville. In the years that ensued, Shari honed her skills under Cantor Leon Lissek and can truly be considered an expert in chanting Torah, Haftorah and the Megillot, knowing all forms of trope and perfecting them all. Shari has come a long way since her first days learning trope and when called upon to do so, aptly, and with her beauti-
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24 MAY 2016 | HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY PMS 118
Shari Spark, with her children Carlyn and Ezra. Shari will be honored at the Temple Beth El Dinner Dance on May 15.
ful voice, leads any portion of religious services. It comes as no surprise that Judaism has been at the center of most of Shari’s life. She attended Akivah Jewish Day School in Nashville, Tennessee, for 6th and 7th grade and went on to study art history and Jewish studies while attending UCLA and the University of Judaism. Shari met her husband, Mark, in high school while they both were involved in USY and refers to him as her “USY Sweetheart.” While living in St. Louis, she was a member of the board of directors of her synagogue. After spending more than 15 years in medical practice management with practices first in California and then in St. Louis, Shari moved to the Tidewater area of Virginia and commenced her new career as a Jewish educator, teaching 4th and 8th grade Judaic studies at the Hebrew Academy of Tidewater from 1995 to 2002. Shari excelled at her position and earned recognition as Educator of the Year of the Jewish Community in Tidewater. In 2002, Temple Beth El history changed when Shari, her husband, Mark Goldstein, and their children, Ezra and Carlyn, moved to Allentown when Mark took over as executive director of the Jewish Federation of the Lehigh Valley. Shari’s musical and educational reputation preceded her and Shari was invited by Cantor Kevin Wartell to be the 5th
and 8th grade religious school teacher. As the Jewish Family Educator for Temple Beth El, Shari seeks out young families and senior citizens alike, providing programming and materials designed to connect adults and families to Judaism and to create a sense of continuity in Jewish life, both in and out of the synagogue. As family educator, Shari has instituted iconic programs like “Count the Omer with TBE,” “ChanuCan,” “Dor l’Dor” and, most recently, “Guided Prayer Service.” It is no surprise that Shari earned the Jewish Educator’s Assembly Jewish Educator of the Year award in 2008. Outside of Temple Beth El, Shari also has gained recognition as the Jewish Federation’s coordinator for the Holocaust Resource Center, a community resource designed to preserve memory of the Holocaust and to provide outreach and educational efforts and teach tolerance. In this capacity, Shari has coordinated the yearly Yom HaShoah program at the Jewish Community Center, has instituted yearly trips for Jewish 8th graders to the Holocaust Museum in Washington, D.C., and has brought Holocaust survivors to high schools to educate students about the Holocaust through the Legacy Exhibit. Temple Beth El has certainly benefited from Shari’s musical talent and childhood background of singing in the school choir and glee club and taking piano and voice les-
sons. Shari combines her love of Jewish music and Jewish education when serving as the volunteer choir director of Temple Beth El’s adult N’imah choir, a choir open to the entire Jewish community, which sings several times of year for special occasions such as the Selichot service and Sisterhood Shabbat. As choir director, Shari not only expertly teaches the music to her choir, but passionately and inspirationally educates the choir as to the music’s spiritual meaning and significance. Shari is extremely proud of the successes of her husband and children. Carlyn, following in her mother’s footsteps, teaches 4th and 5th grade math and science at a Jewish day school in Durham, North Carolina, while Carlyn’s husband, Jason, serves as territory manager for the Raleigh Division of U.S. Foods. Ezra will soon be commencing his PhD studies in economics at Florida State University. Everyone who knows Shari knows that she puts her all into everything she does, whether it is perfecting her Torah portions, developing her programming, leading services or even dressing up as the Wicked Witch of the West for Purim. Temple Beth El is extremely grateful to and proud of Shari and is thrilled to have the opportunity to thank and honor her at the Temple Dinner Dance on May 15. Mazel Tov to Shari and her family, and may she continue to share her talents with and inspire her Temple Beth El family for many, many years to come.
Scholar Ron Wolfson shares message with local congregations and trains local leaders
The boards of Congregation Keneseth Israel, Temple Beth El and Muhlenberg Hillel gather at Hillel on Sunday, April 3, for an interactive training with Ron Wolfson.
Over the robust weekend of April 1-3, renowned scholar Ron Wolfson spoke at Shabbat services, shared personal experiences of growing up in a Jewish family in the Midwest and trained synagogue and Hillel leaders. Wolfson, the Fingerhut Professor of Education at American Jewish University in Los Angeles, focused his time at services on Friday night at Congregation Keneseth Israel and Saturday morning at Temple Beth El on what he calls “Relational Judaism,” stressing personal connections over programing. He had strangers greeting each other, singing songs together and modeling being in relationships. In a moving program on Saturday night at Beth El, Wolfson spoke about his recent autobiography, “The Best Boy in the United States of America: A Memoir of Blessings and Kisses.” The havdalah service that preceded his presentation was led by local clergy and included a performance by the Chaimonics, the Jewish acapella group at Muhlenberg College. On Sunday morning at Muhlenberg Col-
lege Hillel, the boards of KI, Beth El and Hillel came together to experience an interactive training based on Wolfson's book “Relational Judaism: Using the Power of Relationships to Transform the Jewish Community.” The group explored the 12 principles of engagement. KI President Patty Carlis said of the weekend, "I share the pride in our multi-generational Allentown Jewish community. May this be just the beginning of building stronger bonds and long-lasting relationships. I am grateful for the opportunity to have been a part of this amazing weekend." "The warmth between the synagogue communities was evident," Lynn Rothman, past president of Beth El, added. ”Ron’s visit will have a long-lasting impact. It was extra special to have the Hillel students participate both on Saturday night and Sunday. They are our future.” The partnership between the two congregations and Muhlenberg College Hillel was made possible by funding from the Sylvia Perkin Charitable Trust, the Dr. Ray and Bonnie Singer Education Fund and a Men of Reform Judaism-Reform on Campus grant.
By Rena Fraade Congregation Am Haskalah Last winter, an anonymous donor contacted our rabbinical student to discuss the possibility of repairing one of our Torahs. This Torah has been part of our congregation for many years and needed repair of its parchment and ink. Fast forward to this summer and our Torah was given to sofer Neil Yermen in the suburbs of New York City to begin the process of repair. We are incredibly excited that Neil will be bringing the Torah back to us on May 15 and we will have the opportunity to learn with him and celebrate our Torah’s return. All are invited to come celebrate with us from 2 to 5 p.m. Neil and our rabbinical student, Shelley Goldman, will lead a Service of Rededication.
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In addition, they and some congregants will be leading workshops. Participants will be able to learn to write Hebrew calligraphy, like in the Torah. We will explore Hebrew letters and what their meanings are, and learn about the letters in our Hebrew names. Neil will lead an experience of Torah cleaning so we can better understand some of the work he did to clean our Torah. Congregation Am Haskalah is honored to own three Torahs that have each had their own special journey to becoming part of our family. We hope to explore options to repair our other two Torahs as well in the future. RSVP to Rena Fraade at firstname.lastname@example.org. While not required, we invite people to donate in celebration of Torah. Additional information can be found on our website at www.amhaskalah.org. HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY | MAY 2016 25
Community Calendar To list an event in the Community Calendar, submit your information on our website, www.jewishlehighvalley.org, under the “Upcoming Events” menu. All events listed in the Community Calendar are open to the public and free of charge, unless otherwise noted. Programs listed in HAKOL are provided as a service to the community. They do not necessarily reflect the endorsement of the Jewish Federation of the Lehigh Valley. The JFLV reserves the right to accept, reject or modify listings.
SUNDAY-TUESDAY, MAY 1-3 Nearly New Sale JCC of the Lehigh Valley. Low prices on furniture, electronics, books, clothes, and more. May 1, 10 a.m. to 4 p.m. half price day May 2, 11 a.m. to 6 p.m., bag day May 3, 1 to 7 p.m. Contact Sandy Newman, assistant executive director, email@example.com or 610-435-3571 ext. 115, for more information. WEDNESDAY, MAY 4 Yom HaShoah Holocaust Commemoration Reading of names at 6 p.m., program begins at 7 p.m., JCC of the Lehigh Valley. A ceremony to honor the 6 million Jews lost in the Holocaust. The program, “Memory and Discovery,” will explore how local survivors and their children and grandchildren have made discoveries about family during the Holocaust and how preserving those memories has changed the way they see the world. Contact Shari Spark, 610-821-5500, firstname.lastname@example.org, to learn more. FRIDAY, MAY 6 Federation Easton Shabbat: Restoring Civility to Public Discourse 6:30 p.m., Bnai Abraham Synagogue. Join us at Bnai Abraham Synagogue for a Federation-sponsored Shabbat with Martin Raffel, who has a long and extensive history working in the Jewish public affairs field. This event is free. A dessert reception will be take place after the presentation. FRIDAY, MAY 6 TBE Congregational Dinner 6:30 p.m., Temple Beth El. Please join your Temple Beth El family for Shabbat dinner. The cost for dinner is $45/household or $18/per person. If you would like to purchase wine with dinner, please notify us when you are making your reservation. To make your reservation, please contact Ilene at the Temple office, 610-435-3521. Please RSVP by April 22. SATURDAY, MAY 7 Federation Bethlehem Shabbat: Restoring Civility to Public Discourse 9 a.m, Congregation Brith Sholom. Join us at Congregation Brith Sholom for a Federation-sponsored Shabbat with Martin Raffel, who has a long and extensive history working in the Jewish public affairs field. SATURDAY, MAY 7 KI PJ Library Mini Minyan 10 a.m., Congregation Keneseth Israel. Bring the little ones for a Tot Shabbat service with songs and blessings and of course, a PJ Library story. For more information contact KI at 610-435-9074 or Cantor Jenn at email@example.com. MONDAY, MAY 9 TBE Sisterhood Mah Jongg 6:30 p.m., Temple Beth El. We will begin to play promptly at 6:45 p.m. Please be there by 6:30 p.m. to register. We play for about three hours. $10 per player donation to TBE Sisterhood. New faces are always welcome to play. For questions or to RSVP, contact Ilene Rubel at 610-776-1577 or IRUBEL@aol.com. TUESDAY, MAY 10 Yom Hazikaron Observance 7:30 p.m., JCC of the Lehigh Valley. A ceremony will be held in the JCC Auxiliary Auditorium to observe Israel’s Memorial Day and remember the IDF’s Fallen Soldiers and those who have died in terror attacks. This year’s program will give special honor to the women who served in the IDF. Services will be held prior to the ceremony at 7:15 p.m. The public is welcome to attend. THURSDAY, MAY 12 Israel’s 68th Birthday Festival 4:30 to 6:30 p.m., JCC of the Lehigh Valley. Join the community for a Yom Ha’atzmaut celebration! Bring your own kosher-style dinner or falafel available for purchase. Moon bounce, festive music and Israeli-themed activities. Free and open to the community. To RSVP, visit the JCC Welcome Desk, call 610-435-3571 or register online at www. lvjcc.org. Sponsored by the Lehigh Valley Jewish Clergy Group, the Jewish Community Center of the Lehigh Valley, the Jewish Day School of the Lehigh Valley and the Jewish Federation of the Lehigh Valley in partnership with congregations throughout the Lehigh Valley. FRIDAY, MAY 13 Adult Hebrew Class Shabbat Service 7:30 p.m., Congregation Keneseth Israel. Our wonderful
26 MAY 2016 | HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY
adult students will help lead services. SUNDAY, MAY 15 Phyllis Ringel Memorial Lecture: Self Care During Family Challenges or Transitions 10 a.m., Congregation Keneseth Israel. For 25 years, Ann Friedenheim, M.S., L.P.C., has worked with adults, teens and children living through many difficult circumstances to offer a safe and nurturing place to explore situations or problems that are causing distress. Ann will be this year’s featured speaker at Jewish Family Service’s Phyllis Ringel Memorial Lecture. She will discuss “Self Care During Family Challenges or Transitions.” The program will be interactive. Brunch will be provided and RSVPs are appreciated. Call 610-821-8722 or email firstname.lastname@example.org. Free and open to the community. SUNDAY, MAY 15 Sneak Peek into Sunday School 10:15 a.m., Temple Beth El. Beth El Members and nonmembers can sample Sunday School without making a commitment. For children in pre-K through 6th grade and their parents. Participate in a class, view the curriculum and tour the school. Please RSVP to Alicia 610-435-3521 or email@example.com. SUNDAY, MAY 15 PJ Library Family Yoga 10:30 a.m., JCC of the Lehigh Valley. PJ Library invites families to bend, breathe and move with yoga instructor Michele Cooper in this fun and engaging class especially for little ones and their parents. Dress in comfortable clothing. Open to the community. Join us for yoga, a healthy snack, art projects and, of course, a PJ Library story. $5 per child. Parents and children under 2 free. Please register at the JCC Welcome Desk, call 610-435-3571 or register online at www.lvjcc.org. Questions? Contact Abby Trachtman at firstname.lastname@example.org. SUNDAY, MAY 15 TBE Men’s Club Poker Night 12 p.m., Temple Beth El. Come and “Ante-Up,” “Texas Hold-Em” Style.” Come play cards with us, and bring your friends. Enjoy a relaxing evening to socialize and snack. This event is open to the entire TBE community and beyond, so feel free to bring guests. $10 per person. Please RSVP “All-in” to Roy Benasaraf at email@example.com or call 610-216-0190. WEDNESDAY, MAY 18 Women’s Division Spring Event with ‘Invisible Bridge’ Author Julie Orringer 6:30 p.m., Temple Beth El. Women who have pledged a minimum of $365 to the 2016 Campaign for Jewish Needs are invited to join the Jewish Federation for its annual Women’s Division Spring Event. In “The Invisible Bridge,” scholar and award-winning author Julie Orringer ties her grandfather’s story to the love story set against the backdrop of Budapest and Paris during World War II. $45 for dinner and program. Dietary laws observed. To learn more or register, call 610-821-5500, e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org, or register online at www.jewishlehighvalley.org/women. THURSDAY, MAY 19 Bethlehem Easton Hadassah Book/Film Group 1:30 p.m., 1 Nottingham Lane, Easton. Please join us when we review the book, “One More River” by Mary Glickman. Bernard Levy was always a mystery to the community of Guilford, Mississippi. He was even more of a mystery to his son, Mickey Moe, who was just four years old when his father died in World War II. Now it’s 1962 and Mickey Moe is a grown man, who must prove his pedigree to the disapproving parents of his girlfriend, Laura Anne Needleman, to win her hand in marriage. Contact Debbie Miller at 610-253-8919. SATURDAY, MAY 21 Annual Gala Honoring Cantor Jenn Duretz Peled & Matan Peled Cocktail reception, 6 p.m.; Concert 8 p.m.; Dessert reception, 9 p.m., Congregation Keneseth Israel. Sumptuous appetizers catered by Chef Eric. Entertainment by the world-renowned Israeli musician Hadar. Concert will be followed by elegant desserts. $100/person or $60/person for
FRIDAYS 8 - 9:30 AM WMUH 91.7 Featuring Cantor Wartell muhlenberg.edu/wmuh
dessert and show only. RSVP by May 2. Contact 610-4359074 for more information. TUESDAY, MAY 24 Adults at the J and Women’s Division Paint & Create Party 6:30 to 9 p.m., JCC of the Lehigh Valley. Gather your friends and make new ones. Join other adults for a fun, social, evening paint party. Class is taught by Kristina Cole, owner of Paint of Mind LLC. This unique experience includes all you need to have fun and create a one-ofa-kind masterpiece to take home (12 x 16 canvas). Just bring your creative mind, and be ready to relax and be entertained. No experience needed. Wine and munchies included. Price: $32. Limited to first 50 participants. Register at the JCC Welcome Desk, by calling 610-435-3571, or online at www.lvjcc.org. Brought to you by Adults at the J and the Shalom Lehigh Valley Committee of the Jewish Federation’s Women’s Division. Newcomers especially welcome! THURSDAY, MAY 26 Closing Reception for ‘The Wilds of Africa Photography Safari’ 6:30 to 8 p.m., The Gallery at the JCC. Closing reception for the exhibit featuring the work of Buddy Eleazer and Larry Bardawil. Buddy Eleazer is an international award-winning wildlife and landscape photographer who has been featured by “Popular Photography,” “National Geographic” and the prestigious Epson Panorama Awards. Inspired by nature and the great outdoors, he specializes in southern Africa wildlife and landscape photography. Also an extensive traveler, Larry Bardawil finds the beauty and spirituality of nature inspirational. Through composition and technique he creates photographs that stand out on their own merit out of context. Free and open to the public and including refreshments and live music. SUNDAY, MAY 29 JCC Israeli Film Festival: ‘Dancing in Jaffa’ 7 p.m. JCC of the Lehigh Valley. Pierre Dulaine, an internationally renowned ballroom dancer, fulfills a life-long dream when he takes his program, Dancing Classrooms, back to his city of birth, Jaffa. Over a 10-week period, Pierre teaches 10-year-old Palestinian-Israeli and JewishIsraeli children to dance and compete together. Dancing in Jaffa explores the complex stories of three different children, who are forced to confront issues of identity, segregation and racial prejudice as they dance with their enemy. Sponsored by Eydie and Neil Glickstein in memory of Eydie’s father Maurice Marin. Free and open to the community. THURSDAY, JUNE 2 JCC Israeli Film Festival: ‘A Borrowed Identity’ Gifted Eyad, a Palestinian Israeli boy, is given the chance to go to a prestigious Jewish boarding school in Jerusalem. As he desperately tries to fit in with his Jewish schoolmates, Eyad develops a friendship with another outsider – Jonathan, a boy suffering from muscular dystrophy, and gradually becomes part of the home Jonathan shares with his mother. Faced with a choice, Eyad will have to make a decision that will change his life forever. ”A Borrowed Identity” is adapted from Sayed Kashua’s autobiographical writings. Presented in partnership with Congregation Keneseth Israel. $10 general community, $7 JCC members. FRIDAY, JUNE 3 Brotherhood Shabbat Service 7:30 p.m., Congregation Keneseth Israel. The men of Brotherhood will be participating in the service along with the Congregational Choir. SUNDAY, JUNE 5 Shalom Baby Reunion 10 a.m to 12 p.m., JCC of the Lehigh Valley. Join Shalom Baby for a fun family reunion. Meet other Shalom Baby families and enjoy a play date for the little ones and for the parents, too. Snacks, playground time and fun. Free and open to all families who have been welcomed by the Shalom Baby program of the Jewish Federation’s Women’s Division.
Celebrate the beauty of Shabbat
Shabbat & Yom Tov Candlelighting Times Friday, May 6
Friday, May 27
Friday, May 13
Friday, June 3
Friday, May 20
Friday, June 10
Ongoing Events SUNDAY to FRIDAY
100,000 MILES/YR FOR KOSHER! First Tuesday of the month, 7 p.m., Congregation Beth Avraham Open to all. Fascinating vignettes from a mashgiach who drives approximately 100,000 miles/year (yes, per year!) to keep the kosher supply chain intact. From rural Arkansas to frigid Nova Scotia, winter and summer, the demands are always there. Contact Rabbi Yitzchok I. Yagod, Kashruth Hotline (24/6), 610-905-2166, email@example.com.
JEWISH WAR VETERANS POST 239 2nd Sunday of the month, 10 a.m., JCC of the Lehigh Valley Veterans and their significant others are invited as the guest of the Ladies Auxiliary. Come and enjoy comradeship; we’ll even listen to your “war stories.” A brunch follows each meeting. Questions? Contact Commander Sheila Berg at 610-360-1267 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
I ALWAYS WANTED TO KNOW MORE ABOUT JUDAISM 7 p.m., Temple Beth El Taught by Rabbi Moshe Re’em. The course is designed for those wishing to learn more about the religious observances of Judaism, theology of the Jewish holidays and ritual practices. It serves as an introduction to daily Jewish rituals, including prayer and the Jewish dietary laws.
TEFILLIN CLUB & ADULT HEBREW SCHOOL 9:30 a.m. Tefillin; 10 to 11 a.m. Adult Hebrew, Chabad Tefillin is for Jewish men and boys over the age of Bar Mitzvah, to learn about, and gain appreciation for, the rich and enriching Jewish practice – the mitzvah – of donning Tefillin. Contact 610-351-6511.
HEBREW LANGUAGE: GETTING BEYOND THE BASICS 8 p.m., Temple Beth El Are you interested in learning more Hebrew or polishing up your Hebrew skills? Facilitated by Rabbi Re’em, take the step beyond basic reading in Hebrew.
DAF YOMI 7:30 a.m., Congregation Sons of Israel Meeting all year long, this class covers the gamut of Talmudic law, studying one page of the talmud each day, and completing the talmud over the course of seven and a half years. Basic Jewish background is recommended.
TALMUD CLASS FOR BEGINNERS! 10 to 11 a.m., Congregation Beth Avraham of Bethlehem-Easton For information,contact Rabbi Yitzchok I. Yagod at 610-905-2166. MONDAYS FRIENDSHIP CIRCLE 11:30 a.m. to 2 p.m., JCC of the Lehigh Valley Friendship Circle is a place for people to meet, make new friends and enjoy each other’s company. We welcome all adults over 50. Friendship Circle meets weekly for lively and enjoyable programs and a delicious lunch. Annual dues $25; paid up members are treated to two major programs with a catered luncheon. Regular weekly meetings and lunch – $6. First visit – NO CHARGE. Weather permitting. Contact Betty at 610-395-6282 for reservations. THE ROSH CHODESH SOCIETY: ART & SOUL Once a month, at 7 p.m., Chabad Taught by Rebbetzin Devorah Halperin, a seven-part course for women exploring seven art forms – painting, music, literature, dance, architecture, clothing design, and the culinary arts – from the perspective of Jewish teaching and Jewish life. Cost is $60 (including textbook). For more information contact 610-351-6511 or email@example.com. TUESDAYS ANCIENT PRAYERS...ANCIENT YEARNINGS... THEECHO OF YESTERDAY...CAN THEY BE HEARD IN OUR LIVES TODAY? 11 a.m., Temple Beth El Join Cantor Wartell in exploring the historical roots of the prayer service with contemporary application. TORAH STUDY 12 p.m., at the home of Cindy Daniels, 3630 Corriere Rd., Apt. 100, Easton Join Rabbi Melody of TCP to delve into the heart and soul of the Torah and how it applies to your life! No knowledge of Hebrew is necessary, nor is registration. Join us when you can and do the Jewish thing: LEARN! Contact 610-253-2031 for information. PIRKEI AVOT (THE ETHICS OF THE FATHERS) 1:15 p.m., at the home of Cindy Daniels, 3630 Corriere Rd., Apt. 100, Easton Join Rabbi Melody of TCP for this wonderful new class. All welcome! Contact 610-2532031 for information. YACHAD TORAH STUDY GROUP 1:30 to 2:30 p.m., JCC of the Lehigh Valley Bring your curiosity to thet Yachad Torah study group and discover the wonders, adventures and meaning of the Torah. Moderated by Rabbi Yehoshua Mizrachi. Held in the Teachers’ Learning Center/Holocaust Resource Room (lower level, JCC). Call 610-435-3571 for information.
LATTE & LEARN 8 to 9 p.m., Starbucks, Schoenersville Road, Bethlehem Grab your favorite Starbucks quaff and jump right in as we relate the weekly Torah portion to world events, western civilization and even our own relationships. No Hebrew is required. Contact Rabbi Mizrachi 207-404-0474; firstname.lastname@example.org; www.torahovereasy.blogspot.com. WEDNESDAYS 101 JUDAISM CLASS 10 a.m., Temple Covenant of Peace Join Rabbi Melody for the 101 Judaism Class. All welcome! Contact 610-253-2031 for information. HADASSAH STUDY GROUP Every other Wednesday, 1:30 p.m., Temple Beth El Allentown Hadassah presents a stimulating series of short story seminars. All are welcome to attend these free sessions in the Temple Beth El library. The group will be reading selections from anthologies available from Amazon.com. For dates and stories, e-mail Lolly Siegel at spscomm@ aol.com or call 610-439-1851.
Torah, Judaism, the holidays, Hebrew and Yiddish literature, well-known stories and poetry. Cost: $10 each semester. Contact 610-258-5343, email@example.com. MOMMY & ME 10:30 to 11:15 a.m., Chabad Led by Devorah Halperin and Alli Lipson, Mommy & Me is an innovative program for babies and toddlers to experience Jewish traditions in a stimulating, fun and creative atmosphere. Cost is $10 per class, $40 for full session. For information and to register, firstname.lastname@example.org. CONVERSATIONS THAT MATTER: THE MAKING OF A MENSCH 10:30 a.m. to 12 p.m., Congregation Keneseth Israel Join a welcoming group of KI members and their friends to discuss a variety of topics relevant to the Jewish lives we have – or want to have. No prerequisites except an open mind and a willingness to listen to each other. For more information or to get on the email list, contact email@example.com or call 610-435-9074.
CONGREGATION BRITH SHOLOM 1190 W. Macada Rd., Bethlehem – 610.866.8009 Rabbi Michael Singer, Conservative MINYAN is at 7:45 a.m. on Mondays and Thursdays, 9 a.m. on Saturdays and holidays. RELIGIOUS SCHOOL classes every Wednesday at 4:30 p.m. at Brith Sholom and Sundays at 9:30 a.m. at Bnai Abraham Synagogue.
THE SEVEN QUESTIONS YOU WILL BE ASKED IN HEAVEN...HOW TO LIVE A LIFE OF FULFILLMENT TODAY 7 p.m., Temple Beth El A discussion of the new book by the same title by Dr. Ron Wolfson led by Cantor Wartell. The group will explore the thoughts, motivations and behaviors of our lives and consider how to enrich our daily living. FRIDAYS SIMCHA SHABBAT 1st Friday of the month, 6:30 p.m., Bnai Abraham Synagogue Please join us for our musical Simcha Shabbat and stay for a special oneg. For more information please call Bnai Abraham Synagogue at 610-258-5343.
JAVA AND JEANS 4th Saturday of the month, 10 a.m., Bnai Abraham Synagogue Join us for our monthly Shabbat service to discuss current topics of interest as they relate to Jewish laws and practices. For more information, call 610-258-5343.
ADULT EDUCATION CLASS 10:15 to 11:15 a.m., Bnai Abraham Synagogue No preparation or prior knowledge is required. Rabbi Daniel Stein leads an eager-to-learn group. We examine the
CONGREGATION AM HASKALAH 1190 W. Macada Rd., Bethlehem – 610.435.3775 Student Rabbi Leiah Moser, Reconstructionist Weekly Shabbat services and a monthly family service with potluck dinner. Religious school meets Sunday mornings. Email firstname.lastname@example.org to learn more.
EVERYTHING YOU ALWAYS WANTED TO KNOW ABOUT JUDAISM BUT WERE AFRAID TO ASK! 5 p.m., Temple Covenant of Peace This class is one which a person may drop in when one can. Available via Skype. If you are interested, please send rabbi a Skype invitation at Rebmelody.
HUSBANDS ANONYMOUS First Wednesday of the month, 7:30 p.m., location upon signup Calling all wives! Send your husbands to this class! Rabbi WIlensky guides us on how to become more attentive, caring, sensitive partners, and how to strengthen and deepen our spousal relationships in the context of Torah. Contact Sons of Israel for exact dates and locations.
CHABAD OF THE LEHIGH VALLEY 4457 Crackersport Rd., Allentown – 610.336.6603 Rabbi Yaacov Halperin, Chabad Lubavitch SHABBAT EVENING services are held once a month seasonally, SHABBAT MORNING services are held Saturdays at 10 a.m., RELIGIOUS SCHOOL classes are held Wednesdays at 4:30 p.m. and Sundays at 10 a.m.
CONGREGATION BETH AVRAHAM 439 South Nulton Ave., Palmer Township – 610.905.2166 | Rabbi Yitzchok Yagod, Orthodox SHABBAT EVENING starts half an hour after candle lighting. SHABBAT MORNING starts at 9:30 a.m., followed by a hot kiddish.
ORTHODOX JEWISH LIVING: WHAT IS IT & HOW? 8 p.m. Contact Rabbi Yizchok I. Yagod, 610-905-2166 or rabbiyagod1@gmail. com.
BNAI ABRAHAM SYNAGOGUE 1545 Bushkill St., Easton – 610.258.5343 Rabbi Daniel Stein, Conservative MORNING MINYAN services are Thursday mornings at 7:25 a.m., SHABBAT EVENING services are Fridays at 8 p.m., SHABBAT MORNING services are Saturdays at 9:30 a.m., RELIGIOUS SCHOOL classes are Wednesdays at 4:15 p.m. and Sundays at 9:30 a.m..
TORAH ON TILGHMAN 12:15 p.m., Allentown Wegmans Cantor Ellen Sussman of Temple Shirat Shalom leads a lunch and learn on the Torah. RSVP to contactus@templeshiratshalom. com or 610-820-7666.
BETH AVRAHAM TORAH STUDY 7 p.m., Congregation Beth Avraham Torah: It is the common heritage that binds all Jews together. Explore the ancient healing wisdom of Torah together. All are welcome. Who knows? It might even be fun! RSVP: Rabbi Yitzchok I. Yagod, 610-905-2166, email@example.com.
TORAH STUDIES: A WEEKLY JOURNEY INTO THE SOUL OF TORAH 7:30 p.m., Chabad of the Lehigh Valley Torah Studies by JLI presents: Season Two: A 15-part series. Cost is $36 for the complete series (textbook included). For more information contact 610-351-6511 or Rabbi@chabadlehighvalley.com.
BEGINNER’S GEMARA 8 a.m., Congregation Sons of Israel Facilitated by Dr. Henry Grossbard, this is an excellent primer for developing the analytical tools necessary for in-depth study of the Talmud.
CONGREGATION KENESETH ISRAEL 2227 Chew St., Allentown – 610.435.9074 Rabbi Seth D. Phillips Cantor Jennifer Duretz Peled, Reform Services begin at 7:30 p.m. every Friday night. The first Friday of the month is a FAMILY SERVICE and celebration of birthdays and anniversaries. RELIGIOUS SCHOOL classes are held Tuesdays at 4 p.m. and Sundays at 9:30 a.m. CONGREGATION SONS OF ISRAEL 2715 Tilghman St., Allentown – 610.433.6089 Rabbi David Wilensky, Orthodox SHACHARIT: Sundays at 8:30 a.m., Mondays and Thursdays at 6:30 a.m., Tuesdays, Wednesdays and Fridays at 6:45 a.m. MINCHAH/MAARIV: 20 minutes before sunset. FRIDAY EVENING: 20 minutes before sunset, 7 p.m. in the summer. SHABBAT MORNING: 9 a.m. SHABBAT AFTERNOON: 90 minutes before dark. TEMPLE BETH EL 1305 Springhouse Rd., Allentown – 610.435.3521 Rabbi Moshe Re’em | Cantor Kevin Wartell Conservative Weekday morning minyan services at 7:45 a.m. and Sunday at 9 a.m. Shabbat evening services at 7:30 p.m. with the last Friday evening of the month featuring our Shira Chadasha Service . Shabbat morning services at 9 a.m. followed by Kiddush. Religious school classes every Tuesday/ Thursday at 4 p.m. and Sunday at 10 a.m. Midrasha school classes Monday at 7 p.m. Shalshelet — Temple Beth El’s new innovative high school program — meets bi-monthly on Monday evenings from 7 to 9 p.m. Shalshelet (the chain) is open to ALL 10th-, 11th- and 12th-grade students in the Lehigh Valley. For more information contact Alicia Zahn, religlious school director, at bethelallentown.org.
ISSUES IN CONTEMPORARY HALACHAH 12 p.m., Congregation Sons of Israel Join Rabbi Wilensky as he takes Halachah from the weekly Torah portion and brings it to bear on some of the most pressing issues of our time.
TEMPLE COVENANT OF PEACE 1451 Northampton St., Easton – 610.253.2031 Tcp@rcn.com; tcopeace.org Rabbi Melody Davis | Cantor Jill Pakman Reform TCP holds Shabbat evening services every Friday night at 7:30 p.m. and a Renewal Style Shabbat morning service on the 4th Saturday of the month at 10:30 a.m. A family Shabbat service is held on the second Friday night of each month at 6:30 p.m. Our services reflect a diverse culture of traditional, innovative and musical experiences with a Reform Jewish context. Religious school meets on Sunday mornings from 9:15 a.m. to 12:15 p.m. We have a Family Game / Movie night on the first Saturday of every month at 6 p.m. For more information about our Temple and activities, see our website at www.tcopeace.org or look us up on Facebook.
BNEI AKIVA 5:45 p.m., Congregation Sons of Israel An Israel-centered fun program for kids ages eight to 14. This program is free and open to the public. For information and to RSVP, call 610-433-6089.
TEMPLE SHIRAT SHALOM 610.820.7666 Cantor Ellen Sussman Friday night SHABBAT WORSHIP SERVICES held at 7 p.m. at The Swain School, 1100 South 24th St., Allentown. For more information, Contact Us at templeshiratshalom.org or 610-820-7666.
CHAVURAT TORAH STUDY Each Shabbat following kiddush lunch, Temple Beth El No sign-up needed for this class. Taught by Shari Spark. Enrich your Shabbat experience by studying the parashat hashavua, the weekly Torah portion, with other congregants, each Shabbat in the library at approximately 12:45 p.m. No previous knowledge or longterm commitments are required.
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The Jewish newspaper of the Lehigh Valley, Pennsylvania.