T H I S
I S S U E
A MESSAGE FROM RAV K
REFLECTIONS Julia Zeldovich REFLECTIONS: SOULESS SOLES Riki Engel
ISRAEL ADVOCACY Rebecca Rubin
THEN & NOW Sierra Bahar
PARALLEL LIVES Jordana Lebowitz
REFLECTIONS Sarah Edelstein
Machon Ma’ayan U P D A T E
I S S U E I S H AV U OT 2014
A Message From Rav K FOR THE LAST seven weeks we have been counting. Painstakingly, carefully, focused on our goal, we have been counting one day at a time towards our finish-line: The holiday of Shavuot, the celebration of the giving of the Torah.
the first crop to ripen in the spring.
Second, the Torah nowhere defines the holiday of Shavuot as the celebration of the giving of the Torah. The discussion of Shavuot only makes mention of the harvest and of bikkurim, Somewhat strangely, the Torah teaches the offering of the first us the festival of fruits. The central focus Shavuot is celebrated of Shavuot as we know it upon the completion of I AM A JEW BECAUSE I is completely concealed. our counting process. CHERISH THE TORAH... Why does the Torah not This counting of seven explicitly associate the weeks, we are told, AND BECAUSE JEWS... holiday of Shavuot with begins on the second NEVER CEASED TO the giving of the Torah? night of Pesach, or as the Torah refers to it Many answers have VALUE EDUCATION AS A somewhat unusually, been given to these “mimacharat haShabbat”, SACRED TASK, ENDOWING questions, but I wanted on the day after the first to share a few thoughts THE INDIVIDUAL WITH day of Pesach. that are perhaps most pertinent to us. DIGNITY AND DEPTH This description is quite mysterious. First, Rabbi Samson Raphael Shavuot is the only Hirsch reminds us that festival in the Torah that Shavuot is the celebration of both the does not have a specific date marking Written Torah and the Oral Torah. Both it. Instead, we can only “find” the holiday were given on Sinai, and it takes both of Shavuot by counting our seven weeks parts to create and form the Torah after the bringing of the omer, the which illuminates and governs our lives. offering brought from the barley harvest, Therefore, he suggests, that every aspect
of the celebration of the Torah – from the date on which we begin to count, to the date of the holiday itself, and finally to the purpose of the celebration – remain hidden in the Written text and are only recorded in the Oral text. Only those who embrace the Oral Torah, he suggests, can truly take part in the celebration of the complete Torah itself. This idea of the linkage of the Written and Oral Torahs, the concept that the celebration of the giving of the Torah is something passed along in our Oral tradition and ultimately recorded by Chazal can help us understand some additional thoughts. The Maharal, for example, suggests that an explicit association of Shavuot with the giving of the Torah would constitute a commandment to rejoice about our having received the Torah. After all, our holidays are days on which we are obligated to celebrate and be happy. Certainly the salvation from slavery commemorated by Pesach and the God-given protection of Sukkot in the desert, are to every person obvious PLEASE TURN TO PAGE 3 shavuot 2014
Julia Zeldovich, Wauconda, IL, Wauconda High School
“GRADE SCHOOL PREPARES you for middle school, which prepares you for high school, which prepares you for college. Seminary prepares you for the rest of your life.” This is what I told my parents when I convinced them to let me come to Machon Ma’ayan. I’m not sure if I even believed it though; having never had a Jewish education, I didn’t know what to expect. I did know that all my NCSY friends were going to Israel. I knew that if I were to go directly to a public university from high school that I would be lacking any inspiration. And I was told that coming to Machon Ma’ayan would help me grow as a person. Now that my year is drawing to a conclusion, I’m taking some time out to reflect on my experiences and see
if I have, in fact, “grown.” (Besides the obvious growth that takes place when you’re eating falafel twice a week)
“GRADE SCHOOL PREPARES YOU FOR MIDDLE SCHOOL, WHICH PREPARES YOU FOR
HIGH SCHOOL, WHICH PREPARES YOU FOR The beginning of the year was very difficult for me. I COLLEGE. SEMINARY PREPARES YOU FOR had no family in Israel, I had THE REST OF YOUR LIFE.” never learned any Hebrew, and I wasn’t friends with anyone in my seminary before coming here. My Torah Meanwhile, I was terrified because I knowledge didn’t span far past The was told we were going to travel all Prince of Egypt, so it was expected across Israel having a tiyul once a that I’d spend my year trying to catch week. Hello, people! Was I the only one up to 18 years of a Jewish education. I who watched the news and knew that was always a relatively good student, all of Israel was a war-trodden desert? but now I was in this humbling position where I needed a lot of help. PLEASE TURN TO PAGE 4
Reflections: Souless Soles Thousands of shoes of all sizes locked away behind wires going deeper and deeper into darkness until they can’t be seen any longer All black covered in dirt from the ground Each shoe represents a person. A Jew. A soul. Potential to be, to change the world, to walk and explore To conquer. STOLEN Taken away. What’s a person who walks the earth
EVERY SINGLE SHOE WAS A PART OF A JOURNEY OF A JEWISH LIFE.
machon maayan update
Riki Engel, HAFTR High School
without a pair of shoes to protect him from the dirt? Vulnerable. Worthless. Poor. Every single shoe was a part of a journey of a Jewish life. Step by step, day by day. The only difference is the shoe got to survive the torture, Got to be left alone, unbeaten, unrecognized But the feet it protected The Jew who owned them were left ownerless, Dead. Gone forever.
The shoes are now orphans, A pity case for our eyes to lay on, Wondering what kind of a person they could have belonged to. No longer able to leave footprints in this world.
Rebecca Ruben, Portsmouth, NH, Berwick Academy
HAVING PRIDE IN one’s identity as a frustrated when my opinion would be Jew, and the importance of developing completely disregarded, although I had a connection to our beautiful homeland tried with all my might to explain why were two of the most important values I had such a passionate love for my my parents instilled in my sister and me people’s homeland. So many students at from an early age. Although I always the school had a set view of Israel, and had this passion for Israel, it was not there was absolutely nothing I could say until I came to to sway their opinions. Yet study at Machon at the same time, I had not Ma’ayan, and had yet learned the best way such incredibly to approach “making the OVER THE COURSE unique experiences, case for Israel.” Everything that my perspective I would try to share with OF THE THIRTY-FIVE towards Israel has them in a conversation MINUTE CONVERSATION, changed. Sure, I have was based on emotions, experienced the typical and they viewed me as WE DISCUSSED touristy parts of Israel. trying to defend a country However this year solely because my family EVERYTHING FROM I have seen a new lived there. No matter HOW MY FAVORITE side of Israel, having how hard I tried, I lacked had the opportunity supporting facts for my FALAFEL STAND IS ON to immerse myself opinion, so who would KING GEORGE STREET, TO in the culture. With take me seriously. experiences ranging However, last week, I had THE RECENT COALITION from having a random the zechut to make the bus driver wish me AGREEMENT MADE case for Israel over Skype a “chag sameach” to a senior English class at BETWEEN FATAH AND to unfortunately my old high school. When experiencing the terror I was first asked to speak, HAMAS. accompanied with I was incredibly nervous, hearing a “tzeva adom” given my high school siren, my appreciation experience. I remembered for my homeland has hearing that this particular grown. course on the Middle For eight years of my East, focusing on the life, I had the privilege Palestinian and Israeli to attend a private, conflict through literature, college preparatory was known for its school in rural Maine. incredibly pro-Palestinian Although I had many bias. Nevertheless, after wonderful experiences two long conversations at this school, the two with incredible faculty biggest downsides members on the Machon were that there Ma’ayan staff, I made were very few Jewish the decision to at least students, and that the attempt to make the majority of the student case for Israel. I realized body’s opinion of Israel was formed the most important tool I received from from what they had seen on the news. I my year at Machon Ma’ayan was my remember so many different occasions newfound confidence in my abilities to where I would be caught in the middle share my passionate love of Israel. Since of a political debate, and would be so I knew ahead of time that the class itself
had such a noticeable bias, I knew there was a chance the conversation could have gone many ways. The day before I Skyped in, I thankfully received an email with a list of questions I should be prepared to answer, ranging from:
as individuals, to reach this conclusion on our own: To appreciate and celebrate the privilege of Matan Torah. Simply put, such happiness cannot be legislated, it must originate with us.
However, it still remains for each of us to reach this goal individually. And indeed, it is often said that there is a bit of Shavuot in Yom Kippur, because the second tablets were given on Yom Kippur. Now, we can say the reverse as well; that there is a bit of Yom Kippur in Shavuot, being that a cheshbon ha-nefesh
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grounds for joy, yet receiving the Torah might not appear to the casual observer as a reason to rejoice. Rav Amital zt”l continues that it was therefore left to the Jewish people, as a community and
Chazal therefore recognized and marked Shavuot as “zman Matan Torateinu” and thus the nation of Israel communally realized the joy of Torah.
“What’s your favorite food to eat in Israel?” “Would you ever volunteer in the IDF?” “Do your peers express sympathy for the Palestinians or their position?” “Do you think there will ever be peace?” Over the course of the thirty-five minute conversation, we discussed everything from how my favorite falafel stand is on King George Street, to the recent coalition agreement made between Fatah and Hamas. Although I feared that nothing I said would sway their opinions, I used every possible moment to share my emotional connection to Israel as well as many facts demonstrating the profound impact Israel has made on the world. It was clear to me that through life changing seminars on Israel advocacy, as well as the opportunity to listen to some of the most inspirational speakers, Machon Ma’ayan does an incredible job bringing the history and beauty of this land to life. All of the experiences I have had at Machon Ma’ayan have not only deepened my appreciation and understanding of the uniqueness of our homeland, but have truly changed my definition of what it means to be a proud Bat Yisrael. Without the incredible knowledge I gained studying this year, I would not be able to successfully make the case for Israel. I am so blessed and grateful for all the amazing opportunities I have had at Machon Ma’ayan. Although it will be bittersweet to say goodbye to the incredible friends, faculty, and Rabbeim that I have grown from, I am much more prepared to share my deep love as a proud, confident advocate for Israel in University next fall.
PLEASE TURN TO PAGE 7 shavuot 2014
Then & Now TWO YEARS AGO. I was finishing junior year, and despite academic achievements, extra-curricular activities, and lots of friends, I was unhappy. I was beginning to notice a lack of meaning and purpose in my life. And when I took a deeper look, everything appeared to be blurred by superficiality and my own self-centeredness, along with an excessive concern for other people’s opinions. Something was missing. There had to be more. I began to look around. And with the help of NCSY, an amazing summer program called TJJ, and some encounters with some really incredible people, I was introduced to something I had never really known about: Torah. It had some of the answers I was looking for and I wanted to know more. And then someone told me about this thing called seminary. A magical place in Israel where girls spend an entire year before college, growing through Torah and the land of our people. A year to figure out your life. It sounded incredible. An entire year of yarchei kallah, TJJ, and even more amazing advisors and rabbis.
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I did not understand why I needed to spend so much time traveling or volunteering when I could do some “real” learning, the type that could only happen in a classroom. After about a week of classes, my little bubble was popped. I think the Machon Ma’ayan catchphrase should be: Don’t just learn Torah, live it. Because that’s what we do here. We stood on the ground where David slew Goliath, we saw what the third Beis Hamikdash would look like next to the new light rail that borders the Old City, and we climbed so many mountains, just like B’nei Yisrael did when they took ownership of our land. They teach us about the History, Geography, and culture of Israel, and we’re taught how it all is relevant to Torah. The most important lesson I learned from the tiyulim is that an essential part of being Jewish is having a connection to Eretz Yisrael. Being Torah observant is more than just learning some stories, it’s shaping your character and determining your values, then choosing to live by that code of ethics. Twice a week we get the 4
machon maayan update
Sierra Bahar, WL Mackenzie HS, Toronto Canada I could just imagine all that I could accomplish, all the non-stop inspiration, all the growth that would just be handed to me. I could accomplish all my goals, learn all that I want to learn, and grow to become the person I wanted to be. I arrived. I was overwhelmed by the change of environment, foreign people, and cafeteria food. But putting all that aside, I just wanted to start. I was ready to be inspired. And it was amazing. Every class I took had a new idea I never thought about, every shabbos was a high like never before, every conversation with rabbis, teachers, and friends was filled with passion of Torah and growth! Did I change yet? Am I ready to take this mitzvah on? Am I instantly a better person?! But somehow, as routine became established, subtly my motivation became weaker. Sometimes, classes made me have to think really hard. What did it really mean, and how can I incorporate all these new ideas into my everyday life? I was getting exhausted. Sometimes none of the learning I was doing made any sense, and I didn’t
understand how to fit it into my life. Some days I would have preferred to lie in bed. Why did all this personal and spiritual growth take so much work? Why did I have so many ups and downs as opposed to the constant high I thought I would always have? It was clear that it is humanly impossible to maintain the freshness and excitement of a new experience. And boy was this disappointing. What is the meaning of this? How do we function and achieve if we do not have constant inspiration? Why does inspiration seem to last so fleetingly, leaving hard work in its wake? Perhaps the answer is in the question itself. We go to class, we hear an inspiring idea and we’re amazed. But it can’t end there. That isn’t going to generate lasting growth. We can’t acquire anything without work. Instead, on the mornings when we don’t want to get out of bed, we push and get out anyway. When we think we’re facing a challenge that is beyond us, we push harder and persevere. That is the work that Hashem expects of us. And then He
opportunity to do a lot of laundry and a lot of dishes. I never took on chesed wherever the responsibility of doing we so desire. I go THROUGH THE FRIENDS such chores in my home and to a nursing home WE’VE MADE THIS YEAR never realized what a strain and I help with a it has to be on my mother. family on campus WE’VE BECOME A The mother of the family, who lives in a Liraz, has become like my FAMILY AND MACHON caravan. This was so older sister. While learning out of my comfort MA’AYAN HAS BECOME how to fold tights the right zone. Nobody in way we schmoozed about the nursing home OUR HOME. so much more. Between her spoke English; I had explaining different ways to to make flashcards wrap my hair, to discussing with transliterated Israeli politics, to arguing Hebrew every week about what Rambam says and discovered about Women, I have learned new forms of so much in her home. communication that we could share like I can’t believe all the singing Shabbos knowledge I’ve amassed in zemiros. Masudi, the classroom, too. I actually who I visit in the enjoy coming to class nursing home, has because when I get there my taught me what it teachers are happy to see me is to be a selfless and they’re happy to be there. friend. As for the My lessons are exciting, and family on campus, my teachers are hilarious. I was put to dish They’ve renewed my love duty and folding of learning Chumash and laundry. In such a Halacha. They are truly the small home a family of six can acquire holiest people and I would be blessed to
rewards us spiritually. Indeed, in Parashat Behar, Hashem lists the rules and regulations of how shmita works, and poses the Jewish people with the challenge of keeping Shmittah. Next year, will be a shmittah year in Israel, and we must rise to challenge of safeguarding the mitzvah. Israel will be going through a struggle that it has not seen in seven years. We too, the students of Machon Maayan, will be faced with a new challenge as we leave the seminary environment. We have been given a seed of Torah and chessed this year and we were able to plant and water it, however it is only just a bud. It has not fully blossomed into the tree that it will become. Our challenge is to take this bud with us wherever we go next year and continue to nourish it with the values and lessons we have learned here in Israel. It won’t be easy, and it definitely won’t be given to us on a silver platter, but as we continue to nurture this bud, overtime it will blossom
have even half of their enthusiasm and Torah wisdom. Above that, their generosity is unprecedented. Every teacher puts in extra hours with us, and they’re always inviting all of the girls into their homes for Shabbos and the Chagim. Over time, in my classes, I stopped trying to catch up to everyone around me. I started to learn because I wanted to, and I stopped being too proud to ask questions. I didn’t know what תנ’’ךstood for, but one of my new friends would sit down and read it with me. No one ever made me feel inferior for not knowing the “basics,” and I picked them up quickly. At some point, for some strange reason, people started coming to me when they had questions on this stuff. And even stranger, I could explain it to them! I realized whether or not I had a similar upbringing, here in Machon Ma’ayan it’s an even playing field. I’ve never encountered a more diverse school; we have Beis Yaakov girls and public school girls, girls from New York and girls from Alabama and Colombia
into a beautiful tree. This tree grows by the water that is our connection with Hashem, our love and passion for the land of Israel, our belief in the unity of the Jewish people and our ability to continue learning and be an inspiration to others.
DID I CHANGE YET? AM I READY TO TAKE THIS MITZVAH ON? AM I INSTANTLY A BETTER PERSON?!
It will be our responsibility to remember that change and growth cannot be artificially placed in our hands. In order to become the people we want to be, I have now discovered that we have to work at it in order to earn it.
And it is my greatest hope that we learn to enjoy that work and effort, and continue to enjoy it long after our year at seminary. Looking back, I consider the magical place I expected to find when I began my journey. I was wrong. This isn’t a magical place with instantaneous success, immediate achievement of goals, and solutions to all the challenges of life. Instead, it has been the beginning of a journey of effort and growth that will continuously build our character and our relationship with Torah and mitzvot. And truth to be told, that’s more magical than anything I could have ever asked for.
and Germany, Ashkenazis and Sephardis. Everyone came here for the same reason I did; to grow. Now that I’m looking back I see the massive amounts of growth. I don’t mean that in a cookie cutter sense. We came here a diverse group, and we are going to leave here as individuals. We’ve grown in Torah knowledge and understanding. Our love of Eretz Yisrael has influenced our love of Am Yisrael. Through chesed we’ve become more compassionate. Through our classes we’ve become more confident. Through our chavrusas we’ve become more open-minded. Through the friends we’ve made this year we’ve become a family and Machon Ma’ayan has become our home. I’m so thankful that next year, b’ezras Hashem, I’ll have the zchus to come back here for Shana Bet. Others are going straight to college, sheirut leumi (national service), or work. We’re all leaving here as mature young women who are proud to be Jewish and are ready to be the leaders of B’nei Yisrael.
Naomi Stanley, Northwest Yeshiva High School, Ridgefield, WA. shavuot 2014
Parallel Lives PARALLEL LIVES MEET. I, Jordana Lebowitz, 18 years old, hit snooze at 8:00 am in Toronto, Canada and drag myself out of bed. She, 7 hours ahead, does the same. Straight away I text a friend and smile. So does she. Parallel lives connect. I throw on my brand new red shirt. She hates the colour red. The blasts of “Tzevah Adom” (“The Colour Red”) sound through her memory. It has been this way since she was four years old. I brush my teeth, quickly do my makeup and grab a bite to eat. I wonder what the upcoming day will hold. She wonders if a rocket will fall on the way to school or on the way home. It happens on the way there. I drop my phone and freeze in fear as I lean down to pick it up. I hope it is not broken. She drops to the ground as she hears the siren. Lying on her stomach
Jordana Lebowitz with her hands on her head protecting herself from the shrapnel, she shakes. Parallel lives diverge. I sit at my desk waiting for the clock to signal that an hour has passed and class is over. She hides under her desk waiting for the third siren of the day to subside and the crash to sound.
I DROP MY PHONE AND FREEZE IN FEAR AS I LEAN DOWN TO PICK IT UP. I HOPE IT IS NOT BROKEN. SHE DROPS TO THE GROUND AS SHE HEARS THE SIREN.
I worry about being called on to answer a question that I slept through. She worries if her mother was struck just like her grandmother was. I text my friends about accompanying me to a party this upcoming weekend while she plans for her friends to escort her home so she does not have to walk alone in the dark. Parallel lives unmerited. Finally, the school day is over and I walk home entranced in the music blasting in my
Mara Frei Goldblatt came to share her story with the students of Machon Maayan. In September of 1995, Arab terrorists broke into her home in Maaleh Michmash, stabbed her husband to death, took the life of her unborn child and left her severely injured. Everyone in the room was inspired as Mara candidly discussed the extremely painful journey that she endured and how she has emerged an emotionally healthy, strong woman. She left the students with many powerful messages of how to deal with adversity. 6
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ears. She only wears one earphone. Her thoughts are somewhere else. My friend comes over to watch a movie. Her boyfriend cannot. He is on the front lines. Instead, she watches a man’s body being taken away by an ambulance. I yearn for excitement while she, for safety. Parallel lives unchanging. I snuggle up in bed. Tonight she will sleep in her bomb shelter due to safety warnings from the government. I doze peacefully while she tosses and turns. Adi Turgeman, 18 years old in Sderot, Israel, does not turn off her light as she climbs into bed. Tears are running down her cheeks. The television is playing in the background. Anything to distract her from the horrors she has faced today and the unknown of what will be tomorrow. Meanwhile, I sleep without a care in the world. Two worlds left incomprehensible. Jordana Lebowitz is a recent high school graduate from Toronto, Canada. While spending her year studying at Machon Ma’ayan she is interning at the Sderot Media Center as a student-journalist advocating for justice, peace and ultimately, change.
Machon Ma’ayan students recently toured Sde Boaz, an Israeli settlement minutes from Jerusalem in the the Judean Hills, established in 2002. They were able to witness the building of a peaceful and agricultural community in Israel from the ground up.
Sarah Edelstein, Park Vista HS, Boynton Beach, FL
COMING TO MACHON MA’AYAN I had one goal: Learn Torah. I was excited to learn more about Tanach, Halacha, and more about the Parsha But unbeknownst to me, learning meant a whole lot more than opening a Chumash or any other sefer. Coming from a non religious home and a public school background, this seminary was the place for me. They filled the gaps of Judaism knowledge that I missed growing up.
my year was going to affect me beyond the text of Torah I probably wouldn’t have thought so. But today, as I sit to reflect about what I have gained, it is so clear that the exact opposite is true. I always had a basic knowledge of the Torah and the holidays, but there was certainly something missing. This year I reinforced my understanding and learned how to use my new-found knowledge and apply it to my life. The
UPON MY ARRIVAL AT MACHON MA’AYAN, IF YOU WOULD HAVE ASKED ME IF THOUGHT MY YEAR WAS GOING TO AFFECT ME BEYOND THE TEXT OF TORAH I PROBABLY WOULDN’T HAVE THOUGHT SO. BUT TODAY, AS I SIT TO REFLECT ABOUT WHAT I HAVE GAINED, IT IS SO CLEAR THAT THE EXACT OPPOSITE IS TRUE.
The atmosphere encouraged questions, and gave answers with depth on any and every issue. But it was much more than that. Upon my arrival at Machon Ma’ayan, if you would have asked me if thought
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(soul searching) is necessary on Shavuot to ensure that we genuinely rejoice in receiving the Torah. Finally, the Midrash, commenting on the verse “In the third month from the Exodus of the Children of Israel from Egypt, on this day, they arrived at the wilderness of Sinai” suggests that the Torah is sending an implicit message, telling us that Matan Torah is not a historically bound event. Rather, every day we must feel as the though the Torah has just been given. This is why the Torah stresses “on this day” thereby teaching us that the words of the Torah must constantly be considered new to us. In other words, we are not meant to view Matan Torah as a one time event. Instead, every generation must feel as though they have just entered into a covenant with G-d and that G-d’s words were just spoken to them. To stress this,
stories, the lessons, and the concepts are more than just information, they are meant to inform all aspects of how we Jews live our lives, and I love it! Indeed, I found real clarity as to how I
the Torah refrains from giving Shavuot a specific date and leaves the celebration of the anniversary of Matan Torah to be recorded by Chazal. And in doing so, Chazal strike a beautiful balance between the Written Torah and the Oral Torah. Chumash emphasizes one perspective, the ongoing commitment in each generation to the receiving of the Torah, while tradition balances this message by emphasizing the other perspective, the historical significance of remembering that day, by re-living that event. And therefore, Chazal instituted that we spend the entire Shavuot night engrossed in the study of Torah, re-living the experience of receiving the Torah at Har Sinai, just as we spend the night of the Pesach seder re-telling the story of the exodus from Egypt. In short, all of our explanations rotate around the same axis. All recognize that
want to live my life as a Jewish woman. It isn’t only about keeping Shabbat, kosher, and the other Halachot, but I have learned that Torah is a real guide to life. It teaches us how to be the best we can possibly be, which is something my year here helped me realize that I truly want. Beyond that, a major part of my year here has been developing relationships with the faculty and staff. I have been to almost all their homes for Shabbat and I have had the opportunity to discuss issues big and small with them, helping me develop perspective on a variety of issues. They have demonstrated both inside and outside the classroom how to live a Torah observant life in the modern world and guided me on how to be in certain environments and still stay strongly Jewishly committed. This September I will be making Aliyah! I will spend my first semester as Shana Bet at Machon Maayan, and then continue my journey from there. It is clear that coming to a place seven thousand miles away from home without any family is going to be really hard. But I know that my Machon Maayan family will be there for me and support me in all that I do. With their support, my love of Torah and Judaism is greater than anything I could have imagined!
a true celebration of Shavuot warrants a deep connection and commitment to the words of Torah and the words of Chazal. Rabbi Jonathan Sacks sums it up beautifully: “I am a Jew because I cherish the Torah, knowing that G-d is to be found in moral meanings, in words, texts, teachings and commands, and because Jews, though they lacked all else, never ceased to value education as a sacred task, endowing the individual with dignity and depth.” May this Shavuot be a day of celebration for all of us, a day of happiness and appreciation of the Torah that we have, and a day of commitment to our learning and growth. May we continue to find meaning, sense of purpose and fulfillment in everything we do. With Torah blessings, Rav Ira Kosowsky shavuot 2014
Machon Ma’ayan’s beautiful campus and classrooms
Finishing off our year of learning strong; preparing for Shavuot
Mazal Tov: RIVKA (KIMMIE) HUBERMAN ‘10 on her engagement to Avrohom Moshe Swartz LEAH CINER VEFFER ‘07 on birth of a baby boy SALI BLUM CHERNIAK ‘09 on the birth of a baby boy
The whole school attended Ilana (MM ‘09) and Adam’s wedding in Israel
SARAH STONE ‘10 on her engagement to Maor Berkover
REBECCA ASTRACHAN ‘07 on her marriage to Ariel Bernstein
ARIELLA KOSSIN ‘10 on her engagement to Mendel Lazaros AVIGAIL MISHKIN ‘10 on her engagement to Moshe Rubinstein
JAYME DACHS ‘09 on her engagement to David Chapler
MIRIAM CINER VEFFER ‘11 on the birth of a baby boy
TALYA HOMA ‘09, on her marriage to Isaac Shmuelowitz
AMY LEIFER ‘07 on her engagement to Barry Tabacznik
TALIA KURNICK ‘10 on her engagement to Eli Weintraub
MAYA ROSENBLUM ‘11 on her engagement to Reuven Tokayer
Rav Ben Tzion Goldfischer
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HANNAH KAISER ‘11 on her marriage to Lee Gerald Mirowitz
RAIA (SHIFRAN) KLEIN ‘11 on the birth of a baby boy
KAYLA GASNER ‘10 on her engagement to Eitan Rapps
ILANA BRANDT ‘09 on her marriage to Adam Bernstein
Rav Ira Kosowsky
For more information on donating to Machon Ma’ayan, please contact Dina Blank at: email@example.com / 646-248-7029 or visit: www.machonmaayan.org/donate
DEVORAH MILLER ‘11 engagement Yoel Marcus
Mrs. Meryl-Lee Avraham Assistant Director
Mrs. Dina Blank Executive Director
Machon Maayan is a life-changing year-in-Israel program for young women from a wide range of backgrounds. At Machon Maayan each student is valued as an individual and is encouraged to grow at her own pace, exploring our texts, people, and practices and thereby inspiring understanding and sincere dedication to Torah Judaism. Just as the world rests on three pillars, so is our educational program built on formal classroom learning, community internships, and weekly Israel seminars. Through this combination of Judaic Studies classes, Chessed, and exposure to the people and the Land of Israel, Machon Maayan creates a supportive, nurturing environment in which each student can explore her Jewish heritage.