HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY 40th ANNIVERSARY
The Voice of the Lehigh Valley Jewish Community
NOVEMBER 2016 | TISHREI/CHESHVAN 5777
Lehigh Valley Jewish community fondly remembers Shimon Peres
The Community Relations Council sponsored two talks about the future of Jewish life. Read more on page 6.
Learn about the life-changing experiences Jewish kids and teens experience at summer camp on pages 12-13.
Although the loss of former Israeli President and Prime Minister Shimon Peres affects the entire Jewish community on some level, for some residents of the Lehigh Valley who had the opportunity to interact with Peres, the loss is coupled with a deep sense of respect and fond remembrance. Mark L. Goldstein, executive director of the Jewish Federation of the Lehigh Valley, had the opportunity to hear Peres speak several times, in addition to traveling with Peres to his ancestral home in Belarus as part of a trip for Jewish leaders. "It was inspiring to spend time speaking with him over meals and learning his personal story in such a powerful way," said Goldstein. "He was so unassuming; he was so interested in connecting with people. He was always focused on the person, the future and really was the conscience to a certain extent for Israel and a lot of Jewish people around the world in terms of the kind of country Israel can become." "He's the last of the old school that we have lost. He was a wonderful man," added Nate Braunstein, past president of the Jewish Federation of the Lehigh Valley and former UJA national vice chair-
man. "When I was active in UJA, we spent an evening at a bar just talking about Israel and the Jews and I'm just very saddened that we lost one of the giants of Israel." Rabbi Moshe Re'em of Temple Beth El in South Whitehall Township also recalls Peres with a personal touch. Re'em was a 16 yearold in Buffalo, N.Y., when Peres, who was then Israel's minister of information, called his Hebrew school to do a Q&A with students. Re’em recalls feeling impressed and proud at the thought of Peres wanting to speak to high school students in America. As a political figure of note in Israel, it seemed incredible to Re’em that Peres would leave behind any distinctions of power and spend time educating young American Jews about Israel. Michelle Cohen, editor of HAKOL, also heard Peres speak to students, at Colgate University in 2014. Although Cohen does not remember Peres’ exact words in response to a heckler in the crowd who pressed him for details about “illegal settlements,” one thing stuck with her: “The way he conducted himself was honorable. He said something along the
Shimon Peres speaking during an interview at the president’s residence in Jerusalem, April 10, 2013. lines of yelling not being the answer, and that he would be happy to discuss [the heckler’s] concerns later. It was a dignified way to diffuse the situation without shooting down the opposing views. To me, that’s a hallmark of a respectable person.” Peres, who was the last surviving political leader of Israel who helped found the state in 1948, held nearly every cabinet position during his storied career, including serving twice as prime minister and once as president. He began his career in the Defense Ministry and was the architect of Israel’s nuclear program, but in his later years
The twinning program between JDS and our sister region in Israel, Yoav, begins a new year. See page 21.
Sukkot celebrations bring joy, camaraderie to Lehigh Valley
By Michelle Cohen HAKOL Editor
com.UNITY with Mark Goldstein 2 Women’s Division
Jewish Family Service Jewish Community Center Jewish Day School
15 18-19 20
Families around the Lehigh Valley gathered together to celebrate Sukkot at a variety of private and community-wide locations to share meals and companionship. One such celebration took place at the Jewish Day School on Oct. 19. On a warm evening, students and their families returned to school for
an evening filled with fun for all who attended. Tunes flowed out of a DJ’s speakers next to the buffet line, which featured kosher Chinese food supervised by the LVKC. As student volunteers helped attendees load their plates, children of all ages played on the playground, colored the blacktop with chalk and enjoyed Sukkot Continues on page 8
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Peres was more closely identified with the quest for peace with the Palestinians. He was instrumental in negotiating the Oslo Accords, the landmark Israeli-Palestinian peace agreement, and was present on the White House lawn for its signing in 1993. But for those who have had the opportunity to hear him speak or meet him personally, the loss takes on a new meaning. "Peres once said that 'optimists and pessimists die the exact same death, but they live very different lives!' Thank you, Shimon Peres, for filling our lives with optimism and hope," Goldstein said.
FROM THE DESK OF MARK L. GOLDSTEIN
Executive Director | Jewish Federation of the Lehigh Valley firstname.lastname@example.org
‘Um-Shmum’ On several of my trips to Israel, I visited during times of serious diplomatic fallout between Israel and the United Nations. Frankly, it is likely any time you visit Israel, there will be some fissure between Israel and the UN. I am reminded of graffiti and street comments containing the expression “UmShmum.” What does it mean? It’s hard to find “Um-Shmum” in the dictionary, and Google Translate is of no use. When translated into Hebrew, the abbreviation for the “United Nations” is UM. The “Shm” prefix (making Shmum) is a pejorative add-on signifying dismissal and contempt. “Um-Shmum,” therefore, is a uniquely Israeli expression that indicates disgust and disregard for the UN and its ridiculously biased anti-Israel declarations that the body churns out. It is not a new expression; sources date its use back to 1955 by Prime Minister David Ben Gurion. And if I was in Israel a few weeks ago, I am certain “UmShmum” was being uttered all over the place. At the end of October, the United Nations Educational, Scientific and Cultural Organization (UNESCO) Executive Board essentially voted to rewrite history and exclude Jewish and Christian connections to Jerusalem. Similar resolutions have been adopted by UNESCO political bodies in the past. The resolution passed
in October continued to refer to the Temple Mount/Holy Sanctuary solely by its Islamic name, Haram al Sharif, and formally referred to the Western Wall Plaza as the Al-Buraq Plaza. As always, the resolution included numerous highly politicized allegations and false charges against Israel, including of Israel denying Muslims religious access to holy sites and Israel destroying Muslim sites. The only tacit acknowledgment of Judaism’s connection to Jerusalem is a first-time reference to “the importance of the Old City of Jerusalem and its Walls for the three monotheistic religions …” ADL’s Jonathan Rosenblatt put it succinctly when he wrote, “To expunge the Jewish connection to Jerusalem is to deny the very cultural heritage of Jerusalem. This is not only unethical, but it contradicts the role of UNESCO to build intercultural understanding and protect cultural heritage. Resolutions such as these poison the atmosphere and sow mistrust, making steps toward reconciliation all the more difficult.’ By approving such an untruthful and one-sided resolution, UNESCO is eroding efforts to seek a peaceful resolution of the Israeli-Palestinian conflict by giving support to forces in the Palestinian community that reject reconciliation. The resolution is an affront to the Jewish people and our over two-millennia connection
to the Western Wall and the Temple it once supported. By acknowledging the holy sites both on and around the Temple Mount solely by their Arabic names, this resolution seeks to invalidate any claim the Jewish people have to our holiest site. The result of this aggressive effort will be to heighten the already palpable religious tensions in Israel and the surrounding region. At no point does the proposal acknowledge a Jewish association with the Western Wall, one that clearly dates to ancient times. Instead, it ignores any Jewish connection to the site altogether. This gross attempt to erase history by UNESCO is unconscionable. This revision of history is political, offensive and without factual merit. The resolution was put forward by Algeria, Egypt, Lebanon, Morocco, Oman, Qatar and Sudan. Although it passed, more countries abstained than voted in favor. So absurd was the resolution that both the Trump and Clinton campaigns were united in their condemnation of UNESCO. Anti-Semitism and Israel bashing is not new at the UN. From its creation in 2006 to 2016, the UN Human Rights Council over one decade adopted 135 resolutions criticizing countries, nearly 60 percent targeted Israel. From 2012 through 2015, the United Nations General Assembly has adopted 97 resolutions criticizing countries;
LETTER FROM THE EDITOR Dear Readers, When I arrived here a scant four months ago, I wouldn’t have believed how welcoming, kind and supportive the Jewish community of the Lehigh Valley would be. It’s one of many things I feel thankful for this season, and as the High Holidays draw to a close and Thanksgiving approaches, it becomes more important than ever for me to be able to offer my thanks to this community for welcoming me as you have. You have opened your homes to me from the moment I moved in, offered me advice about everything from grocery shopping locations to beauti-
ful outdoor places to visit. I’ve enjoyed my exploration of the Lehigh Valley area so far, and I welcome ideas for more places to go and things to do. In this issue, we’ve tried to feature a variety of goingson in the community, most of which are related to local groups. Learning more information about these groups is a wonderful way to get more involved with the community, whether you’ve just moved like me or whether you’ve been here your whole life. Additionally, this issue serves as the launch pad for Impact ‘17, Federation’s campaign for the upcoming year. Being a part of a Jewish community
bia, Iraq and Iran. Go figure. There will soon be a new leader of the United Nations. Some predict, along with growing positive diplomatic relationships between Israel and many African and Asians nations, that we will begin to see a change in the anti-Israel and Anti-Semitic bias at the UN. I hope so. In the meantime, it’s just more “Um-Shmum.”
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entails being inspired by our gratitude for the amazing things this place offers and using that to help others in this season of gratitude and thanksgiving. 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. Marlowe Relles SHALOM BABY JOE AND RITA SCHELLER Happy “Special” Anniversary Elaine Lerner FRANK TAMARKIN In appreciation of his kindness Margo Wiener LYNN AND PHILIP WEINZIMER In honor of their special birthdays Jeanette and Eduardo Eichenwald
IN MEMORY JOEL BECKER (Brother-in-law of Mindy and Eric Holender) Israel and Valeska Zighelboim MILLARD GRAUER (Father of Wendy Born) Judy and Marc Diamondstein JOANN ROLLAND (Mother of Tanya Rolland) Niles Dubin SUE VIENER (Wife of George Viener) Elaine Lerner
TO ORDER TREES, call the JFLV at 610-821-5500 or visit www.jewishlehighvalley.org. 2 NOVEMBER 2016 | 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 TRACEY AND BEN HAMMEL Birth of their son, Henry Ryan Hammel SHALOM BABY ALLISON AND MATT MEYERS Birth of their daughter, Margaret Hazel Meyers SHALOM BABY RABBI SETH PHILLIPS Arrival of new member of family Israel and Valeska Zighelboim DINA AND DANIEL RELLES Birth of their daughter, Lane
83 (86 percent) were against Israel. In addition to the recent resolution, each year UNESCO adopts about 10 resolutions criticizing only Israel; UNESCO does not criticize any other UN member state in a country-specific resolution (with but one exception in 2013). Not to mention the biased and discredited Goldstone Report on a Hamas instigated war against Israel, and the deplorable Durbin Conferences on Racism that are so obviously anti-Israel that several countries, including the United States, abstain from participating. And, Israel – despite its contributions to science, technology, higher education and over a dozen Nobel prizes – continues to be denied a seat on the UN Security Council, a privilege that has been given to countries such as Venezuela, Pakistan, Syria, Cuba, Libya, Saudi Ara-
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
Federation’s major donors come together for annual reception Major donors to the Jewish Federation’s Annual Campaign gathered on Oct. 6 for an inspiring evening with Rabbi Joel Seltzer, executive director of Camp Ramah in the Poconos. Seltzer talked about “Making Jews in 21st Century America,” touching upon the formative Jewish experiences like camp, day school and trips to Israel – all supported by Federation – that create both singular and community connections to the Jewish people and Jewish life.
Above left, Stuart and Janice Schwartz. Above center, Larry Levitt and Bobby Hammel. Above right, Federation President Mark Scoblionko begins the evening’s program and introduces Rabbi Joel Seltzer.
Two opportunities to prepare for the upcoming elections with Dr. Chris Borick, Director of the Institute of Public Opinion at Muhlenberg College
CERTAINTY VS. UNCERTAINTY WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 2
7:30 p.m., Congregation Brith Sholom Get insight into the upcoming elections from Dr. Borick, along with Dr. Gordon Goldberg, professor emeritus of history at Kutztown University. Sponsored by the Adult Education Committee at Congregation Brith Sholom.
HISTORY IN THE OFFING: THE 2016 ELECTION BY THE NUMBERS Mark Scoblionko and Mike Miller.
THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 3
7:00 p.m., Congregation Keneseth Israel Dr. Borick will provide more insight into politics and polling. Sponsored by the Adult Education Committee of Congregation Keneseth Israel.
Above left, Beth Kozinn, Elaine Lerner, Marlene Finkelstein, Vicki Wax and Eileen Ufberg. Above right, Rabbi Joel Seltzer.
Jeri Zimmerman and Beth Kozinn. HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY | NOVEMBER 2016 3
WOMEN’S DIVISION OF THE JEWISH FEDERATION OF THE LEHIGH VALLEY
JWRP enables local women to explore Israel and continue their Jewish learning
The Jewish Federation of Lehigh Valley is excited to partner with Etz Chaim, a Philadelphiabased Jewish education center, to bring 15 Jewish moms to Israel this summer on a dynamic journey of a lifetime from June 27th - July 5th, 2017. The trip, called the Jewish Wom-
en’s Renaissance Project and sponsored by an international organization, is a nine-day experience for Jewish moms to reconnect to Jewish values, build meaningful friendships and explore the history and meaning of the modern and biblical state of Israel. After the trip, women
SPONSORED BY THE JEWISH FEDERATION OF THE LEHIGH VALLEY’S WOMEN’S DIVISION
WELCOMING NEW BABIES
to the Lehigh Valley LANE MARLOWE RELLES
daughter of Dina and Daniel Relles
MARGARET HAZEL MEYERS daughter of Allison and Matt Meyers
HENRY RYAN HAMMEL
son of Tracey and Ben Hammel If you’re expecting, know someone who is, or have a new baby, PLEASE LET US KNOW! Contact Abby Trachtman, 610-821-5500 | firstname.lastname@example.org
4 NOVEMBER 2016 | HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY
continue their Jewish learning throughout the year here in the Lehigh Valley with 12 dynamic learning opportunities ranging from Israel advocacy to history and Jewish holidays. Founded in 2009 by Lori Palatnik, an energetic and passionate Jewish educator, the JWRP has brought 7,300 moms to Israel for a life-changing experience of connection. The mission of the trip is to inspire mothers, who have a strong impact on their families’ Jewish experiences. Palatnik felt that the impact of inspired families translates into an inspired community, and eventually an inspired global community. The trip has been dubbed a “Birthright” for mom, with all of the breathtaking and meaningful stops that one would expect from a trip to Israel, but at a different life stage where the focus is women’s unique roles in their families and communities. The trip includes touring around Masada, floating in the Dead Sea, a tour of Independence Hall in Tel Aviv, dancing around the Western Wall on Shabbat, a meaningful tour of Yad Vashem, Israel’s Holocaust Museum, a handson volunteer project, a mystical tour of Tsfat, dancing to a firework show over the Sea of Galilee and much more. The trip also has the added dimension of spending time with Israelis in their homes, learning about their unique struggles
and dreams. However, outside of the touring, the trip is more than just a tour, it is an opportunity for moms to connect with one another to learn about core Jewish values that provide wisdom for timely and relevant subjects like marriage, parenting, work-life balance, infusing the home with spirituality, dealing with personality types, and learning practical strategies to live more Jewish lives, in a unique way each woman feels inspired by. The trip will be co-led by Gevura Davis, a Philadelphia based educator who has staffed six other trips with the JWRP, and Jeri Zimmerman, assistant executive director of the Jewish Federation of Lehigh Valley. Beth Kushnik, who is spearheading the first-ever Lehigh Valley group, said, “When I heard about this program, I knew we needed to bring it here to the Lehigh Valley. I am beyond excited about this opportunity and truly inspired by Gevura Davis and the JWRP organization.” Zimmerman added, "We look forward to bringing this initiative to our community. The Jewish Federation of the Lehigh Valley is looking forward to being a partner and to connecting with the women who participate." “I am so excited to help launch the first trip from the Lehigh Valley because I have seen firsthand the incredible impact the trip has for women
and their community, and I can see the same enthusiasm and dedication to Jewish education here,” Davis said. ”Everyone who I know who has been on the trip has said it so far surpassed their expectations. It’s really an opportunity for moms to unwind from the stresses of life and just focus on themselves!” Melissa Ufberg, a participant from the Etz Chaim program in Philadelphia and daughterin-law of Mickey and Eileen Ufberg, said: “After going with my family last year, I was excited to return on my own, with other women. The trip was truly a life changing experience, and having the opportunity to connect with myself and other women, as well as my faith was so meaningful. I hope to go back as a leader soon.” The ground costs of the trip are fully covered by the partnering organizations, and women are responsible for their flights and a few other small fees. Women who are accepted will attend three trip meetings and commit to 12 Jewish learning experiences the year after the trip. Jewish women who have children under 18 living at home are invited to apply at www.jwrp.org. Applications will be open the first week in November and accepted on a rolling basis until Jan. 15. For questions, please contact Jeri Zimmerman at 610821-5500 or email@example.com.
Handmade Afghans BY EVA LEVITT
All proceeds benefit projects in Israel:
Food Banks in Israel Neve Michael Youth Village
For prices or to place an order, call Eva 610-398-1376.
All payments are made payable to the Jewish Federation of the Lehigh Valley
Feature film ‘Denial’ premieres in Lehigh Valley
Holocaust historian Deborah Lipstadt speaks at the Wallenberg Tribute Lecture at Muhlenberg College in October 2015. She spoke about the ways in which we adjudicated genocide, from the Eichmann Trial to her own court case against Holocaust denier David Iriving in the High Court in London, which is the subject of the feature film “Denial.”
Before the lights dimmed for the Lehigh Valley premiere of the feature film “Denial” on Oct. 20, Shari Spark wanted to put what the audience was about to see into context. “We are coming to a time when first person stories will no longer be a tool in our toolbox,” Spark, coordinator of the Jewish Federation of the Lehigh Valley’s Holocaust Resource Center, told the 120 people in attendance at the Frank Banko Alehouse Cinemas at SteelStacks. Spark asked the attendees to be a part of the story just by watching the film. The movie stars Rachel Weisz as Deborah Lipstadt, who took on Holocaust denier David Irving in British court after he sued her for libel. “Thank you for owning this history,” Spark said. Lipstadt, a professor of modern Jewish history and Holocaust studies at Emory University who spoke in the Lehigh Valley at Muhlenberg College’s Wallenberg Tribute Lecture last year, had criticized Irving’s falsification of Holocaust history in her 1993 book “Denying the Holocaust.” In 1996, Irving sued her for libel in British court, where the burden of proof lies with the defendant. The movie depicts how Lipstadt won the case, exposing Irving as an intentional falsifier of Holocaust history. Lipstadt acknowledged to JTA that she had thought about the trial’s cinematic potential. Still, when producers first approached her about “Denial” in 2008, she laughed — the same reaction, she recalled, that she had when she found out Irving was suing her. “When you sign over a book, you are essentially giving them control over your story,” she told JTA. “You’re not going to be able to say, ‘No, that’s not right, I don’t like that, don’t include this.’ So what I kept querying them about is, this is a movie about truth. Do you understand you have to stick to the truth?”
The finished product, Lipstadt said, hews closely to the truth. The story heightens her tension with her lawyers and combines a string of meetings with Holocaust survivors into one encounter. But the courtroom scenes are taken verbatim from the record, and dramatic scenes — from Irving ambushing Lipstadt at a lecture to a tense Shabbat dinner with British Jewish leaders — happened more or less as they play out on screen. The movie keeps the drama alive by focusing much of the plot on Lipstadt’s conflict with her lawyers. Throughout much of the film, Lipstadt attempts to coax her reserved British legal team to allow her and Holocaust survivors to take the stand. “There were moments that I wish had gotten more play in the movie,” she said. “The movie I would have made would have been 3 1/2 hours, maybe four hours.” At times, filming felt almost too spot-on for Lipstadt. A central scene takes place at Auschwitz, where Lipstadt and one of her
Above, Shari Spark, coordinator of the Jewish Federation’s Holocaust Resource Center, offers some perspective before the Lehigh Valley premiere of “Denial” at SteelStacks.
lawyers meet to gather evidence. The filming caused Lipstadt to relive some of the experiences, which felt “very strange, and I tried to stay as far out of sight lines as possible.” But the movie’s central message, she said, is about the need to affirm historical truth, uncomfortable as it may be. And in an age where Lipstadt says anti-Semitism is again rising, she is grateful to have played a role in preserving Holocaust memory. “I got a chance to be out there on the front lines,” she said. “I got a chance to fight the good fight, and I know so many people — Jews, African-Americans, gays, people who have faced prejudice, but certainly Jews — who would want the chance to fight the good fight. And I feel very lucky.” The premiere was sponsored by the Holocaust Resource Center and the JCC’s Jewish & Israeli Film Festival. The movie is now open Valley-wide. Material from the Jewish Telegraphic Agency was used in this report.
J-AMP names speakers for first sessions The JCC is hosting a new and innovative 12-week program called Jewish-Focused Aging Mastery Program®, and with the first class taking place on Nov. 9, many of the speakers have been lined up. Designed to support and empower baby boomers and older adults, J-AMP includes expert speakers, group discussion and various levels of mastery aimed at improving the aging process through small but impactful changes. Rabbi Seth Phillips of Congregation Keneseth Israel will kick off the series as the guest speaker on Nov. 9. The session is titled "Jewish Perspectives on Aging Mastery" and focuses on Jewish ideas of faith, transition and personal growth using the example of Abraham and learning from elders. Goals for this first class include giving participants tools to experience the benefits of relinquishing hurt and regret as they move on in their life journey. Other speakers include former Allentown City Councilwoman Jeanette Eichenwald speaking about community engagement, Certified Financial Planner Julie Knight discussing financial fitness, Dr. Jenni Levy speaking about advanced planning, Dr. Madeleine Langman discussing healthy relationships and Jewish Family Service Executive Director Debbie Zoller talking about making the most of longevity, among others. The last session will be led by Amy Golding, interim head of school at the Jewish Day School of the Lehigh Valley, and will explore living fully the rest of our lives. Each of these topics is vital to help people understand and cope with the aging process. Mark L. Goldstein, executive director of the Jewish Federation of the Lehigh Valley, said, “We are lucky that our JCC was selected for this national initiative. They’re a great resource for our community for healthy aging and healthy living.” J-AMP classes will be held Wednesdays from 10 to 11:30 a.m., Nov. 9 to Feb. 8 (no class Nov. 23 or Dec. 28). Price: $99 for the 12-session series. Contact Amy Sams with questions at firstname.lastname@example.org. All materials included. All adults welcome. Advance registration required. To register, visit the JCC Welcome Desk, call 610-435-3571 or visit the JCC online at www.lvjcc.org.
HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY | NOVEMBER 2016 5
Muhlenberg professor presents roots of Middle Eastern conflict By Stephanie Bolmer Special to HAKOL
On Sept. 25, Dr. Mark Stein of the Muhlenberg College History Department presented a lecture at Congregation Keneseth Israel entitled “From the Trenches to the Temple Mount: WWI and the Middle East Today.” The talk was part of an ongoing series of brunches put on by the KI Brotherhood, and co-sponsored by the Keneseth Israel Adult Education Committee and the Community Relations Council of the Jewish Federation of the Lehigh Valley. Stein said his aim was to leave attendees with “a better understanding of what is going on and why.” He wanted his audience to remember that the roots of the current situation in the Middle East “are not 9/11 or even the ’67 war,” but actually go back much further. “Even WWI is not the true beginning, but it is a key point,” he said, in the history behind the modern picture of the region. Stein points out that this year is exactly a century since WWI, one reason for his choosing to start there, and explaining that that “conflict laid the groundwork for almost everything that happened in the 20th century in the Middle East. Various agreements and treaties, both public and secret, were made during that time.” Another reason to focus on WWI as a starting point for his presentation that is especially relevant to the Arab-Israeli Conflict is, as he points out, that, “The Balfour Declaration was part of the British war effort.” Calling to mind images of Lawrence of Arabia, he emphasized how 100 years have gone by with conflict enduring. Stein earned his Ph.D. from the University of
Above, Dr. Mark Stein lectures about war and peace in the Middle East in the 20th century.
Chicago, and his area of expertise is the Middle East, specifically the Ottoman Empire. He studied at the Ottoman Archives in Turkey, and has taught courses and published books on a variety of topics related to the region.
Mayor’s special assistant discusses Jewish-Latino relations By Aaron Gorodzinsky JFLV Director of Outreach & Community Relations
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* Momentum Trips are FREE to the participants, excluding airfare, $75 for tips and a $49 acceptance fee. Participants pay $360 deposit, which is fully refundable upon return from the trip. Primarily for women with children under 18 at home.
Ministry of Diaspora Aﬀairs
6 NOVEMBER 2016 | HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY
Ministry of Diaspora Aﬀairs
In our continuing effort to get a better understanding of the community we live in, the Community Relations Council of the Jewish Federation of the Lehigh Valley invited Ismael Arcelay to talk to our committee about the makeup of the Latino community in Allentown. Arcelay, a member of the Latino community and special assistant to the mayor of Allentown, shared that according to the last census, 43 percent of Allentown’s residents are Latino, most of them from Puerto Rican or Dominican decent, but also including others from Central and South America and the Caribbean. This number spans all socioeconomic and political backgrounds. The city of Allentown has been working with members of the Latino community for many years, providing guidance and mentorship to the residents and helping new immigrants to adapt to their lives in the Lehigh Valley. Two of the most important initiatives are My Brother’s Keeper, a program that came from a challenge from President Obama to all mayors across the nation to address issues that young minority men face in urban corridors, and the Advanced Mentoring Enrichment Network, which empowers minority youth (ages 12-17) with the necessary tools to help them graduate from high school and encourages them to further their post-secondary education. The city works with faith and communitybased organizations in order to make these initiatives successful. One of the main challenges that both we as a community and the city of Allentown face is finding the right partnerships since there is not a central Latino organization that unifies all members. Arcelay recommended that the best way to proceed is by finding common causes on which members of the Jewish and Latino communities can work together, such as immigration reform. The CRC will continue to work with the mayor and the city to continue to reach out to all members of our community.
Allentown woman honors ‘Unsung Hero’ parents with Federation fund
Above left, Lucy Korsky, on left, sits beside her parents Dora and Yeremey Feldman in an old photograph. Above right, Korsky keeps her parents’ story in the forefront of her mind with a variety of memorabilia. Korsky recently endowed the Yeremey and Dora Feldman Charitable Fund through the Lehigh Valley Jewish Foundation in honor of her parents. By Michelle Cohen HAKOL Editor Yeremey and Dora Feldman were honored as “Unsung Heroes” by the Lehigh County Office of Aging and Adult Services in 2001. Recently, their only daughter Lucy Korsky, inspired by their lifetime of “dignity, integrity, kindness and helping people,” set up the Yeremey and Dora Feldman Charitable Fund through the Lehigh Valley Jewish Foundation to ensure a future where her parents’ values will be honored. Among these values, Korsky recalls her parents’ “generosity, sharing spirit, humility and great consideration for other people.” It is so important, Korsky said, to meet “people who inspire you to be a ‘better you,’ but when it’s your parents, it’s priceless!” Growing up in a family where “the richness of your heart” was far more important than material goods, Korsky absorbed it “by osmosis” and is determined to live by this principle first and foremost in her life. The first step of this is to remember her parents’ story, and to share it with all those who will listen. Her mother, age 96, and her father, who died in 2007 at 89, lived an inspiring “love story” for 63 years. They met before World War II, when they took a ride in the back of a pickup truck on the way to a vacation destination in the summer of 1940. They lost touch during the war, where Yeremey volunteered for the military but was exempted from service due to childhood polio, and ended up working as a military engineer in the steel industry. When he returned to Kiev after the war, he and Dora were reunited by a chance that Korsky called “divine intervention.” After finding out about the loss of his two brothers – one who was killed in the army and one who was murdered with his family in Babi Yar – Yeremey searched in vain for “the love of his life,” but found her apartment building destroyed by a
bombing. Desperate, he headed to the center of the city, and by pure chance, found Dora, who had returned to the city after it was liberated. “The rest is history” – Yeremey proposed that day, they were married the following day, and they began the rest of their lives together. Yeremey and Dora taught their only daughter Lucy how to be generous to others even when financial means were limited. For example, under the Soviet housing system, apartments were assigned by employers, and her parents gave up their assigned single-bedroom apartment for a studio to give the greater space to a family with two children. Korsky immigrated to the United States in 1978. A civil engineer like her father, Korsky sought a new life with her husband and son. The decision to ensure a better future for her was “one of the best decisions in [my] life,” Korsky said. She worked as a civil engineer for 10 years in Reading and Allentown, and after her son graduated from Drexel University, she went back to school for physical therapy. When Korsky left her parents, she was unsure if she would ever see them again due to the Iron Curtain across the former Soviet Union. However, her father and mother were able to follow her in 1979, and even though both had higher education from Europe, they went back to school at the ages of 72 and 70, earning liberal arts bachelor’s degrees cum laude from Touro College. Language was a major barrier for Korsky’s parents when they immigrated. Although Korsky remembers a light-hearted moment when “my mother was doing better in school, in English,” leading to her mother helping her father with homework to the point that she once failed an assignment for supposedly copying off of him, Korsky acknowledges that settling into American life was not easy for her parents. Her mother picked up the language more readily, and just as she helped her hus-
band with reading and writing letters and understanding phone calls, she began to help Russian immigrants in the building where she lived. This kindness, along with other volunteering, was the reason why Dora and Yeremey got nominated as “Unsung Heroes.” It was “logical to continue something my parents started,” Korsky said, noting that “my father would be very proud” of the Yeremey and Dora Feldman Charitable Fund. “It’s a chance for me to share my feeling about them, not only honoring them, but to share who they [are],” she added. Along with a collection
of family photos, old newspaper articles and a video of her father serenading her mother with a Russian love song, she hopes the fund will add to the ways she honors her parents’ lives. The fund, with allocations to “ensure a strong Israel, promote an understanding of the heroism and defiance of the Jewish people during World War II and [support] tolerance education, Zionism and Lehigh Valley synagogues,” is being funded by an IRA Charitable Rollover. The IRA Charitable Rollover is now a permanent option for donors aged 70½ to make a gift directly from their IRA to the Federation.
It can be made in any amount up to $100,000 per year and it will qualify as the donor’s required minimum distribution (RMD). This means using it can reduce one’s taxable income even if the donor does not itemize deductions. To find out more about setting up a fund through the Lehigh Valley Jewish Foundation, the community’s endowment fund of the Jewish Federation of the Lehigh Valley, or other forms of honoring loved ones or leaving a legacy through charitable donations, contact Jim Mueth at 610-821-5500 x333 or email@example.com.
HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY | NOVEMBER 2016 7
Continues from page 1 vibrant conversations with friends. The highlight of the evening, as it is for any Sukkot celebration, was the opportunity to sit inside the sukkah with family and friends. On each of the four tables set up inside the sukkah, a lulav and etrog sat next to a laminated paper with the blessings in Hebrew and English. The sukkah was adorned with coloring pages, paper chains, cutout fruits, shiny CDs and stickers created by JDS students. “It’s always really nice” to go to this event, said parent Carah Tenzer, who has attended the annual event for the past several years. “The kids love getting together with their friends after school, and it was not a hard decision to make. Everyone wanted to go.” “It was really fun, and the food was great!” added Naomi Schachter, another parent. In addition to the fun, though, Schachter pointed out her major observation of the night: “I saw people from all different backgrounds coming together and to me that’s what JDS is about. We’re a Jewish family with all different backgrounds coming together to celebrate our heritage, our culture and our people.”
8 NOVEMBER 2016 | HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY
IN MEMORY LORRAINE BERKOWITZ Nancy and Michael Busch Samantha and Ron Winokur Elliot and Chelsea Busch Emily and Jason Jones DORIS GOELD (Mother of Roberta Epstein) Rita and Mike Bloom Marilyn Claire MILLARD GRAUER (Father of Wendy Born) Jeff and Jill Blinder Rance and Sheryl Block Sam and Sylvia Bub and Family Marilyn Claire Esta and Steve Ellis Amy and Eric Fels Gary and Carol Bub Fromer Barry and Carol Halper Phil and Ellen Hof Jane and Arthur Kaplan Elaine Lerner Evelyn and Jay Lipschutz Bernie and Sara Schonbach Melissa, Matt, and Benjamin Unger (Grandfather of Lisa Ellis) Tracey and Jason Billig Barry and Carol Halper LEAH GROSSMAN (Grandmother of Scott Kattelman) Nancy and Michael Busch Samantha and Ron Winokur Elliot and Chelsea Busch Emily and Jason Jones LILLIAN HOFFMAN (Mother of Carol Hoffman) Jeanette and Eduardo Eichenwald Sandra and Harold Goldfarb Fred and Barbara Sussman and Family Vicki Wax CARL HURWITZ (Father of Rob Hurwitz) Audrey and Arthur Sosis MARC KARPO (Brother of Binae Karpo) Sandra and Harold Goldfarb Donald and Randi Senderowitz JUDY AURITT KLEIN (Mother of Billy Klein) Ross and Wendy Born Donald and Randi Senderowitz
JORGE MANDLER (Husband of Silvia Mandler) Ross and Wendy Born GARY NUSSBAUM (Brother of Gail Combs) Jeanette and Eduardo Eichenwald KILEY STEWARD (Niece of Bill Bergstein) Ross and Wendy Born IN HONOR PETER AND KAREN COOPER Birth of their granddaughter Phil and Ellen Hof JEROME CYLINDER Speedy Recovery Jerry and Flossie Zales JUDY AND MARC DIAMONDSTEIN Engagement of son Noah to Marnie Marilyn Claire BARNET FRANEKEL Happy Birthday and Happy Anniversary Ross and Wendy Born Happy Birthday Judy and Larrie Sheftel RABBI ALLEN JUDA Wallenberg Tribute Honoree Suzanne Lapiduss ELWOOD KOLB Happy ‘Special’ Birthday Carol and Stewart Furmansky LARRY LANG AND ELAINE DEUTCH Engagement of their daughter Marnie to Noah Peter and Karen Cooper Jeanette and Eduardo Eichenwald EVA LEVITT Kipnis-Wilson/Friedland Award Amy and Eric Fels Gary Fromer and Carol Bub Fromer GILFRID AND MICHELE LEVY Bat Mitzvah of their granddaughter Jeanette and Eduardo Eichenwald HERBERT LITVIN In his honor Ronnie and Robert Freedberg PENNY ROTH Happy Birthday Audrey and Jerome Cylinder JOE AND RITA SCHELLER Happy 60th Wedding Anniversary Ross and Wendy Born
DONALD SENDEROWITZ Speedy Recovery Brian and Emily Ford Stuart and Susan Shmookler Vicki Wax LINDA SHEFTEL Happy "Special" Birthday Judy and Larrie Sheftel AIMEE AND OZZIE STEWART Birth of their granddaughter, Shiloh Eden Roberta and Jeff Epstein JAY AND MARGERY STRAUSS Birth of their grandson Ross and Wendy Born Robby, Laurie, Ben and Danny Wax MICKEY UFBERG Happy "Special" Birthday Gary Fromer and Carol Bub Fromer VICKI WAX In honor of her generosity and kindness Beth and Howard Kushnick LYNN AND PHILIP WEINZIMER Happy 70th Birthdays Ann and Gene Ginsberg MARGO WIENER Speedy Recovery Stuart and Susan Shmookler JERI AND LEN ZIMMERMAN Birth of their granddaughter, Norah Bea Zimmerman Ross and Wendy Born Beth and Wes Kozinn HELEN & SOL KRAWITZ HOLOCAUST MEMORIAL FUND IN HONOR NINA JACKSON Birth of her great-grandson, Grayson Jacob Jackson Eloise Engelson Susan and Samantha Friefeld STUART KRAWITZ Happy ‘Special’ Birthday Judy and Larrie Sheftel 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.
Community celebrates launch of Shalom Lehigh Valley in Indulge On September 29, the Jewish Federation of the Lehigh Valley was joined by The Morning Call, publishers of Indulge magazine, to celebrate a partnership between Indulge and Shalom Lehigh Valley. At the happy hour at The Hamilton Kitchen & Bar in Allentown, staff from both publications and community members mingled, enjoyed fine food and wine and shared stories. We look forward to continued relations with The Morning Call and Indulge in the future!
Rena Fraade, Rabbi Melissa Simon, Wendy Edwards, Alan Raisman, Aaron Gorodzinsky, Lisa Kaplan and Aaron Alkasov.
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Above, Federation Executive Director Mark L. Goldstein with Morning Call Publisher and Editor Robert York and executives from the newspaper.
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Right, Rabbi Melissa Simon and Rena Fraade show off the October/November issue of Indulge featuring Shalom Lehigh Valley.
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HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY | NOVEMBER 2016 9
Hesed and Moishe House team up in Minsk special for me. That's for sure! I visit all the Shabbats events, in any weather and any time of year,” she said. “It’s so nice to spend time with the younger generation, who honor the traditions.” We asked Moishe House Minsk resident Tanya Shteinbuk how “Shabbat with Hesed” came together. Editor’s Note: The American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee is an overseas partner of the Jewish Federation of the Lehigh Valley. Residents of the Moishe House in Minsk recently partnered with JDC’s Hesed social welfare center in the Belarusian capital city for a special Shabbat event. To get a taste of the event, we checked in with 80-yearold Vera to see what made it so extraordinary. "Today, Shabbat was
Q: What was the spark of inspiration for this event? A: The coordinator of the Jewish volunteer movement here in Minsk floated the idea to us. Young people here had never spent Shabbat with Hesed before. We thought it was a great idea and a chance for a “celebration” — for us and for the elderly. Q: What was the most powerful part of the event? A: “Shabbat with Hesed” Hesed and Moishe House Continues on page 11
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10 NOVEMBER 2016 | HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY
OUT OF MANY, EMERGES POWER OF ONE:
Kati Marton speaks about Raoul Wallenberg at IJCU tribute lecture By Jennifer Lader Special to HAKOL It wasn’t the famous people Kati Marton mentioned who tugged at her listeners. The author, former ABC news correspondent and current board member for the International Rescue Committee has seen plenty, knows plenty. She knows Madeleine Albright, who, like Marton, came to her acknowledgement that she was Jewish in a roundabout way. It wasn’t mention of the late Richard Holbrook, Marton’s husband of 15 years, though tantalizing, that grabbed the audience. It wasn’t even the subject of the talk, Raoul Wallenberg, the humanitarian who saved thousands of Hungarian Jews during World War II. It was what might be called the “supporting cast” that once in awhile produces a star. Regular people or those seemingly far removed from events, Marton showed, can and have proven that, living among us are altruistic personalities. Marton spoke to a full house at Muhlenberg College’s Moyer Hall on Sunday, Sept. 18, for the annual Raoul Wallenberg Tribute by the Institute for Jewish-Christian Understanding. This year, the IJCU honored Rabbi Allen Juda, rabbi emeritus of Congregation Brith Sholom in Bethlehem, for his efforts at building bridges of understanding and helping people through the years. The IJCU, the Jewish Federation of the Lehigh Valley and the Berman Center for Jewish Studies co-sponsored the event. While on assignment in Hungary some years ago, Marton noticed the many street signs and references to “Raoul Wallenberg.” Intrigued, she made her way to a woman rescued by Wallenberg shortly after his arrival in Hungary from the U.S. “It was too late to save your grandparents,” the elderly woman commented to Marton. She subsequently discovered that, though she had been raised Roman Catholic, her parents were Jewish. This was the beginning of Marton’s odyssey as the biographer of Wallenberg. Born in Sweden to a life of privilege, Raoul Wallenberg studied architecture at the University of Michigan. Meanwhile, during World War II, President Franklin D. Roosevelt’s Secretary of the Treasury Henry Morgenthau, Jr., the president’s sole Jewish advisor and a person, it could be argued, somewhat removed from a directing role in the U.S. response, which had been lacking up to that point. Morgenthau urged Roosevelt to send an emissary to Europe to try and preserve the lives of the remaining Jews. According to a memorandum of the meeting, Morgenthau referred to the success his father, Henry Morgenthau, Sr., had achieved in getting the Armenians out of Turkey. Roosevelt decided to delegate someone “objective,” and so sent for Wallenberg,
who had no particular background as a humanitarian. Yet in bold strokes, upon arrival in Hungary, as Marton said, during Eichmann’s reign, Wallenberg began rescuing his fellow Jews. He even pulled some out of death marches already underway – “raise your hand if you have a Swedish passport!” He behaved, Marton said, as though he had “the power of a potentate.” Wallenberg befriended helpful people. One woman that Marton later located in Munich was the wife of the Nazi foreign minister. Though this woman was also apparently on the sidelines during the war, she proved to be a valuable connection for Wallenberg. And, said Marton, “she spent as much time weeping for her friend Raoul as for her husband, who was hung as a war criminal in 1945.” All told, Wallenberg rescued up to 100,000 souls. “Most of us,” Marton acknowledged, “don’t have the opportunity to be engineers of human rescue … but the world had time to react every step of the way.” It had time to react … but didn’t. Wallenberg, put there and helped by other individuals, saved so many “because he did not accept that they should die.” The connection to today’s crises, especially that of Syrian men, women and children dying at the hands of their own ruler, was clear. Marton has met many Syrian refugees and points out that they are every bit as desperate as her own family was to escape. Regarding immigrants who arrive in this country as part of a wave, Marton pointed out, “I’m sure not everyone turns into a shining example. With the Italian immigrants, we got Frank Sinatra and the Sopranos! … But this is not a reason to discriminate against the men, women and children whose lives are being stripped away from them by a megalomaniac.” Wallenberg eventually died in a Soviet prison, yet continues to inspire people around the world with how much can be accomplished through the power of one, out of many.
RABBI DAVID WILENSKY Congregation Sons of Israel
The High Holiday season is now behind us. We have dipped our apples in honey, heard the shofar, fasted, wore our sneakers to synagogue, carried our palm branches and citrons, eaten our holiday meals out in a hut in the cool autumn weather, and danced mightily with the Torahs. Hopefully, most of us have found this season to be uplifting and inspirational – being able to re-connect with our families and re-awaken our religious passions. But now it is over. All of the beautiful mitzvot that surrounded us this past October are no longer with
Continuing High Holiday spirituality during Sukkot and beyond
Hesed and Moishe House
us … except for one. G-d cares a lot more about how we spend the rest of our year than how we spend the High Holiday season. The holiday season is merely one month whereas the rest of the year is 11. In G-d’s eyes, the reason He instructed us to observe this High Holiday season is so that the rest of the year (all 11 months-worth) be infused with purpose and spiritual meaning. The quality of our High Holiday season is determined by the spirituality suffused in the rest of the year. This message is latent in the esrog. I, like many others, have a glass container at home holding all of the shriveled esrogs used to celebrate my past Sukkot holidays. The esrog is unique in that it can be left out month after month without rotting. No other fruit (to my knowledge) is similar to the esrog in this respect. Due to the fact that the esrog does not rot but rather shrivels, many have the custom to place cloves in the esrog before it shrivels, so that it can be used throughout the year as the besamim
is rather different from all the Shabbat events we’ve held earlier. The atmosphere was very warm and sincere, and there were more than 30 people. All the prayers were accompanied by music; our Eugene played along on guitar. It was really very touching and exciting. After the blessing over the challah, some of the elderly sang songs and read poems, too.
(spices) for the Havdalah ceremony that marks the end of Shabbat. The message behind the esrog is that its aroma is supposed to accompany us throughout the rest of the year, allowing our heightened religious sensitivities of the High Holiday season to permeate our upcoming 11 months. Although the aroma of the esrog can escort us yearround, for those of us who do not have the custom of transforming our esrogs into besamim, there is another, even greater mitzvah that can remain with us yearround. This is the mitzvah of Torah study. The one holiday of the year that has no special Biblical mitzvah is Shmini Atzeret (the final day of Sukkot which is considered its own holiday, separate and distinct from Sukkot proper). We no longer sit in the sukkah, nor take the lulav and esrog, there is no shofar, no matzah, or even cheesecake. There is no other Jewish holiday that is as void of mitzvot as Shmini Atzeret. G-d is telling His people that in closing out the High Holiday period all that G-d wants is a "regular" day – dedicated
to the Torah and its study. No special mitzvoth; simply take the day off from work to spend with Hashem, your family – and study the Torah. It is for this reason that in the Middle Ages the rabbis instituted Simchat Torah on this day – when we celebrate the Torah – by dancing with the Torah scrolls. Our clutching the Torahs on the last day of the High Holiday season is profoundly telling. We are reminded that although the other mitzvot like the shofar, lulav, and sukkah may no longer be with us, the Torah, which is held so dear, is metaphorically never put down. The best way to bring back the High Holiday "feel" is by studying Torah during the year. As anyone who so does can attest, simply opening a Torah book and studying for a short while on an average day of the year, can bring back the High Holiday "aroma" more poignantly than even the esrog. Let’s hold the Torah dear and, by so doing, infuse our year with mitzvot and spirituality for ourselves, our families and our Lehigh Valley community.
Continues from page 10
Q: Why is it important to have events with the elderly? A: It is very important to gain experience, which the elderly have. We have a lot to learn from them. They are the storehouses of knowledge and traditions. We appreciate spending time together with the older generation. Q: How have Moishe House and JDC impacted your Jewish identity? A: Moishe House and JDC give me the opportunity to get to know new people. Each person has their own history, knowledge and Jewish values. Talking with them, I ask them questions, and I ask myself a lot of questions. Moishe House and JDC’s activities and programs are very multifaceted, it allows us to approach the issue of studying Jewish history and culture from different sides.
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HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY | NOVEMBER 2016 11
Local teen shares experience from Jewish theological seminary
By Arielle Yacker Special to HAKOL Editor's Note: Arielle Yacker received a teen experience grant from the Jewish Federation of the Lehigh Valley to participate in a summer program at the Jewish Theological Seminary. Eating crepes on the Columbia University campus. Scavenger hunt on the Upper West Side. Playing music at a homeless shelter. Yankees game. Broadway show. Beautiful Shabbat services. The most remarkable people Iâ€™ve ever met. These are just a few of the amazing encounters I had this summer at the Jewish Theological Seminary in New York City. This summer, my life was completely altered by this program. We consisted of 12 juniors and seniors in high school, who came from as far as Utah and Florida, and three fulltime staff (who were completely amazing!). On weekdays, we would start our morning with Avodat Lev (prayer of the heart) where every one of us got a chance to lead services the way it is meaningful to us, whether that was through song, meditation or just powerful davening. We would then go for a class that would be themed by the day. Some of our themes were inclusion, environmental justice and kindness as individual practice. For the first time in my life, I felt as though my opinions were challenged and/or accepted by my peers and our professor, Rabbi Stephanie Ruskay. During class, we would work through Jewish texts to decipher what they mean and how they have to do with what we were going to learn about later in the day and then act on. After this we would go to different organizations (or they would come to us) around New York City and learn 12 NOVEMBER 2016 | HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY
from them. I learned from organizations such as the Validation Project, Brotherhood/Sister Sol, Keshet, Dorot, and Citizensâ€™ Committee for Children of New York. I learned so many amazing things from these organizations that are doing mitzvot all over the world. One of the greatest things I got to do was work with PresenTense, a Jewish organization that aims to train entrepreneurs to change the world. We did an intensive six-month program in two weeks. I was able to create a prototype of a program that I feel would fix a problem in our society. We were pushed to work quickly and come up with ideas in extraordinary ways. I ended up becoming passionate about something I did not even realize I was so passionate about. I created a prototype for an app that would provide calming situations to people when they are having anxiety attacks. All 12 of us in the program got to present our pitches to judges from some of the organizations that we talked with and they gave us feedback on how to make our project work so we could bring it back home.
We finished every night with a field trip around the city where we had the most amazing bonding time as a group on the subway and just galavanting everywhere around the city. I will never forget the amazing people I met and how they changed my life, whether that was my staff, my best friends on the program, a homeless person I got to serve, or even a 92-year-old man who I visited in his home and talked to him nonstop for an hour. The pluralistic environment allowed me to experience Jewish life in a way that I never have before. One of my friends is not a very religious Jew, but loves his religion, and my roommate, who was one of my closest friends was modern Orthodox and we had everyone in between. I feel so lucky in my life to have experienced this program and I would not trade it for any other community service experience I have ever had. The Federation is now accepting applications for 2017 teen experience grants. The deadline is March 24, 2017. To learn more visit www.jewishlehighvalley.org/scholarships.
Camp scholarships provide connection to Jewish life
By Stephanie Smartschan JFLV Director of Marketing When her parents told her she would be attending Camp Young Judea Sprout Lake in elementary school, Ella*, now 17, remembers being less than thrilled. In fact, she says, she really didn’t want to go. It’s a perspective that quickly changed after that first summer. “The day that [my parents] picked me up, I didn’t want to leave,” she said. “It was definitely an amazing experience.” After Sprout Lake, Ella spent five summers at Camp Tel Yehuda. This past summer in Israel, she even met up with counselors from Sprout Lake. “I’m one of very few Jews in my school so it’s never really been a major part of my life until I started going to camp,” she said. “You actually make life-long friends that are there for you through everything.” Ella is one of the two dozen Lehigh Valley children who receive needs-based scholarships to attend Jewish overnight camp every year through the Jewish Federation of the Lehigh Valley. Without the scholarship, Ella and her brother “absolutely would not have had the opportunity for this exposure to Judaism,” their mother said. “Their identity as Jews is so much more positive because of that.” In her two summers at the New Jersey Y camps, Rachel*, 16, not only made lasting friendships, but got to experience the Jewish world firsthand, from volunteering at a Jewish food bank in San Francisco to visiting synagogues in Costa Rica. “It’s a great experience because you’re with your best friends so you get to explore a lot of new places and have a lot of fun doing it,” Rachel said. “With NJY camps, we got a great Jewish aspect on all the different places.” Because Jewish overnight camps can be so expensive, sometimes “people automatically dismiss the possibility of even applying, especially families with multiple children,” her mother said. But there is financial help out there – from the Federation, from synagogues, and from the camps themselves – and the
experience is a worthwhile one, she said. Rachel will most likely return to the New Jersey Y camps this summer as a counselor. A Federation scholarship allowed one Allentown mother to send her son to Camp Ramah. “My son loved the camp and friends so much that he now goes to Barrack,” the mother said. “He really wanted to be in a Jewish school. He loves learning and is doing great. I am so thankful to the Federation for giving him this opportunity. It has helped him grow in every way.” One Allentown father said that being at Camp Ramah has been an incredible experience for his kids, and is the thing his son looks forward to most every year. “There's no better way to ensure Jewish continuity then to send your kids to summer camp. It's a fantastic environment, where being Jewish is celebrated and appreciated,” the father said. “The Federation scholarships are vital to me being able to finance the Ramah experience. “ *Names in this story have been changed or omitted out of respect for the privacy of the scholarship recipients. The Federation is now accepting applications for summer 2017 needs-based camp scholarships. The deadline is March 24, 2017. To learn more visit www.jewishlehighvalley.org/scholarships.
FREEDOM of movement
HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY | NOVEMBER 2016 13
Veterans Day: Honoring Jewish soldiers from around the world
By June Glazer JNS.org Fact: During World War I, 10 percent of the officers in the German army were Jewish. Fact: During World War II, 4.7 percent of soldiers in the United States Armed Forces were Jewish, despite comprising less than 2 percent of the population. Jews have always served in the military and fought to defend their country of residence. As a tribute, Jewish National Fund (JNF) has erected a Wall of Honor at Ammunition Hill in Jerusalem to commemorate Jewish soldiers who fought in any war in any country. Started in 2008 with 15 plaques, today the names of at least 331 men and women from around the world, including Israel, are inscribed there. “Ammunition Hill was cho-
sen as the location for the Wall of Honor because of a famous battle waged here by the Israeli Paratrooper’s Brigade,” said Yoel Rosby, JNF Ammunition Hill liaison, speaking at the visitor’s center of this national heritage and memorial site. “During the Six-Day War in 1967, fierce and bloody fighting against Jordanian forces took place on this hill, and the Israeli victory led directly to the capture of the Old City and the reunification of Jerusalem. This site is revered as a symbol of heroism and bravery.” A group from the US gathered at the wall last year to add a new plaque to the roster of names. In an emotional ceremony, Philip A. Brodie, of Long Branch, New Jersey., stood by as a plaque bearing his name was unveiled. Brodie,
who enlisted in the National Guard in 1964 and served for six years during the Vietnam era, was visibly moved by the recognition of his service and said the honor meant a great deal to him. “I think that any person who is Jewish who served in the [U.S.] Armed Forces, especially during the Second World War, did so because of the need for the Jewish people to survive. Certainly, you served because of a love for your country and a desire to protect what your country believes in, but it was also a matter of the survival of Judaism,” Brodie said. That’s the idea behind the wall, said Rosby. “It’s about being connected to the Jewish people, and to other Jewish combatants, whether they are alive or dead.” Ken Segel of Albany, New York, was also a part of the U.S. group, and had previously donated two plaques, one for his father, who served in the Navy during World War II, and the other for his father-in-law, who served in the Polish army for less than a month before being captured and sent to a concentration camp. “The Wall of Honor is an appropriate way to remember people and to memorialize them in Jerusalem, the eternal capital of the Jewish People,” Segel said.
On Veterans Day and every day, Jewish war veterans continue to serve By Stephanie Bolmer Special to HAKOL Sheila Berg is no stranger to a good challenge. After a career as a social worker, she enlisted in the Air Force, where she chose to take on the area she scored lowest in and started out as a jet engine mechanic. It’s that sort of grit which makes her an ideal commander for Jewish War Veterans (JWV) Post 239. Berg is the fearless leader of the Lehigh Valley’s chapter of the oldest veterans’ organization in the country. “It was founded in 1896,” Berg said. “Most people don’t realize that we’re the oldest.” Her involvement goes back to the 1980s, but she has become more and more active over the years. After 29½ years in the Air Force, she reached the rank of senior master sergeant and is now retired, and giving even more time to the JWV. “This past year, I’ve gotten more involved, serving on two different committees – the Scholarship Committee, which makes scholarships available to high school students, and the Women in the Military Committee, which is a new concept for JWV,” Berg said. At last summer’s convention, she attended the first meeting of this new committee focusing on women’s issues. The majority of the members of Post 239, however, are men, and most of them are World War II
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vets. They do more at their meetings than just eat bagels and reminisce, however. Their meetings include speakers on various topics as well as service work. “They’re very excited about some of our upcoming projects,” Berg said. These include participating in a national campaign called Operation Gratitude, where members help to collect personal items such as razor blades, mouthwash, toothbrushes, toothpaste, socks and scarves to ship to active servicepeople in remote areas of Iraq and Afghanistan who are not near a military store. They’ll be sending care packages with Chanukah cards this December. Post 239 is also involved in another national JWV campaign – Support Our Soldiers – which is an outreach to servicemen. “This is important,” Berg said, “because for many of the young people, it’s their first time away from home.” She also emphasized that though Jews are a small minority in the military, “they are there.” The projects the local post supports go along with the overall mission of JWV, which is oriented around service to both patriotic and Jewish causes. Berg’s goal is to connect all Jews in the Lehigh Valley who have served, including those who may have been members of JWV in the past. “There really is strength in numbers,” she said, reflecting on how addressing veterans’ issues such as the VA and veterans’ homelessness is at the heart of JWV’s work as well. She is also diligent in her efforts to keep her members informed about news applicable to them. “I scour the internet and report back pertinent things,” she said. Berg emphasized that their meetings are “open to the entire Jewish community if they wish to meet us.” Some of the veterans from Post 239 have already met students at the Jewish Day School by volunteering to speak to classes about their war experiences. Jewish War Veterans Post 239 meets from 10 a.m. to 12 p.m. at the JCC on the second Sunday of the month (adjusted for holidays as needed). For more information, please contact Commander Sheila Berg at email@example.com.
HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY | NOVEMBER 2016 15
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when disaster strikes & emergency needs arise, federation responds. At midnight on Aug. 13, 2016, the floodwaters began to flow into Ellen Sager’s Baton Rouge home. The Sagers had to be evacuated from their block by boat. The water had risen to 4 feet outside the house and to 2 feet on the first floor. “People are paralyzed,” said Sager, executive director of the Jewish Federation of Greater Baton Rouge. “People don’t know what to do. You’re watching your life being hauled away into a dumpster and you need to start all over.” The Sagers were among 34 Jewish families who lost their homes in the flooding that hit the Baton Rouge area in August. Though the Baton Rouge Jewish community is small, the Federation network is at the ready. The Lehigh Valley Federation is joining other Federations across North America to raise the more than $1 million that the community needs to recover.
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ughout the month of november, the jewish federation of the lehigh valley e highlighting the ways that your gift makes a difference. your dollars reach d wide, touching the lives of people you know and people you will never meet. re just some of the ways that your gift to federation is making an impact.
to secure our jewish future, federation instills jewish values. Zoe, age 10, is a PJ Library graduate, but now she gets the pleasure of reading her collection of Jewish-themed books with her younger sister. “I think that it is important that all Jewish kids can learn about their religion and history, and PJ Library is perfect for this,” Zoe says. “The books are fun, interesting and by far the best Jewish kids’ books ever.” Celebrating five years in the Lehigh Valley, PJ Library enhances the lives of Jewish families by delivering free books every month to children ages 6 months through 8 years on a variety of Jewish topics.
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e JCC audi d their corng tables in th lo at d re he gs and pinche at lin G fil r ei th e Valley ugh, chos w to the Lehigh ne rolled their do em th of y mentashen en – man ere to make ha th ners. The wom st ju ’t en er ing and it’s unity – w nds. “I like cook ie Jewish comm fr e ak m to d learn a im, but meet people an in time for Pur d an le op pe , who moved talk to en Appleman ar K a good way to id sa ,” ay volved with the holid recently got in little bit about ly on t bu o, newcomers’ years ag e Federation’s to town seven th h ug ro th y the events,” mmunit back to a lot of the Jewish co g in m co be finitely events. “I’ll de rience.” en a good expe be t’s she said. “I
not had an easy life. To rn from his family as a yo ung man by the Nazis, he was lucky to survive the camps. But when he re turned to Budapest afte r the war, everything was gone. Since his beloved w ife passed away 20 years ago, he has been living alon e in a small apartment. And when a stroke left him helpless to care for himse lf, JDC gave him a commun ity, and so, so much more. Oszkár is one of the appr oximately 4,000 Nazi vi ctims receiving lifesaving assistan ce from Federa American Jew tion partner th ish Joint Distr e ibution Comm Hungarian offi it te e (JDC)’s ce. He depend s on critical m home supplie edical care an s, while other d Hungarian Hol receive food pa oc aust survivors ckages, home care, medicines social workers , visits from and more.
be the impact.
Make your pledge to the 2017 Campaign for Jewish Needs this November. Call 610-821-5500 or visit www.jewishlehighvalley.org.
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JDS students cultivate friendship with Yoav students in third year of twinning program
By Michelle Cohen HAKOL Editor Fifth through eighth grade students at the Jewish Day School in Allentown are enjoying the opportunity to meet and befriend students from Sdot Yoav, a school in the Lehigh Valley’s sister region in Israel, as part of a school twinning program from JDS. “The idea is that students here would understand the meaning of living in Israel,” and that “there’s not such a difference,” said Elvira Mana, the teacher in charge of the JDS portion of the twinning program. “We do a lot of the same things,” she added as she explained the idea behind several of the past programs. To this effect, a future program is planned to delve into the family roots of each family participating in the program, to show that the students have roots in common in addition to culture, holidays and other Jewish practices. The students interact on video three times a year, and during the rest of the year, they interact online and
write letters to each other. The students are encouraged to communicate with their new friends independently of school functions as well; they text, instant message, and email each other. Mana and her Israeli counterparts are pleased that the students foster these “personal connections with other kids” outside of the classroom, she said, and she and the other teachers are doing their best to arrange programs during the school year to help the kids facilitate these relationships. The most recent joint project took place over Rosh Hashanah. Students from JDS wrote Rosh Hashanah cards and blessings for their Israeli friends and then mailed the cards before receiving cards from Israel in return. The JDS students had an opportunity to practice their Hebrew in their cards, and vice versa, with the students from Yoav; since the school in Yoav is so large, approximately 20 students who are proficient in English are chosen from each grade to keep the numbers relatively even.
The students have now begun their next project, where they are working on ID cards. Each student is writing a card about himself or herself; the cards will later be shared on a private website only accessible to the students and teachers participating in the program. With the new ID cards, students from both schools will be able to learn more about each other before their video chats and other interactive programs. The upcoming Chanukah event, where students will video chat, light candles, eat, play games and “create more of a community,” according to Mana, is an ideal place for the students to engage with each other, practice their language skills and make new friends. Although video chats are
more complicated due to the seven-hour time difference and the difference in school breaks in Israel and the US, Mana and her counterparts do their best to give the students plenty of time to interact and bond. Following the Chanukah event, Mana hopes to hold other events at other holidays, including Purim and Passover. Each video chat is saved on the group’s private website, and a teacher with video editing experience combines the video experiences from each side so they can be watched side by side. This made last year’s Purim skit particularly enjoyable; the video of the megillah-based charades game was spliced to show how the students from each place played each of the
main characters of the Purim story. Last year’s Passover seder was also broadcast online, and students are able to watch the videos again at any time. The ultimate goal of the program is giving the students the linguistic and multicultural tools they will need to continue their friendships long after their involvement in the program has ended. Students who travel to Israel are encouraged to go to Yoav and meet their friends in person, and some students even choose to celebrate their bar or bat mitzvah in Yoav. Although most of the students’ communication is web-based, Mana hopes to see an outcome that can result from years of a traditional pen pal relationship: lifelong friendship.
HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY | NOVEMBER 2016 21
HAKOL at 40: Since HAKOL began accepting display advertising more than 13 years ago, many businesses have consistently elected to use their often limited budgets to reach out to our readers and let them know they are preferred, desired customers. We are grateful to all of our advertisers over the years, but this month we are celebrating those who have been there since the beginning. These advertisers have played a key role in making HAKOL successful and have subsidized the cost of providing this free publication to the Jewish community.
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THANK YOU. These current advertisers have been regular advertisers in HAKOL for over 10 years. Artsquest Art Gallery & Frame Shop Bellissimo Ristorante Boscov’s Ala Carte Catering Camp Galil Camp Ramah in the Poconos Children’s Healthcare
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Table talk for a Jewish Thanksgiving By Edmon J. Rodman Jewish Telegraphic Agency When it’s time to talk turkey, what do Jews have to say? There is little Jewish liturgy for Thanksgiving dinner; not even seconds. You could say Ha’Motze, the blessing over the bread, and after the pie sing Birkat Ha’Mazon, thanking the Eternal Thanksgiving-giver for the food you ate. You could do that. You also could sit at the Thanksgiving table, throw the dice and blurt out one of those conversation starters that at first causes a lot of throat clearing and foot shuffling, earning you peeved looks from your host — but has the potential of stimulating an intellectual appetite or two. Here’s my modest starter: On Thanksgiving, what do Jews have to be thankful for? We are thankful for our families, homes and health. We are thankful for all that. But there’s more, isn’t there? So, Jewish America, I am sitting at the Thanksgiving table with all of you, thanks for the invite, and the question’s been asked. Considering it’s my question, you would think that I could nail the answer. I want to say as a Jew what I’m thankful for, but I can’t find the words. Too personal a question? Maybe I’m just hungry. Then I just blurt out, “Thank God I’m a Jew.” Complete silence. Not everyone at the table is Jewishly involved, and I’ve taken what basically is a national nonsectarian meal and turned it into a Jewish conversation. With no postmodern irony or sarcasm, I said it because I’m really thankful that’s who I am. Among the morning blessings, Jews say “praised is God who has made me a Jew." So why can’t I say it at the Thanksgiving table? “Shouldn’t the question really be,” a teacher from Binghamton, New York, says, “on Thanksgiving, what do people have to be thankful for?” “No,” I respond, working the peas around in my plate. “Let’s slice this turkey; what do Jews have to be thankful for?” “Not the turkey,” says a woman from Philly. “I am definitely not giving thanks for the turkey. I’m a vegan.” “Not necessary,” I answer. “There’s no special blessing, no bracha for poultry, meat or fish.” “A bracha is one of those ‘baruch atah’ things,” I add, seeing a couple of quizzical looks at the table. “It’s a Jewish formula for praising and giving thanks; acknowledging God’s presence in the world. They are said
over different types of food and drink, when experiencing something exceptional, and when fulfilling a commandment.” “Look who went to Hebrew High,” a teacher from Phoenix comments. A software salesman from Seattle joins the conversation. “I’m thankful I have a job,” he says. “Is there a bracha for when I make a sale?” “In the Birkat Ha’Mazon, there’s a blessing for parnasah, sustenance,” a woman from Los Angeles responds, adding that “I’m very thankful to my iPhone for that answer.” “How about a bracha for hangovers?” a college student from Queens asks. “Yes, there’s one,” the iPhoner responds. “There’s a prayer particularly good for this time, called Modeh Ani, of literally having your soul returned to you — though you may not feel that way. The prayer acknowledges the miracle of being alive every day.” “Is there a bracha over pain, ignorance, hunger?” asks the table skeptic from Berkeley waving his fork. “Nobody blesses that,” I respond. “But there is a prayer for teachers, students and study, Kaddish d’Rabanan; another to help the needy, Ozer Dalim; and a Mi Shebeirach, a blessing to bring healing and restore to health.” “I’m thankful for getting engaged,” a guy from Florida says. “At our wedding, friends and family are going to recite seven blessings. Our rabbi told us that the blessings connect us to the lives of all those Jews who were married before us.” “In the Jews by choice class I took,” he continued, “I found there’s a bracha upon seeing a rainbow, hearing thunder, getting good news and bad. Traditionally, Jews say 100 blessings every day.” “Many brachot are included in the day’s three prayer services,” I add. “Whether you pray them or not, the idea of 100 blessings does get you to look for the positive — definitely a counter-cultural mind-set.” Then finally, just as the turkey platter was passed to me, I had the answer to my original question — as a Jew I’m thankful for all this: Shalom bayit — peace in my house — the thoughtfulness, respect and love there. For books, especially Jewish friends with books. For herring of any kind — it’s proof of intelligent design. I’m thankful for a roof over our heads and the doorposts as well; when Jehovah Witnesses come to the door I explain expansively about my mezuzah. That an Israeli player made the NBA. That all our cars started and brought us back to the table safely to say Shehecheyanu for another year. And for Thanksgiving guests, there’s one more blessing: In Birchat Ha’Mazon, there’s a bracha for eating at another’s table. That one counts for plenty.
3 side dishes for Thanksgiving BY SANDI TEPLITZ
Parsnips in Cider
Parboil 1 bag of parsnips; peel, cool, and cut into 1" lengths. Boil 2 cups of apple cider; add parsnips and simmer until thickened. Serve warm.
Cranberry Stuffing Balls Prepare your favorite bagged recipe for stuffing. Cool. Add 1 bag of cooked whole berry cranberry sauce. Roll into large balls. Place on greased cookie sheet. Bake at 350 degrees until cooked through and lightly browned. Serve with turkey.
Russian Salad a la Inna Tseytlin
Mix together: 3 large sour pickles, minced; 3 boiled unskinned potatoes, cubed; 3 large beets, boiled, peeled and cubed; 3 large carrots, boiled, peeled and cut into 1" lengths; 1/2 jar crunchy pickled, green cabbage, shredded (purchasable at a Russian supermarket or a Polish stand at a Farmer's market). Cover generously with homemade vinaigrette dressing made with sunflower oil, white vinegar, salt and pepper to taste. Mix well and marinate overnight in refrigerator.
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Brazilian-themed Hadassah concert bespeaks LV native's path Interview by Jennifer Lader Bethlehem-Easton Hadassah In this Q&A, violinist and Allentown native Ted Falcon anticipates the annual Hadassah benefit concert, set for 3 p.m. on Sunday, Nov. 13, at Congregation Brith Sholom in Bethlehem. What were some of the highlights for you as a professional musician in Brazil, where you lived for a number of years? I had the opportunity to travel around the country performing my own music in Salvador, Recife, Curitiba, Brasília, São Paulo and Rio. For me, one of the most memorable highlights was performing with Armandinho Macêdo, a famous mandolinist, in the famous Trio Elétrico Carnival parade in Salvador in front of thousands of people on top of a huge moving truck. Another highlight was working with the musical legend Hermeto Pascoal several times in Ubatuba, São Paulo, and playing with him on several occasions in Brasilia. How did Brazilian music resonate with your musical roots? I loved the melodies, rhythm and harmonies. To me, the music is so complete. I really enjoy the Choro style, which is similar to American ragtime jazz. I remember hearing my father, Marvin Falcon, playing Brazilian guitar music when I was a kid. It sparked my curiosity to get to know the music up close, and eventually led to a move to Brazil. Being a musician seems to run in your family! My father is a fantastic guitarist, composer, writer and arranger. I was always around music. Dad would teach guitar lessons at our house, and I was exposed to great music. When I was 5, I took my first piano lessons and, at 6, I started the violin at Muhlenberg Elementary School in Allentown. I always enjoyed it. Music came naturally to me and was a lot of fun to play. Forty years later, it still is
Allentown native Ted Falcon (left) and Eduardo Souza will perform a joyous array of Brazilian and gypsy jazz music at the annual Hadassah concert on Sunday, Nov. 13 at Congregation Brith Sholom. the same. I love playing and it comes naturally. What can the audience look forward to with this upcoming concert in November? I’ve invited a great Brazilian guitarist, Eduardo Souza, to perform with me for Hadassah. He’s flying in from Brasilia to perform several concerts with me in Los Angeles and San Francisco first. We will play a mix of gypsy jazz swing and Brazilian choro music. We play an upbeat, fun mix of music from Django Reinhardt and Stephane Grappelli to world music from Russia, Hungary and Israel. What are you up to now that you and your family
have moved to California? I am working at Whittier College as an adjunct professor of world music and teaching music lessons at the Silverlake Conservatory of Music. I’ve jumped back into the scene playing violin with the Cuban group Charangoa as well as performing with various Brazilian groups in town. I am performing in a musical revue called Hotsy Totsy and also in November will start a two-month engagement at Disneyland with the klezmer group Mostly Kosher. Tickets are available the day of the Hadassah concert for $30. You can also contact firstname.lastname@example.org or call Carole at 610-554-3788.
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24 NOVEMBER 2016 | HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY
Federation's overseas partner brings emergency support to Hurricane Matthew victims in Haiti
Water covering portions of the road after Hurricane Matthew hit in Daytona Beach, Florida, on Oct. 7. (Drew Angerer/Getty Images) By Rebecca Caspi Senior Vice President of Global Operations Jewish Federations of North America As Floridians and others along the southeastern U.S. coast braced for the impact of Hurricane Matthew in October, Haiti was already in the midst of its biggest humanitarian disaster since the 2010 Earthquake. Matthew left a trail of devastation in the Western Hemisphere's poorest nation, killing hundreds and affecting more than 1 million people. Due to the destruction or damage of major infrastructure – particularly cell communications, key bridges, airports and roads – there has not yet been a full assessment of the damage caused by the hurricane and it is very difficult to get to the areas impacted to retrieve concrete information about the needs. However, some roads have been cleared and reports from international organizations as well as a field representative for the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee (JDS) indicate that there is severe destruction, food shortages and health concerns including cholera and dehydration. JDC, an overseas partner of the Jewish Federation of the Lehigh Valley, is working with UNICEF to provide hygiene kits and water purification tablets and is teaming up with Heart to Heart to help control and prevent additional cholera cases. The Jewish Federation of the Lehigh Valley, along with Federations across North America, is accepting donations to aid in these efforts and more. One hundred percent of the money donated will go directly to Hurricane Matthew relief. The Haiti government has officially reported 473 deaths, but that number is expected to rise. 2.1 million people, including 894,057 children, are affected. Close to 13 percent of the population is in need of assistance. 750,000 people need urgent humanitarian aid including access to a sufficient supply of quality water, education, shelter, child protection, health and nutrition, and an estimated 175,000 people have been displaced.
Dispatch from Haiti: Delivering aid to hurricane survivors By Mike Attinson American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee Editor’s Note: JDC and its partners Heart to Heart International and UNICEF are providing critical aid to hundreds of people in Haiti in the wake of Hurrican Matthew, including medical support, hygiene kits and water purification tablets. JDC’s disaster relief expert and field medic Mike Attinson is on the ground in Haiti, coordinating JDC's response and working to triage victims in need of medical attention at community clinics run by Heart to Heart. He wrote these reflections from the field. As we approached Jeremie, an area that was pummeled by Hurricane Matthew, it is easy to see that the damage to the homes is significant. It reminds me of what I saw on the ground after Typhoon Haiyan struck the Philippines in 2013. Not only did the wind completely decimate homes, it also uprooted trees and vegetation that Haitians depend on for their livelihood and as their source of food. The topography here looks similar to a war zone, with endless broken trees everywhere the eye can see. About an hour out from our destination, the road was completely unpaved and the after effects of rockslides were very apparent. I am deployed slightly outside of Jeremie in a government-run medical facility no longer in operation. This evening, I went to a village in the hills about 50 minutes from Jeremie to assess a potential cholera treatment center to be operated in addition to the Heart to Heart clinic in Jeremie. On our journey, we took an injured child to the hospital in town – a child suffering from a compound fracture, an injury that occurred because of the harsh weather conditions brought on by the hurricane. There are no ambulances and it is very difficult to get to a hospital. The roads are in bad shape, and there is no electricity anywhere. There are only small amounts of food available, but today, supply trucks are coming with a small reserve of nourishment. Yesterday was a very productive day. We set up shop with Heart to Heart at the Methodist church in downtown Jeremie, and a paramedic and I split about 103 patients between us to triage. Most patients are suffering from long term problems and some issues that are result of the hurricane and its aftermath. We have organized our operation well with local nurses, who also serve as translators, and by providing food and water to patients.
While it is still very hot and humid on the ground, we saw quite a few helicopters overhead today that look to be part of the U.S. Navy. Also, more trucks carrying supplies are beginning to arrive in the city. Haitians are starting to fix their roofs, yet it will take a lot of time to finish these repairs. Still, the city has real potential for rebirth. Today’s weather is less humid and immediately after waking up, our team headed back to the church. Throughout the country, alongside five other teams, Heart to Heart has helped over 500 Haitians in need of medical care. Patients sit calmly in church pews as they await triage; their blood pressure, temperature, and pulse taken while they fill out forms to give to the doctors. After seeing the doctor, patients are sent to an improvised pharmacy manned by Heart to Heart volunteers. We are seeing many issues related to noncompliance with the medicine prescribed to the patients. They say that the "medicine is running out.” Some patients have never had their condition treated. They are remarkably stoic considering the circumstances. On the bright side, I saw a water truck today on the street, and people have returned to walking around town. Electricity remains nonexistent in the city, with power lines still on the ground in many places. In the Methodist guest house, we have access to a generator at nighttime but we shut it off after a few hours to conserve fuel. Despite everything going on around us, I am doing OK. I am proud to represent JDC as we work to aid the hardest-hit communities in Haiti, helping those who most desperately need assistance.
To learn more or donate now, visit www.jewishlehighvalley.org.
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Alexander Forgosh as he is called to the Torah as a Bar Mitzvah on November 12, 2016. With love, From Ari and Margee Forgosh HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY | NOVEMBER 2016 25
An introduction to the Hebrew Family League
The Lehigh Valley Community Mikvah, which is one of the three entities overseen by the Hebrew Family League. By Ira Robbins Special to HAKOL The Hebrew Family League (HFL) is the umbrella organization for the Lehigh Valley Kashruth Commission (LVKC), the Chevra Kadisha and the Mikvah Association of the Lehigh Valley. These three organizations are a mainstay to a thriving Jewish community. The HFL provides a service to the entire Lehigh Valley Jewish community by upholding observance of Jewish dietary laws, providing a proper Jewish burial and maintaining a beautiful Mikvah for uses such as family purity and conversion. The HFL is indepen-
dent of any specific synagogue and supports and provides information to any Jewish person regardless of affiliation. The Chevra Kadisha ensures Jewish families in our area are able to have a traditional and dignified burial for a loved one in concert with Jewish traditions upheld for generations. The Chevra Kadisha recruits and has volunteers from many synagogues and is always looking for new volunteers. I would like to thank Mark Notis for chairing the Chevra Kadisha. The mikvah is a fundamental fixture here in the Lehigh Valley. The Lehigh Valley mikvah, located in
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Allentown, is a beautiful facility that ensures families can uphold the practices of family purity and that conversions can be done, as well as for various other purposes. I would like to thank Rachel Wilensky for chairing the mikvah. The LVKC ensures that certified kosher food is available for the kosher consumer of the Lehigh Valley. From ice cream at Menchies to supervision at a local affair, the LVKC is a vital part of the Lehigh Valley Kosher experience. I would like to thank Bob Levin-Dando for chairing the LVKC and to Jonathan Powers, the kosher supervisor of the LVKC. All three of these vital institutions require significant financial support as well as volunteers. Importantly, the HFL also provides support to the entire community, Jewish and non-Jewish alike. I remember receiving a phone call once from a lawyer who was the executor to a Jewish man who died. The non-Jewish lawyer's secretary was requesting information on Jewish burial. Fortunately, she knew enough to call a Jewish organization. Over the next three months, please take the time to read the articles on the three organizations listed above. You will find them both informative and interesting.
Allentown AZA kicks off the year
By Steven Lipson AZA Mazkir BBYO is an outlet for young Jewish teens to meet people from the same area. Our region is called Liberty Region, which is composed of many local chapters. There are two branches per chapter in Allentown. One is a girls’ branch called B’nai Brith Girls, and the other is a boys’ branch called Aleph Zadik Aleph. Each branch has an officer’s board with six positions. The godol, or president, is in charge of overall chapter welfare. The s’gan, or vice president of programming, is in charge of creating fun and informative programs at events. The moreh, or vice president of membership, is in charge of recruiting new members and maintaining current members. The shaliach, or vice president of Jewish heritage, is responsible for maintaining a sense of Judaism throughout the chapter in events and community service. The mazkir, or secretary, is responsible for all chapter communications. Finally, the Third s’gan is responsible for chapter money and fundraisers. Brian Neff and Benjamin Feinberg also serve as advisors for the chapter. They are essential in planning all events and activities. This year, our region started off with a yacht party on the Spirit of Philadelphia. There was a DJ, food, games and incredible views. Over 300 teens attended this event, which caused mass excitement amongst chapters. The first official regional convention was Regional Leadership Training Institute. It was held at Camp Kweebec. Teens were sup-
plied information on how to run a successful chapter. In addition, they learned leadership skills and met new people from local chapters. This was the first event in which our regional board could showcase their plans for the new programming year. Allentown’s first chapter event was called Allentown Kickoff. The BBG mazkirah, Sophia McWilliams, was kind enough to host this event at her home in Bethlehem. There were tacos, salsa, guacamole, sombreros and a piñata. Teens also enjoyed basketball and Havdalah services along with the fiesta theme. The next regional convention is called Tournies. It is generally the largest convention of the entire year in Harrisburg. Chapters compete against each other for trophies and medals in a multitude of activities. There are sports, board games, songs, dances, T-shirts and lots of spirit. On Nov. 4-6, Allentown AZA will rent a bus and travel to Harrisburg in an attempt to win for the eighth straight year. In conjunction with regional and chapter events, Allentown AZA holds meetings every Tuesday at the JCC from 7 to 8 p.m. We follow parliamentary procedure and discuss important chapter information. We would like to thank the community for their constant support. Many generous families open their homes to our organization for events. We could not successfully run our chapter without everyone’s help. If you would like more information on our events or how to join BBYO, please email allentownaza@gmail. com.
GIVE A MITZVAH, DO A MITZVAH
Pretty our playground Amanda Gordon, a high honor roll eighth grade student at Springhouse Middle School in Allentown, will become a Bat Mitzvah on Nov. 12 at Temple Beth El. A varsity volleyball player and avid skier, Amanda didn’t know what kind of mitzvah project she wanted to do. Ellen Gordon, Amanda’s mom, contacted mitzvah coordinator Abby Trachtman, who proposed several ideas. When Ellen shared them with Amanda, Amanda immediately chose a project that would benefit her beloved preschool at the JCC. On Sunday, Oct. 30, Amanda will gather her friends and family at the JCC playground to begin a much-needed update. Overseen by the JCC gardener, Eugene Guschard, the group began a series of changes using donated and recycled items to transform the playground to a more natural and homelike feel. “It’s called Reggio Emilia or school of thought,” Alexa Karakos, director of the preschool, said. “We are using nature and cleaning up the playground. For example, some tree stumps were removed from the
JCC campsite and brought to the JCC. These were installed to make a stepping element for the children to climb on.” Other changes include a music wall made of recycled items, a balancing rope with poles and a path made from rubber mats. The group also moved the existing gazebo and laid all new mulch around the play structure. “I chose this mitzvah project because I wanted to donate my time doing something special that would benefit the JCC preschool. My sister and I spent many years at the JCC preschool and I have many wonderful memories of my time spent there. I loved playing on this playground and want to keep it looking great and for it to be a fun place for all the preschoolers to play,” Amanda said. “Lance and I are very proud of Amanda on reaching this milestone in her life and becoming a Bat Mitzvah. We are so proud of her picking this mitzvah project and how she wants to donate her time at a place that is so special to her. She loved her preschool years at the JCC and she will feel
such a great accomplishment when this project is completed,” Ellen added. You can still make a donation toward the cost of the supplies to complete this project; any monetary donations should be made payable to the Jewish Community Center of the Lehigh Valley, 702 N. 22nd St., Allentown, PA, 18104, Attn: Tracy Sussman, Director of Membership and Marketing. All donations are tax-deductible. In addition to her mitzvah project, Amanda 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 610-821-5500.
PJ OUR WAY: The next chapter for PJ Library kids
Once a child graduates from PJ Library, there is often a question of “what’s next?” Children around the Lehigh Valley receive Jewish-themed books through PJ Library, and until now, the program has ended abruptly at the age of 9. Now, there is an answer to that question: PJ Our Way. PJ Our Way is for kids ages 9-11. It is kid-driven – they choose their own books, creating a totally tailored experience based on their own interests and reading level. To make the choice easier, the website at www.pjourway.org includes summaries and author bios, along with ratings, reviews and video trailers created by mem-
bers themselves. Kids can also take polls and quizzes, participate in monthly interviews and challenges, post their own reviews or videos and comment on blog posts. The PJ Our Way site is a completely safe and moderated space, perfect for acclimating older kids to using the web independently. It even has a parent blog, where you can read about the books on offer for your child, and find family discussion questions for each book. You can also find out what values or topics are covered, as well as any content advisories you or your child should know before choosing a book.
PJ LIBRARY Family of the Month: THE BILLIGS
We love PJ Library’s age-appropriate stories. Our children not only love opening their own mail but reading a Judaic story that we can then discuss as a family. - TRACEY AND JASON BILLIG
To learn more about PJ Library and register to receive free Jewish-themed books for children from 6 months through 8 years, visit www.pjlibrary.org.
HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY | NOVEMBER 2016 27
Bob Dylan awarded 2016 Nobel Prize in Literature Jewish Telegraphic Agency American singer and songwriter Bob Dylan has been awarded the 2016 Nobel Prize in Literature. Dylan, 75, was recognized for “having created new poetic expressions within the great American song tradition,” the Swedish Academy, which is responsible for choosing the Nobel laureates in literature, announced. Born Robert Allen Zimmerman and raised Jewish in Minnesota, Dylan wrote some of the most influential and well-known songs of the 1960s. His hits include “Blowin’ in the Wind,” “Like a Rolling Stone” and “Times They Are a-Changin’.” Dylan is the first American to receive the prize in more than 20 years; novelist Toni Morrison won in 1993. He will receive the $927,740 prize in Stockholm on Dec. 10, which is Alfred Nobel’s birthday.
Bob Dylan performing at Kezar Stadium in San Francisco, March 23, 1975.
Jack Greenberg, civil rights attorney who defended Martin Luther King Jr., dies at 91
Jack Greenberg receiving a standing ovation from the audience at the NAACP Legal Defense Fund’s luncheon in Washington, D.C., to commemorate the Supreme Court’s 1954 Brown v. Board of Education decision, May 16, 2014. Jewish Telegraphic Agency
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Jack Greenberg, a prominent lawyer in the U.S. civil rights movement who once defended the Rev. Martin Luther King Jr., has died. Greenberg had been suffering from Parkinson’s disease, said his wife, Deborah Cole Greenberg, according to The New York Times. He died Oct. 12 in Manhattan at 91. The son of Jewish parents from Poland and Romania who immigrated to the US, Greenberg was a pioneer in the civil rights movement of the 1960s and ‘70s who fought for equal rights for disenfranchised African-Americans. He was the last surviving member of a group of lawyers assembled by Thurgood Marshall who argued for voting rights, equal pay and access to schooling for African-Americans. Greenberg was one of seven lawyers who argued against segregated schools in Brown v. Board of Education, leading to the Supreme Court’s 1954 ruling to end single-race public schools. After Marshall was appointed to serve on the Supreme Court in 1961, he tapped Greenberg to lead the NAACP Legal Defense and Educational Fund. Greenberg served in the role for more than 20 years. The appointment rankled some who wondered why Marshall had not picked an African-American lawyer, The New York Times reported. Greenberg also was involved in controversy with Jewish groups for his support of affirmative action. The Anti-Defamation League said the policy, which favors minorities for university admission and employment, discriminated against whites. In 1963, he represented King when the civil rights leader was jailed in Birmingham, Alabama, for protesting against segregation. Greenberg was born in 1924 and grew up in Brooklyn and the Bronx boroughs of New York City. He earned bachelor’s and law degrees from Columbia University, and served as the dean of its law school in 1989-93. Greenberg said he wasn’t driven by his religion to fight for civil rights but more by his upbringing in the socialist Zionist movement of Jews who had immigrated from Eastern Europe. “We were social activists,” he said. “Back then we’d call them socialists; now you’d call them liberals.”
Are you interested in reporting Jewish news in the Lehigh Valley? Contact editor Michelle Cohen at firstname.lastname@example.org or 610-821-5500 for more information.
Project TEN: Discovering a hidden history in the Lower Galilee Editor’s Note: Project TEN is a project of The Jewish Agency for Israel, an overseas partner of the Jewish Federation of the Lehigh Valley. Shelby Lifshitz was born in California to Israeli parents, Varda and Canaan Lifshitz. After graduating from UC Berkeley, where she studied psychology, Shelby wanted to go abroad to do volunteer work in the human rights arena. "I was offered programs in Nicaragua but I wanted to come to Israel,” Shelby says. “My mother asked ‘Why Israel?’ One of the reasons was because my brother, mother and father are the only family members living in the United States—the remainder live in Israel. I grew up without a family… and I wanted to see and to know and to be known by my large Israeli family.” Shelby came to Israel with The Jewish Agency’s Project TEN Tikkun Olam program. Project TEN brings together young Jewish adults from all over the world, to a program that combines volunteer work with local communities, alongside service-learning in the fields of international development, culture, identity and Jewish activism. Shelby and her fellow Project TEN volunteers were based in Harduf, a kibbutz in the Lower Galilee located near the villages of more than 4,400 members of the Bedouin Ka’abiyye tribe. The road to Harduf is surrounded by green trees, soft rain and farmland. Through Project TEN, Shelby volunteered with local communities, and studied social change, leadership, activism and strengthening ties between Jews and Israel. Volunteers’ homes are built with a green approach that encourages recycling and conservation. The idea is to foster a strong connection between nature and the people in the community. Harduf’s inhabitants practice anthroposophy, an alternative educational system rooted learning in a therapeutic and relaxing atmosphere. Over 100 Harduf children are educated in the community’s elementary, junior high and high school. They study alongside children and teenagers from the neighboring Arab villages. Shelby and her friends teach English in both the Arab and Jewish schools as part of a spirit of openness and coexistence. Shelby’s Personal Discovery "I chose to participate in Project TEN because it deals with, among other things, social justice and human rights. I studied both psychology and law at university and always knew I wanted to represent people fighting for their human rights. I worked in a Jewish organization engaged
in human rights before I got to TEN,” Shelby says. Project TEN allows volunteers to study the relationship and conflict between Jews and Arabs. Shelby, however, came to how these relationships impacted her directly. “I never knew my mother had lived in a mixed family – both Jewish and Arab. I found out that her father is a Christian Arab and her mother is Jewish. And my grandfather has a big family in Acre. I didn’t expect to come to Israel to learn about Jewish-Arab relations and find out that this issue is directly related to my family and my life. I have a cousin serving in the IDF who is Arab and converted to Judaism and her sister isn't converting. It's interesting to see how the sisters feel about the situation. I’m learning so much about the relationship between Jews and Arabs and it is so significant to find out what the relations between Jews and Arabs are doing to my family, and me, personally. I didn’t know my cousins were Arabs until I got here," she says. " I went to their homes in the past and they spoke Arabic and I had no idea they were Arabs. Even after I signed up for TEN, I had no idea that this was my family story. I made a list of relatives that I should visit and when I got to meet them one by one, I discovered the secrets of my family; my mother's side of the family.” Shelby contacted her mother telling her that she was “learning more about my family than you told me…It was amazing and sad to discover that my mother and her family never spoke about living in a mixed family in Israel. It was embarrassing for her as a child and she didn’t want to explain to me that she basically lost her Christian Arab father when she was just a year old; she never really met him.” During Shelby’s stay in Israel she became close to her cousins in Acre who invite her on hikes around Israel. "I didn’t think it would be like this, and I was surprised in a good way. My Arab cousins even offered to come for Shabbat dinner because they know I'm Jewish. Shelby’s revelations about her family continued as she discovered that "half of my mother's brothers are Orthodox and the others are mixed, one converted to Islam, which just shows how complicated and touching life can be in Israel. I get a perspective on life in Israel that Israelis don’t get," she says.
ily history open her eyes and served as added motivation for her to work with the Arab children in the Shabiya neighborhood schools. "When I walk into the Arab village to teach English to the children, and I hear the muezzin’s call to prayer five times a day. This is an incomprehensible experience because I could have lived my life without knowing or experiencing any of this." The Project TEN volunteers at Kibbutz Harduf and the three Bedouin villages are facilitated by Sha’ar LaAdam, an international ecological Jewish-Arab center established by local residents of the kibbutz and Bedouin villages. The organization, active in the community since 2002, was established with the understanding that collaboration can bridge the gap between religions and cultures. "Sha’ar LaAdam’s range of activities characterizes its belief that the first we must turn to ourselves, to our people in the communities in which we live, and then draw the strength and skills to promote and build our relationship," says Daniel Aschheim, Project TEN’s director of marketing and public relations. "In these complex times, when sometimes it seems that fear and
distrust overcome everything else, Project TEN in Harduf is a beacon of humanity, humanism, and a bridge between populations. Additionally, it creates a dialogue between the volunteers, who come from all four corners of the world, amongst themselves - which strengthens the bond within the Jewish world and between people who come from different cultures. The center creates a real and sincere dialogue - without intermediaries - between people regardless of their origin. We are really creating a unique space where human activity is the center of attention. Project
TEN is at the forefront of the Jewish world and is proud of the participants devoting their energies to make the world a little better and hold Gandhi’s maxim ‘be the change you want to see in the world,’ which also serves as the credo for our organization." On a more personal level, Shelby’s changes have been real and profound. "I could have lived my life without knowing what I discovered. I’ve learned here in five months things I’ve never learned in my life. You cannot imagine how much I have learned and experienced so far on Project TEN.”
Working With Children Shelby’s complex famHAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY | NOVEMBER 2016 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.
THROUGH NOVEMBER 4 Organic Expressions Gallery at the J, JCC of the Lehigh Valley. The Gallery at the J presents “Organic Expressions” through Nov. 4 featuring the works of internationally acclaimed painter Hong Foo and ceramist Robert Jenkinson. All displayed art is available for purchase. SUNDAY, OCTOBER 30 Dinner and a Movie 5 p.m., Congregation Brith Sholom Please join us for a 1890s dinner setting the stage for the big screen showing of “Hester Street.” Our resident film maven, Barbara Platt, returns to bring greater light to the relevance of the movie. $20 per person. Bring family and friends. Contact Tammy@ brithsholom.net for more information. SUNDAY, OCTOBER 30 Felice Cohen, Author of ‘90 Lessons for Living Large in 90 Square Feet (... or more)’ and ‘What Papa Told Me’ 6:30 p.m., refreshments in the Gallery at the J, 7 p.m., Kline Auditorium, JCC of the Lehigh Valley. When her “tiny apartment” YouTube video went viral with millions of hits, people around the world emailed author/blogger Felice Cohen asking for advice on how to declutter their homes and lives. This inspired her to write “90 Lessons for Living Large in 90 Square Feet (or more)” She wrote “What Papa Told Me” as a gift to her grandfather, a Holocaust survivor, whose story is told in this work. Felice has been featured on Good Morning America, NBC, CBS, Fox 5, Sirius, NPR, Time, Forbes, and much more. View the YouTube video: www.lvjcc.org/ events. For more information visit www.lvjcc.org or email Monica Friess at email@example.com. Cost: $9/ JCC MVP $6. WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 2 Certainty vs. Uncertainty: 2016 Election Forum 7:30 p.m., Congregation Brith Sholom. Congregation Brith Sholom’s Adult Education Committee and the JFLV Community Relations Council are pleased to host a conversation on the upcoming elections with Dr. Chris Borick, director of the Institute of Public Opinion at Muhlenberg College, and Dr. Gordon Goldberg, professor emeritus of history at Kutztown University. Free and open to the community. THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 3 History in the Offing: The 2016 Election by the Numbers 7 p.m., Congregation Keneseth Israel. Exciting presentation by Muhlenberg professor Chris Borick about politics and polling. FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 4 Asian Buffet Shabbat Dinner 6 p.m., Congregation Brith Sholom. Join us at Congregation Brith Sholom for a Shabbat dinner and Friday night services. All are welcome to enjoy a menu filled with a wonderful variety of Asian flavors. Make your reservations by 12 p.m. on Oct. 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. SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 5 TCP Second Annual Interfaith Dinner 4:30 p.m., Temple Covenant of Peace. Dairy/vegetarian potluck dinner followed by a panel discussion looking at how lifecycle events are celebrated by different faith communities. Contact 610-253-2031 for more information. Sponsored by Temple Cov30 NOVEMBER 2016 | HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY
enant of Peace and the Easton Leadership Council of the Jewish Federation of the Lehigh Valley. MONDAY, NOVEMBER 7 Ethics and Shareholder Activism 7 p.m., Zoellner Arts Center, Lehigh University, 420 E. Packer Ave., Bethlehem. Free lecture with Barry Rosenstein, a graduate of Lehigh University. Rosenstein is the founder of JANA Partners, LLC, an eventdriven investment manager located in New York City. JANA Partners focuses on companies with a compelling valuation and various catalysts to realize value. JANA has been a successful activist in numerous companies including ConAgra, PetSmart, Walgreens Boots Alliance, Apache, URS, Safeway, Ashland, Marathon Petroleum, McGraw Hill, CNET and Kerr-McGee. For more information, please visit www.mylehigh.lehigh.edu/ethics16. TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 8 Mussar Study Group: ‘Moderation’ 7 p.m., Congregation Keneseth Israel. All are welcome! Contact Rob Cohen 610-730-8303. WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 9 NEW: Jewish-Focused Aging Mastery Program® (J-AMP) 10 to 11:30 a.m., JCC of the Lehigh Valley. J-AMP is a 12-week program designed to support baby boomers and older adults, in making the most of their gift of longevity. J-AMP combines goal-setting, daily practices, and peer support to help participants make meaningful changes in their lives. The program includes expert speakers, group discussion and various levels of mastery aimed at improving the aging process. The series includes two sessions that connect Jewish spirituality and wisdom with actions proven to improve health and well-being. The series curriculum consists of 12 sessions: 1. Jewish Perspectives on Aging Mastery 2. Navigating Longer Lives: The Basics of Aging Mastery 3. Exercise and You 4. Sleep 5. Healthy Eating and Hydration 6. Financial Fitness 7. Advance Planning 8. Healthy Relationships 9. Medication Management 10. Community Engagement 11. Falls Prevention 12. Harvest Time: Living Fully the Rest of Our Lives Nov. 9 to Feb. 8 (no class Nov. 23 or Dec. 28). Price: $99 for the 12-session series. Contact Amy Sams with questions at firstname.lastname@example.org. All materials included. All adults welcome. Advance registration required. To register, visit the JCC Welcome Desk, call 610-435-3571 or visit www.lvjcc.org. WEDNESDAY, NOVEMBER 9 Paint and Create Party 6:30 to 9 p.m., JCC of the Lehigh Valley. Join other adults for a fun, social evening paint party. Class includes all you need to create a 12x16 masterpiece. No experience needed. Wine and hearty snacks will be served. Class is taught by Kristina Cole, owner of Paint of Mind LLC. Limited to the first 30 registered. Price: $38, JCC member value price: $32. Questions? email@example.com. To register, visit the JCC Welcome Desk, call 610-435-3571 or visit the JCC online at lvjcc.org THURSDAY, NOVEMBER 10 Gallery at the J Opening Reception 6:30 to 8 p.m., Gallery at the J, JCC of the Lehigh Valley. Opening reception for the exhibit featuring
FRIDAYS 8 - 9:30 AM WMUH 91.7 Featuring Cantor Wartell muhlenberg.edu/wmuh
the paintings and drawings of David Sommers and the works of ceramist Corianne Thompson. Enjoy complimentary refreshments and live music by “Just So.” All displayed art is available for purchase. Exhibit runs through Dec. 23. FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 11 Veterans Day KIddish and KIbbitz and Congregational Choir 6:30 p.m., Congregation Keneseth Israel. Enjoy socializing before services at KIddish and KIbbitz followed by services featuring the Congregational Choir and musical selections and readings in honor of Veterans Day. SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 12 Images of Jews in Medieval Christian Art 7 p.m., Temple Covenant of Peace. Professor Sara Lipton will speak on representations of Jews in medieval art. In both of her books, “Images of Intolerance: The Representation of Jews and Judaism in the Bible” and “Dark Mirror: The Medieval Origins of Anti-Jewish Iconography,” Lipton examines medieval texts to track how there came to be a set image of this foreign entity, “a Jew,” and then how that image was used to further propagandize during the Medieval age. Contact 610-253-2031 for more information. SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 13 Jewish Family Service Presents 8ish Over 80 10:30 a.m., Temple Beth El. Join us for an elegant champagne brunch to honor role models, 80 years and over, who have dedicated their time, talents and hearts to our Jewish community. Proceeds benefit Older Adult Services. To learn more, call 610821-8722 or visit www.jfslv.org/8ishOver80. FRIDAY, NOVEMBER 18 Deli and Davvenning! 3 p.m., B’nai Jeshurun in NYC. We will be taking a bus to NYC, having a dutch treat at a kosher deli on the Upper West Side and finishing off the evening with the celebrated music and ru’ach of a Friday night service at one of the premier synagogues in New York - B’nai Jeshurun. Dinner is “dutch treat.” Cost: $18. Contact 610-253-2031 for more information. Sponsored by Temple Covenant of Peace and the Easton Leadership Council of the Jewish Federation of the Lehigh Valley. SATURDAY, NOVEMBER 19 TSS Lecture Series 7 to 9 p.m., location TBD. Havdalah and dessert reception. The community is invited to attend to hear Rabbi Beifield discuss important topics of the day. TUESDAY, NOVEMBER 22 Wellness Workshop with Dr. Melissa Hakim 7 to 8 p.m., JCC of the Lehigh Valley. Monthly onehour workshops. Choose from the following small group workshops: Nov. 22 - “Sitting is the New Smoking” Dec. 14 - “Cooking as a Tool for Healthy Living” Individual workshop price: $15, two workshops: $27. Questions? Contact Amy Sams, firstname.lastname@example.org. To register, visit the JCC Welcome Desk, call 610435-3571 or visit online lvjcc.org. SUNDAY, NOVEMBER 29 Fall Crafts at the J 11 a.m. to 12 p.m., JCC of the Lehigh Valley. Join other adults for a fun, creative, hands-on project. Classes taught by Barbara Butz. Last Tuesday of the month. $10 per class. To register, visit the JCC Welcome Desk, call 610-435-3571 or visit the JCC online at www.lvjcc.org.
Celebrate the beauty of Shabbat
Shabbat & Yom Tov Candlelighting Times Friday, Nov. 4
Friday, Nov. 25
Friday, Nov. 11
Friday, Dec. 2
Friday, Nov. 18
Friday, Dec. 9
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 sh-berg1@hotmail. 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 610-3516511. 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 Betty at 610-3956282 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 Bring your curiosity to the Yachad Torah study group and discover the wonders, adventures and meaning of the Torah. Moderated by Rabbi Yehoshua Mizrachi. Held in the Teachers’ Learning Center/Holocaust Resource Room (lower level, JCC). Call 610-435-3571 for information. 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 email@example.com. 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), 610-9052166, firstname.lastname@example.org. “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 207-404-0474; email@example.com; www.torahovereasy. blogspot.com. WEDNESDAYS 101 JUDAISM CLASS 10 a.m., Temple Covenant of Peace Join Rabbi Melody for the 101 Judaism Class. All welcome! Contact 610-2532031 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 610435-3571 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 firstname.lastname@example.org or call 610-4391851. 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. HUSBANDS ANONYMOUS First Wednesday of the month, 7:30 p.m., location upon signup Calling all wives! Send your husbands to this class! Rabbi WIlensky guides us on how to become more attentive, caring, sensitive partners, and how to strengthen and deepen our spousal relationships in the context of Torah. Contact Sons of Israel for exact dates and locations. 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 Four: A 12-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 AxelrodCooper. Call 610-821-8722 to learn more. There is no charge for the group. CONVERSATIONS THAT MATTER: THE MAKING OF A MENSCH 10:30 a.m. to 12 p.m., Congregation Keneseth Israel Join a welcoming group of KI members and their friends to discuss a variety of topics relevant to the Jewish lives we have – or want to have. No prerequisites except an open mind and a willingness to listen to each other. For more information or to get on the email list, contact email@example.com or call 610-435-9074. 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 firstname.lastname@example.org or 610-820-7666. EVERYTHING YOU ALWAYS WANTED TO KNOW ABOUT JUDAISM BUT WERE AFRAID TO ASK! 5 p.m., Temple Covenant of Peace This class is one which a person may drop in when one can. Available via Skype. If you are interested, please send rabbi a Skype invitation at Rebmelody. 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 email@example.com. 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 in-depth study of the Talmud.
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.
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.
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.
ISSUES IN CONTEMPORARY HALACHAH 12 p.m., Congregation Sons of Israel Join Rabbi Wilensky as he takes Halachah from the weekly Torah portion and brings it to bear on some of the most pressing issues of our time.
TEMPLE 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.
BNEI AKIVA 5:45 p.m., Congregation Sons of Israel An Israel-centered fun program for kids ages eight to 14. This program is free and open to the public. For information and to RSVP, call 610-433-6089.
TEMPLE SHIRAT SHALOM 610.730.6272 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 610-820-7666.
HAKOL LEHIGH VALLEY | NOVEMBER 2016 31
HAKOL is the Jewish newspaper of the Lehigh Valley, Pennsylvania.