Pittsburgh Jewish Chronicle 4-12-24

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New local organization sheds light on candidates’ positions regarding

Jewish interests

If you’ve ever wondered where a politician stands when it comes to Jewish well-being, you’re not alone.

In fact, a group of concerned community members have formed a new 501(c)(4), the Beacon Group, to provide some answers.

“After Oct. 7, some of our local politicians had very strong opinions, it turns out, about Israel and the Jewish people,” Beacon volunteer Rebecca Elhassid said. “Some of those were really harmful.”

Elhassid said that if voters had known a candidate’s position on antisemitism, their race may have turned out differently.

“Nobody’s ever asked the right questions,” she said. “Nobody ever thought to ask an Allegheny County Council person what they think about the Jewish people. So, when an Allegheny County Council person comes out and posts Hamas videos, that was very surprising.”

Babka, body doubles and Fetterman among surprises at Shaare Torah’s annual dinner

antisemitism adopted by the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance. Using the IHRA definition, Beacon Coalition leaders believe they can vet candidates by identifying documented words or actions that are antisemitic.

In defining antisemitism, the IHRA is guided by examples including the “targeting of the state of Israel, conceived as a Jewish collectivity.”

The Beacon Coalition is beginning by focusing on competitive Democratic races in the April 23 Pennsylvania primary and intends to provide information for candidates campaigning in the general election for House and Senate seats and the presidency.

Jeremy Kazzaz, Beacon’s executive director, said the organization is starting with a small budget and a limited number of volunteers but felt compelled to get up and running during this election cycle.

“The driving thought is that there’s not nearly enough eyes on all the people in local politics, and that’s the challenge,” he said.

Plates of chicken and tiresome speeches are familiar features of synagogue dinners — visits from U.S. senators are not.

For an organization that regularly bills its annual event as “Not-Your-Average Shul Dinner,” however, Sen. John Fetterman’s attendance was one of several surprises at Shaare Torah Congregation’s March 31 affair.

The event, which honored Lauren and Elan Noorparvar, received an added boost days earlier, as hours before Shabbat on March 29, Shaare Torah’s Rabbi Yitzi Genack announced the congregation was presenting Fetterman with its Lion of Israel Award.

The Beacon Coalition, founded in October, will serve “as an independent voice to identify where politicians stand on issues related to the rights and wellbeing of the Jewish American community, regardless of political party and their other positions,” according to the organization’s website.

To do that, it uses the definition of

While several organizations advocate for the Jewish community — the Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh and the American Jewish Committee, for instance — Kazzaz said they’re limited in what they can do because of their 501(c)(3) status.

This honor recognizes the senator’s “determined and courageous support of the state of Israel,” Genack said. “He has consistently advocated for policies and initiatives that promote Israel’s safety and well-being. He stood with us as many of us gathered on the National Mall in Washington, and I was fortified by the image of his towering figure draped with an Israeli flag.”

On Sunday evening, with approximately 180 people present, Fetterman accepted the

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Et odictiumqui andae amusam quistium si de net voloritat
keep your eye on PittsburghJewishChronicle Tasty taktouka FOOD Israeli dance troupe comes to town Research rewarded LOCAL LOCAL S ‘Co ee and conversation’ with House candidate Page 2 LOCAL 10.27 Healing Partnership secures funds Organization to continue until 2029 Page 3 LOCAL The Jews of New Kensington History preserved by local groups Page 4 LOCAL Finding meaning while volunteering Young Pittsburghers return from Israel Page 8 Please see Fetterman, page 10 Please see Beacon, page 10 April 12, 2024 | 4 Nissan 5784 Candlelighting 7:39 p.m. | Havdalah 8:40 p.m. | Vol. 67, No. 15 | pittsburghjewishchronicle.org $2
 Lauren Noorparvar, Elan Noorparvar, Sen. John Fetterman and Rabbi Yitzi Genack Photo courtesy of Shaare Torah Congregation  Beacon Coalition volunteer Rebecca Elhassid holds a picture of Israeli hostage Yoram Metzger at a community vigil Photo courtesy of Jeremy Kazzaz


Bhavini Patel shares ‘Coffee and Conversation’ with Jewish community Lee has not responded to Federation invitation

Bhavini Patel entered the race for Pennsylvania’s 12th District’s House seat because she wants to ensure the promise of the American Dream can be fulfilled for others like her.

Patel’s family, she said, faced economic insecurity while she was growing up. She was raised by an immigrant single mother who built a business that allowed Patel to be the first college graduate in her family, attending both the University of Pittsburgh and the University of Oxford.

“It taught me a lot about Western Pennsylvania values, grit and hard work,” Patel said, detailing the struggle of her mother, who eventually owned two food trucks where Patel worked.

Patel told her story in response to an opening question from Laura Cherner, director of the Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh’s Community Relations Council and host of the organization’s Coffee and Conversation, a town hall-style discussion on April 8.

Cherner asked the candidate running against incumbent Summer Lee in the Democratic primary about a range of subjects, including infrastructure and the local technology industry, threats to democracy and foreign policy, including funding for Ukraine’s ongoing war with Russia. Terrorism, Hamas’ Oct. 7 attack on Israel, identity, health care, gun violence, the Abraham Accords, women’s reproductive rights and the responsibility of politicians to hear from their constituents were also discussed during the far-reaching discussion.

Patel, an Edgewood Borough councilwoman, also shared thoughts about the recent acts of vandalism and antisemitism that have occurred in Squirrel Hill, including the desecration of several yard signs supporting Israel with red handprints.

“I think that when your property in front

of your home is vandalized in that way with hands, it’s important to understand the history of what that means and the message that’s being sent,” she said.

Patel called that vandalism “antisemitism.”

“This shouldn’t be complicated,” she said.

Patel said that she watched the footage of Hamas’ Oct. 7 terrorist attack in Israel, calling the acts she witnessed “deeply, deeply traumatizing.”

She took the opportunity to contrast herself to Lee, noting that, unlike Lee, she attended the Oct. 8 vigil in support of Israel and the Jewish community and that she makes herself available to the Pittsburgh Jewish Chronicle whenever asked.

“It’s incredibly important to be a shoulder to lean on in the community, to educate myself and continue to be present,” she said.

Patel said that Lee’s social media posts about the recent deaths of several relief workers in Israel were “careless.”

“She tweeted out something, knowing that the Biden administration had called for a full investigation by the Israeli government as to what happened,” Patel said of Lee. “She tweeted language calling it a ‘targeted’ attack against humanitarian aid workers. It’s important to point out, because when you use language like that it stokes antisemitism and puts the Jewish community in a very precarious position.”

sked about the International Holocaust Remembrance Alliance definition of antisemitism, adopted or endorsed by 43 countries, including the United States and a large number of political organizations, Patel said she supports it and spent time learning about the definition. She said that she was recently endorsed by the Beacon Coalition, which asked about her position on the definition. (The Beacon Coalition, a local group that advocates for Jewish well-being in politics, said it “strongly supports” Patel on its website assessment of the race.)

In defining antisemitism, the IHRA is guided by examples including the “targeting of the state of Israel, conceived as a Jewish collectivity.”

Patel said she supports the Biden administration’s efforts to help normalize and advocate for the IHRA definition. Her support for the administration was something the candidate went back to time and again, contrasting herself to Lee. Patel noted that Lee voted against a recent spending bill that was supported by most Democrats and a resolution condemning countries that provide weapons to Iran.

Asked about Lee’s frequent claims that Patel is funded by AIPAC and the United Democracy Project, Patel called the allegations “unfortunate.”

“I think my opponent wishes that she were running against a Republican with the kind

Despite invitations from the Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh’s Community Relations Council, Rep. Summer Lee has not agreed to appear at a Coffee and Conversations town hall-style event. Her opponent, Bhavini Patel, spoke with Laura Cherner at a Coffee and Conversations event on April 8, fielding questions from the CRC director and those posed by the audience.

Lee last appeared at a CRC Coffee and Conversations event during her previous primary run in April 2022. Since then, the District 12 House representative has not made herself available to take questions at any Jewish communal event.

Lee also has ignored more than a dozen interview requests from the Pittsburgh Jewish Chronicle and has been absent from various Jewish community events attended by other local politicians, including the Oct. 8 vigil following Hamas’ terrorist attack on Israel.

Cherner said that Lee’s office confirmed receipt of the invitation to a Coffee and Conversation — which the organization has sent twice — but has not responded. The CRC, Cherner said, would be willing to schedule a community discussion with Lee up to April 23, the day of Pennsylvania’s primary election.

“The Federation is the central convener of the Jewish community, comprised of over 50,000 Jews,” Cherner said. “These forums are a critical way for Jewish voters to be able to understand the policy positions of elected officials and a way for the community to have direct access to our representatives. So, participating in them is an important way for elected officials to connect with the Jewish community.”

Lee did not respond to the Chronicle’s request for a comment before press time. PJC

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p Bhavini Patel and Laura Cherner Photo by David Rullo

The 10.27 Healing Partnership won’t have to worry about funding for the next five years. And, after that, the organization will sunset its mission.

Founded to help address the ongoing mental health issues and trauma related to the Oct. 27, 2018, Pittsburgh synagogue shooting, the resiliency center recently secured $350,000 in state funding through the efforts of state Sen. Jay Costa and state Rep. Dan Frankel. Those funds, in addition to the $547,000 the organization recently received from the federal government, means that the 10.27 Healing Partnership has the financing it needs to keep its doors open for the next half-decade.

Maggie Feinstein, executive director of the 10.27 Healing Partnership, said the organization’s steering committee spent a lot of time pondering the question of what to do when its initial funding ended.

“Is it something we keep open indefinitely or is it something that we continue for a finite amount of time? We, as a steering committee, took that question very seriously,” Feinstein said, “because the realization is that there is going to be more triggers, that there’s other things going on, but also that there a time for moving on.”

And while the center might be closing its doors in 2029, Feinstein said the work will go on, continuing at different Jewish institutions, possibly including the Jewish Community Center of Greater Pittsburgh.

Steering committee member and shooting survivor Carol Black said that it felt right to eventually sunset the center, but that couldn’t happen immediately.

“There was still too much of a need for the services this organization provides,” Black said. “So, we decided to extend it for another five years and do whatever it takes to get the appropriate funding to offer the services that the community has relied on.”

Andrea Wedner, a steering committee member and shooting survivor, said she was in awe of the people who served with her and Black.

“They all have jobs, but they show up and they do the work and it’s good work,” Wedner said. “I’m so grateful to all of them, and I’m grateful to know them and to see how this all

open for five more years, Feinstein said, the Pittsburgh synagogue shooter’s trial was just beginning, and the rising tide of antisemitism following Hamas’ Oct. 7 terrorist attack still hadn’t occurred.

She emphasized the mission of the center — “that we are better together, that we have to have a space where we can gather and that we have to use the experience of 10/27 to help other people share what we learned from it” — and the “vicarious resilience, as well as the vicarious trauma” people experienced after the synagogue shooting.

That resilience, Feinstein noted, comes from the stories of “incredible people” in their healing, and stories of allyship and solidarity shown by the community’s civic and spiritual leaders.

Located at the JCC in Squirrel Hill, the 10.27 Healing Partnership is in a space that has served as an art studio, hosted a boys’ Hebrew high school and even operated as the FBI family assistance center in the weeks immediately following the synagogue shooting.

“This space is no stranger to evolving with community need,” JCC President and CEO Jason Kunzman said, while noting the view from the Partnership’s window — flowers in bloom and a church that served as the spiritual home of Fred Rogers or, as most know him, Mister Rogers. The view was important five years ago during the spring, when Kunzman and Feinstein were deciding on which space the organization would call home.

“Things were in bloom, much the same way that they are today,” he recalled. “It really spoke to, I think, what Maggie and I both hoped would represent the journey of healing and building resilience.”

The JCC, Kunzman said, was “honored and humbled” to be able to play a role in the aftermath of the attack. It was through the efforts of the steering committee, and other engaged community members, that the decision to locate the Pittsburgh resiliency center at the JCC was made, he added.

Frankel, who represents the Squirrel Hill neighborhood, said he couldn’t imagine a more appropriate home for the 10.27 Healing Partnership than the JCC.

“As you know, I’m here most mornings,” he said. “The diversity you see at the JCC, the

Healing Partnership,
p From left: Maggie Feinstein, state Rep. Dan Frankel, steering committee members Andrea Wedner and Carol Black, and JCC President and CEO Jason Kunzman met to announce funding for the 10.27 Healing Partnership through 2029. Photo by David Rullo
Please see


Tri-City Historical Society partners with Rauh Jewish Archives to share stories of region’s Jewish roots

Ahistorically minded group is reminding local residents about a largely forgotten past.

Anthony Palyszeski and James Sabulsky of the Tri-City Historical Society have spent months working with Eric Lidji of the Rauh Jewish Archives at the Senator John Heinz History Center to unearth stories of Jewish contributions in New Kensington.

The project began when Palyszeski traveled to the History Center to learn more about New Kensington and its early influences. Through a mutual acquaintance, Palyszekski was introduced to Lidji.

Palyszeski told Lidji that he was particularly interested in religious communities and how they influenced New Kensington.

“His eyes sort of went up, and then he said, ‘Oh, this is bigger than you think that is,’”

Palyszeski recalled Lidji saying.

Located in Westmoreland County and founded in 1891, New Kensington’s Jewish roots date to the city’s inception.

After the Burrell Improvement Co. bought land along the Allegheny River, “laid out a town

and held a highly publicized sale for lots,” Isaac Claster, a Jewish peddler, purchased a plot, according to the Rauh Jewish Archives. Claster built a clothing store on the parcel in 1892. One year later, landsmen Isaac and Phillips Fisher opened a store in New Kensington. In 1894, a cigar factory was established by David Solobodsky.

Sabulsky, president of the Historical Society, said many New Kensington residents have little idea about how much the city and its commercial life was shaped by its Jewish community.

A lot of department stores that people

shopped in growing up, including my parents, were opened by people of the Jewish culture that had moved up here,” he said.

Palyszeski continued researching New Kensington’s history. He shared his findings with other members of the Historical Society, as well as the Burrell High School’s history club.

Twice a month, the Historical Society meets with five to 15 members of the history club to discuss local and national matters.

“ They’ll pick a topic they’re interested in, tell us what it is, do a presentation then we’ll try to connect it to our local area and how it influenced our local area,” Sabulsky said.

Lidji agreed to partner with the groups investigating New Kensington’s Jewish roots.

What the historically minded parties discovered was that even beyond creating stores, Jewish life burgeoned during New Kensington’s early days.

Rauh Jewish Archives records show that formal Jewish life began in the city in 1895 when Rabbi Herman Levendorf read the megillah at Isaac Claster’s home. During the next 10 years, several Jewish families held services in rented

Yeshiva Girls School’s Basya Taub places in top five in contest for neuroscience research

Basya Taub, a 17-year-old senior at Yeshiva Girls School, has always enjoyed how science is something of a puzzle.

The passion she has for her favorite subject is evident in how she speaks about her research project for the Jerusalem Science Contest, an international competition for 11th- and 12th-grade Jewish students. Taub’s 19-page paper placed her in the top five for girls, earning her a trip to Israel.

The Jerusalem Science Contest is a collaboration between the Walder Science C enter and the Jerusalem College of Technology Lev Academic Center. The contest selects a field of science for students to study and conduct research on. This year’s theme was neuroscience.

Her paper and subsequent presentation was called “The Gut Microbiota and Decision Making.” She examined the gut-brain axis, which links the central and enteric nervous systems. Research has shown that the gut-brain axis can affect mood and stress, but Taub wanted to determine the role that it plays in making decisions.

omeone has a healthy gut could help them make wiser financial decisions.

In addition to her research project, Taub had to complete assigned readings and watch lectures on neuroscience and its Judaic connection before taking seven tests on the material, tion to a comprehensive exam. She estimated that she spent five hours studying for each test, and scheduling issues meant she didn’t follow the usual timeline that would have given her two weeks between

One day, I had a whole test on Friday and then the next one on Monday. It was, like, crazy,” she said. “But I like that. I like keeping busy. I like having something I’m working towards.”

Her science teacher, Okxana Cordova, suggested the contest to Taub. While she did her project independently, she emphasized Cordova’s guidance and dedication. er teacher suggested the gut-brain axis for her topic, serving as a proctor for the exams and staying on even after leaving her role at Yeshiva Girls School.

She drew on academic research, including a study done at Maastricht University that found that participants who took probiotics exhibited less risk-taking behavior and more future-oriented choices in game-like

For her research, Taub surveyed 45 friends, family and community members, asking about their gut health, eating habits and prebiotic or probiotic intake. She also had them rate how often they wanted to do something that they intellectually knew was a bad decision and the intensity of the desire. Her study found that those who took probiotics or had a healthier diet had lesser rates of desire for something that wasn’t

poorer gut health.

As a contest requirement, the research conducted by students has to have a Judaic connection. For Taub, she examined the question of whether providing probiotics and gut-healthy food could be considered a form of tzedakah. She argued that, because gut health affects risk-taking behaviors, it could affect whether an individual makes risky financial decisions; therefore, ensuring

Taub said the hardest challenge was finding the time to do everything, particularly as she prepared for Yeshiva Girls School’s biennial theatrical production.

“It was a lot of work, for sure. You know, just like constant, like, straight from school to library, spend three hours there, come back home, eat dinner, spend another three hours,” she said. “I became an expert juggler,

see New Kensington, page 11
p Basya Taub at the Jerusalem Science Competition’s Culminating Program in Chicago
Photo by Leah Boyarskiy Please see Taub
, page
p Image of a historic map of New Kensington Snapshots of The Past via Flickr at https://rb.gy/ie365f


Suranjana Parsai was born in a Nepali refugee camp after her parents were forced to flee their native Bhutan due to religious and ethnic persecution. The 15-year-old Baldwin Whitehall High School student came to America in 2010.

It was the South Hills Interfaith Movement that provided needed resources to Parsai and her family when they arrived in the States.

“I was in their Head Start preschool program,” Parsai said. “Since I was in kindergarten, SHIM provided free book bags and school supplies for me and all my siblings. A couple of times a month, my family went to food banks hosted by SHIM and were able to get food we otherwise wouldn’t have been able to afford.”

Parsai recounted her family’s experiences at an April 2 event at Temple Emanuel of South Hills.

“A Nation of Immigrants: Humanity at its Best,” hosted by the Jewish Women’s Foundation of Pittsburgh, highlighted JWF’s partnerships with three organizations: SHIM, Open Field and Bhutanese Community Association of Pittsburgh.

The program celebrated the organizations, all of which have received funding from JWF

bring this to our community,” Rosenberger told those in attendance.

Rosenberger thanked JWF’s other partners for the event: Beth El Congregation of the South Hills, the Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh, JCC’s Center for Loving Kindness and Jewish Family and Community Services. JWF’s members wanted to build a program around immigrants because “there has been a great deal of negativity around the issue of immigrants and refugees,” Rosenberger said.

Burmese and other refugees transitioning to life in Pittsburgh, according to BCAP Executive Director Khara Timsina.

The organization has grown since its founding, Timsina said, and even recently helped its first Russian immigrant who moved to Mt. Lebanon.

Timsina attended the event as an audience member, preferring to allow BCAP representatives Benu Rijal and Lila Adhikari to address the crowd.

Rijal came to the United States in 2010 after living in a refugee camp.

“It was a life-changing situation but an extremely hard situation for us,” she said.

Despite the challenges, her son, she said with pride, recently graduated from the University of Pittsburgh and is now a mechanical engineer at SpaceX. Her daughter is also doing well in the States.

Born in Nepal, Adhikari moved to Pittsburgh with her husband.

Open Field founder and CEO Justin Forzano explained that his organization’s mission is to improve the lives and futures of youth through sports.

“Through soccer, we connect with young people, the world’s favorite game, and work to run programs that promote life skills, leadership and girls’ empowerment, which is how we connected to JWF,” he said.

Open Field, he said, has a program with the Community College of Allegheny County. Two years ago, the organization started a club team for men there, and this year it’s launching a women’s team.

“The idea is to use the club team as a magnet and support mechanism to help young people get their associate degree,” Forzano said. “In a couple of weeks, we’re launching a high school soccer league that helps bridge the gap between

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 Stacey Reibach (far left) moderated JWF’s “A Nation of Immigrants: Humanity at its Best” at Temple Emanuel of South Hills on April 2. Photo by David Rullo Please see Immigrants, page 11


Submit calendar items on the Chronicle’s website, pittsburghjewishchronicle.org. Submissions also will be included in print. Events will run in the print edition beginning one month prior to the date as space allows. The deadline for submissions is Friday, noon.



The Healing with Nature Mosaic Project is designed to respond to the human experience of grief and loss through the healing power of nature and of creative expression. The six-week, 10-session program facilitated by mosaic artist Laura Jean McLaughlin will guide participants in the collective creation of a community mosaic mural, gathering shattered pieces together to tell a story of community healing and resilience. Saturdays, 1-3 p.m. Thursdays, 4-6 p.m. Frick Environmental Center, 2005 Beechwood Blvd. Registration required. 1027healingpartnership.org/ healing-with-nature-mosaic-project.


14 Steps + 10 Plagues, 24 delicious kinds of ice cream. Enjoy 24 di erent flavors (some vegan options, too) at the Ice Cream Pre-Passover Seder sponsored by Tree of Life Congregation. The ice cream is kosher and generously supplied by Bruster’s of Squirrel Hill. Reservations by April 12 are recommended. 11 a.m. $5 in advance, $10 at the door. treeoflifepgh.org/ event/icecreamseder.

Join Chabad of the South Hills for a pop-up Jewish NY Deli. Order pastrami and corned beef sandwiches, potato knishes, matzo ball soup and Dr. Brown’s soda. Pre-order by April 11, pick-up April 14, from 3-6 p.m. 1701 McFarland Road. chabadsh.com/deli.


Chabad of Monroeville invites you to BLT (Bagel, Lox, Tefillin), an in-person tefillin club followed by breakfast. No prior experience necessary. Tefillin available for use. 9 a.m. 2715 Mosside Blvd. RSVP appreciated at chabad@jewishmonroeville.com

Join a lay-led online parshah study group to discuss the week’s Torah portion. No Hebrew knowledge needed. The goal is to build community while deepening understanding of the text. 8:30 p.m. For more information, visit bethshalompgh.org.


Justice David Wecht of the Pennsylvania Supreme Court will be the featured speaker at “An American Jurist’s Perspective,” hosted by the Jewish Law Student Association at Duquesne University Kline School of Law. Wecht will discuss the roots of Jew-hatred and share his experiences from his recent trip to Israel. Noon to 1 p.m. Kline School of Law, Room 203. A Zoom link is available by request; email Professor Rona Kaufman at kitchenr@duq.edu.

Join the Holocaust Center of Pittsburgh for Whistleblowers Who Exposed the Holocaust

Rafael Medo and whistleblower attorney Mark Zaid will discuss the new nonfiction graphic novel “Whistleblowers: Four Who Fought to Expose the Holocaust.” A Zoom link will be provided closer to the event. Noon. Free. hcofpgh.org/event/whistleblowerswho-exposed-the-holocaust.

Grab your popcorn and top hat and join us around the ring for an afternoon filled with jaw-dropping surprises at Chabad of Monroeville’s Kids Club/ Seder Circus. 4:45 p.m. 2715 Mosside Blvd. jewishmonroeville.com/kclub.

Join the Friendship Circle of Pittsburgh for Better Together with Pamela Schuller, a night of comedy and storytelling with a message of inclusion and the power of community. Appropriate for youth ages 14 and up; families welcome. Free and open to the community. 7 p.m. Katz Auditorium, 5738 Darlington Road. one.bidpal.net/ pamelaschullerpgh/ticketing.


H. Arnold and Adrien B. Gefsky Community Scholar

Rabbi Danny Schi presents Torah 2. Understanding the Torah and what it asks of us is perhaps one of the most important things that a Jew can learn. In Torah 2, Schi will explore the second half of Leviticus and all of Numbers and Deuteronomy. 9:30 a.m. $225. Zoom. jewishpgh.org/event/torah-2-2/2023-10-09.


Join Congregation Beth Shalom for a weekly Talmud study. 9:15 a.m. For more information, visit bethshalompgh.org.


Join Chabad of Monroeville for its monthly Kosher

Deli Night. Take-out. Order by Tuesday, April 16; pick up Wednesday, April 17. jewishmonroeville.com/Deli.


Join JFCS for SPACE Training: Rethinking Parenting Anxious Kids, a four-part virtual interactive workshop for parents. Learn the principles of SPACE (Supportive Parenting for Anxious Childhood Emotions), an evidence-based treatment developed at Yale University. Gain strategies for making simple shifts in your own behavior that can lead to significant changes in your children and create a more peaceful and cooperative household. This workshop is applicable for parents of kids in second through 12th grades. It is recommended that all parents/guardians attend the workshops together. Free. Noon. jfcspgh. org/spaceworkshop.


Understanding and explaining Israel’s current position requires knowledge of history. In the 10-part course, A History of The Arab-Israel-Iran Conflict: All You Need to Know, Rabbi Danny Schi will provide a full overview of the regional conflict that Israel has experienced over the last century. The cost of taking a course is never a barrier to participation. If price is an issue, please contact the organizer of this course so that we can make the cost comfortable for you. $145. 8 p.m. jewishpgh. org/series/history-of-the-arab-israel-iran-conflict.


Join AgeWell for the Intergenerational Family Dynamics Discussion Group at JCC South Hills the third Wednesday of each month. Led by intergenerational specialist/presenter and educator Audree Schall. The group is geared toward anyone who has children, grandchildren, a spouse, siblings or parents. Whether you have family harmony or strife, these discussions are going to be thought-provoking, with tools to help build strong relationships and family unity. Free. 12:30 p.m.

Chabad of Monroeville invites you to spend an hour playing mahjong and other games. Play, shmooze, learn a word of the Torah, say a prayer for Israel, and, of course, nosh on some yummy treats. Free. 7 p.m. RSVP is required: SusanEBurgess@gmail. com, or text or call 412-295-1838. 2715 Mosside Blvd. jewishmonroeville.com/mahjong.

Temple Sinai’s Rabbi

Daniel Fellman presents a weekly Parshat/Torah portion class on site and online. Call 412-421-9715 for more information and the Zoom link.

Join the Squirrel Hill AARP for their April meeting, open for all interested seniors. Stephen Och, a private client financial adviser, will speak on the pros and cons of private investments. Please bring individual snack packs of non-perishables to be donated to the homeless. For further information contact President Marcia Kramer at 412-656-5803. Refreshments will be served. 1 p.m. Rodef Shalom Congregation, Falk Library, 4905 Fifth Ave.


The Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh virtually presents two Melton courses back-to-back: “Ethics” and Crossroads.” In “Ethics,” learn how Jewish

teachings shed light on Jewish issues. “Crossroads” will present an emphasis on reclaiming the richness of Jewish history. 7 p.m. $300 for this 25-session series (book included). jewishpgh.org/series/ melton-ethics-crossroads.


Bring the parashah alive and make it personally relevant and meaningful with Rabbi Mark Goodman in this weekly Parashah Discussion: Life & Text. 12:15 p.m. For more information, visit bethshalompgh.org/life-text.


Join Rabbi Amy Bardack and Dor Hadash member Charlie White for a morning Shabbat service study, a nine-session, in-depth study of the structure and content of the siddur, with a focus on the prayers of Shabbat morning. 7:30 p.m. Free for members; $120 suggested donation for nonmembers. In-person with a virtual option. congregationdorhadash.shulcloud. com/event/class-on-shabbat-morning-services.html.

Bring your lunch and join Rabbi Jessica Locketz for Lunch Time Torah: Spring holiday edition. Learn about the spring holidays. O ered in person and online. 1 p.m. 4905 Fifth Ave. $54 for non-members. rodefshalom.org/lunch.


Join Rodef Shalom Cantor Toby Glaser for a 20-40 Kabbalat Shabbat. Get to know other Pittsburgh young Jewish professionals and close out the week with wine, refreshments and great company. Registration required. 9 p.m. 4905 Fifth Ave. rodefshalom.org.


Chabad of Monroeville invites you to celebrate Passover in the warm and inviting atmosphere of friends, family, and community at their community Passover Seder. 7:45 p.m. 2715 Mosside Boulevard, 15146. jewishmonroeville.com/seder.

Join Chabad of the South Hills for their Passover Seder. Enjoy gourmet Passover cuisine, handmade shmurah matzah and a meaningful and interactive seder. Register by April 15 for advanced pricing. Adults $65; Children $25. No one will be turned away due to lack of funds. 7:30 p.m. 1701 McFarland Road. chabadsh.com/seder.

The Pittsburgh Jewish Chronicle invites you to join the Chronicle Book Club for its April 14 discussion of “Golda Meir: Israel’s Matriarch,” by Deborah Lipstadt. From The Times of Israel: “In this examination of the pioneering Israeli leader, Lipstadt succeeds in painting a visceral portrait of Golda Meir as a gifted orator and blunt negotiator, a pragmatic, single-minded and often inflexible leader who was wholeheartedly devoted to the Zionist mission.”

Celebrate the holiday of Passover with Chabad of Squirrel Hill at a community Passover Seder with the warm company of family and friends. 7:30 p.m. $25 adult/$15 child. 1700 Beechwood Blvd. chabadpgh.com/seder.


Film Pittsburgh and The Arthur J. and Betty F. Diskin Cultural Endowment Fund of the Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh present JFilm Festival’s Opening Night screening of: “Left Alone Rhapsody: The Musical Memoir of Pianist John Bayless,” followed by a dessert reception, live performance by John Bayless and question-and-answer with Bayless and director Stewart M. Schulman 7 p.m. Carnegie Musical Hall. $118. 4400 Forbes Ave. filmpittsburgh.org.


Join Beth El Congregation of the South Hills for Hope & Healing on Zoom the first Thursday of each month, a 30-minute program led by Rabbi Amy Greenbaum. Chant, breathe, pray for healing and seek peace. Call Beth El at 412-561-1168 to receive the Zoom link. 5:30 p.m. bethelcong.org.


Join Rodef Shalom Congregation as Payadora Tango performs award-winning music from “Silent Tears, The Last Yiddish Tango.” From inspiring songs about survival to mournful laments, this program, based on poems, testimonies and writings of women who survived the Holocaust, conveys a depth of emotion rarely sung about. $18. 2 p.m. rodefshalom.org/ SilentTears.


Join the Holocaust Center of Pittsburgh for its annual Yom HaShoah Commemoration program honoring the victims of the Shoah, as well as survivors and their families, with readings, music and candle lightings. 7 p.m. Campbell Memorial Chapel, Chapel Hill Road, 15232. hcofpgh.org/event/2024-yom-hashoahcommemoration.


Join the 10.27 Healing Partnership for Virtual Legal Appeals Process Educational Program. Professor David Harris from the University of Pittsburgh’s School of Law will explain what appeals are and the function they serve. Free. 6 p.m. Zoom only. 1027healingpartnership.org/event/virtual-legalappeals-process-educational-program. PJC

Email: Contact us at drullo@pittsburgh jewishchronicle.org, and write “Chronicle Book Club” in the subject line. We will send you a Zoom link for the discussion meeting. Registration closes on April 12. Happy reading!

Join the Chronicle Book Club!
Your Hosts: Toby Tabachnick, editor of the Chronicle David Rullo, Chronicle senior staff writer
How and When: We will meet on Zoom on Sunday, April 14, at noon.
What To Do Buy: “Golda Meir: Israel’s Matriarch.” It is available at area Barnes & Noble stores and from online retailers, including Amazon and Barnes & Noble. It also has limited availability in the Carnegie Library system.
PJC — Toby Tabachnick

Passover & the Primary

This year, Passover begins at sundown on Monday, April 22, and PA’s presidential primary is Tuesday, April 23.

If you’d like to vote by mail, request your mail ballot NOW and return it by 8 p.m. on April 23.

April 2024

All PA registered voters are eligible to request a no-excuse mail ballot by 5 p.m. April 16. Your options to request a mail ballot include:

» Visit vote.pa.gov/ApplyMailBallot and request it online.

» Visit your county elections office, where you can apply for your mail ballot, receive it, complete it, and return it all in one visit.

» Complete a paper mail ballot application and send it to your county elections office. Have

Scan & apply for your ballot!

123456 8910111213 7 1516171819 20 14 22 23 24 25 2627 21 2930 28 PASSOVER BEGINS PRIMARY DAY
question? Call
Department of State’s year-round voter hotline
1-877-VOTESPA. Interpretation services are available in 200+ languages.
Deadline to apply: 5 p.m. April 16

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If you’re spending too much time managing IT and downtime issues, that’s time not spent growing your business. Let us take IT on, so you can do what you do best.

Volunteering in Israel leads young adults to constructive conversation in Pittsburgh

Jonah Keller felt helpless. As the Israel-

Hamas war progressed, countless invectives crossed his social media feeds. Keller, 19, decided to go to Israel.

“I felt powerless here,” the Case Western Reserve University student said. “I think the only thing I was able to do was piss off antisemites on Instagram.”

In late December, Keller boarded a plane to the Jewish state. Alongside fellow young Jewish adults, he spent two weeks volunteering. He picked grapefruits and flowers. He spoke with farmers and heard how Hamas’ Oct. 7 attack and the resulting war uprooted familiar life and presented new challenges.

Keller spent most of his time in an orchard, 23 miles north of Tel Aviv.

“They had a whole section of plants that were rescued from farms around Gaza on Oct. 7,” he said.

The transplanted crops offered a symbol of hope, he continued: “It just shows the Israeli resilience — that these things happen and still being able to rebuild from all this destruction.”

Like Keller, Matthew Garber traveled to Israel with other young adults. Garber’s trip, which occurred in March, also centered around volunteering.

“I decided to go because I wanted to make an impact in Israel,” he said. “There is so much work that needs to be done.”

Garber, 21, couldn’t help thinking how different the country looked.

“I was there over the summer with [Birthright Israel] Onward,” he said. “It was so surreal to be there seven months later and to see all this change.”

Apart from assisting farmers, Garber spent a day traveling to the Nova Music Festival Memorial.

Located near Kibbutz Re’im in southern Israel, the site has more than 300 saplings that were planted on Tu B’Shvat by Keren Kayemeth LeIsrael-Jewish National Fund, survivors of the Oct. 7 attack and family members of those who were murdered.

“Everyone needs to see it,” Garber said. “Go to these sites, bring awareness and share that with your friends.”

Ariel Noorparvar hasn’t had much time to process her experiences in Israel. She returned to Pittsburgh last week from a two-month trip to the Jewish state.

Noorparvar, 30, volunteered on farms, in schools, hospitals and anywhere she could.

During a week in Jerusalem, she packed mishloach manot before Purim, tied tzitzit for IDF soldiers, organized bags for people running in the Jerusalem Marathon and made sandwiches for students.

“The coolest thing that week was I went to

a wedding,” she said.

Technically, it was 10 weddings.

Noorparvar saw a post on Facebook seeking volunteers for a “Marrying the Warrior” service. Organized by the Savyon Chabad Community, the event featured simultaneous ceremonies for 10 couples with at least one partner serving in the IDF.

Each of the couples’ wedding plans had been disrupted by the war, i24NEWS reported.

“I ended up volunteering as a bartender, which is hilarious because I have no experience,” Noorparvar said. “It was one of these random things — and I went, had no idea what I was going to — and it was one of the coolest things in my life.”

As part of the event, each bride concurrently walked down the aisle toward her own chuppah.

“Afterwards, it turned into a rager,” Noorparvar said.

With nearly 1,500 people in attendance, the weddings not only “went flawlessly,” but offered a testament to resilience, she said. “It’s obviously not an easy time in Israel. But everyone was joyous, and celebrating together, and holding each other up.”

Noorparvar, Garber and Keller had all previously traveled to Israel with Birthright Israel. Their recent visits were supported by Onward, the Israeli government and the Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh, according to Adam Hertzman, the Federation’s associate vice president of marketing.

“Birthright Israel continues as always to connect young people to their Jewish heritage and to our ancestral homeland,

— LOCAL — FSA Consulting is powered by Frank and Stein Associates. MANAGED IT SERVICES | BUSINESS PHONE MANAGED WI-FI | BUSINESS INTERNET A proud member of the fsaconsulting.us (412) 228-3100 Contact Us
Please see Volunteers, page 11
 Jonah Keller picks grapefruits while volunteering in Israel. Photo courtesy of Jonah Keller


Miss Israel 2021 accosted in New York by ‘5,000 lunatics’ Israeli model and pastry chef Noa Cochva was assaulted by pro-Palestinian protesters in Times Square, on March 31, JNS.org reported.

Cochva, who won the Miss Israel title in 2021, and a group of friends began to sing Israeli songs after encountering the protesters.

“They decided to hold an extreme protest here. We knew it was not safe, we were afraid, but we could not stop ourselves and wanted to show a bit ourselves. We were 10 Israelis against 5,000 lunatics. We had to,” she wrote on Telegram.

“I was just standing there and my Star of David necklace peeked through my shirt. The difference is that we are people of reason and they are people of violence. With what logic do they demonstrate for peace with violence?” she wrote.

Survey: Most Americans, nearly all American Jews say antisemitism has risen since Oct. 7

Most Americans, and nearly 90% of American Jews, say they have seen a rise in antisemitism since Oct. 7, according to a new study, JTA.org reported.

But the survey also found that one in 10 respondents says Americans should be allowed to call for violence against Jews or Muslims. By contrast, 73% say such calls

should be prohibited.

The survey, on April 2 by the Pew Research Center, comes following widespread reports of rising antisemitism in the United States since the outbreak of the Israel-Hamas war on Oct. 7. It found that increasing shares of Americans, and American Jews, believe there is a high level of antisemitism and Islamophobia in the United States.

But along with the minority of respondents who say calls for antisemitic or anti-Muslim violence should be allowed, the survey showed that most Americans say advocacy for the end of a Jewish state or the prevention of a Palestinian one should also be permitted.

The survey showed that 67% of Muslims and 72% of Jews perceive “a lot” of discrimination against their own respective groups. But only 17% of Muslims reported seeing a lot of discrimination against Jews, the lowest number of any religious group polled. Among Americans overall, 40% say there is a lot of discrimination against Jews, double the figure from a 2021 poll.

Leading American medical journal faces down its history of endorsing Nazi race science

A leading American medical journal praised the Nazi Party’s medical practices in the 1930s and was slow to acknowledge Nazi Germany’s antisemitic abuse, according to a historical retrospective the journal is publishing this week, JTA.org reported.

The article in the New England Journal of Medicine addresses the publication’s history

Today in Israeli History

April 15, 1936 — Arab rebellion breaks out

of endorsing Nazi race science.

“We hope it will enable us to learn from our mistakes and prevent new ones,” wrote authors Joelle M. Abi-Rached and Allan M. Brandt, both historians of medicine affiliated with Harvard University.

Titled “Nazism and the Journal,” the article is part of a series written by independent historians that focuses on biases and injustices that NEJM has historically countenanced. Previous entries have addressed eugenics and racism in medicine as well as diversity in medical residency programs.

The article concludes that the journal “paid only superficial and idiosyncratic attention to the rise of the Nazi state” until the end of World War II, even as competitors dealt forthrightly with the health implications of the Nazis’ persecution of the Jews.

Germany to redesign numbers on national soccer jersey after realizing they look Like a Nazi symbol

The new line of German soccer jerseys by Adidas will be redesigned after customers realized the stylization of the number 44 resembled the infamous Nazi SS lightning bolt symbol, JTA.org reported.

The German Football Association, or DFB, shared in a statement on April 1 that the number designs had been submitted to the Union of European Football Associations for review, and “none of the parties involved saw any proximity to Nazi symbolism in the development process of the jersey design.”

Now the jerseys’ font is being refashioned so as not to evoke an association with

the SS, the force that took a leading role in perpetrating the Holocaust.

“Nevertheless, we take the information very seriously and do not want to provide a platform for discussions,” the DFB said, adding that it “will develop an alternative design for the number 4 and coordinate it with UEFA.”

White House ‘concerned’ after Netanyahu pledges to use new law to shutter Al Jazeera in Israel

The Biden White House said it was “concerning” that Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu planned to close down the Israeli offices of Al Jazeera, based on a law just passed by Israel’s Knesset, JTA.org reported.

Netanyahu, posting in Hebrew on X, formerly Twitter, said of the Qatar-based network that “the time has come to eject this herald for Hamas from our country.”

The new law, passed by a vote of 71-10 in the 120-member body, allows the government to shut down a news outlet that poses a threat to security for 45 days, and renew the shutdown for another 45 days, for as long as the IsraelHamas war persists.

But the White House expressed worry that the law would curtail freedom of the press.

“We believe in the freedom of the press,” White House spokeswoman Karine JeanPierre said on April 1. “It is critically important and the United States supports the critically important work journalists around the world do. And so and that includes those who are reporting in the conflict in Gaza.” PJC

— Compiled by Andy Gotlieb

Items are provided by the Center for Israel Education (israeled.org), where you can find more details.

April 12, 1951 — Knesset creates Yom HaShoah

The Knesset establishes the 27th of Nisan as Yom HaShoah, Holocaust Memorial Day. The date is chosen because it is close to the start of the Warsaw Ghetto uprising without intruding on Passover.

April 13, 1948 — Hadassah medical convoy is massacred Arab forces ambush a medical convoy bound for Hadassah Hospital on Mount Scopus in Jerusalem and kill 79 people, mostly doctors and nurses. A British military post 600 feet away fails to aid the convoy.

An Arab uprising begins when 10 cars are attacked in what appears to be a robbery near Tulkarm. Violence lasts until 1939, and the British shift toward pro-Arab policies and partition.

April 16, 1983 — Watches, art are stolen from Islamic museum

In what may be the costliest heist since modern Israel’s founding, watches, clocks and paintings worth tens of millions of dollars are stolen overnight from the Museum for Islamic Art in Jerusalem.

April 17, 1948 — Rabin leads relief for Jerusalem

Commanded by Yitzhak Rabin, the Harel Brigade delivers a convoy of supplies to Jewish residents of Jerusalem who have been blockaded since February. Arab forces again cut off the city April 20.

Jewish Community Center welcomes new senior director of Jewish life

The Jewish Community Center of Greater Pittsburgh has appointed Hindy Finman as its new senior director of Jewish life.

Before pursuing her rabbinical degree at Hebrew College in Boston, Finman worked in Colorado as a program coordinator helping to launch BaMidbar Wilderness Therapy. Finman, who majored in criminal justice at Temple University, also served nine consecutive summers at Camp Ramah in the Rockies, with roles including camper care liaison, inclusion specialist and head of the Jewish Outdoor Leadership Institute.

p Illana Shoshan

as a beauty queen

April 14, 1961 — All-Time Miss Israel is born Illana Shoshan, who wins the 1980 Miss Israel title and in 2010 is voted the Miss Israel of All Time, is born in Kfar Saba. She becomes a fashion model, actress, film producer and activist on women’s issues.

April 18, 1955 — Albert Einstein dies Physicist Albert Einstein, who declined an offer to serve as Israel’s president in 1952, dies at 76. He was drawn to Zionism after World War I, raised money for Hebrew University and first visited the Land of Israel in 1923. PJC

“The mission and initiatives of the JCC of Greater Pittsburgh, including the nationally recognized Center for Loving Kindness and Civic Engagement, deeply resonate with me,” Finman said in a prepared statement. “I can’t wait to continue the important work of building bridges of healing, hope, love and kindness across the Pittsburgh region and beyond.

“As a rabbi,” she continued, “I am continually pondering how we cater to the needs of those present and extend support to those absent, emphasizing the importance of kindness and care for marginalized communities and strategizing ways to address their needs.

My unwavering commitment lies in cultivating spaces that are not only inclusive and secure

but also demonstrate the warmth reflective of a

The search process for the role included more than 60 local, national and international applicants, and “there was an extensive vetting process,” said Jason Kunzman, the JCC’s president and CEO.

Kunzman will travel to Newton, Massachusetts, in June to attend Finman’s rabbinic ordination.

“I am excited for what Hindy will bring to Jewish life here at the JCC and across our community,” Kunzman said in a prepared statement.

Finman will succeed Rabbi Ron Symons, who will move to New York this summer. PJC —

started and model and became an actress, producer and activist.
By Robert Rafael, CC BY-SA 3.0, via Wikimedia Commons p Israeli Prime Minister David BenGurion tried to persuade Albert Einstein to serve as Israel’s second president. National Photo Collection of Israel
Toby Tabachnick
p Hindy Finman Photo courtesy of the JCC of Greater Pittsburgh


Continued from page 1

award but deflected praise for championing the Jewish state.

“With so much going on right now, I’m a very, very, small part of it,” he told the Chronicle.

For many, Fetterman’s actions since Oct. 7 belie that statement: His comments, social media posts and behavior have garnered praise, scorn and lots of attention.

Immediately following Hamas’ invasion of Israel and abduction of 253 hostages, the senator placed a photograph of each captive on the wall of his Capitol Hill office.

“We put them all up there. They’ve all been documented. The ones that were brought home, or the ones that were lost or murdered by Hamas, were shifted on the other wall. And they’re all going to be up there and monitored until everyone is brought back home,” Fetterman said. “We have to bring them all home.”

source and working with partner organizations like Federation.”

While the PAC will be involved in the campaign side of elections, including raising money and cutting checks, the bulk of the work done by Beacon Coalition will be based around education and advocacy through research and other tools, Kazzaz said.

“That will be the driver, the first round of candidate evaluations that we put up. It’s all about education and advocacy,” he said.

hen voters go to the site and click on a candidate, they’ll find categories like “Being an advocate for the Jewish community,” “Public statements,” “Votes” and “Allies.”

t the end of the evaluation, they’ll find a section titled “Our Take.” In the case of Pennsylvania District 12 Rep. Summer Lee, the assessment reads:

“Summer Lee, the incumbent in this

For the past six months, family members of hostages have traveled to Washington and spoken with the elected official.

Fetterman said he’s met with eight groups to date.

Keeping the hostages “front and center” is imperative, he said: “The first thing out of anyone’s mouth should have been like, well, let’s send them home.”

But as the Israel-Hamas war continued, the hostages’ plight was tied to armed action and political rhetoric.

Last week, Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu told families of about 20 people kidnapped by Hamas that returning the hostages is achievable only through “the continuation of the powerful military pressure,” Haaretz reported.


Continued from page 2

of messaging she’s putting out,” she said. “I’m proud to say that roughly 70% of our money was raised last quarter in the state of Pennsylvania, and 65% of our contributions were $250 or less.”

Patel called donors to her campaign a “representation of the diverse coalition that we’ve built in this district.”

In fact, it is Lee, Patel said, who has taken money and endorsements from questionable sources. She also pointed to the incumbent’s

all of this tragedy,” he said. “They own this whole tragedy and all of the death and the destruction. Where it’s at is because of the choices Hamas has made. They are holding innocent citizens — children, babies, women, elderly — we can’t forget. And that’s why it’s always been very front center with me. And that’s where it’s going to remain.”

Fetterman’s support of Israel and stance on the war has rankled some fellow Democrats and some pro-Palestinian activists.

On March 13, the No Dem Left Behind PAC tweeted, “We deeply regret supporting Senator John Fetterman he betrayed all of us.”

In January, protesters gathered outside the senator’s Braddock residence and shouted, “Fetterman, Fetterman, you can’t hide. You’re supporting genocide.”

Fetterman responded by silently waving an Israeli flag from his rooftop.

The senator told the Chronicle he welcomes

unwillingness to denounce the Uncommitted Movement, formed as a protest to President Biden’s support of Israel after Hamas’ Oct. 7 terrorist attack.

“She cannot bring herself to do that,” Patel said. “I think that’s more telling because, if there were a barometer of who was more a Democrat, I think I would be the one.”

When questioned about the Abraham Accords, Patel voiced support, then noted that the Biden administration is “doing all it can in the Middle East,” including providing humanitarian aid to Gaza, something she called “critical.”

she has had with concerned Jewish residents and leaders in her district. We strongly support Bhavini Patel in this race.”

Elhassid differentiated between a recommendation and an endorsement, noting that the organization might recommend more than one candidate in the same race.

“If we have a recommendation, we’ll say what our recommendation is,” she said. “And if we don’t have a recommendation, or we’re recommending multiple candidates, we’ll say that, as well, and we’ll explain why.”

As they expand their work, Elhassid said, they’ll also be looking for volunteers and donations.

“We’re open to refugees from other political organizations who feel politically homeless and need a place to apply their time and effort,” she said. PJC

David Rullo can be reached at drullo@ pittsburghjewishchronicle.org.

The Washington Post read, “Accusations of hypocrisy follow U.S. arms transfer to Israel.”

Fetterman wrote on X (formerly Twitter): “No conditions. Zero hypocrisy. Stand with Israel.”

“I’m just going to be on what I believe is the right side, and that’s how it’s going to continue,” Fetterman told the Chronicle.

Throughout the evening, the senator posed for photographs with honorees and attendees. A large cardboard cut-out of Fetterman’s likeness was placed on Shaare Torah’s stage.

In a humorous nod to conspiracy theorists who claim that Fetterman has been replaced by someone of his likeness, the politician acknowledged the life-size image and said, “That body double is an AI. I mean it really is. You don’t know how hard it was to find a six-foot-eight guy, bald and had a stroke.”

and all of the things that they’ve done. And now they are hiding behind civilians — whether it’s in hospitals, whether it’s in schools, and everything — and they’re just cowards. Now they are trying to create a situation. And I think it’s important that we stand and hold with Israel.”

Squirrel Hill resident and Shaare Torah member Michael Milch has visited Fetterman on Capitol Hill five times since Oct. 7.

“After each trip, I inevitably get asked why the senator is such a friend of ours and the state of Israel,” Milch said. “My answer has remained as consistent as the senator’s position on this conflict. I met the senator many years ago, and this is a family man — of integrity, compassion and justice. Sen. Fetterman is honest and unafraid to share the truth, even in the face of adversity.”

After the Biden administration authorized transferring weapons and jets to Israel totaling billions of dollars, a March 30 headline in

That doesn’t necessarily mean, though, that she is a strong supporter of the current Israeli governing coalition.

“Israel is a democracy,” Patel said. “There are people that are protesting in the streets right now, calling for the removal of Benjamin Netanyahu. I think it’s important that we allow that process to play out until we can move towards peace.”

The goal, Patel said, is lasting peace and a two-state solution.

“As we continue to engage in, hopefully, nuanced discussion, we cannot stoke hatred and we cannot stoke the danger of alienating

Shortly before leaving the event, Fetterman was asked why he decided to attend a shul dinner on Easter weekend.

“I showed up tonight to acknowledge the trauma to the community, and to let them know that this is a voice that you can always count on in D.C.,” he said. “And I don’t care what polls or what other people are saying.”

As he headed toward the synagogue’s Murray Avenue exit, Fetterman was stopped by Shaare Torah member Etti Martel.

The Israeli-born Squirrel Hill resident handed the senator a freshly baked chocolate babka. Fetterman called the unexpected gift “an embarrassment of riches.”

“Some of my colleagues love envelopes of cash or gold bars in their mattresses,” he said. “Baked goods — my family tore the last one apart.” PJC

Adam Reinherz can be reached at areinherz@pittsburghjewishchronicle.org.

people,” she said. “That just makes things worse. Right now, I feel like I’m running against someone who continues to do that and fails to understand the larger implications.”

The Coffee and Conversation program with Patel can be viewed on the CRC’s Facebook page. PJC

As of press time, Summer Lee had not accepted the CRC’s invitation for her own Coffee and Conversation.

David Rullo can be reached at drullo@ pittsburghjewishchronicle.org

p Sen. John Fetterman and David Knoll enjoy a laugh on March 31 Photos courtesy of Shaare Torah Congregation p Jeremy Kazzaz is the executive director of the Beacon Coalition, a new political organization focused on Jewish wellbeing. Photo courtesy of Jeremy Kazzaz


Healing Partnership:

Continued from page 3

different languages spoken and the different races that are here is just the kind of modeling of what a community ought to be at its best. To have the 10.27 located here is just a perfect blend of what community is about.”

New Kensington:

Continued from page 4

rooms in downtown New Kensington. By 1905, New Kensington’s Jewish community had grown to nearly 25 families; and that year, a small synagogue, located on the 1100 block of Third Avenue, was founded.

In 1907, Beth Jacob Congregation was incorporated. Four years later, the Chevra Kadisha Cemetery Association was established. In 1912, a religious school was created.

New Kensington’s Jewish community increased during the next 30 years. By the late 1950s, according to the Rauh Jewish Archives, Beth Jacob “reached its peak membership of 160 families.”

The following decade, however, marked the start of the city’s population decline.

Once ALCOA closed its New Kensington plant in 1971, depopulation furthered.


Continued from page 4

definitely learned a lot of time management and multitasking skills from this.”

For future research, she said she’d like to examine whether other parts of cognitive functioning could be affected by gut health, like memory or the symptoms of ADHD. As for her own future, Taub said she enjoyed learning about neuroscience and could see


Continued from page 5

The state representative said that after 26 years in public office, he knows how to get some things done and that it wasn’t too difficult to get funding for the organization.

“ We try and address all kinds of community needs. We have the ability to identify resources to do that,” he said. “It’s a privilege for us to do that and it’s a great use of taxpayer dollars.”

Costa too, is impressed with the work of the center, saying that it is responsible for healing some of the horrible wounds and pain that people have dealt with, and that it serves as an outlet for people to talk about their feelings and what occurred at the Tree of Life building in 2018.

The legacy of the 10.27 Healing Partnership, Costa said, “is that they stepped forward in a really critical time, in terms of our

James Kopelman, a lawyer and adjunct professor at the University of Pittsburgh School of Law whose family has been tied to New Kensington for nearly 130 years, recalled the factory’s closure when speaking with Postindustrial in 2019.

“It was like someone cut the heart out of the community,” he said.

Researching New Kensington’s history is a chance to broaden current residents’

herself exploring it after graduation. She finds neuroscience particularly interesting because it helps her understand how the brain works and how it affects everyday life, but she also has an interest in teaching.

Taub presented her research at the contest’s Culminating Program in Chicago in front of a crowd that she estimated at 100 people. Taub loves public speaking, she said, and the nerves of the day quickly wore off. The entire experience gave her the confidence to

she began participating in activities sponsored by Open Field.

derstanding, Palyszeski explained.

“I think that people imagine New Kensington as being very one-dimensional. They think about it as being kind of one-sided,” e said. “I am always encouraging people to think about things as complex, including New Kensington and its history.”

Thanks to their research, members of the Historical Society and the history club know more about New Kensington’s Jewish roots. Still, Palyszeski and Sabulsky have bigger plans.

The two are working with Lidji on an exhibit to showcase their findings.

With a goal of opening in June, the exhibit will be housed at the Historical Society’s museum at 1017 5th Ave. in New Kensington.

“We’re just trying to reach every and anybody we can to kind of show a different type of culture that was involved from the beginning,” Sabulsky said.

“What we have today in New Kensington

succeed, she said.

“If I can choose to do something, I can do it. I didn’t think at the beginning of this that I would actually be winning a trip to Israel and, like, doing all these things. But I did, and so now I’m, like, ‘OK, I can go find other contests, do that, I can go apply to places I don’t think I can get in,’” she said.

As for her trip to Israel, it’ll be Taub’s first time visiting the Jewish state. She’ll be going in late May for an eight-day trip along with

community, and the need to be able to c ommunicate with other folks and to have an ear for people to be able to work with and talk with, as they continue to grieve through this process. They were very timely and very relevant and very helpful to assist people to heal.” PJC

— and beyond in our little area of Western Pennsylvania — we have the Jewish community to thank for,” Palyszeski said.

Sabulsky hopes interested readers will partner with the effort.

“If anyone has any pictures, newspaper articles, or family history or stories pertaining to the Jewish culture in New Kensington, Arnold, Lower Burrell or the Alle Kiski Valley, please feel free to contact us at the Tri-City Historical Society,” he said.

Developing new links furthers an important and meaningful bond, Palyszeski said.

“Young people, old people, it doesn’t really matter to me,” he continued. “People in our area should be more proud of who they are, what their personal histories are and connections.” PJC

Adam Reinherz can be reached at areinherz@pittsburghjewishchronicle.org.

the other girls who placed in the top five of the contest.

“It’s definitely going to be so fun to spend it with a bunch of, like, nerdy girls like me. And also, like I said, I’ve never been to Israel before,” she said. “It’s so cool that all these places that I’ve been learning about my entire life, I’m going to be able to see.” PJC

Abigail Hakas is a freelance writer living in Pittsburgh.

Forzano was joined by Nateso Salivaire, a 16-year-old high school student whose parents are from the Democratic Republic of Congo. He was born in Burundi, where his family lived as refugees before coming to the United States in 2020.

Masoka Wilondja shared the stage with both Forzano and Salivaire. Like Salivaire, she attends Brashear High School and has been in the States since 2018, the same year


Continued from page 8 high school and college or trade school or the workforce.”

but in many ways, this connection has become even more important in the aftermath of the Oct. 7 terrorist attack,” Hertzman said. “As so many Jews in their teens and 20s focus solely on the actions of the current Israeli government, we need to remind them that Israel has a right to exist as a democratic Jewish state.”

Since returning to Pittsburgh, Garber

SHIM, an organization created in 1968 by a rabbi, priest and minister to provide food, clothing and social services to people in need in Pittsburgh’s southern suburbs, was represented by Director of Programs Courtney Macurak.

The nonprofit hosts six food pantry distributions at three locations each month, benefiting more than 8,000 individuals, half of whom are immigrants and refugees, Macurak said. It also operates a utility assistance program and provides back-toschool supplies for approximately 1,700 kids.

SHIM’s Family Support program aids mostly young families through homelessness

has tried telling friends and fellow students about his experiences in Israel.

“I think it’s definitely hard to have a constructive conversation with people right now, but I have,” he said. “It’s hard when a lot of people are ignorant and don’t know what’s happening. I’m not saying I know everything, but it’s shocking to me that people believe certain things.”

Keller has told as many people “who will listen,” about his trip, he said. “There is so much misinformation that goes around, and I feel like people don’t actually know

programs, parenting classes and other services, as well as hosting homework and enrichment programming.

“Our vision,” Macurak said, “is to see an inclusive community where everyone has the opportunity to thrive.”

E ach of the speakers spoke of their individual and family stories, coming to the States and the help provided by the organizations they represented. The youth discussed their hopes for the future now that they are living in the United States.

Salivaire said that he hoped to be an athlete.

“If I can’t make it as an athlete, I’d like to be a pilot,” he told the audience.

what it’s like to be in Israel. There are all these misconceptions.”

The teen said his chats have occurred on Instagram and over cups of coffee.

“Each individual person has a lot of capability to do good. And you don’t need to get on a plane to do that,” Keller said. “You can, but just talking to people and having genuine conversations can make a really big difference.” PJC

Parsai said has yet to decide on a career path, ending the formal part of the evening on a high note, telling those in attendance: “ There’s a lot of options ahead of me. I’m thriving everywhere. That’s what they tell me.

I think I have a bright future.”

Founded in 2000, JWF’s primary work is giving grants to organizations that create social change for self-identified women and girls in both the Jewish and general communities, primarily in Allegheny County. Since 2003, JWF has invested more than $1.8 million in the community. PJC

David Rullo can be reached at drullo@ pittsburghjewishchronicle.org. Adam Reinherz can be reached at areinherz@pittsburghjewishchronicle.org. p Ariel Noorparvar sorts flowers while volunteering in Israel. Photo courtesy of Ariel Noorparvar p Photo of Fourth Avenue, New Kensington hartjeff12 via Flickr at https://rb.gy/ol6pzt


I gave a college lecture on Jewish identity — and confronted a mob of video vigilantes

SAN BERNARDINO, Calif. — As I walked into the lecture hall on the Cal State University campus here, someone handed me a flyer. The headline screamed, “Genocide Enablers Are Not Welcome.” It denounced the evening’s speaker for being “actively involved in financing war crimes and crimes against humanity in Gaza,” and asked how could the university have dared to invite him to campus.

The flyer featured images of human suffering in Gaza and, smack in the middle, my name. I was the speaker the university had dared to invite. I was the object of the angry protest.

It did not matter, apparently, that I was not there to talk about Israel or the war, but to deliver a lecture on contemporary Jewish identity in honor of one of the region’s great rabbis, Hillel Cohn. To the dozens of students and faculty members chanting and waving signs outside the auditorium, it seems, any Jewish leader is subject to attack.

I am grateful that they did not disrupt my talk, and I never felt physically unsafe (after the event, I was whisked away by campus police — Mick Jagger-like — and escorted not just to my car, but all the way to the highway).

The depressing part was my post-lecture exchange — or, more precisely, non-exchange — with students.

I cannot even remember their exact questions because I was so distracted by the smartphones: Every person asking me something seemed to have a sidekick recording my every word and move.

In the days since, I have compared notes with friends and come to understand that such vigilante videography is a well-worn tactic of our time. An electronic ambush, a TikTok takedown: The idea is to catch an off-the-cuff hot-mic moment that can be clipped and posted to social media, bolstering the poster’s

clout and cause — and sullying the character of the sad sap caught in a gotcha moment.

I came to campus ready and willing to talk to anyone about pretty much anything — especially college students who hold views contrary to my own about Israel. But when confronted with the smartphone as a weapon, I shut down.

It was clear the students’ goal was not dialogue but performance. I told them I would be happy to talk, to listen and to debate, on the condition that they put their phone cameras down. An exchange of ideas — by all means. A clip for their Instagram feed — no way.

They refused; I walked away.

well-placed video clip can play an important role in our democratic process.

And when done wrong, when the cell phones come out, when dialogue is reduced to a performative exercise, both sides lose.

The person holding the recording device is not thinking about the exchange of ideas but about the clever or damning post to follow. As for the person being recorded — the other night, yours truly — the shields go up, the introspection goes down, and the possibility for reflective and creative dialogue disappears.

Exchanging ideas in a mind-changing dialogue requires a degree of vulnerability.

Dialogue means giving expression to who we are and listening attentively, intently, and most of all, empathetically to who the other person is.

It was all so very sad. An opportunity for dialogue and discourse, a chance to challenge someone’s views and have my own views challenged, a chance to see that despite our differences, we can dignify each other’s humanity. A lost chance, perhaps, to build a bridge.

There is nothing wrong with the proliferation of smartphones in the public square — and sometimes everything right with our ability to record in real time. Documenting a fender-bender, catching a comedian using an offensive slur — accountability is a good thing. When I told this story upon my return, our rabbinic intern, former Forward reporter Aiden Pink, reminded me that it was only because of a 17-year-old bystander’s phone video that George Floyd’s death was exposed for the brutal police murder that it was.

Long before our present technology, Louis Brandeis, in his famous 1913 article “What Publicity Can Do,” reflected on the wickedness of people shielding wrongdoers, making his famous comment that “sunlight is said to be the best of disinfectants.” When done right, a

One must be able to state one’s views plainly and honestly, sharing the personal and collective experiences that root them and give rise to them. Our beliefs are reflections of our biographies; to share them is to share part of ourselves.

Dialogue means giving expression to who we are and listening attentively, intently, and most of all, empathetically to who the other person is. An idea is tendered, countered, sharpened, reframed and tendered again and again and again. We allow our views to be challenged, and we interrogate them ourselves, even as we challenge the thoughts and opinions of our sparring partners.

There is a reason that every historic negotiation — be it Oslo or Bretton Woods — happened in some press-free location. For the parties to speak their hearts and minds and, most daring of all, expose their doubts to another, it cannot be performative. You have to be able to be human — to go for a walk in the woods and chat with your guard down.

Absolute truth belongs to God alone. The debate of ideas is meant to nudge us closer, but never fully to, that truth. Sometimes, lo

Understanding an old joke in a new way

They tried to kill us. We won. Let’s eat.

As Passover approaches and we begin preparing for the seder, this old joke will no doubt be heard often in the coming days. It is a familiar and tonguein-cheek explanation of what the seder is all about, at least for some. In a time when some regrettably search for ways to abbreviate their seder, this is “abbreviation” on steroids.

The joke is meant to be humorous; however, it is not inaccurate. At the seder,

we begin by telling the story of how Pharaoh enslaved us with an ultimate plan to annihilate us and how we won and survived. Then we eat.

Moreover, this phrase is often heard not just on Passover, but on other holidays that commemorate moments when the plans of our enemies were thwarted. Each holiday has its own “commemorative” food item: On Purim, we read the story of Esther and then eat hamantaschen. On Chanukah, we light the candles and then eat latkes and jelly doughnuts. On Israel’s Independence Day, we remember the great struggle and victory in 1948 and then enjoy hummus and falafel.

One could argue that since the theme of the redemption from Egypt is embedded in the Kiddush that inaugurates Sukkot, Shavuot and Shabbat, it is also applicable to those holidays.

As I write this, we have just celebrated Purim and are preparing for Passover. With the events of Oct. 7 and its aftermath still at the forefront of our collective Jewish psyche, latkes on Chanukah and hamantaschen on Purim were consumed with less gusto. Unless the situation in Israel dramatically improves over the next couple weeks, the brisket and matzah ball soup may not be as enjoyable as in previous years.

Nevertheless, the old joke will still be told, perhaps serving as verbal “comfort food” at a time when our collective Jewish anxiety level is quite high. But I would suggest that, especially now, we should understand it as more than a joke. On the contrary, in many ways, it summarizes what it means to be a Jew.

They tried to kill us . From ancient Pharaoh and his subjects to Amalek and

and behold, we change our minds. In all times, hopefully, we come to appreciate another person’s views as situated in their humanity.

In the words of the late rabbi, scholar and activist Arthur Hertzberg, “One cannot affirm one’s own certainties without engaging in the counter-certainties of another.”

In my 25 years as a rabbi, of the incalculable number of people who have voiced disagreement with me, it has been those who invited me for a coffee to quietly debate a position that are not only the people whose opinions I respect most, but the people whose views have shaped my own.

The student body of Cal State San Bernardino is diverse; 80% of the undergrads are the first in their families to attend college. The epilogue to my evening — both solace and sorrow — was an email I received upon my return, the reflections of a Jewish student present at the lecture, the child of immigrants from the former Soviet Union.

He expressed gratitude for my talk but said the protests made him lonely and scared. Given his family history, he was well aware of the toxic effects of non-democratic and antisemitic regimes. How sad, this student wrote, to see those same hardened hatreds now take root here.

The once-fertile soil of our country has grown less and less capable of producing the fruits of reasoned debate. As a Jewish community in our charged times, we feel the pinch acutely.

If you want to talk about war, peace, humanitarian values — just tell me where and when, and I’ll show up. You bring your ideas, I’ll bring mine, and let’s be vulnerable one with another and appreciate our shared humanity, whatever the differences in our views may be. And let’s leave the smartphones in our pockets. PJC

Elliot Cosgrove is the senior rabbi at Park Avenue Synagogue in Manhattan in New York City. This story originally appeared in the Forward. To get the Forward’s free email newsletters delivered to your inbox, go to forward.com/newsletter-signup.

Haman, medieval Christendom and Islam, Hitler and the Nazis, and modern-day Hamas and its supporters, our enemies “have arisen through the endless years … filled with a futile thought: To make an end of that which God has cherished” (“Gates of Repentance,” p. 431).

We won. Despite centuries of persecution and oppression both physical and spiritual, wanton degradation and ruthless slaughter, we have refused to disappear and refused to wallow in victimhood. We have remained resilient and committed to our ancient mandate to be “a light unto the nations.”

Let’s eat . The first two sentences of the joke remind us of our past. The third

Guest Columnist Rabbi Elliot Cosgrove
Please see Kozberg, page 13
Guest Columnist Rabbi Cary Kozberg


Chronicle poll results: Passover seders

Last week, the Chronicle asked its readers in an electronic poll the following question: “How many Passover seders will you host or attend this year?” Of the 274 people who responded, 49% said two; 40% said one; 9% said none; and 2% said they weren’t sure. Comments were submitted by 33 people. A few follow.

Traditions, such as attending seder on Passover night, are vital to the future of the Jewish people.

I have no family around and am by myself. I have no Jewish friends to spend the holiday with.

I would like to attend one, but I have a schedule conflict.

How many Passover seders will you host or attend this year?

I am pleased to say that here at Concordia of the South Hills we will have a lovely Passover seder, as usual. My relatives have died, moved away or are estranged over political issues.


Continued from page 12

invites us to respond in the present: Let’s celebrate as Jews have always celebrated — by eating. But let this food not only satisfy our appetites but nourish our souls, and prepare us spiritually and psychologically for whatever the future holds.

The phrase “in every generation” appears twice in the Passover Haggadah: “In every generation, some rise up against us to

Response to an ally

destroy us, but the Holy One, Blessed Be He, delivers us from their hands” and “In every generation, a person should regard him/herself as personally having gone forth from Egypt.”

This means, “In every generation,” they tried to kill us

“In every generation,” we won, thanks to Divine intervention.

“In every generation,” let us see ourselves as redeemed from both physical and spiritual bondage, now free to live as Jews

To James D. Lucot Jr., who wrote the letter titled “Fear in the air” (April 5): What a sweet letter; what a brave thing to write.

I feel so sad, Mr. Lucot, that you had to learn this feeling all at once. We Jews have lived with being on alert, as you note, for thousands of years. We teach it to our children along with their religious and history studies.

We are not surprised when we are attacked, though we would prefer to avert it. (Sometimes we are caught off guard.) We love and trust our neighbors until proven overwhelmingly otherwise, and even then we are open to reconciliation. And we are stubborn. Four thousand years’ worth of stubborn. We continue with our lives, with the usual joys and sorrows that inure to being human. With welcoming open arms to others. And we don’t expect our guests to understand all at once!

What can you do? Just continue to be a friend. The stronger our network against hate, the safer we all are.

And maybe one other thing. Perhaps you will see the similarities in the way the citizens of Israel live, with an active military, mandatory conscription and an Iron Dome protecting their tiny country. Israel is constantly under attack from all sides, and this is the way they live. Sometimes they, too, are caught off guard.

I was raised in Pittsburgh with two seders. I will always take part in two seders.

I may be a glutton, but I’m not a glutton for punishment. Seders last for hours, and I confess that I don’t have the patience or stamina anymore for interminable praying and singing.

We’re actually also going to a third: a third-night seder at a local retirement facility.

My kids are visiting the week before Pesach, so we’ll do my grandkids’ first seder a week early!

I always have one seder, but this year we will be out of town helping with a new grandchild! I feel sad about not being able to do a seder though.

I am 81 and I do all the cooking for the seder; one seder is all I can manage.

We get together as a family to read from the Haggadah (going around the table, reading a few paragraphs; even the great-grandchildren participate) and a cheer goes up at the words “festive meal!”

To anyone who can’t attend a seder, don’t give up: There are so many organizations who are happy to help you find one! PJC

— Compiled by Toby Tabachnick

Chronicle weekly poll question: What type of topping do you prefer on matzah? Go to pittsburghjewishchronicle.org to respond. PJC

The dangers of ‘anti-Zionist propaganda’

Mr. Mark Fichman’s op-ed is a stark example of what a steady diet of anti-Zionist propaganda will do to an otherwise sane mind (“J Street is committed to electing officials who are pro-Israel and pro-democracy,” April 5).

People must bear in mind that the stage for the so-called “pro-Palestinian” movement was set way back in the 1970s by the former Soviet Union and Iran and nurtured along

have been called to live.

Therefore, let’s eat! As we enthusiastically enjoy the traditional seder foods, may we also develop and nurture an appetite for Torah and Jewish learning—the “food” that has always nourished Jewish souls.

Adonai oz l’amo yetain; Adonai y’varekh et amo bashalom. “Hashem will give strength to His people. Hashem will bless His people with peace.”

May the food we were given after we left

Egypt, the food that has sustained us as a people and given us our unique purpose in the world, continue to strengthen us in this difficult time and prepare us for what history has in store for us. PJC

Rabbi Cary Kozberg is the rabbi of Temple Sholom in Springfield, Ohio, and the Jewish chaplain at Kensington Place in Columbus. He has been an advocate of Jews learning self-defense for more than three decades. This first appeared on JNS.

for decades by an assortment of leftist and Marxist groups with a thinly veiled agenda. Using sexy pacifist calling cards preaching raindrops and lollipops to the young and/or underinformed, impressionable populace has been, unfortunately, a successful strategy. But it’s time to call out these folks for the dangerous, calculating agents of destruction that they are.

J Street, Jewish Voice for Peace and IfNotNow are dangerous. They are to be condemned, castigated and denounced.

Jon B. Tucker, MD Pittsburgh J Street’s bubble

In the April 5 issue of the Chronicle, Mark Fichman’s column extols the virtues of J Street’s love for Israel, democracy and peace (“J Street is committed to electing officials who are pro-Israel and pro-Democracy”). His column is full of the usual Netanyahu- and Trumpbashing we often see from J Street and seeks to exemplify its partisan approach for its love for Israel. What seems startling is J Street’s boasts about its support for pro-Israel, pro-peace, pro-democracy candidates to Congress. Did I miss something? Did J Street withdraw its endorsement and support for Congresswoman Summer Lee? Ms. Lee, who wore a keffiyeh at the recent State of the Union address and proudly stands behind Rashida Tlaib and Cori Bush, is no friend of Israel — and, for that matter, for the vast majority of her Jewish constituents. Ms. Lee leans closer to a position of “no Israel.” Is that J Streets’ position?

When 40 rabbis across the spectrum of our community raise concerns about Ms. Lee’s rhetoric and votes — at a time of war and a major threat to Israel’s existence and to Jews around the world — J Street seems to be in a bubble.

J Street appears once again fixated more on its political agenda than the security and safety of Israel.

Rocky Wice

Squirrel Hill

49% Two
9% None 40% One 2% Not sure — LETTERS — We invite you to submit letters for publication. Letters must include name, address and daytime phone number; addresses and phone numbers will not be published. Letters may not exceed 500 words and may be edited for length and clarity; they cannot be returned. Send letters to: letters@pittsburghjewishchronicle.org or Pittsburgh Jewish Chronicle, 5915 Beacon St., 5th Floor, Pittsburgh, PA 15217 We regret that owing to the volume of correspondence, we cannot reply to every letter.

Life & Culture

Taktouka: a tasty roasted pepper salad

Taktouka is one of my favorite salads to prepare and I love my version, which keeps the vegetables chunky but the garlic and spices on the milder side.

There are quick versions of this salad, but I prefer to simmer it longer to get a velvety tomato sauce.

I make this before Shabbat, but we eat it continually during the week. Taktouka is amazing as a dip for pita or challah.

Nobody makes salatim (salads) like the Jews of North Africa, who have so much talent and thankfully shared these foods with the rest of us. It’s not uncommon to have a Friday night meal consisting only of fish and many kinds of salatim — and by many kinds, I’m talking about 10 to 15 different salatim on the table at once. I love a meal where the vegetables take the spotlight.

I especially like to put this salad on a schnitzel sandwich because it adds so much flavor and tastes great at room temperature. This recipe lasts for several weeks if stored in a tightly sealed container in the refrigerator.


5-6 sweet colored and green peppers

1 large yellow onion, finely chopped

2-4 tablespoons olive oil

3 cups fresh tomato, chopped

3-4 garlic cloves, minced

2 teaspoons tomato paste

1½ teaspoons sea salt

1½ teaspoons paprika or Aleppo pepper

2 teaspoons cumin

I use a mix of red and green peppers and throw in orange or yellow in place of red if I have them on hand. If you have peppers that are starting to wrinkle, this is a perfect recipe for them. I prefer to use 2 green peppers and 4 sweet peppers for this recipe.

Wash and pat dry the peppers.

Line a baking sheet (with sides) with foil and place the rack in your oven in the upper third, close to the broiler. I broil these on a high setting, but if you don’t have a broiler, set the oven temperature to 450 F — they will

take a few minutes longer per side to cook.

Broil the peppers for about 10 minutes before checking on them. There should be a nice amount of charring on the pepper, but you should flip them over before they are totally blackened.

Cook on the second side for another 10-15 minutes. When the peppers are ready, they will still have some firmness to them, but they will start to deflate when you touch them with tongs. When the peppers are cooked, remove them from the oven.

Put them into a plastic bag and seal it, or use a large plastic storage container to steam. Just pop them in, put on a tight-fitting lid and let them rest until they are cool enough to touch. This is an important step. Steaming the peppers in a sealed container (or any roasted vegetable) is how you get the skin to come off easily. This works for eggplant and tomatoes as well.

Remove the stems and peel off the skin before removing the seeds.

Once the peppers have been peeled, quickly rinse them under cool water to

remove any remaining seeds.

I prefer a chunky pepper salad, so I cut them into ¼-inch wide strips, but you can dice these if you want a smoother consistency.

Set aside until the tomato sauce base is ready.

Place a pot or sauté pan over medium-low heat and add 2-3 tablespoons of olive oil. Let the oil warm for a minute before adding the diced onion.

Sauté for 10 minutes or until the onion is soft and translucent before adding the garlic, then cook for 1 more minute before adding the salt, cumin and pepper of your choice.

If the pot looks dry, add another tablespoon or two of olive oil and stir the spices into the onion until well combined.

Add the tomato paste and diced tomatoes at this time, cover the pot and simmer for 10-15 minutes. If your peppers are not yet ready, turn the heat off of the pan and let the tomato sauce sit covered until you’re ready to add them.

When you’re ready to combine the

medium-low, stir in the peppers and cook covered for about 20 minutes.

Uncover the pot, reduce the heat to simmer and cook for an additional 10 minutes. I keep a little bit of liquid in the sauce, but you can simmer uncovered until it’s at your preferred consistency. If you prepare my chunky version but then think that you’d prefer a smoother sauce, use an immersion blender to break down the big chunks, but be careful to not to puree the sauce entirely.

Test the salad and adjust the salt or spices to your taste. Make this recipe to your preference; if you want more paprika or cumin, add it in ½ teaspoons until you reach your desired flavor.

This salad serves beautifully hot or cold. You can drizzle a little extra olive oil on the top and garnish with chopped parsley if desired. Enjoy and bless your hands! PJC

& Seni-Private Space Available
— FOOD —
Jessica Grann is a home chef living p Taktouka Photo by Jessica Grann p Simmering taktouka Photo by Jessica Grann

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Life & Culture

Israeli dance company to perform at the Byham

Randal Miller has wanted to bring Israel’s innovative Vertigo Dance Company to Pittsburgh since he saw the troupe perform several years ago at the Baryshnikov Arts Center in New York City. The pandemic, though, got in the way.

Miller, the director of programming for the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust, said he’s thrilled to finally bring the Jerusalem-based dance troupe to the Byham Theater later this month for its Pittsburgh premiere.

“I’m really excited to be finally getting this company here after all these years of working on it,” Miller said.

Vertigo was founded by Noa Wertheim and Adi Sha’al in 1992. The company has a prominent presence in the Israeli dance scene and also has performed around the world — including in Korea, Germany and Turkey — serving as an ambassador for Israeli art.

“We see Vertigo as a messenger of Israeli art at its best, at home and abroad, that comes to bring people closer together and touch them through the language of the body,” Vertigo’s website touts. “As such, the company combines, in addition to its performances, master classes, workshops,

co-productions with other companies from around the world and invites artists from different fields to create together with the company.”

Vertigo will perform its original piece

Polling Place Changes


the First Day of Passover (April 23rd)

Polling places normally housed in Jewish organizations/synagogues will be relocated.

Know Before You Go!

See the list of these changes at www.lwvpgh.org/pollingplace

If your polling place has moved...

Your vote is your voice!

“Makom” at the Byham on April 20 at 8 p.m. In Hebrew, “makom” means “place.”

“In ‘Makom,’ Wertheim deals with the constant search to return to the place that brings us closer to ourselves, in a world that has gone out of place and lots its balance,” a spokesperson for Vertigo said. The piece “continues the same ecological and spiritual concept that the Vertigo Dance has adopted, creating a space in which t here is a strong feeling and atmosphere, which cannot be ignored. The work presents a vacuuming space that makes you want to stay inside it and do nothing. The main thing is not to go outside, the main thing is to stay suspended between nothingness, to linger, before immediately returning to the world.”

The set and costumes of “Makom” are minimalistic, with an emphasis on the dancers. The set is comprised of wooden sticks forming platforms, ladders and bridges, and the costumes are in neutral hues.

Wertheim created the piece in 2022 “to bridge between right and left, between myself and my relationship with others,” she told Boston’s Jewish Journal last month. “We can all be gentle and we can all be violent. It is our choice as human beings.”

The debut of Vertigo in Pittsburgh is part of the Pittsburgh Dance Council’s 53rd season. The council joined the Pittsburgh Cultural Trust as a programming division in 2002 to bring contemporary dance companies from around the world to Pittsburgh.

Vertigo, Miller said, is “a great company that we’ve been working on for years. For this city to see new work from around the world is one of the cornerstones of what we try to do here. And after all this time, it’s finally working out.” PJC

Toby Tabachnick can be reached at ttabachnick@pittsburghjewishchronicle.org.

Day is
sponsored by You will receive a postcard in the mail with your new polling location. There will be signs posted at your old polling place directing you to the new location.
p Vertigo Dance Company in “Makom” Photo by Ziv Barak p Vertigo Dance Company in “Makom” Photo by Ziv Barak


4905 5th Ave. Pittsburgh PA 15213

In person only with a special breakfast

We’ll explore the fundamental section of the Torah called “Kedoshim” (elevated behavior), and clarify the intent of the numerous legal provisions to be found there.


Education Full inclusion is a core value of Jewish Pittsburgh. The Jewish Federation welcomes invitees of all abilities, backgrounds, races, religious affiliations, sexual orientations and gender identities. The cost of taking a course is never a barrier to participation. If price is an issue, or if you need accommodation for a disability, please contact Molly Newman at learning@jfedpgh.org
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REGISTER TODAY QUESTIONS? Contact Patti Dziekan at pdziekan@jfedpgh.org or 412-992-5221. Classes are generously supported by the Elaine Belle Krasik Fund for Adult
or 412-992-5243 so that we

Torah Celebrations

B’nai Mitzvah

Maayan Orli Aronson Dubowitz is the daughter of Jay Aronson and Tamara Dubowitz, and granddaughter of Leslie and Jean Dubowitz, and Karen and Richard Heilman. She is in seventh grade at the Ellis School. Outside of school, Maayan swims for the JCC Sailfish. She spends her summers at her beloved Camp Yavneh in New Hampshire. She loves animals and hopes to own several golden retrievers and assorted rescue dogs when she is older. Maayan loves to travel and spend time with her friends, preferably in person but if not, FaceTime is almost as good. She has an older brother, Ezra, an older sister, Talia, and two dogs, Thabo and Khaya. She will become a bat mitzvah on April 13 at Congregation Beth Shalom.

Asher Max Fidler will be called to the Torah to celebrate his bar mitzvah on Saturday, April 13, at Beth El Congregation of the South Hills. Asher is the son of Joe and Leah Fidler of Upper St. Clair, grandson of Samuel and Michelle Markovitz of Upper St. Clair, and Irving and Diane Fidler of Reading, Pennsylvania. He is big brother to Eli Fidler. Asher is a seventh grader at Ft. Couch Middle School in Upper St. Clair. In his free time, he enjoys basketball and video games. For his bar mitzvah project, Asher volunteered with the Miracle League of the South Hills as a Buddy.

Evan Abraham Young, son of Jeff and Laura Young of Mt. Lebanon, and younger brother of Addie, became a bar mitzvah at Temple Emanuel of South Hills on Saturday, April 6. Evan’s grandparents are Nathan Young (and the late Elinor Young) of Squirrel Hill, and the late Carol and Edward Hopkins of Rockville, Maryland. Evan enjoys all things sports and has a keen interest in history and geography. When he’s not playing on the Xbox, he can be found on the soccer field or basketball court, or hanging with the family dog, Manny. For his mitzvah project, Evan is collecting dry dog and cat food for Animal Friends.

Birth Announcement

Kenny Denmark of Anaheim Hills, California, Linda Silberberg Denmark of Corona, California, and Rosario Parra from Oregon announce the birth of their grandson.  Nathan Mateo Denmark was born on Jan. 23, 2024. Parents are Howie and Sara Denmark of Lake Elsinore, California. PJC

Tazria : The sin of complicit silence

“Losing a friend is one of the great, under-reported tragedies of adult life.’’

This poignant truth, shared between two members of a clergy search committee in Michelle Huneven’s 2022 novel “Search,” highlights oft-unspoken challenges that may arise within groups. As the committee struggles to identify what they seek in a spiritual leader, Huneven’s tale presents “a portrait of a community working toward that most elusive of goals — a unanimous decision.”

Huneven’s “Search” spotlights “the emotional questing that brings people into spiritual community,” while also chronicling “the rivalry, pettiness and basic human failings that manifest in those [same spaces].” While the congregation in the story is Unitarian, the group dynamics described are surely the same within communities and organizations of all traditions and types.

shows itself when there is a felt need to decide quickly, to overlook or obscure facts, and whenever unanimity is sought as proof of a group’s rectitude.

How does such a contagion stealthily spread among otherwise judicious adults?

In the face of swelling sentiment among an increasingly persuasive and powerful subset of any group, individuals may fear raising alternate ideas or objecting to a process that is moving with undue haste. This is true even when a contrary point of view would clearly be in keeping with the community’s foundational values.

Speaking truth to power within a group marching in lockstep is risky. For doing so, an open-minded member risks suffering that which befell those afflicted with Tazria in ancient times. That is, independent thinkers may be summarily isolated and ostracized for fear of their infecting the larger community.

In this way, erstwhile courageous people are cowed into a complicit silence. Be assured, dear reader, it happens more often than any of us would like to imagine.

How does such a contagion stealthily spread among otherwise judicious adults?

Similarly, this week’s Torah portion, Tazria, offers us insight into risks inherent in group decision-making, especially when participants are emotionally invested, opinions are strongly held, there is a rush to judgment, and relationships (that is, friendships) will be forever impacted by what transpires behind closed doors.

While the Torah teaches Tazria was a contagious medical condition, our Rabbinic commentators have long suggested that we understand Tazria to be akin to gossip. Or echoing the lyrics of the “West Side Story” song “Gee, Officer Krupke” — and with a hat tip to Leonard Bernstein — we might best understand Tazria to be a social disease.

Pernicious speech is a social contagion, to be sure. But an even more Tazria-esque harm to society may well be the sin of silence, especially when enforced through the power of groupthink, peer pressure and a conspiratorial code of omertá.

Groupthink, defined as “making decisions in a way that discourages individual responsibility,” is a lurking, social danger that can strike at any time, but mostly

Parshat Tazria (like Huneven’s “Search”) comes, therefore, with a warning:

No matter how high-minded or virtuous one believes oneself to be, the insidious nature of the “Tazria of silence” is a poison pill for all.

Thus, when members of any group preach unanimity, circle their wagons and swear an oath of silence, that group’s pronouncements ought to be probed for a willingness to deliberate methodically, eschew bias, entertain new evidence and welcome minority opinions.

Tazria teaches us the importance of maintaining standards (not silence) when managing both medical and social contagions. To which Huneven adds, in the midst of this sacred work, the loss of friendships is tragic.

Jewish tradition’s lesson? We ought never elevate process over people. PJC

Rabbi Aaron Bisno is the senior rabbi at Temple Ohav Shalom and the Frances F. & David R. Levin Rabbinic Scholar at Rodef Shalom Congregation. This column is a service of the Greater Pittsburgh Jewish Clergy Association.

Rabbi Aaron Bisno Parshat Tazria Leviticus 12:1 – 13:59 5885 Forbes Avenue • Squirrel Hill, PA 15217 phone #: 412-521-8100
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BARISH: Shirley Jean Barish passed away peacefully at home on Friday, March 29, 2024, at age 100. She was surrounded by her three children and son-in-law. Shirley was the beloved wife of the late Stanley S. Barish and the daughter of Morris and Malvina Chotiner. She was the loving mother of Nancy Moeller (Thomas Moeller), Richard Barish and Steven Barish. She also leaves behind her dear brother Gerald Chotiner (Barbara), her “favorite” grandson Michael Moeller (Indra), and her two great-grandsons, Ashton and Anthony, whom she greatly enjoyed. She also held dear her nieces, nephew, and cousins and their families. Her brother, Stanley Chotiner, and his wife, Audrey, preceded her in death. Shirley was born in Pittsburgh and attended Allderdice High School. She completed one year at Carnegie Tech (Carnegie Mellon), studying interior design, until World War II interrupted her studies. Shirley married Stan in 1943, a marriage that lasted 79 years until Stan’s death in 2022. Her husband thought she was as smart as she was lovely. Her many friends considered her a maven in various subjects. She was an avid reader of fiction and kept a dictionary close by. She wanted to be up to date on what was going on in the world, even in her 100th year of life. Shirley loved playing bridge. She would have weekly bridge games with her friends and was a faithful reader of the bridge columns in the paper. She attended to all the household finances and helped with bookkeeping at Stanley›s camera store, The Fotoshop. She was an excellent cook, searching cookbooks and magazines to find good recipes. She loved to host family holiday dinners, summer cookouts on the patio, and birthday parties for her children, as well as occasional parties for her friends. Along with her family, Shirley’s friends were important to her. She and Stan would unfailingly get together with them for weekly dinners out. She was also a talented seamstress who could create both practical items as well as custom decorative accessories for her home. In her later years she became knowledgeable at using the computer. Shirley was a good conversationalist, who made you feel special when she talked with you. Shirley was fortunate to travel to many places around the world with Stan, including Caribbean islands, Spain, the Canary Islands, Hawaii and Japan. One of their travel adventures involved the whole family and their friend’s family living on a houseboat cruising down the Allegheny River. They also took a road trip across the country through the Carolinas, New Orleans and out West. When they took up sailing, she enjoyed their long weekend trips to Erie to sail on the lake, often inviting family and friends to come up to their boat. Shirley will be dearly missed by her family and friends. Services were held at Ralph Schugar Chapel, Inc. Interment private. Contributions may be made in Shirley’s honor to Carnegie Library (carnegielibrary.org/give) where she liked to browse the shelves, find new books and check out videos, or to WQED (donate.wqed.org/ wqed/donate) that presented the cooking shows she enjoyed. schugar.com.

DONATO: Barbara Boas Donato of Squirrel Hill, age 72. Beloved wife of Morgan Donato III. Loving mother of Erica Donato (Alex) and Harrison Donato (Allyssa), and daughter of the late Harry and Annabelle Boas. Sister of Edward Boas (Marlene), Paula Boas (James) and Robert Boas (Cynthia). Passed away peacefully March 28, 2024. Anyone who knew Barb was struck by her illuminating light. She was passionate about her career as a speech pathologist and her time working at St. Francis Hospital. Barb always found a way to cherish every moment big and small. She valued family and togetherness and enjoyed dance, art, meditating, cooking and being around loved ones. A celebration of life will be held at a later date. Services and interment are private. In lieu of flowers, the family suggests contributions be made to The Bili Project Foundation GI Cancers Alliance, 303 Fuller Road, Suite 1, Central Square, New York 13036, gicancersalliance.org, or a charity of one’s choice. Arrangements entrusted to Ralph Schugar Chapel, Inc. schugar.com

page 20

Jewish Association on Aging gratefully acknowledges contributions from the following:

A gift from ...

In memory of...

Anonymous .Isadore Berenfield

Anonymous .Sidney Lebovitz

Anonymous .Scott A Samuels

Stewart Barmen .Abe Turk

Robert Bogdan

Alice Bogdan

Robert & Kathleen Grant .Helen H Berman

Joan Israel Sophia E Israel

Karen R Jurgensmier

Sylvia Rosenfeld

Linda Levine Florence Rosenfeld Myers

Ivan Marcus Israel Marcus

Maxine & Larry Myer

George Zeidenstein

Maxine & Larry Myer .David A Myer

The Reisner Family

The Reisner Family

Norma Brodell

Lawrence Brodell

The Reisner Family .Joanne Brodell Alpern

The Reisner Family .Sarah Davis

William Davis

The Reisner Family

Linda & Marty Supowitz Gertrude Weinberg Supowitz

Nathan Young Ida Shrut

Sunday April 14: Matilda Beck, Sarah S Berman, Anna F Davidson, Sadie Farkas, M Emanuel Heller, David T Horvitz, Myer Klevan, Sidney H Lebovitz, Bessie Lundy, Philip Singer, Sarah Sontag, Sam Vixman, Bernard Winer

Monday April 15: Allen Stein Amdur, Isadore Berenfield, Louis Farkas, B Joseph Green, Saul Guttman, Max Handelsman, Julia Hepps, Morris J Klein, Arthur Kramer, Mildred Lebovitz, Helen Mermelstein, Rose Beck Nathanson, Isadore M Peril, David Pollack, Shirley Rattner Lieberman, Kenneth Joel Rosen, Anna L Rosenberg, Edward S Sheinberg, William Shussett, Dr Sidney A Silverman, Tillie N Sirocca, Abe Turk, Harry Weinberger, Louis Zamore

Tuesday April 16: Sol Bennett, Bernard Berry, Samuel L Case, Ralph Herny, Mollie Liff, David A Myer, Leah J Rosenberg, Rose Rosenthal, Max Rotter, Louis A Schwartz, Allan Robert Shine, Sam Stein, Samuel J Weiss

Wednesday April 17: Harry Balber, Julia Baroff, Louis Cohen, Morris Cohen, Eva Cooper, Harry Fisher, M .D , David Frank, Steven David Harris, Jean Katzman, Larry J Klein, Anna Leff, David Levy, Charles E Rosenthall, Pearl Baskind Sadowsky, Rody S Verk

Thursday April 18: Milton Alderman, Benjamin Geduldig, Dora Himmel, Dorothy Leah Katz, Anne R Levy, Betty Pearl, Israel Pick, Adele Prizant, Fannie Serbin, Ida Shrut, Sidney A Uram

Friday April 19: Beatrice Alter, Celia Apple, Annette L Smith Bergsman, Helen Harris Berman, Eva Diamond, Mervin B Feldman, Florence Glick, Gertrude N Hoffman, Nathan H Isaacs, Sophia E Israel, Dora Jacobson, David Kalson, Louis Meyer, Marlene Pearl Rosen, Morris Schwartz, Nettie Silverberg, Leon Spiegel

Saturday April 20: Steven Beck, Goldie R Broida, Irving Cowen, Nathan A Davis, Abraham Glanz, Ruben Heller, George Lurie Jr , Ruth G Martin, Hyman Miller, Roberta Morrison, Catherine Neiman, Louis Plesset, Jennie Volkin

the Development department at
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Kether Torah Cemetery • Reserve Township

A special meeting of the Hill District congregation Kether Torah was held in 1916 and each member was assessed $50 for the purchase of a cemetery on Hoffman Road in what was then Millvale. The congregation later purchased and expanded south onto a new hilltop section on Irwin Lane, and the cemeteries now total over 700 graves. Adath Israel, a shul in Oakland was granted a small portion of ground within the upper portion.

Rabbi Ephraim Rosenblum was Kether Torah’s longstanding spiritual leader, and the congregation is now led by his son Rabbi Yossi Rosenblum. Kether Torah is the last remaining 19th century Pittsburgh congregation to pray in nusach sefard, a blend of Ashkenazi and Kabbalistic traditions.

The founding families and early members stayed close. The Rice and Linder families were synonymous with Kether Torah. Harry Linder, known as “Aaron Dovid” served as President from the move off of the Hill to Squirrel Hill, passing away in 1973. Charles Rice served out Harry’s term … and then some. He stayed on for over forty years running the shul, and devotedly lit yahrzeit candles for members throughout the year in his home. His brother Frank Rice chaired the cemetery committee passing away in 2006. Duties were ably assumed by George Weiss.

The JCBA assumed the ownership, management, and maintenance of Kether Torah Cemetery in 2022.

For more information about JCBA cemeteries, to volunteer, to purchase plots, to read our complete histories and/or to make a contribution, please visit our website at www.JCBApgh.org, email us at office@jcbapgh.org, or call the JCBA office at 412-553-6469.

JCBA’s expanded vision is made possible by a generous grant from the Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh’s Jewish Community Foundation



Continued from page 19

LANDMAN: Robert (Bob) Landman recently turned 95 and all of his children, grandchildren, and great-grandchildren came from far and near to celebrate him. Bob grew up in Squirrel Hill and attended Allderdice High School. He is predeceased by his beloved wife, Cookie, parents Mark and Jean, older brother Ivan and identical twin, Dicky. Bob and Cookie, together since they were 15, were married for 68 years. They had a beautiful marriage and enjoyed spending time together golfing, dancing, traveling, entertaining and watching the Steelers. He took enormous pride in their three children, Bill Landman (Beth), Lynne Turton and Joy Mayerson (Rick). In addition to his children, he is survived by his eight grandchildren, six great-grandchildren, sister-in-law, Essie Garfinkel, and several nephews and nieces. Bob was proud of his service in the Korean War where he was stationed in Japan working as a map maker. Despite the circumstances, he felt fortunate for the experience of living in another country with a different culture, and he discovered photography. When Bob returned from the Army, he and Cookie bought their first home in Scott Township and later moved to Mt. Lebanon. Bob began a long career in construction at Northwest Lumber, first in the warehouse and later as a salesman, but always knew that he wanted his own business. In the early 1960s, he started Quaker State Construction. The business grew and evolved with the times, eventually specializing in decks and room additions. Bob, the “head Quaker,” was always the creative force behind the success of Quaker State. It gave him great pride that he and his partner of many years, Dave Dickson, recently sold the business and he was happy to know that it would continue on without them. Until that point, Bob remained involved. He was successful in his business, but always made time for family and fun. He played golf and cards for many years at Rolling Hills Country Club, where he formed lasting friendships. Bob was known for his great sense of humor and for not taking life too seriously. In 2021, two years after his beloved wife, Cookie, died, Bob decided he needed to be closer to family and relocated to the Philadelphia area near his son Bill. He made some close friends at Shannondell retirement community, but it never felt like home to Bob because he left his heart in Pittsburgh. Service and interment was held at Mount Lebanon Cemetery, Temple Emanuel Section. In lieu of flowers, please consider making a donation to Disabled American Veterans, (help.dav.org). Arrangements entrusted to Ralph Schugar Chapel, Inc. schugar.com ‘

SHERWOOD: Malcolm H. Sherwood Jr.: Age 93. Died April 1, 2024. He was preceded in death by his wife of 38 years, Elinore Sabel Rabinowitz. He is survived by son Robert Sherwood, son Thomas Sherwood (daughter-in-law Laura), and a daughter Barbara (son-in-law Donald Currey); a brother Bruce (sister-in-law Ruth); and a niece Anita Steinfeld. Services and interment were private. Contributions should be made to the Jewish Federation of Greater Pittsburgh, 2000 Technology Drive, Pittsburgh, PA 15219. Arrangements entrusted to Ralph Schugar Chapel, Inc. schugar.com PJC

Chronicle nominated for 8 Golden Quill awards

hronicle Senior Staff Writers Adam Reinherz and David Rullo, and Chronicle Editor Toby Tabachnick are finalists for this year’s Golden Quill awards, an annual competition sponsored by the Press Club of Western Pennsylvania that recognizes professional excellence in journalism. Reinherz is nominated in the following categories: Spot/Breaking News (“Summerset Vandalized With Antisemitic and Other Hateful Messages”); News Feature (“Yahrzeit Plaques and Other Mementos Collected, as Tree of Life Prepares for Future”); History/ Culture (“Civil War Seder Memorialized in Fayetteville”); and Education (“Protecting
— LOCAL — www.pittsburghjewishchronicle.org
Trauma During the Pittsburgh Synagogue Shooting Trial”). Rullo is nominated in the following categories: Enterprise/Investigative (“Detangling the Legal Issues of the Pittsburgh Synagogue Shooter Trial”); and Columns/ Blogs (“After the Pittsburgh Synagogue Shooting Trial: A Reporter Reflects”). Tabachnick is nominated in the following categories: Profile (“Lawyer Who Represents the ‘Worst of the Worst’ Leads Defense in Synagogue Massacre Trial”); and Editorials. Winners will be announced during the annual Golden Quills dinner on Tuesday, May 28 at the Rivers Casino. PJC — Toby Tabachnick

Real Estate


MONROEVILLE • $750,000

328 Shalimar Court

Nestled at the end of a tranquil cul-de-sac, this exquisite residence epitomizes timeless elegance and sophistication. Adorned with graceful touches, the sprawling 5-bedroom, 4.2 bathroom estate o ers an unparalleled living experience. Spanning across an expansive 0.61 acres of meticulously manicured grounds, privacy is paramount, with a massive fence enveloping the rear and side of the home. The three-car garage provides ample space for vehicles and storage. Inside, a grand foyer welcomes you with soaring ceilings and an abundance of natural light, setting the stage for the impeccable craftsmanship and attention to detail found throughout. Each of the four upstairs bedrooms features its own walk-in closet. o ering both style and functionality.

OAKLAND • $275,000

Neville House

New listing! 2 bedroom 2 bath bright open unit with spectacular views. Enjoy open spaces in this luxury condo. Close to hospitals, universities, and transportation.


Sophisticated 2 bedroom 2.5 bath home with sparkling hardwood floors, and lots of light pouring in, a sleek gourmet kitchen, private outdoor courtyard, and a 2 integral garage. Steps from Point Breeze’s vibrant business community. Easy access to Frick Park, Shadyside, Downtown and Oakland. Very Special.



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Now more than ever, celebrate Israel’s Independence!

Join us to commemorate and honor Israel’s fallen soldiers and victims of terror.

Please note there will be Kol Isha, pre-recorded and live music during the program.

Live concert at JCC with Israeli band who performed for soldiers and evacuees since October 7

Israeli-themed booths

Light refreshments

Yom HaZikaron
8:00–9:30 PM JCC SQUIRREL HILL 5738 Forbes Ave., Pittsburgh, PA 15217
MAY 12 1:00–3:30 PM SUNDAY MAY 19 jewishpgh.org/event/yom-hazikaron-2 REGISTER TODAY! jewishpgh.org/occasion/yom-haatzmaut DETAILS:
March from Beth Shalom to JCC (gather at 12:45 PM)
Beacon St. Pittsburgh, PA 15217 Concert at JCC Squirrel Hill (1:30 PM)
Forbes Ave. Pittsburgh, PA 15217


Bring Them Home

Community members gathered on the corner of Murray Avenue and Darlington Road to demand the release of an estimated 133 hostages held by Hamas since Oct. 7. The April 7 gathering marked 184 days that the hostages have remained in captivity.

Big Nosh is Big Success

Still celebrating Purim

The Pittsburgh Jewish Chronicle presented Big Nosh, a Jewish and Israeli food festival. The April 7-8 event welcomed more than 3,000 people. Along with providing attendees an opportunity to enjoy delicious kosher cuisine, dance and learn more about the local Jewish community, Big Nosh supported the Pittsburgh Jewish Chronicle.

p PJC Board Chair Evan Stein, Councilperson Erika Strassburger, PJC CEO & Publisher Jim Busis, Mayor Ed Gainey and Councilperson Barb Warwick gather after a proclamation from the City of Pittsburgh was read. Photo by Renee Rosensteel p Campus, speaks during the April 7 demonstration. Photo courtesy of David Dvir Communitywide celebrations enabled young learners and local residents to enjoy a meaningful Purim. p Purim celebration at Shaare Torah Congregation. Photo courtesy of Hillel Academy of Pittsburgh p Photo courtesy of Community Day School p Creating memories at Big Nosh Photo by Renee Rosensteel p Big Nosh is big fun. Photo by Renee Rosensteel
24 APRIL 12, 2024 PITTSBURGH JEWISH CHRONICLE PITTSBURGHJEWISHCHRONICLE.ORG Let our expert shoppers navigate the aisles for you with Curbside pickup & delivery. save time and money
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