HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY 40th ANNIVERSARY
The Voice of the Lehigh Valley Jewish Community
JANUARY 2017 | TEVET/SH’VAT 5777
of the community together for mitzvah day By Stephanie Smartschan JFLV Director of Marketing A long time ago, in a galaxy far, far away, a community came together to provide for those in need. Now, those forces are being called to the front line again as the Jewish Federation hosts its annual Super Sunday phone-a-thon and community mitzvah day on Jan. 29. Whether you choose to make the call, answer the call, or participate in a mitzvah project, may the Fords be with you. “We block out Super Sunday on our calendars every year,” said Brian Ford, who is co-chairing the event with his wife Emily. “There are so many ways to make a difference that day, and the best part is we can bring our kids and teach them about giving back too.” Super Sunday will, as always, begin and end with a phone-a-thon and community celebration at the JCC. From 9:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. and 5:30 to 8 p.m., volunteers will be “making the call,” asking for support for the 2017 Campaign for Jewish Needs. Funds raised help feed the hungry, comfort the elderly and inspire Jewish life and learning in the Lehigh Valley, in Israel and all over the world. Volunteers can make Super Sunday a family affair. A free PJ Library program will take place at 10:30 a.m. in the auxiliary auditorium featuring a “Bend & Stretch” class with Coach T. There will also be crafts provided by Camp JCC, stories and snacks. The first 50 young Padawans will get a free T-shirt. BBYO members and Hillel students will be participating in the phone-a-thon, some
Learn about a Jewish, Muslim and Christian union against bigotry on page 3.
Discover a piece of controversial Israeli legislation on page 8.
making thank you calls to those who have already pledged to this year’s campaign. There will be refreshments provided for both shifts and a few special guests are expected in the morning. All volunteers will receive an orientation before making calls, and a T-shirt. Between the calling shifts, this year’s mitzvah project will take place at the Atria in Bethlehem at 1:30 p.m. Volunteers will accompany Jewish Family Service to bake a special treat with residents. “We all have family recipes that we cherish and memories of time spent in our grandparents’ kitchens,” said Chelsea Busch, who is co-chairing the mitzvah project with fellow Young Adult Division member Joy Wernick. “Few things warm the heart like being able to cook together.” “The residents of Atria truly appreciate the Jewish life that we bring through Shabbat and holiday programs,” said Carol Wilson, JFS clinical coordinator of older adult services. “We hope to make Super Sunday a special day for both the residents and the volunteers.” To sign up now for a phone-a-thon shift or mitzvah project, visit www.jewishlehighvalley.org/supersunday, call 610821-5500 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
Jewish Agency provides financial support to hundreds of families after fires Look back at six years of Super Sunday on pages 16-17
No. 394 com.UNITY with Mark Goldstein 2 4
Jewish Family Service Jewish Day School
Jewish Community Center Community Calendar
ities in coordination with the National Emergency Authority. Money raised by the Jewish Federation of the Lehigh Valley for the Israel Fire Emergency Fund, in concert with Federations across North America, will help fund the grants, along with other services that the Jewish Agency is providing. Jewish Agency Chairman Natan Sharansky and Boston’s Combined Jewish Philanthropies President Barry Shrage join Haifa resident Herzl Shahaf Israel fire in surveying the damage to his home in the wake of the recent wildfires, Continues on page 7 November 30, 2016.
Non-Profit Organization 702 North 22nd Street Allentown, PA 18104
U.S. POSTAGE PAID Lehigh Valley, PA Permit No. 64
DON'T MISS OUR SPECIAL SECTION
filled with unique bar mitzvah and wedding stories and so much more!
The Jewish Agency for Israel is providing financial assistance to hundreds of families across Israel whose homes were damaged by the devastating wildfires in November. Grants of $1,000 will be provided to each family in order to help them address urgent needs presented by the loss of their place of residence. Eligible recipients are being identified by local author-
FROM THE DESK OF MARK L. GOLDSTEIN
Executive Director | Jewish Federation of the Lehigh Valley email@example.com
Commemorating Dr. King Growing up in the Deep South, I was keenly aware of the Civil Rights Movement. I recall my father’s business trucks being vandalized because of his willingness to hire people of color for jobs typically occupied only by whites. I remember vividly Nashville bracing itself for civil unrest following the assassination of Dr. Martin Luther King, Jr. National Guard vehicles lined major streets and surrounded the largest municipal park. While many people are able to recall the connection of Jews to the civil rights movements, many fail to recognize the reciprocal support Dr. King and others lent to “Jewish causes.”From virtually the very beginning of the movement to free Soviet Jews in the 1960s, King was a major advocate on their behalf. In 1965 the New York Times published a letter to the editor by Dr. King. He publicly sought support for the re-establishment of the “religious and cultural freedom” of Soviet Jews. He also urged the Soviet government to “end all discriminatory measures against the Jewish community.” In a 1967 telephone hookup, King addressed dozens of Soviet Jewry human rights rallies across America. In his compelling remarks, he stated that the Soviet government deprived Jewish communities of basic items required to sustain even a modest existence. He
admonished his fellow Americans not to sit “complacently by the wayside” while their Jewish brothers and sisters in the Soviet Union faced the possible dissolution of their spiritual and cultural life. King’s commitment to a secure and independent Israel was also clear. A few months after the Six-Day War, he wrote to Jewish community leaders that “Israel’s right to exist as a Jewish state in security is incontestable.” In addressing a conversation of rabbis just 10 days before his tragic death in 1968, the Nobel Prize laureate referred to Israel as “one of the great outposts of democracy in the world.” He went on to say that “we must stand with all our might to protect [Israel’s] right to exist, its territorial integrity.” King also frequently denounced anti-Semitism. According to him, “the segregationists and racists make no fine distinction between the Negro and the Jew.” In a letter to Jewish leaders, he attacked anti-Semitism “within the Negro community, because it was wrong. I will continue to oppose it, because it is immoral and self-destructive.” For King – and for the Jews actively involved in the Civil Rights Movement – there were no “Negro issues” and “Jewish issues.” Freedom and equality for one was inextricably tied to the universal right of all groups to live in peace, free from discrimination and op-
pression. This belief, exemplified by King’s extraordinary leadership, was instrumental in shaping the close relationship between Blacks and Jews that developed during the King years, a closeness that included cooperation in campaigns to end discrimination in housing and to improve educational opportunities. I write this the day after participating with Lehigh Valley interfaith leaders, led by the Interfaith Action Committee of Lehigh Conference of Churches, in a denouncement of bigotry and division. The joint statement recognizes the awkward and discomforting “climate of tension and anxiety in our community and nation.” One need not look beyond the Lehigh Valley to sense a rise in hate speech, bullying, anti-Semitism and other expressions of intolerance. We are experiencing a dramatic increase – just in the past couple of months – of public schools connecting with our Federation’s Holocaust Resource Center for curricular assistance and programming related to combatting intolerance. For instance, at Southern Lehigh High School, the HRC’s Holocaust Legacy Exhibit was installed on short notice. The school created a three-day schedule exposing over 700 students to the lessons of the Holocaust. Our Holocaust Resource Center program, along with the IJCU’s Youth and Prejudice
LETTER FROM THE EDITOR Dear Readers, Event planning is one of the most stressful things we can do. It sometimes feels insurmountable, and in the times when I’ve done it, I’ve had moments when I’d wonder if it would all be worth it. It took some ingenuity and caring from my college friends to prove to me that every event has the potential to be magical. It was a few days before my graduation from Colgate. I got home one night and was shocked when five friends jumped out from behind the couch, yelling “SURPRISE!” It was then that I noticed the streamers, balloons, cakes, cards, games, every trapping of a great party. I soon began to notice a few balloons drifting down and the
streamers that said “Happy Birthday” (they were made out of graduation ones, my friends said). I wondered what had gone wrong when I learned the pineapple cake had a plastic fork baked into the middle and the chocolate one had a Lunchables pizza on it for decoration. But that’s not what I think of when I remember that night. I remember the unscripted moments, the laughter from the games we played, the presents that came from $.50 machines at the grocery store, the owl decorations my friends made out of construction paper. I remember, in short, the moments of joy and magic that the planning had created. With the stage set, and even with some mishaps along the way, my friends created an unforgettable experience that I remember
against apathy and indifference, hate speech and intolerance. Whether anti-Semitism or Islamophobia. Whether racism or sexism. Whether impugning the equality and rights of immigrants, the LGBT community, those with disabilities, or members of other faith communities. Allowing hatred against one provides license for hatred against many.
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.
COMMUNITY SUBMISSIONS Submissions to HAKOL must be of interest to the entire Jewish community. HAKOL reserves all editorial rights including, but not limited to, the decision to print any submitted materials, the editing of submissions to conform to style and length requirements, and the placement of any printed material. Articles should be submitted by e-mail or presented as typed copy; “Community Calendar” listings must be submitted by e-mail to firstname.lastname@example.org or online at www. jewishlehighvalley.org. Please include your name and a daytime telephone number where you can be contacted in the event questions arise. We cannot guarantee publication or placement of submissions.
Phone: (610) 821-5500 Fax: (610) 821-8946 E-mail: email@example.com
Allison Meyers Diane McKee
Advertising Representative TEL: 610-515-1391 firstname.lastname@example.org
JFLV EXECUTIVE STAFF Mark L. Goldstein Executive Director
Assistant Executive Director
Director of Finance & Administration
Director of Planned Giving & Endowments
Director of Outreach & Community Relations
Mark H. Scoblionko JFLV President
Monica Friess, Acting Chair Barbara Reisner Judith Rodwin Sara Vigneri
Member American Jewish Press Association
as one of the happiest nights of my life. When I moved to Allentown six months ago, I hung up the owls and a deflated red balloon. Every time I see them, they make me smile – which makes the planning all worthwhile. Shalom, Michelle Cohen
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 EDITH MOSKOVITCH Rose and Alex Jakoby MARK RAPOPORT (Husband of Wendy Rapoport) Libby and Ira Gershansky Sarah, Aaron, Eli, and Gabriela Herrmann
TO ORDER TREES, call the JFLV at 610-821-5500 or visit www.jewishlehighvalley.org. 2 JANUARY 2017 | HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY
Mail, fax, or e-mail to: JFLV ATTN: HAKOL 702 N. 22nd St. Allentown, PA 18104
JEWISH FEDERATION OF THE LEHIGH VALLEY IN HONOR BARNET FRAENKEL Happy “Special” Birthday Margo and Steve Wiener FRANK AND TAMA TAMARKIN JDS Gala Honor Allison and Scott Lipson
Workshop, exposes thousands of students in the Lehigh Valley to history lessons from the Holocaust and other examples of genocide and hatred. More importantly, values clarification activities enable the students to explore how to avoid being a bystander. The students learn that fear and apathy consume the bystanders to no good. They learn the meaning of Elie Wiesel’s words: “Neutrality and apathy helps the oppressor, never the victim. Silence encourages the tormentor, never the tormented” and that “the opposite of life is not death, it is indifference.” Dr. King worked his entire life for a dream … a dream of equality for all mankind. Let us rise up and call out hatred and bigotry. While we must battle the anti-Semite, equally we must join with others
All advertising is subject to review and approval by The Jewish Federation of the Lehigh Valley (JFLV). JFLV reserves the right to decline, withdraw and/ or edit any ad. The appearance of any advertising in HAKOL does not represent an endorsement or kashrut certification. Paid political advertisements that appear in HAKOL do not represent an endorsement of any candidate by the JFLV.
JEWISH FEDERATION OF THE LEHIGH VALLEY MISSION STATEMENT 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
Lehigh Conference of Churches along with Muslim and Jewish allies release statement of tolerance By Michelle Cohen HAKOL Editor On Dec. 12, the Lehigh Conference of Churches joined with Jewish and Muslim organizations from around the Lehigh Valley to assert their dedication to religious tolerance and release a statement condemning bigotry and division that have become more commonplace in today’s discourse. The event was held at Respect Graduate School, the only Muslim college in the Lehigh Valley capable of granting a Master of Arts in Islamic Studies, as a way to offer solidarity with Muslims in the Lehigh Valley. The statement itself was read during the program after an opening prayer from Yasemin Aksoy, director of communication and student recruitment at Respect. It begins by acknowledging the “climate of tension and anxiety in our community and nation,” immediately following that with an assertion that “we lift our voices together, as people of faith, to remind our brothers and sisters that we are all Americans united not only by the concord of our national policy but also by the call to build the ‘Beloved Community.’” While each signee vowed to combat the “global state of division and
discord, fueled by intolerance and xenophobia” by “challeng[ing] this dynamic and express[ing] our witness against it,” the statement also urged Lehigh Valley residents to join in this fight. The statement implored people in the Lehigh Valley to “act respectfully toward others, including those representing other faiths and ideological perspectives,” to “refrain from personal attacks on individuals or groups while maintaining the right to disagree vigorously” and to “set an example for our youth in finding ways to settle disputes peacefully and in refraining from acts of bigotry and bullying.” The statement was signed by 89 people, including Allentown Mayor Ed Pawlowski, Jewish Federation Executive Director Mark L. Goldstein, Rabbi Seth Phillips of Congregation Keneseth Israel, Cantor Ellen Sussman of Temple Shirat Shalom, Cantor Kevin Wartell of Temple Beth El, Rabbi Danielle Stillman of Lehigh University and the Rev. Dr. Peter Pettit, director of the Institute for Jewish-Christian Understanding at Muhlenberg College. “I think that we all need to lend our voice against any kind of hatred or bullying that might be happening, and as a clergyperson this was the
Above, Cantor Kevin Wartell of Temple Beth El delivers concluding remarks at a press conference. This event, featuring Christian, Jewish and Muslim organizations in the Lehigh Valley, centered around the release of a statement condemning bigotry. natural form for me to do it in,” said Stillman, director of Jewish student life at Lehigh, one of four people who spoke briefly following the reading of the interfaith statement at the event. “I talked about how a foundational commandment in Judaism is loving a stranger, and that means both people who are different from us – strange in the sense of different – and also
strange in the sense of oppressed or marginalized in society, and this is a major orientation of Judaism that we have to do this,” Stillman said. “I also talked about how when we come together as a group like this, we have to be careful to maintain our own Conference of Churches Continues on page 13
HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY | JANUARY 2017 3
WOMEN’S DIVISION OF THE JEWISH FEDERATION OF THE LEHIGH VALLEY
Women’s Division luncheon presents 20th century artist Rubington’s work
By Michelle Cohen HAKOL Editor Local gallery owner Santa Bannon introduced the work of Norman Rubington, a sculptor, painter, collager, printmaker, illustrator, filmmaker and author, to the Women’s Division of the Jewish Federation of the Lehigh Valley at a Lunch & Learn on Dec. 1. In a room filled with Rubington’s paintings, prints and other forms of work, Bannon walked the attendees through the collection of works and
presented the story of how these works had come into her gallery. She then passed the microphone to Rubington’s cousin, Ann May Greene, who inherited about 300 works of art after his death in 1991, including the ones on display, and became the founding curator of his work. Greene opened the attendees’ eyes to the life of Rubington, who was born in 1921 and moved to France to attend art schools École des Beaux-Arts and Académie de la Grande Chau-
mière with money from the GI Bill. He spent many years in France as well as some time in Rome and the Bowery in New York working on various forms of art. In addition to painting, Rubington was a writer known for satirical pieces under the pseudonym “Akbar del Piombo.” His works earned a variety of awards, including the Prix de Rome, a Guggenheim Fellowship, a McDowell Art Colony Fellowship and a Tiffany Foundation Grant. In addition to his impressive pedigree as an artist, Greene wished to “resurrect” the cousin who she met in Paris in 1949. She shared
two works in particular, one a stark painting of a rabbi that sat next to the lectern as well as one of his dismal paintings of Holocaust victims. In the painting Greene displayed, three naked women holding onto each other with despairing looks on their faces and a pale, dank background. Few know of Rubington’s religious beliefs, but Greene recalled his bar mitzvah, and said that his faith inspired him to create religious works of art. In addition to Jewish art, Rubington also created a Gothic version of the Crucifixion that was awarded the Religious Art Award of the
Year in California and has a permanent home in a major cathedral there. Greene next introduced Ilene Wood, the self-described “midwife” of the story, who described a variety of meetings that led to Greene and Bannon collaborating to create a gallery for Rubington’s work. “Art brings people together in the most amazing ways,” said Lisa Fraenkel, the Lunch & Learn chairperson. As a final parting offer, Bannon said that she would donate 20 percent of any Rubington purchases at the Santa Bannon Fine Art Gallery inspired by the Lunch & Learn to the Federation.
Handmade Afghans BY EVA LEVITT
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 JANUARY 2017 | HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY
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
Doctor to address professional wellness at bagel brunch By Michelle Cohen HAKOL Editor On Jan. 8, join the Maimonides Society for a bagel brunch where Dr. Melissa Hakim will address the important issue of wellness for professionals. “Doctors are always so busy giving advice to others that they sometimes don’t listen to their own advice,” Hakim said, which can lead to increased stress as well as career burnout. She plans to discuss the signs and symptoms of being unwell, as well as tips on how doctors can “take care of themselves, eat well, exercise, prevent burnout and find satisfaction in their work.”
A doctor herself, Hakim knows that it can be difficult to navigate the complex world of healthcare decision-making. In addition to other wellness workshops she offers around the city, Hakim has embarked on a new career path in healthcare advocacy, or as she describes it, “working with clients to get the most out of their doctors’ appointments.” In her sessions with clients, she translates medical jargon and helps them decide on their best course of treatment. Rather than offering diagnosis or treatment like a traditional doctor’s appointment may propose, Hakim helps her patients understand their current conditions and how to make the most of potentially limited
time with doctors. As medicine becomes more “corporate,” Hakim said, doctors have less time with each patient, which can lead to a feeling of being overworked after seeing so many patients in a day. “With the rise of obesity and stress-related illnesses,” she added, “doctors don’t necessarily have the time or the energy to take care of themselves. Sometimes we put ourselves last, and it’s a way to give recognition that we too need to take care of our health.” “It’s really directed to an audience that already knows what they should be doing but not necessarily,” she added. “I think sometimes as physicians we feel invincible so this is to
target this part of physician’s own well-being.” The new year is an ideal time for healthcare professionals to make resolutions about taking care of themselves, Hakim said. Whether these resolutions include eating healthier, working out more, getting screened for diseases or simply going to a yearly physical, Hakim hopes to inspire her fellow medical practitioners at the brunch. The brunch will take place on Sunday, Jan. 8 from 10:15 to 11:45 a.m. at the JCC of the Lehigh Valley. It is free for Maimonides members and spouses and $10 for community members. RSVP to 610-8215500 or firstname.lastname@example.org.
TBE students prepare to make new Israeli friends Students at the Temple Beth El religious school prepare to send their first letters to their new pen pals in Yoav, Israel as part of the “Same Moon” program. This program brings children from both regions together to foster international friendships.
HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY | JANUARY 2017 5
COURTESY OF EMERGENCY VOLUNTEERS PROGRAM
Top US firefighters ‘dropped everything’ to help Israel battle the blazes
American and Israeli firefighters posing for photographs after returning from a call in Jerusalem, Nov. 27, 2016.
By Andrew Tobin Jewish Telegraphic Agency Call them Israel’s American volunteer fire brigade. Dozens of firefighters from across the United States put their lives on hold – leaving behind jobs and families – to help subdue the wildfires that swept Israel between Nov. 18 and the beginning of December. While they all share a love of Israel, only a handful of them are Jewish. “We’re just firefighters. When guys hear about a situation like this one, where the Israelis are working as hard as they can, they want to come help,” said Billy Hirth, a Protestant who retired last year after a 24-year career as a firefighter in Arlington, Texas, and has been coordinating the American effort from Jerusalem. “It’s a brotherhood. Firemen are firemen,” he said. Hundreds of fires flared up in Israel
6 JANUARY 2017 | HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY
starting on Nov. 18, forcing tens of thousands of people to flee. Some 32,000 acres of forest and brush burned along with hundreds of homes and businesses. Israeli authorities said the fires started because of an unseasonably long dry spell and high winds, and then were exacerbated by Palestinian and Arab-Israeli arsonists with nationalist motives. Israel’s Public Security Ministry formally requested firefighting help from the Emergency Volunteers Project, a network of over 950 American volunteers and professional first responders. By the next evening, with the fires coming under control, the firefighters started arriving at Tel Aviv’s Ben Gurion Airport, from where they were schlepped to overstretched fire departments across the country. Some went to work battling the remaining wildfires and those that flared up the next day, while others chipped in with routine firefighting. The Israeli stations remain on high alert, with firefighters
having worked grueling shifts over the past week. “Many of the firefighters here, including myself, had been working for over 90 hours straight,” said Oren Shishitzky, a spokesman for Israel’s Fire and Rescue Authority. “Because most of the Americans were trained in Israel, they are familiar with how we operate, and they were able to easily relieve some of the burden on the crews, whether with regular fire response in local districts or in extinguishing the remaining wildfires. “I cannot emphasize enough our appreciation that these guys dropped everything around the Thanksgiving holiday to come here.” Adi Zahavi, 39, founded the Emergency Volunteers Project in 2009 after serving as an overwhelmed first responder during the second intifada and the Second Lebanon War. He set out to prepare willing Americans to help in future crises, from wars to terrorist attacks to natural disasters. Training sessions are held in the United States and Israel. The deployment of the volunteers is coordinated with Israeli authorities. Of the 39 firefighters who traveled to Israel, 33 were full-timers, including the first female firefighter the group has brought to Israel, and six were part-time volunteers. Several, including Hirth, also came to Israel during the 2014 Gaza war, when the south and center of the country were bombarded with rockets. Many worked alongside firefighters with whom they have built friendships during training. “The quality of the American firefighters that have arrived is excellent,” Shishitzky said. “They are elite firefighters, with years and years of experience. Many are veterans who serve in some of the best departments in America. “Where there are distinctions in
training and practice, those were overcome long ago with the training we have conducted.” Elan Raber, 42, is one of seven Jews among the firefighters. He flew in from Los Angeles, where he works for the city fire department. Raber is familiar with the station he is serving at in Petach Tivkah because he trained there with the Emergency Volunteers Program. He said he has been responding to routine calls, like traffic accidents, elevator accidents and reports of smoke. “I was here last year and really bonded with the guys, so I wanted to come back. They do have pretty steady action and a lot of equipment to get familiar with,” Raber said. “We’re coming in here while these guys have already been up for three, four days. We can basically help them out and be on standby if the wildfires come back.” Having been born in Israel and served in the Israel Defense Force, Raber views being here as a part of his “calling.” “Unfortunately, there’s a lot of bad press for Israel, so I hope to show that people are willing to drop everything to show solidarity with the people of Israel. I think people see that, and it’s a good thing. Firefighting was my calling, so I’m happy to help out,” he said. A fellow Jew on the other side of the country helped bring Raber to Israel on short notice. Eli Row — the Orthodox Jewish owner of Jet911, an air ambulance company based in the Queens borough of New York City — scrambled to arrange flights for the firefighters over Shabbat, something that Jewish law requires if it could mean saving lives. Back in the U.S., 25 firefighters stood by in case the wildfires again begin to spread. Once weather conditions improved, the firefighters in Israel returned home.
SAVE THE DATES! Our community gardens for the needy Two events, two headliners coming to Temple Beth El COMEDY NIGHT AT TEMPLE BETH EL FEATURING ROBERT KLEIN Saturday, Feb. 25
Robert Klein, stand-up comedian, singer and actor, will be entertaining us for our Annual Comedy Night. Klein has had several popular comedy albums in the 1970s. He was nominated for a Tony Award for Best Actor in the 1979 musical “They’re Playing Our Song.” He has appeared in a variety of TV shows, including Saturday Night Live and also appeared in several different movies. Please join us for a night full of laughter and noshes.
A MAGICAL EVENING FEATURING FOOTBALL PLAYING MAGICIAN JON DORENBOS Sunday, May 7
Jon Dorenbos is currently the Long Snapper for the Philadelphia Eagles Football Team. He finished third place on the 11th season of America’s Got Talent TV show. He learned to perform magic to help ease his mind from his struggles while growing up. Temple Beth El will be hosting a cocktail hour before the show, the show and a meet and greet/dessert reception after the show with Jon. Join us for one, two or three parts of the evening. More details to follow. Questions? Contact Temple Beth El at 610-435-3521.
Israel fire Continues from page 1
“I was overjoyed to receive a phone call from a Jewish Agency representative,” said Shai Gabay, a Haifa resident. “While the government will provide some compensation for the damages, this grant was an additional lifeline that reminded me, especially during these difficult days, that all of Israel is responsible for one another.” What started as a single fire on Nov. 22 became a firestorm engulfing many parts of the country. The devastating wildfires caused more than 70,000 people to flee their homes as the fires burned and approximately 32,000 acres of land were eradicated. The selfless determination of firefighters and security forces ensured that not a single life was lost. The fires have brought heartbreak and despair to people from all parts of Israeli society, but they have also brought together every segment of Israeli society and Jews around the world. “At trying times like these, world Jewry feels closely connected to what is taking place in Israel and comes to our help without hesitation,” said Natan Sharansky, chairman of the executive of the Jewish Agency for Israel. “We are proud of our partners in Jewish communities around the world, and particularly in North America, and appreciate their solidarity when it matters the most.”
By Sharon Land Congregation Keneseth Israel At this time of year, most members of our Jewish community’s thoughts turn to latkes, a chanukiah and presents. For some who are members of Congregation Keneseth Israel and Temple Beth El, thoughts have turned to seeds, soil and water. Plans are already under way for “The Barn” Community Garden 2017. Jewish synagogue members have been involved with other faith groups for two years by starting and maintaining community gardens to feed the food insufficient in Allentown. The last of the vegetables and herbs have been picked and the fences have been taken down. Our second season of community gardening with The Barn, Muslim Association of Lehigh Valley and Beth El is complete. This was the first year for Life Church located in Nazareth. They built a large garden on their grounds at the beginning of the season and donated their produce to local soup kitchens. Caring KI members assisted them after a storm toppled over their many tomato plants. Now that Life Church's program is running, they will "get into the mix" in 2017 and they will be in the rotation of volunteers and gardens helping each other out. We had a wonderful season growing 4,471 pounds of produce! This was the largest amount ever grown by the program. Daybreak, which receives most of the vegetables, enjoyed the increased amount of herbs and loved the
red beets. The garden group asked them for feedback last year and accommodated Daybreak's wishes for this year. We had a good amount of KI volunteers in the gardens who performed varied tasks such as tilling the soil, spreading fertilizer and lime, putting up fences, weeding, planting, watering and harvesting. I enjoyed seeing Beth El's six new permanent plots for the first time. They are tidy raised gardens on the right side of their building. I enjoyed meeting new volunteers and got reacquainted with "seasoned" volunteers. The most fun is seeing the smiles on the faces of Daybreak clients as they enjoy dinner from the produce the community garden has provided. They are getting nutritious as well as tasty, local, seasonal, food. Come see where our food ends up. Volunteer to shop, deliver, bake (ahead
of time) or cook and serve at Daybreak with our partners, The Barn. They usually cook on the second Friday of every month, 2 to 5 p.m. The community gardening group is planning social activities with our gardening partners. The first is a youth seed planting event for all interested ages and groups on Sunday, March 19, 12:30 to 2:30 p.m. at Keneseth Israel. Bring a cultural pot luck meal, kosher style. Students will be divided into age groups for discussion. Think of volunteering to start seeds in the late winter or for planting in the spring. It's worth it, to taste a sugar snap pea straight off the vine! And you will fulfill the commandment to feed the hungry, maakhil r'evim. Please contact me, Sharon Land, Keneseth Israel social action chairperson, email@example.com, 610-390-1062.
With the help of donations from Jewish Federations, the Jewish Agency was also able to establish an emergency information desk in Haifa during the crisis. The desk was manned by Jewish Agency professionals and volunteers who assisted those in need and provide them with timely information. A new Jewish Agency elderly housing facility opened its doors earlier than scheduled to provide nursing care for 22 elderly Holocaust survivors who were evacuated from their nursing home in Haifa. They arrived cold, confused and concerned. The dedicated staff assessed their needs and eased their anxieties. The agency’s Sapir Absorption Center in Kiryat Yam served as a temporary haven for 13 new Russian immigrants who recently arrived in Haifa. They have since returned home and local Jewish Agency staff is guiding them as they navigate insurance and compensation procedures. Students in the agency’s Ulpan Etzion program in Haifa who live throughout the city were supported by Jewish Agency social workers and staff as they returned to their apartments and regular program activities. The Jewish Federation of the Lehigh Valley has opened an emergency mailbox to collect contributions to aid the Israelis affected by the fires. To make a donation online, visit www.jewishlehighvalley.org or call the Federation at 610-8215500. HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY | JANUARY 2017 7
Controversial Knesset Bill denounced by Jewish Agency, Jewish Federations IN MEMORY BROTHER OF PAM LOTT Jeanette and Eduardo Eichenwald MILLARD GRAUER (Father of Wendy Born) Kira and Richard Bub Jeannie and Holmes Miller (Grandfather of Lisa Ellis) Kira and Richard Bub JORGE MANDLER (Husband of Silvia Mandler) Evelyn and Jay Lipschutz HONEY SUSSMAN (Mother of Cantor Ellen Sussman) Jeanette and Eduardo Eichenwald Vicki Wax IN HONOR ALIETTE AND MARC ABO Engagement of Jessica Vicki Wax BARNET FRAENKEL Happy "Special" Birthday Suzanne Lapiduss and Family NEIL AND EDYTH GLICKSTEIN Bat Mitzvah of their granddaughter Jeanette and Eduardo Eichenwald ELLEN AND PHIL HOF Marriage of Jessica and Yaniv Sharon and Joseph Bernstein WESLEY KOZINN Happy "Special" Birthday Jeanette and Eduardo Eichenwald MURRAY AND JOAN LEVIN Speedy Recovery of daughter Cindy Sandra and Harold Goldfarb GIL AND MICHELE LEVY Bat Mitzvah of their granddaughter, Isabelle Jeanette and Eduardo Eichenwald ILANA AND YAIR LEVY Bar Mitzvah of grandson, Ari Jeannie and Holmes Miller
HENRY LUFTMAN In honor of his Simchat Torah honor Jeanette and Eduardo Eichenwald JAY AND BOBBI NEEDLE Josh’s engagement Jeanette and Eduardo Eichenwald Max’s acceptance to PhD program Jeanette and Eduardo Eichenwald ELAINE RAPPAPORT-BASS Happy "Special" Birthday Iris, Jonathan, Harry and Charlie Epstein MARTHA SEGEL Happy "Special" Birthday Audrey and Arthur Sosis Speedy Recovery Jeanette and Eduardo Eichenwald LISA STEIN National Association of Music Education award Jeanette and Eduardo Eichenwald CAROL AND BOB WILSON Bat Mitzvah of their daughter, Rebecca Iris, Jonathan, Harry and Charlie Epstein The Mittleman Family ISRAEL ZIGHELBOIM Chairman of St. Luke’s OBGYN Sara and Karl Glassman JERI AND LEN ZIMMERMAN Birth of their granddaughter, Norah Bea Zimmerman Vicki Wax 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.
8 JANUARY 2017 | HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY
A bill to prevent non-Orthodox public prayer at the Western Wall was submitted to the Knesset and was immediately denounced by the Jewish Agency for Israel and Jewish Federations of North America. Under the measure submitted, the Western Wall site would be placed under the jurisdiction of the Chief Rabbinate and be governed by the religious practice approved by the Chief Rabbinate and Israel’s rabbinic courts, which in practice is Orthodox. A fine of some $2,500 or a six-month prison sentence would be levied on participants in egalitarian prayer services or on women who use a tallit or tefillin. Lawmakers from the Sephardic Orthodox Shas party and the haredi Orthodox United Torah Judaism party are backing the bill, along with three members of the right-wing Jewish Home party and two from the ruling Likud party. The bill would prohibit any ceremony “that is not held according to local custom, that offends the feelings of the worshipers in the Holy place.” It also would bar “an act that could disturb the worshippers with their prayer; mixed prayers of men and women” in any area of the Western Wall plaza. That would include “a ceremony in the Women’s section that includes taking out the Torah scroll and reading from it, blowing on shofars, and wearing prayer shawls or phylacteries.” Passage of the bill would torpedo the agreement reached in January 2016 for an egalitarian prayer section at the Western Wall negotiated by the Reform and Conservative movements, the Women of the Wall organization, the Jewish Agency for Israel and the Israeli government. The agreement was endorsed by Prime Minister Netanyahu and Orthodox Jewish leaders in Israel. But
subsequent implementation was met with resistance and intransigence, including from some who initially expressed support. Jewish Agency Chairman Natan Sharansky, who led the negotiations on the egalitarian measure along with outgoing Cabinet secretary Avichai Mandelblit, slammed the new proposal. “This bill makes a mockery of all the efforts made by recent governments to ensure that the Western Wall is a place that unites, rather than divides, the Jewish people,” Sharansky said in a statement. “This bill’s passage would have grave consequences for the relationship between Israel and Diaspora Jewry. Based on the Prime Minister’s strong personal commitment to strengthening the Israel-Diaspora relationship, it is my fervent hope that this damaging bill will be summarily dismissed by a majority of the coalition and of the Knesset.” Under the January agreement, which was approved by the Cabinet, the egalitarian section of the wall near Robinson’s Arch would be expanded and placed under the authority of a pluralist committee. The plan called for solidifying haredi Orthodox control over the site’s traditional Orthodox section. “This bill is far from becoming law and I trust that calmer heads will prevail in the Knesset. The January 2016 agreement was landmark and respected the reality that multiple, legitimate expressions of Judaism should have access to Judaism’s holiest site,” commented Mark L. Goldstein, executive director of the Jewish Federation of the Lehigh Valley. “It is unfortunate that Knesset politics are delaying the agreement that will enable respectful accommodation at the Kotel.” Material from JTA was used in this report.
The Northampton County Historical & Genealogical Society undertakes an important project to conserve a part of early northeast Pennsylvania Jewish history By Andrew A. Zellers-Frederick Executive Director, Northampton County Historical & Genealogical Society Easton’s Sigal Museum, the headquarters for the Northampton County Historical & Genealogical Society (NCHGS), has within its collection an irreplaceable piece of early American Jewish history that is in urgent need of conservation, preservation and restoration. Last year, at a meeting of the Society’s Collections Committee, committee member Becky Goldenberg brought to the attention of her colleagues the declining condition of this oil portrait and the need to take action. A campaign was begun to raise the approximately $4,300 to complete this endeavor using the highly respected paintings conservation firm of Steven B. Erisoty located in Philadelphia’s Chestnut Hill section. Erisoty closely examined the portrait, providing the NCHGS with a detailed analysis and schedule for the project. The portrait is of Jacob Hart (1777-1853). He was the son of Michael and Leah Hart who settled in the Lehigh Valley from what is now modern Germany. Per a 1900 article (No. 8, pp. 127-133) in the publications of the American Jewish Historical Society, “the Hart family was one of the earliest and most respected families in the county.” Jacob became a prominent merchant and leader in the Jewish community. Before his death,
his father Michael deeded to Jacob property in Easton at Northampton and John Street, a part of a parcel of land first granted to the Harts by John and Richard Penn, for a Jewish burial ground. The portrait, painted by his son-in-law Leopold Unger, depicts an affluent Jacob. The painting, which was featured in the August 1969 edition of Antiques, was in the possession of Mrs. C. Spencer Allen and her family for generations before being donated to the NCHGS in 1978. The NCHGS is now tasked with returning this portrait to its former glory in order that it may be properly exhibited. If anyone is interested in giving a tax-deductible donation at any level to this endeavor, please send your contribution to the attention of the NCHGS executive director at c/o Sigal Museum, 342 Northampton Street, Easton, PA 18042 or to have any questions answered call 610-253-1222 extension #11 or email AndrewZF@ northamptonctymuseum.org. The NCHGS would like to thank the following institutions* for supporting the restoration: The Borowsky Family Foundation The Abram & D. Walter Cohen Foundation The Martin D. Cohen Family Foundation Congregation Brith Sholom Congregation Keneseth Israel of Allentown Jewish Federation of the Lehigh Valley Friends of Helaine Sigal
The Herbert M. & Naomi R. Leavitt Family Charitable Trust Richard Master & MCS Industries The Sisterhood of B’nai Abraham Synagogue Temple Covenant of Peace Mrs. Sandra Wigder *The list may be incomplete at time of printing
Veterans lend support to soldiers for the holidays By Sheila Berg Jewish War Veterans This holiday season, Post 239 assembled personal items for soldiers. Items were received from the Jewish community including the Jewish Community Center and Jewish Day School. The JCC and the JDS made cards. Eight boxes were sent to Operation Gratitude to be distributed for soldiers in the forward operating bases.
On Nov. 11, Jerry Farris conducted an afternoon service at Ann's Choice in Warminster, Pennsylvania, focused on veterans. Later that evening, she led the National Anthem, Hatikva, and Kiddush at Shaare Shamayim Synagogue in North Philadelphia, and gave the D'var Torah (Lech Lecha) at the Kabbalat Shabbat service, again focused on the similarities between the parshah and veterans. She was well received at both.
HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY | JANUARY 2017 9
US Senate passes bill to help recover Nazi-looted art Jewish Telegraphic Agency A bill to facilitate the return of Nazi-looted artworks to their original owners or heirs passed the U.S. Senate. The Senate unanimously passed the Holocaust Expropriated Art Recovery Act, or HEAR Act, on Dec. 9. The House passed the same bill on Dec. 7. It must still be signed into law by President Barack Obama. The bill would extend the statute of limitations for the stolen artwork to six years from the date that the art in question is identified and located, and from when the claimant has shown evidence of possession of the art. In some previous cases, defendants were able to avoid restitution because states had statutes of limitations as short as three years. The HEAR Act was introduced in the Senate in April by Sens. Ted Cruz and John Cornyn, both Texas Republicans, along with Richard Blumenthal, D-Conn., and Charles Schumer, D-N.Y. “Today, we delivered a longoverdue victory for the families of Holocaust victims,” Cruz said in a statement. “This bipartisan legislation rights a terrible injustice and sends a clear signal that America will continue to root out every noxious vestige of
the Nazi regime. I’m proud to have worked closely with my colleagues on both sides of the aisle to empower the victims of the horrific atrocities that took place over 70 years ago and will continue to fight to bring peace and justice to these families.” “Artwork lost during the Holocaust is not just property – to many victims and their families it is a reminder of the vanished world of their families,” Cornyn said. “Thanks to the Senate’s approval of the HEAR Act, victims of the Holocaust and their families will finally have their day in court to claim what is rightfully theirs,” said Ronald Lauder, chairman of the Commission for Art Recovery and president of the World Jewish Restitution Organization. “This important legislation will allow those seeking to recover art and other heritage stolen by the Nazis a fair opportunity to have their cases judged on the facts, rather than be undercut by legal technicalities.” In June, testimony was held before the Senate Judiciary Committee subcommittees on the importance of the act. Among those testifying was British actress Helen Mirren, who said that “restoring physical parts of lost heritage to Holocaust victims and their families is a moral imperative.” Mirren said she became steeped in the issue while playing Maria Altmann in the 2015 film “Woman of Gold.” Altmann battled the Austrian government for years until 2004, when she recovered works stolen from her family by the Nazis. During World War II, the Nazis stole valuable belongings, including art, from Jewish families. Much of the looted property was not returned after the war, and heirs of the families have faced lengthy legal battles to recover their family belongings.
10 JANUARY 2017 | HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY
A book club like no other By Adina Re’em Special to HAKOL You might say it was born out of necessity. The Israeli Book Brunch (IBB) group, looking forward to its fourth Sunday morning meeting at Temple Beth El on Jan. 29, was initially a way for me to bridge between Israel and the community where I now live in the Lehigh Valley. After every trip I felt I wanted to bring something of Israel back with me. The books we read have been selected out of the vast body of contemporary Israeli literature not only for us to enjoy as a good read. The novel is our gateway into the world of the author, into a time period in Jewish and Israeli history. It is also a chance to learn about a place or places where the events take place. Our meetings are structured around a presentation based on the books and include photos, maps and diagrams which help illustrate and illuminate the issues at hand. As an Israeli and a Hebrew reader, my role is to fill in the linguistic and cultural gaps between the original work and its translation. A good novel has universal appeal, that’s why translation works. But there are nuances you will only pick up on if you are familiar with the language and its culture. I mine the books for just those points and they serve as a window into Israeli society and the Jewish world. Currently our group includes men and women, TBE members as well as non-members and Hebrew readers among a majority of participants who read the books in English translation. Some have visited Israel and some have close family living there. Such diversity makes for fascinating sharing and good conversation. There is room for anyone to join one or all future meetings. I believe that literature can serve to unite what are today the two greatest concentrations of Jewish populations worldwide, in Israel and in the U.S., and help us from being estranged from one another. Many participants have shared their enthusiasm for this project with me which has energized me greatly to continue. In the words of one participant: “… It brings the book and all its issues to life, makes it more tangible, it’s like armchair travel! I wouldn’t be having these discussions anywhere else. I’m trying to educate myself. I’m curious to know more.” Come and see for yourself, you’ll be glad you did. For more information, contact Adina Re'em at firstname.lastname@example.org.
Healing our country's divisiveness with openness him secrets written on anonymous homemade postcards, which he would then post weekly on his blog. Today the project is an ongoing community art project which has spawned several best-selling books, events, and a blog that has been visited by over 700 million people. The weekly posting of new postcards has become for many, myself included, a Sunday ritual. I began reading PostSecret in college in 2006 when my roommate and I stumbled upon the project. There were some postcards telling the sorrows of those who lost loved ones, others telling of their relief from losing loved ones. There were postcards explaining embarrassing incidents and shameful habits. There were postcards with confessions of love and others with confessions of hatred. It was exciting to be given a window into the lives of other people. I even submitted a few secrets of my own. Of course, this project hasn’t been without its
STUDENT RABBI JANINE JANKOVITZ Congregation Am Haskalah
“You will find your answers in the secrets of strangers” - FRANK WARREN As we begin January and move deeper into the winter, it is still apparent that we do so with much divisiveness among us in this country. As a result, I’ve been thinking lately about community and how one can find common ground with others. This past Sunday, as I do every week, I read the blog PostSecret. PostSecret was created in 2005 by Frank Warren, who invited the public to submit to
criticisms. Some secrets have generated backlash for the nature of their content. It’s not known whether all secrets which are submitted are true, but to me whether they are all true or not is immaterial. Those controversies aside, there is meaning to be found in this project. When I read the secrets posted each week, I usually identify with at least one if not more. Each week I am reminded that underneath all the exterior identities and falsehoods we put up, each of us has the same internal need; a need to be understood. And since I do not know who wrote which postcard, there are none of the usual barriers of who I might think the author is, or how different I might think they are from me. I can only read what they wrote and try to understand them at their deepest level. I believe that the act of reading secrets week after week can open one up towards deeper concerns and sympathy for others in the world. This is especially
true when one can see his or her own fears and questions reflected in other submissions. Some have even had the shock of reading their own secret on the blog written by another person, and have had the powerful realization that they are not alone. Shimon HaTzaddik teaches in Pirke Avot 1:2 that the world stands on three things: Torah, Avodah, service to G-d, and Gemilut Chasadim, acts of human kindness. He teaches that the world cannot survive without these three fundamental things. Shimon HaTzaddik did not teach that acts of human kindness were for the people we agree with, the people who looked like us, or the people we like. Instead it is required for everyone. We need acts of human kindness to survive. Without it, we pull apart from one another until we are left alone and in pain. Some of the unhappiest people I have met in this world are the ones who have created boundaries
between themselves and other people. Somewhere along the way, we lost sight of the hope that can be found in making community. We have divided ourselves to the point that sometimes we can forget the humanity of “the other side." Of course, I do not believe that we can solve the divisiveness of this country with as simple a statement as “we are all human and so therefore we should all just get along." That is hollow rhetoric which ignores the reality of the deep-seated issues and the structures of racism, classism and other forms of oppression which remain in our country. However, I do believe that places like PostSecret can help us remember what we do have in common which can help us build community with one another. As Frank Warren said, “You will find your answers in the secrets of strangers.” Perhaps the reminders of our deepest similarities in our secrets can be one of the first steps toward our healing.
Our New Guide to Handling Touchy Topics with Your Parents Talking to your aging parents about touchy subjects like giving up driving or moving to a retirement community to get more help can be difficult and emotionally draining for everyone involved. So we’ve used our extensive experience to prepare a 12-page guide to help you handle the task. It includes helpful tips and insights like:
70% After age 65, an American has more than a 70% chance of needing help with the activities of daily living like dressing and bathing.
10 examples of what NOT to say to your aging parents 3 ways to avoid anger and misunderstandings Discussing the issue of giving up driving The best time to begin sensitive discussions 6 most common pitfalls for siblings trying to help their parents To get our free guide, stop by our community, or visit us online at CountryMeadows.com/Parents. And you can always just give us a call to ask a question. We’re here to help. Download for free or stop by
–American Society on Aging
410 N. Krocks Road, Allentown (minutes from Route 22 & I-78) • 610-395-7160 / 4035 Green Pond Road, Bethlehem (close to Routes 22 & 33) • 610-865-5580 NOW OPEN! 175 Newlins Road West, Easton (in Forks Twp.) • 484-544-3880
Independent Living | Assisted Living & Personal Care* | Memory Care | Restorative Care* | Skilled Nursing** | In-Home Services* *Forks campus offers Independent Living, Assisted Living & Memory Care only. **Skilled nursing is available at our Bethlehem campus only. Country Meadows offers services and housing without regard to race, color, religion, disability, marital status, ancestry, national origin, sexual orientation or gender.
HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY | JANUARY 2017 11 PMS 118
Thank you for being the impact Jewish Federation of the Lehigh Valley 2017 Campaign for Jewish Needs
$1,033,618 raised as of 12.14.16 Because of your support of the 2017 campaign, we are able to help when help is needed, provide a safety net for those who must rely upon it, and nurture the core institutions that are the fabric of a rich and dynamic Jewish community.
PRIME MINISTERS CIRCLE $100,000+ Wendy Born*° Robert and Bonnie* Hammel° Anonymous (1) THEODORE HERZL SOCIETY $50,000 - $99,999 Lewis and Roberta* Gaines° The Wax-Goldman Family Funds Vicki Wax* Robby and Laurie* Wax Steven and Nancy Wax Goldman KING DAVID SOCIETY $25,000 - $49,999 Tama Fogelman* and Family° The Fraenkel Family° Dr. Harold and Sandra* Goldfarb° TREE OF LIFE SOCIETY $18,000 - $24,999 Leonard Abrams° Fischmann Family Fund° KING SOLOMON CIRCLE $10,000 - $17,999 Dr. Jeffrey and Jill* Blinder° Jonathan and Iris* Epstein Gary Fromer and Dr. Carol Bub Fromer* Mark L. Goldstein and Shari Spark*° Elaine Lerner*° The Philip and Muriel Berman Foundation Dr. Richard and Barbara* Reisner° Dr. Stuart A. and Janice Schwartz° Seidel Cohen Hof and Reid LLC° Daniel and Nancy* Cohen Phillip and Ellen* Hof Chris and Tara Reid Anonymous (1) BUILDERS OF ISRAEL $5,000 - $9,999 Dr. Sam and Sylvia* Bub° Arnan and Marlene* Finkelstein Dr. Peter Fisher and Kathy Zimmerman* Susan Gadomski *° Barry and Carol R.* Halper° Dr. Wesley and Beth* Kozinn° Dr. Jeffrey and Kim Kramer Dr. Lawrence and Eva* Levitt° Dr. Moshe and Lisa* Markowitz Dr. William and Jane* Markson° Michael and Linda* Miller° Dr. Alex and Robin* Rosenau° Shaoli Rosenberg* Sadie Berman Lion of Judah Endowment Irwin and Ellen* Schneider° Mark and Deena* Scoblionko° Elizabeth Scofield* Dr. Michael and Eileen* Ufberg° Dr. Israel and Valeska* Zighelboim Jeri Zimmerman* SABRA CIRCLE $2,500 - $4,999 Leonard and Beverly* Bloch Foundation° Dr. Ian and Patricia* Carlis° Dr. Mitchell Cooper and Rebecca Axelrod-Cooper* Glenn and Jan* Ehrich Veronica Fischmann* Dr. Gene and Ann* Ginsberg° Dr. Lawrence and Vicki* Glaser° Dr. Arthur and Jane* Kaplan° Martin and Judy* Krasnov° Dr. Howard and Beth* Kushnick Ryan and Claudia* Mattison Dr. Holmes and Jeannie* Miller° Dr. Michael and Ruth* Notis° Dr. Noah Orenstein and Diana Fischmann Orenstein* Rabbi Seth Phillips and Marge Kramer* Dr. Robert and Lota* Post° Dr. Abraham and Nancy* Ross and Family Cathy Sacher*°
12 JANUARY 2017 | HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY
Dr. Arthur and Audrey* Sosis° Arthur and Barbara* Weinrach° James and Linda* Wimmer° Larry and Carolyn Zelson GATES OF JAFFA $1,500 - $2,499 Dr. Howard Altman Dr. Michael Busch Lawrence Center Marilyn Claire*° Dr. Karen Dacey* Hon. Maxwell Davison° Dr. Eric J. Fels Jerome and Sally Frank Dr. Gordon and Rose Lee* Goldberg° Dr. Marsha Gordon* Dr. Robert M. Gordon° Esther Halperin*° Hausman Family Dr. Jonathan and Marjorie* Hertz Drs. Andrew and Deborah* Kimmel° Roberta Kritzer* Ferne Rodale Kushner*° Dr. Michael and Carole* Langsam Dr. Paul Lemberg Donald Lipson° Robert and Betty* Mendelson Taffi Ney*° Dr. Mark and Alice* Notis° Selma Roth* Dr. Michael and Lynn F.* Rothman Ronald and Martha* Segel° Margery Strauss*° Fred and Barbara K.* Sussman° Dr. Ryan and Carah* Tenzer Dr. Darren and Stefanie* Traub Dr. Michael and Janet Ulman Dr. Benjamin and Ellen Weinberger° Gail Wolson*° Anonymous (4) CHAVERIM $500 - $1,499 Tama Lee Barsky* Steven Bergstein and Nanci Goldman Bergstein° Dr. Marc and Lauren* Berson° Rance and Sheryl* Block° Michael and Rita* Bloom° Akiva and Rachel* Boonswang Dr. Stuart and Joan* Boreen Harry and Edna* Brill° Albert and Eva* Derby Joan Epstein*° Jay Haltzman° Ronald and Joan* Harrison° Arthur and Susan* Hochhauser° Gwen Jacobs* Selma Jacowitz* Audrey Kanoff* Kathi Katzman*° Maxine S. Klein*° Dr. Mark and Iris Koshar Gerson Lazar Family Fund Martha B. Lebovitz*° Dr. Henry and Susan* Lehrich Dr. Lisa* and Rivki Lindauer Dr. David and Robyn Meir-Levi Ethel Melamut*° Marla Melman*° Edith Miller*° Morton Miller James and Shelah Mueth Marc Nissenbaum° Alan and Roberta* Penn° Henry and Phyllis* Perkin Bernard and Sara* Schonbach Margo Wiener*° Jerry and Flossie* Zales° Debbie Zoller* Anonymous (8) SHORASHIM $250 - $499 Isabella Alkasov* Vivian Appel* Miriam Bandler*° R. Bill Bergstein° Sharon Bernstein* Andrew and Dr. Christy* Block and Family Temple and Ann Coldren Eduardo and Jeanette* Eichenwald° Fran Fisher*° Renee Gittler*°
Dr. Barry and Sharon* Glassman Rhoda Glazier*° Glazier Furniture° Toby Juda*° Phyllis Kaufman* Iris Klein*° Lillian Kobrovsky*° Hilary Koprowski Elaine Langer*° Michele Levy* Sandy Newman* Julian Rappaport and Toby Brandt° Jeffrey and Rabbi Rachel Rembrandt Rabbi Melissa B. Simon* Adam and Stephanie* Smartschan Michael and Jane* Spitzer° Dr. Rachel Wilensky* Bruce and Alicia* Zahn Anonymous (4) KEHILLAH $100 - $249 Elaine Berk* Dr. Joan Bischoff* Randi Blauth* Robert and Gail* Burger Chelsea Busch* Muriel Charon* Jerome and Audrey* Cylinder° Leah Devine* Samuel and Lynn* Feldman° Brad and Robyn* Finberg Jerome and Gloria* Ginsburg° Gary and Pat* Glascom Julia Goldberg* Mark Kennedy and Arlene Gorchov* Aaron Gorodzinsky Donald Greenberg Marion Halperin*° Alvin and Arlene* Herling° Dr. Lewis and Joan* Katz Daniel and Anne* Kaye Ruth Kugelman*° Dr. Samuel and Sharon* Land Mary Laronge* Frederick and Sherry Lesavoy° Dr. Zalman Liss° Steven Markowitz° Gary and Diane* Miller° Natalie Millrod* Rabbi Alan and Patricia* Mittleman° Hank and Jill* Narrow Dr. Douglas and Ruth* Nathanson Debbie Ovitz*° Joseph and Eve* Peterson Linda Piesner* Jay and Marlene* Plotnick Dr. Matthew and Denise* Pollack Dr. Jason Radine Martin Rapoport David Reiff Charles Richter and Lynda Pollack* Ira and Erica* Robbins June Rothkopf* Fae Safer* Alan and Mary* Salinger° Dr. Norman and Jett* Sarachek° Helene Rae Scarcia* Mr. and Mrs. Mark Schuhan* Barry Siegel° Susan Sosnow* Michael and Sybil* Stershic Matthew and Tracy* Sussman Norman Tahler Sharon Trinker* David Vaida and Cantor Ellen Sussman* Philip and Lynn* Weinzimer Marjorie Weiss* Norman and Sandra* Wruble Anonymous (8) GENESIS $1 - $99 Richard and Regina* Angel David and Carmit* Bach Terrence Baker Jayson and Nurit* Baron Dr. Susan Basow* Marla Beck* Delores Bednar* Arthur and Phyllis Berg Jerome Block Jerry and Wilma Brucker Victor Bunick Betty Burian*
Joyce Camm* Ginny Cohen* Michelle Cohen* Betty Diamond* Roberta Diamond*° Marilyn Doluisio*° Wendy Edwards* David Eiskowitz E.G. Jerry Farris* Brenda Finberg* Fredda Fischman* Diane Fisher*° Emily Freudenberger* Ann Friedenheim* Dr. Michael and Traci Gabriel Dr. Debra Garlin* Cathy Gilbert* Shelley Goldberg* and Family Dr. Malvin and Lillian* Goldner Martin Goldstein° Nissa Gossom* Deena Gottlieb* Ronald and Ann* Gould Betty Greenberg*° Judith Greenberg* Rosaly Greenberger* Harry and Paula* Grines Bernice Harris* Dorothy Hoffman*° Dr. Michael Hortner Michael and Donna* Iorio Dr. Lubov Iskold* Sondra Jacobs*° Rabbi Janine Jankovitz Harry and Grace* Kagan Rosine Knafo*° Dr. Neal Kramer Doris Lifland* Rebecca Lovingood* Rochelle Lower* Leonard Lutsky° Silvia Mandler* David and Susan* Manela Diane McKee* Eugene Meyer and Dr. Lisa Jean Todes* Stanley Miller Susan Mohr* Rene Moskowitz* Jane Much* William and Sharon* Mullin Richard Nelson Robert Prichard and Ellen Osher* Cantor Jill Pakman* Dr. Alan Parker Mildred Poliner*° Barbara Rudolph* Mary Lou Scarf* Andrew Schaeffer Jon Schaeffer Nolie Schneider* Lewis Schor° Rabbi Rebecca Schorr* Donald Schwartz Lorraine Secouler* Stuart and Susan* Shmookler Michael Smith Rabbi Aryeh Spera Sandi Teplitz*° David Teumim Sondra Toland* Lynn Waite* Eugene and Alice Ward Kristina Weiner* Joy Wernick* Gladys Yass* Helaine Young* Herman and Jessica* Ytkin Anonymous (9)
The donors noted above represent gifts to the JFLV 2017 Campaign for Jewish Needs. Every effort is made to correctly recognize all of our generous donors and honor their listing requests. If there are any inaccuracies or omissions, please call the Federation office at 610-821-5500. * Indicates an individual woman’s gift to the 2017 Campaign for Jewish Needs ° Indicates Silver Circle members who have contributed for 25 years or more.
After the fire, the gift of family
Hakol at 40: Special Sections
Editor’s Note: Eight years ago, HAKOL featured its first special section on Planning Your Simcha. The feature story of the section was about Elana Kahn’s family, around the time of her daughter Ma'ayan’s bat mitzvah. In this piece, Kahn, now director of the Jewish Community Relations Council at the Milwaukee Jewish Federation, provides a family update.
Just a few months ago, Odelia and Ohad Brat celebrated one of the happiest occasions of their lives: their son’s bar mitzvah. They’ll never forget when he received his brand-new tefillin—special leather boxes worn during prayer—from his beloved grandparents. Everyone was so filled with pride. And they’ll never forget grabbing those same tefillin at the last minute as they and their six children— ranging in age from 6 to 20—quickly fled their home in Talmon. A raging fire was only minutes away. So they took what was most precious to them. It was a smart splitsecond decision. Flames destroyed much of the Brat family house. The entire upstairs was charred. When the family returned, they could barely even recognize
what used to be their home. The Brats did make one unlikely discovery, though. A bank tin, badly burned. Inside was the money one of their sons had earned mowing lawns for neighbors. It was dirty and damp, but it was there. It’s a symbol for what it’ll take to rebuild their home and their lives. It’s not going to happen overnight. But they have each other. And Federation partner The Jewish Agency for Israel, which is delivering grants of $1,000 to families across Israel who lost everything in the fires. With the grant, the Brats are able to buy clothing, medicine and other essentials for their large family. Odelia says that the care, concern and support they’ve received from The Jewish Agency has left her speechless.
This October, I threw a birthday party for myself. For the first time. As I considered marking my 49th birthday, beginning my 50th year, I knew I wanted to gather around me people I love and sit, if only for a moment, in the present -- not run toward the future and not grieve what has been lost, but immerse myself in the light of the moment. Like all the ritual events I’ve organized – a wedding and two bat mitzvah celebrations – I wanted it to reflect my real life. So I invited into my home friends from a variety of segments of my life, including Jews and non-Jews, people who didn’t know each other, friends and family. I walked barefoot in my house, so happy to be surrounded by the people who add color to my life. My children each had roles. My 17-year-old daughter, a high school junior who does not drink but appreciates mixing, set up a corner of the room to be the bar and used her kitchen skills to create three craft cocktails. My 19-year-old daughter, who is serving as an instructor for search and rescue in the Israel Defense Forces, organized her friends to come and play live music. I was disappointed that she couldn’t come to Milwaukee to celebrate with us, but looked forward to seeing her days later for Rosh Hashanah. About an hour into the party, a figure approached the front door. With the help of her father, Ma’ayan came in early from Israel to surprise me at my party. I hollered and whooped and wept as I swept my child into my arms. The night went on – cool, live jazz and group singing, dancing with my tipsy 81-year-old father, opening my brother’s gift of a Squatty Potty (an appropriate gift for a woman hitting middle age?), seeing connections form between people who didn’t previously know each other, and just hanging together. It wasn’t the perfect party, but it was perfectly the party we had. And I was elated. Perhaps the reason to create individualized
Elana Kahn and her daughter Ma'ayan at Elana's 49th birthday party. rituals is to mark life not just as we’d like it to be but as we actually live it. The food wasn’t fabulous because I didn’t want to deal with serving and maintaining hot food. The house was just clean enough. I didn’t have goody bags and the collective singing was scrappy and disorganized. But I like it that way – natural and spontaneous and human. For me, the underlying principle, one that I am more comfortable with now than when I was younger, is trust. Can I trust that everything will be as it’s meant to be, that the people I love will show up, that nothing can be perfect but that our imperfect, human selves are good enough? And that maybe joy is to be found in embracing the personal and imperfect? If not, let that be the story and let that be OK. For me, I seek to embrace Rabbi Abraham Joshua Heschel's sentiment, “Our goal should be to live life in radical amazement... get up in the morning and look at the world in a way that takes nothing for granted. Everything is phenomenal; everything is incredible; never treat life casually. To be spiritual is to be amazed.”
Conference of Churches Continues from page 3
differences and celebrate them and try to not all be the same but try to reach out from within those differences.” Stillman was joined by Rev. Janel Rice, vice president of the board of the Lehigh Conference of Churches, Mr. Mohammad Khaku, an Islamic community activist, and Shree Patel, youth director at the Shree Swaminarayan Spiritual & Cultural Center in making such statements. At the end of the event, Pickens was joined by Wartell, who offered concluding remarks. “I used Emma Lazarus’s quote on the Statue of Liberty – give me your tired, your poor, your huddled masses yearning to be free,” Wartell said. “America is a welcoming land and Jews should never lose sight of that.” Wartell stressed that the event was “just the beginning” of what he hopes will be a more interwoven community in the Lehigh Valley. He encouraged attendees to take steps like, “[supporting] immigration policy [and] watching out for people of color being persecuted because of their difference. It’s not so long ago we were being persecuted because of our difference, and we still are. We shouldn’t be too comfortable. We’re a minority and we’re the first ones to be reminded of that when [people] start talking about differences.” One important distinction Wartell made was that “Jews need to care not just about when swastikas show up but when things happen in other communities. If we don’t care about other minorities, why should they care about us? It’s very selfish only to worry about ourselves.” As for why this effort should come from the clergy, Wartell said, “I represent a community, and we’re all soldiers in this struggle toward protecting the minorities of our society. If the faith community doesn’t lead, then the message will be lost on the most important generation – young people. We need to implement youth groups meeting with each other, communities dialoguing and breaking bread with each other. Otherwise it’s all whipped cream with no cake.” Wartell began this effort himself: on Friday, Dec. 16, he planned to be at the Islamic Center at 5:30 p.m. before Shabbat to "break bread with them to wish them a good Shabbat." HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY | JANUARY 2017 13
Lehigh Valley mikvah offers spiritual opportunities for the community By Rachel Wilensky Special to HAKOL A woman from the tri-state area was traveling through the Lehigh Valley on her way back home from a vacation and asked to use our community mikvah. When she entered our mikvah building, she immediately commented with surprise how “gorgeous and spa-like” our beautiful mikvah is – in her words, “even more spa-like” than the mikvah in her very large Jewish community. The Lehigh Valley community mikvah, located in a beautiful facility in Allentown, is one that we in the Lehigh Valley truly take pride in. Our mikvah houses two mikvaot or ritual baths, as well as spa-like amenities for preparation use, including two Jacuzzis. Our mikvah building also houses a kelim mikvah, a smaller bath used exclusively for the mitzvah of dunking metal or glass utensils. However, the beautiful exterior of our mikvah only mirrors the internal, deeply personal and spiritual nature of the mikvah’s uses. The rabbis teach us that the mikvah is the cornerstone of any Jewish community, and building a mikvah takes precedence even
UK Prime Minister Theresa May adopts official anti-Semitism definition JNS.org
over building a synagogue. The primary uses of a mikvah are for a woman to use monthly before resuming intimacy, as well as for conversions. What is so fundamental about this mitzvah? The mikvah waters have been compared to the womb. When a woman dips into the mikvah each month, she has the spiritual opportunity for rebirth, to shed the spiritual blocks and challenges of the previous month and to emerge from the mikvah waters anew and ready for increased connection and intimacy. Similarly, when one converts, he or she emerges from the waters in a completely new status, ready to start his
or her new life as a Jew. Our mikvah is used for a variety of other purposes for both women and men and is open to the entire community. The mikvah relies heavily on dedicated volunteers and supportive donors to help maintain the beauty and health of the mikvah facility and to ensure a smooth operation for those using the mikvah. More information about scheduling a visit can be found on the mikvah website, lehighvalleymikvah.org. The mikvah is part of the Hebrew Family League. To learn more, please contact Rachel Wilensky at Rachelmwilensky@gmail.com.
United Kingdom Prime Minister Theresa May announced that her government will officially adopt a working definition of anti-Semitism, while also saying it is “disgusting” that anti-Semitic views are found in British politics. "It is unacceptable that there is anti-Semitism in this country. It is even worse that incidents are reportedly on the rise. As a government we are making a real difference and adopting this measure is a groundbreaking step,” May said at a private lunch hosted by the Conservative Friends of Israel. "It means there will be one definition of anti-Semitism—in essence, language or behavior that displays hatred towards Jews because they are Jews—and anyone guilty of that will be called out on it," she said. The working definition of antiSemitism was developed in May by the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance (IHRA), an intergovernmental organization backed by 31 countries. The IHRA defines anti-Semitism as a “certain perception of Jews, which may be expressed as hatred toward Jews. Rhetorical and physical manifestations of anti-Semitism are directed toward
Jewish or non-Jewish individuals and/or their property, toward Jewish community institutions and religious facilities.” In her remarks, May also slammed the Labour Party for the increase in anti-Semitism in its ranks under the leadership of Jeremy Corbyn, who has also personally been accused of harboring anti-Semitic and anti-Israel views. A British parliamentary committee report in October said that Corbyn does not fully comprehend “the distinct nature of contemporary anti-Semitism” and suggested that his party is “institutionally anti-Semitic.” "It is disgusting that these twisted views are being found in British politics," May said, adding that "of course, I am talking mainly about the Labour Party and their hard-left allies." A spokesman for Corbyn said in a statement that he fully supports the IHRA definition of anti-Semitism. "Jeremy Corbyn and the Labour Party share the view that language or behavior that displays hatred towards Jews is antiSemitism, and is as repugnant and unacceptable as any other form of racism. We agree with the IHRA 'working definition" of anti-Semitism," the spokesman said, The Telegraph reported.
JCC plans tailgate casino night By Phyllis Kaufman Special to HAKOL It’s game time! The big game is on and you are invited for the second annual JCC Casino Night. Put on your jeans and jerseys and come for a fun-filled tailgate casino night to celebrate “pre-game” on Saturday, Feb. 4, 2017, from 7:30 to 10:30 p.m. at the Jewish Community Center of the Lehigh Valley. Join in the huddle for an evening of high stakes, football finger fare, signature cocktails and scrumptious desserts. The event will be LVKC supervised. Go on the offensive and find your best field position with blackjack, poker, roulette, craps and slots. The night of gaming, green and gridirons will surely be one for the playbook. Score a touchdown with one of three grand prizes, or cash out your chips and try your luck with the End Zone Raffle. Ready to beat the odds? Avoid a delay of game penalty and join the JCC for an evening of fun, food and football.
14 JANUARY 2017 | HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY
HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY | JANUARY 2017 15
Super Sunday throug Each year, the Jewish Federation hosts Super Sunday. While one purpose of the event is to raise money for the Annual Campaign for Jewish Needs, Super Sunday has become much more. Over the years, it has evolved from simply a â€œphone-a-thonâ€? to a true community mitzvah day. Volunteers enjoy a sense of camraderie along with fun goodies and surprises, and mitzvah projects continue to make a difference in the community. As the Jewish Federation prepares for Super Sunday on Jan. 29, 2017, HAKOL is taking a look back at Super Sundays over the past six years.
16 JANUARY 2017 | HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY
gh the years
Stuart T. Shmookler, Esq. WILLS TRUSTS REAL ESTATE
ELDER LAW BUSINESS LAW ESTATE ADMINISTRATION
(610) 820-5450 33 S Seventh St • Allentown, PA 18105 SShmookler@GrossMcGinley.com
FranLebowitz_ 4x4_Layout 1 12/9/2016 12:04 PM Page 1
FRAN LEBOWITZ Thu., Jan. 26 - 8 PM - $40 Sponsored by WDIY 88.1 FM
453 Northampton St., Easton, PA 1-800-999-STATE . 610-252-3132 Home of the FREDDY© AWARDS
HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY | JANUARY 2017 17
18 JANUARY 2017 | HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY
HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY | JANUARY 2017 19
20 JANUARY 2017 | HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY
Netanyahu embarked on historic visit to Muslim allies Azerbaijan and Kazakhstan
BBG gearing up for new membership events
Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu (left) meets Azerbaijani President Ilham Aliyev in Baku. JNS.org Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu left on Dec. 13 for a historic visit to Azerbaijan and Kazakhstan, two Muslim-majority nations, in an effort to bolster ties with the Central Asian former Soviet Republics. In Azerbaijan’s capital of Baku, Netanyahu met with President Ilham Aliyev, who has been an outspoken supporter of Israel and an adversary of Iran, which shares a border with Azerbaijan. Aliyev noted that Azerbaijan’s Jewish community plays “a very active part of our society.” He also revealed that to date, Azerbaijan has purchased close to $5 billion in defense equipment from Israel.
“The biggest part of these contracts have already been executed and still we are continuing to work on that, and we are very satisfied with the level of this cooperation,” Aliyev said. Netanyahu recalled his previous visit to Azerbaijan nearly 20 years ago during his first term as prime minister, and lauded Israeli-Azerbaijani ties as “something that we can show the world.” “The world sees so much intolerance, so much darkness, and here is an example of what relations can be and should be between Muslims and Jews everywhere,” said Netanyahu. Following his stay in Azerbaijan, Netanyahu planned to visit Kazakhstan.
Allentown BBG’s current and prospective members attend Global Shabbat. By Sophia McWilliams Special to HAKOL So far, Allentown BBG has had a great start to the 2016-17 year. In collaboration with Allentown AZA, we secured a second place victory at Liberty Region’s annual Tournies Convention, had a successful Global Shabbat on Dec. 2, and are planning events to obtain new members in the upcoming months. Allentown BBG worked incredibly hard at Tournies, coming together to participate in song and dance, basketball, photography, banner, and more. Joelle Pitkoff and Ben Palumbo placed first in corn hole and Hannah Tamarkin dominated Jewish Jeopardy, also receiving first. Allentown BBG worked hard, but most
importantly, had lots of fun while doing so. On Dec. 2, Allentown BBG hosted a Global Shabbat. On Global Shabbat, BBYO members all across the world host a Shabbat, creating a sense of togetherness. Allentown BBG’s Global Shabbat was hosted at Carly Zager’s house, where we all participated in an interactive service featuring Shabbat traditions and stories from BBYO teens across the globe. It was a perfect opportunity for us to come together as a chapter to welcome new members and, specifically, eighth graders. Allentown BBG holds meetings every two weeks, in which current and prospective members come together to talk about upcoming events and keep everyone in the chapter updated.
sponsored by WDIY
January 25 | 7:30 pm
in the Fowler Blast Furnace Room
January 28 | 8 pm
February 10, 11, 14, 17 & 18 | 7 pm Musikfest Café at SteelStacks ™
Tune in to Service Electric TV2 Sundays at 8 pm for Musikfest Café Live.
steelstacks.org | 610-332-3378
Ladysmith Black Mambazo March 7 | 7:30 pm
Graeme of Thrones March 22 | 7:30 pm
HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY | JANUARY 2017 21
Children of fallen Israeli soldiers, and an American, celebrate bar mitzvahs
Left, the participants in the IDF Widows and Orphans Organization's mass bar and bat mitzvah ceremony with Israeli leaders. Right, an IDF choir member singing at the event. By Sam Sokol JNS.org Dozens of orphans of fallen Israeli soldiers, and the son of an American serviceman who died in Afghanistan, celebrated their bar and bat mitzvahs in Jerusalem in a mass ceremony conducted by the IDF Widows and Orphans Organization. The children, between ages 12 and 13, met with the Israeli Army’s Chief Rabbi ahead of the event to receive pairs of tefillin, leather boxes containing scriptural passages that Jewish men wear on their arms and heads during prayer. The organization, which provides support for army widows and orphans, makes an “extra effort to be there at important junctions in the lives of children who lost parents, and one of these is the bar mitzvah year,” said Shlomi Nahumson, director of the group’s youth department, at a celebratory concert for the young orphans. “A child should be able to begin this journey with the hand of their father on their shoulder and with their presence when they make their choices on becoming adults,” Nahumson said. “There’s no way we can bring their fathers back to them. But we can put our hands on their shoulders, so they know they're not alone, and that we appreciate the sacrifices their parents made.” As multicolored strobe lights illuminated the
room during the evening gala, Israeli President Reuven Rivlin addressed the youngsters, accompanied by Chief of the General Staff Gabi Eizenkot, Defense Minister Avigdor Liberman and other senior officials. “I know that all of you will continue to be a source of hope to make the world a better and more peaceful place,” Rivlin said. “We will accompany you always as you continue to grow and make your families and the people of Israel proud.” While the event was billed as a bar/bat mitzvah ceremony, not all of the kids were Jewish. However, among those clapping and laughing as an IDF choir sang classic Israeli pop songs was Asool Naserladen from the Druze village of Daliyat Eal-Karmel. Asool, now 12, was only 4 years old when her father Lutfe, an infantryman in the Golani Brigade, was killed in the line of duty. She recalled his laugh, how he would buy her presents and “when he took me to Luna Park.” Since losing him, she feels that “this organization is my home. I feel that everyone loves me and thinks about me,” she said. Among the Israeli children was American A.J. Voelke, 13, from Springfield, Virginia. Slight and blond, A.J., an avid sportsman, worried constantly about his father when he went overseas and recalled how sad he felt when his father deployed for the fifth time to Afghanistan. U.S. Army Maj. Paul C. Voelke, 36, was killed
June 22, 2012, when he was run over by a military vehicle in an accident on the American base in Afghanistan. Describing her initial reaction to the news, Voelke's wife, Tami, said, “It was kind of like in the movies when officers come to your house and you see them standing there and you know what it means. They brought in a chaplain and then life changed.” “It was the worst day of my life,” A.J. remembered. Connected with the Israeli widows and orphans organization by an American group with a similar mission, the Voelkes were invited to take part in the bar mitzvah ceremony, an experience that A.J. said was incredibly meaningful. Staying with an Israeli army widow during their visit has been incredibly special, Traci Voelke explained, saying she felt an “instant connection.” Visiting Israel during the High Holidays has been “very spiritual” and sharing experiences and pictures have “helped us all through this big event for A.J.” “It feels pretty good to be bar mitzvahed in Israel with children who know what I’m going through,” A.J. said. “It’s been pretty great.” For more stories about bar mitzvahs and other special events, check out this month’s special section on Planning Your Simcha.
Free Checking For Life!
Say GOODBYE to Hidden Checking Fees and HELLO to Embassy Bank’s Free Checking for Life! • No minimum balance requirement, Ever. • No monthly service charges, Ever. • No per check fees.
• No Debit/ATM Card fees and no fees for
• Yes, we’ll switch your already established
purchases made with the card. • No Embassy Bank fees for ATM withdrawals
• No fees for phone or internet banking.
made at ATMs not owned or operated by Embassy.
• FREE – First order of checks.
(Fees may be assessed by the ATM operator or network owner.)
automatic payments to your new account for FREE! It’s FAST & EASY!
(610) 882-8800 • embassybank.com 8 Offices Valleywide: Allentown • Bethlehem • Easton • Nazareth
22 JANUARY 2017 | HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY
GIVE A MITZVAH, DO A MITZVAH
Helping to make the world safer for kids Cory Lemberg will become a Bar Mitzvah this winter at Temple Mikveh Israel Emanuel on the island of Curaçao, the oldest surviving synagogue in the Americas. Commonly known as the Snoa, short for esnoga, an old Portuguese and Ladino word for synagogue, it is a major tourist attraction in Curaçao. The community dates from the 1650s and included Spanish and Portuguese Jews from Brazil and the Netherlands. The current building dates from 1730 and has a sand covered floor that was common in Caribbean synagogues of the time. The sand floors remind congregants of how their Jewish ancestors on the Iberian Peninsula covered the floors of their makeshift prayer houses so that their footsteps would be muffled and the suspicion of potential denouncers would not be aroused. Mikveh Israel’s name translates to “the hope of Israel.” Cory, an 8th grade student at Springhouse Middle School and a member of Temple Beth El in Allentown, chose the synagogue for its historic significance. “I think it’s really cool that there is all this history to the congregation,” Cory said through a mischievous grin, “knowing how they have lasted and changed is what made me want to have my bar mitzvah there.” The island is Dutch, the synagogue is Reconstructionist and the congregants are descendants of multiple countries. Not just interested in history, Cory is also doing a mitzvah project to enhance his bar mitzvah experience. “I want to raise money for FARE,” Cory said. In 2012, Food Allergy Research & Education (FARE) was formed as the result of a merger between the Food
Allergy & Anaphylaxis Network (FAAN) and the Food Allergy Initiative (FAI). The new organization combined FAAN’s expertise as the most trusted source of food allergy information, with FAI’s leadership as the world’s largest private source of funding for food allergy research. Today, FARE is the leading national organization working on behalf of the 15 million Americans with food allergies, including all those at risk for life-threatening anaphylaxis. “I had, and still have, food allergies, and I want to fund research to cure food allergies.” To raise money, Cory made and is selling cell phone wallets that say “I Helped Make the World Safer for Kids.” Cell phone wallets can be attached to the back of a phone and have just enough room to slip in an ID and a credit or debit card. Cory will be selling the wallets for $2. He plans on selling them in the lobby of Temple Beth El after religious school. His brother and sister plan to help in Cory’s efforts by selling the wallets to friends and at Dickinson College. All the money raised will be donated to FARE. “I used my own money to make the wallets, so that’s a donation that I am already making,” Cory added. If you would like to purchase a cell phone wallet from Cory, you can contact him at allergyawaremitzvah@gmail. com or make a donation to FARE in honor of his bar mitzvah. “We are so proud of him,” Diane Lemberg, Cory’s mom, said, “and delighted to be celebrating his bar mitzvah! Cory worked hard to prepare
himself particularly since the synagogue’s service is Sephardic. We know that the day will be an incredible religious and cultural experience for our family.” In addition to his mitzvah project, Cory has made his first adult gift of tzedakah to the Jewish Federation of the Lehigh Valley Annual Campaign for Jewish Needs.
Reducing prejudice and telling the story of real Shoah survivors Isabella Kun will become a Bat Mitzvah on Jan. 14, 2017, at Temple Beth El in Allentown. The seventh grade Eyer Middle School student loves to dance and hang out with her friends. Isabella is an outgoing young woman with an easy smile and a story. The story is her grandmother’s survival through the Holocaust. When discussing her mitzvah project, she knew that she wanted to do something having to do with the Holocaust and imparting that story to other young people. Fay Kun, Isabella’s mother, knew about the Holocaust Resource Center and contacted its director, Shari Spark. They discussed the Legacy Exhibit, a moving display of museum-quality artifacts, reproductions and original photographs
available to schools through the Holocaust Resource Center of the Jewish Federation of the Lehigh Valley. The exhibit is free to schools and libraries and is designed to supplement World War ll studies. Isabella decided to produce a suitcase for the exhibit, one that would tell her grandmother’s story “I didn’t initially think of making a suitcase,” Isabella said, “but I knew I wanted to do something to teach others about the Holocaust because it is close to my heart.” “We’re excited to help Shari Spark grow the exhibit,” Fay added. “It’s a really well-done and cool project that travels to schools all over the Lehigh Valley and there have even been requests from schools in New Jersey.” You can learn more about the Legacy Exhibit at www.jewishlehighvalley. org/legacy. In addition to producing the suitcase, Isabella will be joining her mom in participating in The Institute for JewishChristian Understanding’s drama-based curriculum on Holocaust studies and prejudice reduction at Muhlenberg College. This curriculum is presented separately to high school and middle school students. Students learn experientially about the challenges of living in Nazi Germany in the 1930s through reading first-person memoirs, doing independent research and participating in theater exercises, all as part of developing an understanding of what happened during the Holocaust. The experience leads to a final session in which students transfer their learning to the present day
and its challenges. Students’ empathy and tolerance grows as the choices facing those caught in the Holocaust become real for them. Fay Kun will be representing her mother by telling Isabella’s grandmother’s story to the students. “Michael and I are so proud of Isabella,” Fay added. “Isabella’s respect for the past and her inner strength to pass on her family’s story, will help to ensure that those of her generation that she touches never forget the atrocities of the Holocaust.” If you would like to make a donation to the Holocaust Resource Center in honor of Isabella’s bat mitzvah, you may send a check to the Jewish Federation of the Lehigh Valley and note that your donation is for the HRC. In addition to her mitzvah project, Isabella has made her first adult gift of tzedakah to the Jewish Federation of the Lehigh Valley Annual Campaign for Jewish Needs. For help developing your mitzvah project, contact Abby Trachtman, program coordinator, at email@example.com or call her at the Federation office at 610-821-5500.
BennettCars.com A World of Difference - Visit the Bennett Automotive Group Today!
HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY | JANUARY 2017 23
BY SANDI TEPLITZ These are a little different than your usual cookie; for the grown ups! INGREDIENTS: 1/2 pound softened salted butter 1 c. dark brown sugar, firmly packed 1/2 c. Domino cane sugar
2 large eggs, preferably cage-free 1 T. pure vanilla 2 c. + 2 1/2 T. all purpose flour, unbleached 1 t. b. soda 1 t. non-iodized salt 2 1/2 t. instant espresso coffee 1 c. chopped pecans, or to taste 8 oz. by weight bittersweet chocolate chunks, preferably Ghirardelli TECHNIQUE: Brown 1/4 pound of the butter; cool. Cream remaining butter with both sugars. Add cooled butter in a slow stream. Add eggs and vanilla. Mix in chocolate and pecans by hand. Make 24 balls of dough. Bake on greased cookie sheets (2) for 15 minutes at 375 degrees.
24 JANUARY 2017 | HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY
Britain’s Mitzvah Day brings out record 25,000 volunteers Jewish Telegraphic Agency Some 25,000 people, including London Mayor Sadiq Khan, participated in British Jewry’s largest-ever Mitzvah Day. Organizers said the number of volunteers for the faithbased day of social action, which was held on Nov. 27, 2016, was the most since Mitzvah Day was first inaugurated in the United Kingdom in 2005. Bringing together Jews, Muslims, Christians, Hindus and others, activities included hosting tea parties, making teddy bears, wrapping Christmas presents, cooking meals and collecting goods for immigrants and the poor. Joining Khan, the first Muslim mayor of London, as volunteers were Communities Minister Lord Bourne, Chief Rabbi Ephraim Mirvis, Imam Qari Asim, Bishop of Edmonton Robert Wickham and numerous lawmakers. This year’s Mitzvah Day was focused on building bridges in British society following the polarizing effect of a referendum held in May in which a majority of voters supported a British exit, or Brexit, from the European Union. The campaign to leave highlighted issues connected to immigration and integration. Following the vote, British watchdog groups reported a spike in xenophobic hate crimes and incidents. “Since the E.U. Referendum and U.S. Presidential election campaigns, we’ve seen a recorded rise in racism and hate crimes, and a heightened fear of the outsider,” said Laura Marks, a former vice president of the Board of Deputies of British Jews and the founder of Mitzvah Day. “The need to bring people together has never been greater.” One of the activities conducted during Mitzvah Day included “wrapping Christmas presents, or making cards and teddy bears, for those who have been through so much hardship,” Marks added, in reference to children she described as refugees. Khan and some of his staff collected biscuits and cakes for a Christmas party that the Alyth Reform Synagogue hosted for people they said were refugees. “Thousands of volunteers of all faiths in London, and around the United Kingdom and the world, gave up their time to bring our communities together, in the service of others, for Mitzvah Day 2016,” the mayor said, adding that “this special day is a big part of what makes our city, and our country, so great.” In addition to the 25,000 volunteers in Britain, some 15,000 people participated in Mitzvah Day projects abroad that were inspired by the British event and timed to be held simultaneously in 25 countries, Marks said. In total, Mitzvah Day participants gave 150,000 hours of their time to help hundreds of charities and causes.
Boise’s surprising—and splendid—historic synagogue
Left, Boise’s Ahavath Beth Israel, the oldest continuously in-use synagogue west of the Mississippi. Center, an original stained-glass window inside Congregation Ahavath Beth Israel of Boise. Right, the Anne Frank Human Rights Memorial in Boise. By Dan Fellner Phoenix Jewish News/JNS.org Sometimes you’ll find the most splendid synagogues in the places you least expect. Such was the case during my recent three-day trip to Boise, Idaho, a popular gateway for skiing, river rafting and hiking that isn’t exactly known for being a hotbed of Jewish life. Yet there at 11 N. Latah St., just a five-minute drive from downtown, sits the oldest continuously in-use synagogue west of the Mississippi River. And it’s far more than just a beautiful wood building. As I learned, Congregation Ahavath Beth Israel is the centerpiece of a surprisingly robust Jewish community with a fascinating history. I was able to meet Nina Spiro, the synagogue’s director, who was kind enough to show me around the building on the busy day before Yom Kippur eve. “People love this building,” she said. “We can’t believe how blessed we are. It’s cozy, it’s homey, and the acoustics are great.” Boise, a city of about 200,000 residents at the base of the Rocky Mountain foothills in southwestern Idaho, is the state’s capital and largest city. Rooted in the potato industry, the area has recently emerged as a budding high-tech center and growing destination for tourists. The locals pronounce it “Boy-see,” not “Boy-zee.” Before my visit, I had read about Ahavath Beth Israel and knew a little about its history. It was built in 1895, when there were only about 25 Jewish families in Boise. Many had emigrated to the U.S. from Germany and worked as merchants, farmers, and ranchers. One of the original members of Beth Israel—as it was known at the time—was Moses Alexander, who became the mayor of Boise and later was the first elected practicing Jewish governor in the entire country. He served two terms, from 1915-19. There is a display at a museum inside the Idaho State Capitol in downtown Boise trumpeting that historical distinction. To this day, Alexander remains the only Jewish governor in Idaho history. Today, more than 120 years later, Moses’s grandson, Nathan Alexander, is still a member of the congregation. For several decades, Boise actually had two synagogues. After World War II, with the arrival of more Jewish families in the area, Congregation Ahavath Israel was built. The two congregations merged in 1987 to become
the present-day Congregation Ahavath Beth Israel. Both buildings continued to be used; one as an education center, the other for religious services. But by the end of the 20th century, the congregation had grown to more than 200 families and needed to expand. Due to the lack of land available where the existing buildings were located, the congregation decided that the original synagogue would need to be moved to a different site. So, in the middle of a cold October night in 2003, members of the congregation were joined by some 500 people from the Boise community to walk alongside the synagogue while it was slowly moved by truck about three miles to its new location on Latah Street. Today, the synagogue sits on a beautifully landscaped campus that also includes a 100-student religious school that meets weekly, a social hall, a library and administrative offices for the synagogue’s full-time rabbi and other staff. The interior of the synagogue still features the original wood columns and stained-glass windows. It is listed in the National Register of Historic Places. Since the community is so diverse in its religious orientation and the ages of its members— from retirees to young families— Spiro describes Ahavath Beth Israel as “reconservadox.” While it tries to meet the needs of both religious and not-so-religious members, the congregation is affiliated with the Union for Reform Judaism and emphasizes music in its services and events. In fact, the synagogue has its own klezmer band called “The Moody Jews,” a popular group that performs monthly at a temple event called “Shabbat Unplugged” and at community interfaith events. But not all events surrounding the synagogue have been cheery. Idaho has a reputation for being a haven of extremist hate groups. About 10 years ago, the Aryan Nation leafletted some Boise neighborhoods with anti-Semitic and racist literature. Spiro’s home was among those that received the offensive literature. “It was pretty shocking,” she recalls. “Since then, a lot of work has been done.” To demonstrate its tolerance, Boiseans have erected the Anne Frank Human Rights Memorial, which occupies a prominent place adjacent to the 25-mile Boise River Greenbelt, a tree-lined paved pathway that follows the Boise River through the heart of the city. The memorial first came
to Boise in 1995 as a traveling exhibit but the response was so overwhelming by Idahoans, community leaders decided to build a more permanent tribute. In 2002, the Anne Frank Memorial opened to the public. Featuring a life-sized bronze statue of Anne Frank, it’s an inspirational and contemplative site in a beautiful setting. Despite the small pockets of anti-Semitism in Idaho, Spiro describes Boiseans as “welcoming”
and interested in learning more about their Jewish neighbors. “We’re constantly hosting tour groups and church groups,” she said. “They want to visit the synagogue. They want to know about Jewish history. They want to learn about Judaism.” Spiro says visitors to Boise are welcome to attend Shabbat services, which are held Friday evenings and Saturday mornings, and other temple events as well. For information, visit the congre-
gation’s website: cabi-boise.org. Even if you’re not able to attend services, just driving by and marveling at this magnificent, historic structure would undoubtedly mark a highlight of any Jewish traveler’s visit to Boise. Dan Fellner is a faculty associate at Arizona State University and freelance travel writer specializing in Jewish destinations. His website is: Global-Travel-Info.com.
HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY | JANUARY 2017 25
Captain of communication: IDF vet helps 2nd Annual European Jewish Resilience Conference helps email users filter out all the junk
COURTESY OF HAIM SENIOR
Knowmail, founded in 2014, is embarking on major technological partnerships, and Senior continues to call on his military and leadership skills to push forward so that email users can maximize their efficiency. The Israeli entrepreneur discusses his venture with JNS.org in the following interview:
Knowmail CEO Haim Senior By Matt Robinson JNS.org As a former Israel Defense Forces elite special forces captain, Haim Senior knows the importance of clear and effective communication—filtering out the junk in order to reach the heart of the matter. In his current position as CEO and co-founder of Knowmail (www.knowmail. me), Senior stretches that expertise into an actual solution, helping individuals sort through the noise of their inbox to get to the messages that are truly relevant and important to them.
JNS: How do you define your venture? Haim Senior: Our mission is to revolutionize the way we communicate using Personalized Artificial Intelligence. On the surface, it seems like an impossible mission, but I am optimistic. I believe that such a solution is absolutely needed, and I'm a little naïve that it can truly be done. JNS: What gave you the idea? Senior: The endless amount of time we spend every day reading and writing emails, and the huge stress involved with trying to stay on top of my game and succeed at work. JNS: How does your Judaism impact and influence your venture? Senior: We are a case of David versus Goliath – a small company sufficiently funded trying to change a paradigm that has been controlled by giants for more than three
decades. The Jewish mind of implementing innovative ideas with limited resources comes in handy, as it encourages thinking outside of the box and working intelligently. JNS: Who is your customer base or demographic? Senior: Mostly companies with 200-plus employees interested in making their organizations more responsive, efficient, and positive. Our current focus is the U.S., but we are open to additional markets. JNS: How do you hope to fit into the market? Senior: We want to be the ultimate platform for personalized communication, amplifying known solutions to help employees get more done in less time and with less stress. JNS: What do you need most to succeed? Senior: More time! As our core competency is Personalized Artificial Intelligence, we require the time necessary to develop and hone a trustworthy machine that can be relied upon. Identifying each persona at work is a huge barrier of entry, yet it’s doable. Matt Robinson has been writing for and about entrepreneurs for more than 20 years. He can be reached at matthewsrobinson@ mac.com.
strengthen tenacious Jewish communities
American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee As European Jews continue to face challenges including terror attacks, growing nationalism, rising anti-Semitism, the Syrian refugee crisis and complex socioeconomic challenges, JDC believes strengthening Jewish community resilience and planning for the future are key to ensuring thriving Jewish life across the continent. That's why dozens of leaders, experts and professionals came together to further invest in Jewish life at the second annual European Jewish Resilience Conference, held from Nov. 13 – 15, 2016, in Barcelona. The inaugural JDC Resilience Conference in 2015 paved the way for the 2016 confab, which acts as a forum in which community leaders and others can join together to have robust conversations on not only the current challenges they face, but also specific ways to overcome them. “In these frightening times,
Best summer, every summer!
SAVE $1000 Summer 2017
SAVE $1000 Summer 2017
Join us this summer in the Poconos! 215-its-camp www.pinemere.com 26 JANUARY 2017 | HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY
it is very reassuring to know that there are people who are thinking ahead and helping us plan for the future,” said Yariv Reisler, chairman of the Irish Jewish Museum. Themes of the conference included: developing relationships with local authorities and other faith communities; strategies and common dilemmas to improve media relations; and models and best practices related to security and preparedness. Co-organized with the European Council of Jewish Communities (ECJC) and the European Jewish Congress, and supported by UJA-Federation of New York, the event brought together attendees to learn about critical issues that will affect the future of Jewish community life in Europe. Despite rising tensions, most Jews in Europe are committed to a future there. Keynote speakers like renowned historian and Paideia Director Fania Oz-Salzberger spoke about Judaism's approach to resilience and community survival, while Guardian columnist Jonathan Freedland highlighted extremist trends in Europe and a Jewish response to these movements. “Resilience is not only about staying alive. It's about asking, "Why is it worth it to be alive?,” Oz-Salzberger said. The conference also included a conversation with Katharina von Schnurbein, who coordinates the European Union's efforts to combat antiSemitism, and a special panel discussion on French Jewry featuring Jewish leaders from France. “I came into a room filled with strangers, but I felt that I was with family," said Petra Kahn Nord, secretary general of the Jewish Youth Union of Sweden. "We are all dealing with similar challenges and here we can really strengthen each other." The JDC is an overseas partner of the Jewish Federation of the Lehigh Valley.
UNESCO awards tolerance prize to Moscow Jewish museum Jewish Telegraphic Agency UNESCO gave Moscow’s main Jewish museum an award for its promotion of tolerance. The Jewish Museum and Tolerance Center, a $50 million state-of-the-art institution that opened in 2012, received UNESCO’s Madanjeet Singh Prize for the promotion of peace and non-violence on Nov. 16, Interfax reported. Rabbi Alexander Boroda, the president of the Federation of Jewish Communities in Russia and the museum’s director general, accepted the prize, which is named after an Indian painter, at UNESCO’s headquarters in Paris, the report said. Russian Chief Rabbi Berel Lazar, whose top aide Rabbi Boruch Gorin is the museum’s chairman, said in a statement that “spreading tolerance is an absolutely necessary thing for Russia,” whose Jewish community “is involved in this as much as they can be, specifically after the opening of the Jewish Museum. UNESCO has faced criticism in recent months over the passing of several resolutions that were widely seen as erasing Jewish ties to Jerusalem by referring to certain holy sites only by their Arabic-language names. Lazar, who has friendly ties with President Vladimir Putin, harshly criticized the Russian government’s support for one such resolution in October. “It is very strange that Russia, which has consistently fought all kinds of historic falsification, this time supported a blatant falsification of history,” Lazar wrote in a statement following a vote. Israel, whose neutrality in the ongoing conflict between Ukraine and Russia diverged from the anti-Russian stance of other Western countries, voted in favor of a U.N. resolution condemning Russia’s annexation of Crimea from Ukraine. Israel has vociferously protested the October UNESCO vote and briefly recalled its ambassador to that body, a move which Russian Deputy Foreign Minister Gennady Gatilov criticized as “disproportionate and overly emotional.” “The text of the resolutions refers to the ownership of these holy places of all three religions — Judaism, Christianity and Islam,” Gatilov said. During a visit to Israel in early November 2016, Russian Prime Minister Dimitry Medvedev said his country “never denied the rights of Israel or the Jewish people to Jerusalem, the Temple Mount or the Western Wall.”
Romania’s Bereshit event turns 13 American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee "Imagine getting to meet with 400 Jews who we don't get to see every day in a reunion that is positive and energizing," said Luciana Friedman, president of the Jewish community in Timisoara, Romania. “It's a real learning experience and a unique opportunity!” Luciana is one of hundreds of participants, representing 33 communities across Romania, who gathered together for a multi-day celebration of Jewish culture, learning, and traditions at the 13th annual Bereshit event, serving as a special bar mitzvah for the seminar, in Tirgu Mures, Romania. "This event brings Jews from across Romania for a weekend of learning and discovery. We have professors from Israel and Romania who come to teach Judaism in a way that is both interesting and accessible, and there are hundreds of people who are thirsty to learn and celebrate their Jewish identity," said Israel Sabag, JDC director of Romania and the former Yugoslavia. The weekend gathering is especially significant, as it marks 100 years of JDC’s work in Romania, including the founding of the Bereshit academic study event for the country’s Jewish community, and local Jewish Community Center (JCC) members. At this seminar, the group explored the theme of tikkun olam – the Jewish concept of repairing the world – through dynamic, interactive activities highlighting Jewish values. "It gives me an enriching
opportunity to meet other members from other Jewish communities in Romania," said another participant, Ivan Schnabel. Attendees also celebrated Shabbat and engaged in text study and meaningful dialogue. “This seminar is a beautiful celebration of Jewish knowledge,” said Zoya Shvartzman, part of the JDC Europe team. “This forum provides educational, spiritual and
social enrichment for a community that was shattered by the Holocaust and decades of Communism, giving individuals the opportunity to gather, engage in Jewish study and strengthen their connection to their Jewish heritage. It is a testament of the vibrancy and resilience of the Jewish community of Romania." The JDC is an overseas partner of the Jewish Federation of the Lehigh Valley.
HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY | JANUARY 2017 27
Pre-WWII film that presaged Holocaust to be restored after crowdfunding campaign
Poem handwritten by Anne Frank sells for $150,000
Jewish Telegraphic Agency
MAUDE BRULARD/AFP/GETTY IMAGES
Segments of a pre-World War II Austrian film that foresaw the expulsion of Jews will be restored thanks to a crowd-funding campaign, after missing reels were found in a Paris flea market. The 1924 film, “Die Stadt ohne Juden,” or “The City Without Jews,” was made by director Hans Karl Breslauer, based on a satirical novel by the Austrian Jewish writer Hugo Bettauer, published two years before. It tells an imaginary, dystopian story of politicians deciding to expel all Jews from a major metropolis – in the book, this was Vienna, but in the film, it was called “Utopia.” In the book and film, the outcome of the expulsion is disastrous, on economic, cultural and social levels. In the movie, the disaster turns out to have been a dream of one of the characters, an anti-Semitic legislator. The author, Bettauer, was murdered in 1925, allegedly following calls by the Nazi Party for lynch justice against political opponents. His killer was hospitalized for mental illness and released about two years later. Less than a decade after the film was made, the actual deportation and extermination of Austrian Jews began. The film disappeared after World War II; a damaged copy was found in the Film Museum in Amsterdam in 1991. The reels that complete the picture were found by a collector in Paris in 2015. About $91,000 was raised to restore the film by the Film Archive Austria in a crowdfunding campaign. The Archive will now digitally transfer the images from fragile nitro-film – which is literally explosive – to modern material.
A rare handwritten poem by Anne Frank, penned shortly before she went into hiding from the Nazis, addressed to “Cri-Cri” or Christiane van Maarsen, signed by the Jewish teenager and dated March 28, 1942.
Jewish Telegraphic Agency A poem handwritten by Anne Frank was sold for $150,000 at auction, more than four times the minimum bid of $32,000. The poem was sold Nov. 23 by the Bubb Kuyper auction house in the western Dutch town of Haarlem, the French news agency AFP reported. It was sold to an unnamed online bidder after two minutes of bidding that AFP described as
“tense.” There were 20 collectors who bid in person and others who bid by telephone and online, according to the report. The eight-line poem is written in Dutch in black ink on a piece of white paper that has yellowed with age. It is dedicated to “Cri-cri,” the sister of Anne Frank’s primary school friend Jacqueline van Maarsen and is advice from one girl to another. It is dated March 28, 1942,
three months before the family went into hiding from the Nazis in an Amsterdam attic when Anne was 12 years old. Christiane ‘Cri-cri’ Van Maarsen died 10 years ago. Jacqueline van Maarsen reportedly also has a poem dedicated to her by Frank but does not wish to sell it. Letters written by Anne and her sister Margot with American pen pals sold for $165,000 in 1988, according to AFP.
Dr. Israel Zighelboim Leads OB/GYN Growth, Vision at St. Luke’s Israel Zighelboim, MD, FACOG, FACS, is focused on the future of St. Luke’s University Health Network’s Department of Obstetrics and Gynecology. As its newly named Chair, he has a deep appreciation for the generations of babies who were born at St. Luke’s University Health Network’s Bethlehem and Allentown campuses and now are coming back to have their babies there.
His strategy is working: Year-over-year new patient numbers have increased more than 100 percent.
He wants today’s new parents to have the same good experience their parents had and his plan is to have the Network continue to distinguish itself by continuing to focus on its small, user-friendly practices.
Additionally, to keep up with the growth spurred by two new hospitals, St. Luke’s will continue to recruit physicians who are interested, experienced and who have a track record of success in academic endeavors as well as in patient care.
“We will maintain this model because it allows a woman to know all the names and faces of the people who are taking care of her. Women who are patients in much larger network practices often feel they’re being cared for by strangers,” Zighelboim said.
“We’re lucky to be positioned between New York and Philadelphia,” Dr. Zighelboim said, “And there are specialties we have not yet tapped.”
“For the past 100 years, our department has been women’s preferred care provider and we are going to build on that by making access to great care very easy no matter where a woman finds herself on the age spectrum. Whether she’s a teen, a new mom, premenopausal, menopausal or beyond, every woman will find her best patient care experience here at St. Luke’s,” he said.
Moving forward, Dr. Zighelboim’s vision is to grow St. Luke’s already burgeoning OB/GYN Department by getting more national visibility. To do that, the Network will be taking its excellent medical education and clinical research into its main areas of focus.
Five years from now, he said, “We’ll be twice the size we are now, and the Network that is already the Lehigh Valley’s preferred care provider will be nationally positioned at an academic level in a very competitive way.”
www.sluhn.org • 1-866-STLUKES
28 JANUARY 2017 | HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY
Israel Zighelboim, MD, FACOG, FACS Dr. Zighelboim is board certified in obstetrics and gynecology and gynecologic oncology and is a fellow of the American College of Obstetricians and Gynecologists and the American College of Surgeons. He is an ad hoc reviewer for the journals Gynecologic Oncology, Cancer Research, Clinical Cancer Research, Journal of Clinical Oncology and the American Journal of Obstetrics and Gynecology and is Editorial Board Member of Gynecologic Oncology Case Reports. He is experienced in minimally invasive surgery and managing cancerous and noncancerous diseases of the female reproductive system. His special interest and expertise is in cancer genetics. His research has been funded by the National Cancer Institute and private foundations.
Israel Zighelboim, MD, FACOG, FACS
Warsaw museum to offer high-tech posthumous talks with Poles who saved Jews Jewish Telegraphic Agency
Are you interested in reporting Jewish news in the Lehigh Valley?
FROM THE DEPTHS
Polish and Israeli officials announced the future opening of an innovative museum honoring non-Jews who risked their lives to save Jews from the Holocaust. The museum, which will feature interactive 3D videos of saviors of Jews, is slated to open in 2018 in the center of Warsaw under the auspices of the TSKZ cultural association of Polish Jewry and the commemoration group From the Depths. The two groups made the announcement in a statement following a ceremony in Warsaw in November featuring the signing of a letter of intent about the new museum’s establishment. The event was attended by Poland’s Secretary of State Anna Maria Anders, the deputy speakers of the Israeli parliament and the Polish senate, Yehiel Bar and Adam Bielan, respectively, TSKZ Director Arthur Hoffman and From the Depths founder Jonny Daniels. Visitors to the museum, which will occupy two rooms inside what will be the new seat of the TSKZ building, will be able to interact with 3D video recordings of the Righteous Among the Nations — a title conferred on Holocaust saviors by Israel — using socalled intelligent software,
Daniels said. The questions will be put vocally to microphones and analyzed by voice recognition software that will play the relevant recorded answer. The software, which is currently in development, will have a bank of dozens of answers to some questions from which visitors can choose. “As both the righteous and the people they saved leave this world, we are using technology to allow also future generations the privilege of talking to these people, to hear firsthand of the terrible risks they undertook and how they felt about it,” Daniels said. In March, Polish President Andrzej Duda attended the opening of a museum for saviors of Jews in Markowa, a village in southeastern Poland. It was the latest in a series of efforts to celebrate this heroism by Duda’s rightwing government. Critics of these efforts, including the Poland-born, American historian Jan Gross, have argued they are excessive and designed to dominate the narrative about the Polish population’s checkered record of action on the Jews during the Nazi occupation of Poland. Gross is currently the subject of a criminal investigation for allegedly insult-
Jozef Jarosz, who saved 14 Jews during the Holocaust, meeting Jonny Daniels, left, in Warsaw in November 2016. ing the honor of the Polish nation, a felony in Poland, by telling a German paper that during World War II, Poles killed more Jews than Poles killed Germans. The author of a 2001 book entitled “Neighbors,” Gross triggered a debate about Polish complicity against Jews during the Holocaust by chronicling in that book the massacre of dozens of Jews by their non-Jewish Polish neighbors in the town of Jedwabne. Polish nationalists are
arguing for an exhumation of the victims’ bodies, citing theories, which are not supported by witness testimonies, of German participation in the massacre. Only 10 percent of Poland’s Jewish population of 3.3 million people survived the Holocaust, in which only a very small minority of Jews were killed by Poles. Poland has the world’s highest number of Righteous Among the Nations: Some 6,620 have been recognized as such by the Yad Vashem
Holocaust museum in Jerusalem. The country with the second-highest number of righteous is the Netherlands, with some 5,516. German Nazis and Dutch collaborators killed 75 percent of Holland’s Jewish population of 140,000 during World War II. If Poland had the Netherlands’ ratio of saviors per Jews in 1940, there would have been nearly 120,000 Polish Righteous Among the Nations.
Excellence in the arts, academics, athletics, and so much more!
Contact editor Michelle Cohen at firstname.lastname@example.org or 610-821-5500 for more information.
CHOREOGRAPHERS February 9-11
Spectacular Works by Internationally Acclaimed Choreographers
EXPERIENCE THE DIFFERENCE. PLAN YOUR VISIT TODAY!
MORAVIAN ACADEMY P R E S C H O O L ( A G E 3) T H R O U G H G R A D E 12
BETHLEHEM, PA | 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 | JANUARY 2017 29
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, JANUARY 8 Maimonides Society Bagel Brunch with Dr. Melissa Hakim 10:15 to 11:45 a.m., JCC of the Lehigh Valley. Join the Maimonides Society for a bagel brunch with Dr. Melissa Hakim, who will talk about health and wellness for professionals. Free for Maimonides members and spouses, $10 for community members. RSVP to 610-821-5500 or email@example.com. SUNDAY, JANUARY 8 Camp JCC Reunion 4:30 to 6 p.m., JCC of the Lehigh Valley. Relive all of your favorite summer memories surrounded by friends and counselors. Slideshow, crafts, and gaga! Free for campers of both Stagemakers and Camp JCC in Center Valley. Campers 6 and younger need to be accompanied by an adult. MONDAY, JANUARY 9 TBE Sisterhood Mah Jongg Club 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. If you are a Mah Jongg player, please come and join us for sisterhood, laughter and a great bunch of fun. $10 per player donation to TBE Sisterhood. New faces always welcome. Looking forward to playing Mah Jongg with you. For RSVP and questions, contact Ilene Rubel, 610-776-1577 or IRUBEL@aol.com. MONDAY, JANUARY 9 TBE Men’s Club Poker Night 7 p.m., Temple Beth El. Come play cards with us and bring your friends. The Men’s Club is sponsoring an evening filled with refreshments, a big game on TV and card playing! 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. Please RSVP to Roy Benasaraf at royben@ ptd.net or call 610-216-0190. THURSDAY, JANUARY 12 Chair Supported Yoga 12 to 1 p.m., Congregation Brith Sholom. We are very pleased to announce that we will again be offering a Chair Supported Yoga class at Brith Sholom. The class will meet every Thursday from 12 to 1 p.m., with the first class scheduled for Jan. 12. The class will run for a total of 10 weeks. The cost per participant for the 10 sessions is $90, or for those who prefer to pay week by week, the cost for each one-hour session is $10.50. Chair Supported Yoga is suitable for people of all ages, abilities and disabilities. For those who are active and have a regular yoga practice or did in the past, the chair allows for deep and sustained full range of motion without the burden of full self weight support. The chair also allows folks with no experience at all or with injuries or physical limitations to find their fullest range of motion in all joints and muscle groups safely within the limits of their restrictions. People with balance or stability issues can do this class as well as people with dizziness issues. To register for the class, please contact Tammy at 610-866-8009. SATURDAY, JANUARY 14 Sock Hop Joint Fundraiser 7 to 10:30 p.m., Bnai Abraham Synagogue. Join Bnai Abraham Synagogue and Temple Covenant of Peace for a sock hop fundraiser. Music by the Main Street Cruisers. Soda shop buffet (burgers, hotdogs, fries, onion rings, etc.). Best costume prize, maybe even a twist contest. Tickets are $29. To make a reservation, call BAS at 610-258-5343 or TCP at 610-253-2031.
SUNDAY, JANUARY 15 TBE Israeli Book Brunch 11 a.m., Temple Beth El. “Judas” by Amos Oz. View a presentation, join a conversation, learn, connect, share and eat. Please RSVP to Adina Re’em at firstname.lastname@example.org. FRIDAY, JANUARY 17 Traditional Ashkenazi Shabbat 6 p.m., Congregation Brith Sholom. Join us at Congregation Brith Sholom for a Shabbat dinner and Friday night services. Enjoy the warmth of our community and indulge in a dinner with many of the traditional flavors we all love. Make your reservations by 12 p.m. on Jan. 4. Reservations are required. The price is $15 per adult or become a patron for $20; $5 per child between the ages of 5 - 13; no charge for children under 5 with maximum family charge of $45. Please pay in advance. Make out checks to “CBS - Shabbat Dinners.” Call Tammy at 610-866-8009 for reservations and more information. For those that need transportation, please contact Tammy. THURSDAY, JANUARY 19 Bethlehem-Easton Hadassah Book Review 1:30 p.m., home of Roberta Diamond, 218 Georgia Ave., Bethlehem. We are honoring the life of Oliver Sacks. Choose your book! “An Anthropologist on Mars” or his very interesting memoir “On the Move?” Any of the fascinating books by Sacks can be part of the discussion. A favorite is “The Man Who Mistook His Wife For a Hat.” To learn more, contact Roberta at 610-865-3357. SATURDAY, JANUARY 28 Something For Everyone Shabbat 10 a.m., Temple Beth El. A Shabbat program for every age! 0 to 3-year-olds: bring your favorite grown up to BIMBOM BUDDIES. Pre-K to grade 2: enjoy games and stories in KINDERSHUL. Grade 3 to 6: daven with donuts at JUNIOR CONGREGATION. Teens: help lead youth services or visit GPS. Parents can drop in our GUIDED PRAYER SERVICE. We will all gather together in the main service for the conclusion of services, followed by kiddush lunch. For more information, call Alicia at 610-435-3521. EVERYONE is welcome to celebrate Shabbat with us! SUNDAY, JANUARY 29 Super Sunday Community Mitzvah Day Calls 9 a.m. to 1 p.m. and 5:30 to 8 p.m., JCC of the Lehigh Valley; mitzvah project 1:30 p.m., Atria of Bethlehem. Bring the forces and join the Jewish Federation of the Lehigh Valley for its annual Super Sunday phone-a-thon and community mitzvah day. MAKE THE CALL: Volunteers are needed to reach out to donors and ask for their support for the 2017 Campaign for Jewish Needs. Calls will happen in two shifts: 9:30 a.m. to 1 p.m. and 5:30 to 8 p.m. The event is family friendly, yummy snacks will be served all day and all volunteers will receive a free T-shirt. ANSWER THE CALL: If your phone rings on Super Sunday, answer it. Your contribution – whatever it is you can give – will help feed the hungry, comfort the elderly and care for Jews in need here at home, in Israel and around the world. It will also help to nurture and sustain Jewish life today and for future generations. COMMUNITY MITZVAH PROJECT: Volunteers are needed to bake a special recipe with seniors at the Atria in Bethlehem. Volunteers will meet at the Atria at 1:30 p.m. Visit www.jewishlehighvalley.org/supersunday to learn more and sign up.
FRIDAYS 8 - 9:30 AM WMUH 91.7 Featuring Cantor Wartell muhlenberg.edu/wmuh
30 JANUARY 2017 | HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY
SUNDAY, JANUARY 29 PJ Library Bend & Stretch @ Super Sunday 10:30 a.m., JCC of the Lehigh Valley. Make Super Sunday a family experience. Bring the kids for a free PJ Library program at 10:30 a.m. featuring stories, snacks, crafts provided by Camp JCC and a Bend & Stretch class with Coach T. Get your cameras ready for an appearance by FeFe from the IronPigs. The first 50 kids in attendance will get a free T-shirt! RSVP to email@example.com. SATURDAY, FEBRUARY 4 JCC Tailgate Casino Night 7:30 to 10:30 p.m., JCC of the Lehigh Valley. It’s game time at the JCC! Football finger fare, signature cocktails, beer and wine. LVKC supervised. Jeans and jersey attire. RSVP by Jan. 25 by visiting or calling the JCC Welcome Desk, 610-435-3571, or online at www.lvjcc.org. MONDAY, FEBRUARY 6 TBE Men’s Club Poker Night 7 p.m., Temple Beth El. Come play cards with us and bring your friends. The Men’s Club is sponsoring an evening filled with refreshments, a big game on TV and card playing! 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. Please RSVP to Roy Benasaraf at royben@ ptd.net or call 610-216-0190. FRIDAY, FEBRUARY 10 Greek Shabbat 6 p.m., Congregation Brith Sholom. Join us at Congregation Brith Sholom for a Shabbat dinner and Friday night services. Tu B’Shevat is here! Let us celebrate together. Join us to see what our cooking masters have come up with to tempt your tastebuds. Make your reservations by 12 p.m. on Jan. 30. Reservations are required. The price is $15 per adult or become a patron for $20; $5 per child between the ages of 5 - 13; no charge for children under 5 with maximum family charge of $45. Please pay in advance. Make out checks to “CBS Shabbat Dinners.” Call Tammy at 610-866-8009 for reservations and more information. For those that need transportation, please contact Tammy. SUNDAY, FEBRUARY 12 The Rise of Anti-Semitism in the United States 10 a.m., Temple Beth El. Nancy Baron-Baer, regional director for the Anti-Defamation League, will discuss the state of anti-Semitism in the United States and what the ADL is doing to combat the current rise. Free and open to the community. Sponsored by the Community Relations Council of the Jewish Federation of the Lehigh Valley and the Men’s Club of Temple Beth El. SUNDAY, FEBRUARY 12 Confronting Anti-Semitism: A Workshop for Middle and High School Students and Their Parents 1 p.m., Temple Beth El. Have you ever heard someone make an anti-Semitic joke or remark and felt that you didn’t know how to respond? Are you prepared to speak up? Join the Community Relations Council of the Jewish Federation as we partner with the ADL to address this issue. Learn how to confront insensitive or hateful comments and behaviors, challenge antiSemitic myths with facts, respond to hate-motivated incidents in school and the community at large and utilize national and regional resources to fight antiSemitism on all levels. Pizza at 1 p.m., program begins at 1:30 p.m. To learn more or sign up today, contact Aaron Gorodzinsky, 610-821-5500, firstname.lastname@example.org.
Celebrate the beauty of Shabbat
Shabbat & Yom Tov Candlelighting Times Friday, Jan. 6
Friday, Jan. 27
Friday, Jan. 13
Friday, Feb. 3
Friday, Jan. 20
Friday, Feb. 10
Ongoing Events SUNDAY to FRIDAY 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. SUNDAYS 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 email@example.com. 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. 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. 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 Cynthia at 610-739-2755 for reservations. TUESDAYS 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. 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 610-253-2031 for information. YACHAD TORAH STUDY GROUP 1:30 to 2:30 p.m., JCC of the Lehigh Valley It doesn’t matter how much you know, it matters how much you want to know. Bring your curiosity to Yachad’s Torah study group and discover the wonders, adventures and meaning of the Torah. Moderated by lay leaders. Held in the front gallery at the JCC. Email firstname.lastname@example.org for information about individual sessions. YIDDISH CLUB 2 to 3:30 p.m., JCC of the Lehigh Valley Experience the joys of Yiddish. The
group meets weekly to discuss topics like cooking, politics, humor, music and all kinds of entertainment in the Yiddish language. All are welcome to join this lively, weekly discussion. There is something for everyone no matter if you know a few words, or are a fluent speaker. Enjoy fun, fellowship, stories and more. Coffee and cookies served. Tuesdays through Dec. 27. No meeting Oct. 4. Questions? Contact Amy Sams at asams@lvjcc. org. New members welcome. Walk-ins welcome. 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. “CHOVOT HALEVAVOT: NURTURING THE INNER FEELINGS OF A JEW” 8:45 p.m., Congregation Sons of Israel For both men and women and no prior knowledge of Jewish texts is necessary. The class will be studying the classic work of Rabbi Bachya Ibn Pekudah of 11th century Spain which will focus on cultivating the thoughts and emotions of self-reflection, trust, belief, humility, devotion and love. 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 207-4040474; 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 610253-2031 for information. GAMES FOR ADULTS AT THE J 1 to 3:30 p.m., JCC of the Lehigh Valley Join other adults for your choice of game such as mahjong, canasta, checkers and more. Gather your friends and make new ones in the TV Lounge. Visit the JCC Welcome Desk or call 610-435-3571 to learn more. 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 email@example.com or call 610-439-1851. BETH AVRAHAM TORAH STUDY 7 p.m., Congregation Beth Avraham Torah: It is the common heritage that binds all Jews together. Explore the ancient wisdom of Torah together. All are welcome. RSVP: Rabbi Yitzchok I. Yagod, 610-905-2166, rabbiyagod1@ gmail.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
One: An 11-part series. Cost is $36 for the complete series (textbook included). For more information contact 610-351-6511 or Rabbi@chabadlehighvalley.com. ORTHODOX JEWISH LIVING: WHAT IS IT & HOW? 8 p.m. Contact Rabbi Yizchok I. Yagod, 610-905-2166 or rabbiyagod1@gmail. com. THURSDAYS CHRONIC CONDITIONS GROUP 2nd Thursday of the month, 10:30 a.m. to 12 p.m., Jewish Family Service The group is open to anyone that is coping with living with a chronic condition and looking for others to share life issues and garner support. Co-led by Susan Sklaroff-VanHook and Rebecca Axelrod-Cooper. Call 610-821-8722 to learn more. There is no charge for the group. A MOTHER’S DELIGHT: MAIMONIDES - RABBI AND DOCTOR 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 firstname.lastname@example.org or call 610-435-9074. 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 email@example.com or 610-820-7666. CBS CONFIRMATION PROGRAM Twice monthly 5:30 to 6:30 p.m., Congregation Brith Sholom THIS IS NOT RELIGIOUS SCHOOL! Open only to 8th - 12th Graders. Come and enjoy snacks, dinner, some Jewish learning, discussions, field trips and creative projects with your friends and Rabbi Singer. This year we will explore the theme of “Food Glorious Food.” Study Program: This year we will be cooking and eating together while learning about how food is at the heart of Jewish living, values and culture. To learn more, contact tammy@ brithsholom.net. SHABBAT 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 indepth study of the Talmud. 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 weekly Torah portion, with other congregants, each Shabbat in the library at approximately 12:45 p.m. No previous knowledge or long-term commitments are required. 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. 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.
Congregations BNAI ABRAHAM SYNAGOGUE 1545 Bushkill St., Easton – 610.258.5343 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. 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 AM HASKALAH 1190 W. Macada Rd., Bethlehem – 610.435.3775 Student Rabbi Janine Jankovitz, 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. 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. 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. CONGREGATION KENESETH ISRAEL 2227 Chew St., Allentown – 610.435.9074 Rabbi Seth D. Phillips, 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 at 4 p.m. and Sunday at 9 a.m. Midrasha school classes Monday at 6:30 p.m. Shalshelet meets bi-monthly on Monday evenings from 6:30 to 8:30 p.m. Shalshelet (the chain) is open to ALL 10th-, 11th- and 12th-grade students in the Lehigh Valley. For more, contact Alicia Zahn, religlious school director, at bethelallentown.org. 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. Religious school meets on Sunday mornings from 9:15 a.m. to 12:15 p.m. For more information about our Temple and activities, see our website at www.tcopeace.org or look us up on Facebook. TEMPLE ISRAEL OF LEHIGHTON 194 Bankway Str. Lehighton – 610-370-9591 Rabbi Rachel Rembrandt, Pluralistic Shabbat evening services are held monthly beginning with potluck at 6:30 p.m. followed by services at 7:30 p.m. All other regular monthly events can be found at templeisraeloflehighton.com. TEMPLE SHIRAT SHALOM 610.730.6272 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 610-730-6272.
HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY | JANUARY 2017 31