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Jewish American Heritage Month
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UJFT’s Biennial meeting, June 3
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UJFT 2013 Annual Campaign coming to a close
The United States and Israel: friends and allies in militarism
s of April 30, the UJFT 2013 Annual Campaign had raised $4,252,478 from 1490 individual donors! More than 700 individual donors who were new, returned to the campaign, or who increased their donations by 10% or more from last year, were match-eligible. Their aggregate match dollars totaled $173,347 —more than exhausting the $125,000 in match funds, which were generously made available by the Tidewater Jewish Foundation, the Simon Family Fund, and two anonymous campaign donors. The match formula for all qualifying gifts was 50-cents on the dollar. The leadership and staff of the UJFT thank each and every donor who has already given to the 2013 Annual Campaign. The goal is to break $4,500,000, and there is still time to help get there. Gifts enrich and touch the lives of so many Jews, and others, in Tidewater, in the United States, in Israel, and globally. If you have not yet made your pledge to the 2013 Annual Campaign, please consider doing so today. Pledges received by 5 pm on Friday, June 7 will be recognized in UJFT’s Annual Donor report (which will be distributed via the July 15 issue of the Jewish News). The 2013 Campaign officially ends on June 30, 2013, and all pledges received before that date will help UJFT get closer to the goal (or surpass it!). Pledges may be made online at JewishVA.org/donation, via telephone to 757‑965‑6100 or in person at the Federation offices on the Sandler Family Campus of the Tidewater Jewish community, 5000 Corporate Woods Dr, Virginia Beach, VA 23462.
I am a subscriber to the Jewish News. I was glad to read in the May 6 edition of the News of the gala program celebrating the 65th anniversary of the State of Israel. I have family and friends living there, so this means a lot to me. In the “Briefs” section I was pleased to see that President Obama cited the “Jewish striving for freedom.” He added that “Teachings from the Torah lit the way toward a more perfect Union, from women’s rights to workers’ rights to the end of segregation.” I am one who has had a hand in that striving. Early on I was strong supporter of Israel. I was saddened to see in the “Upfront/Israel Update” section the headline “U.S. to provide Israel with advanced weapons, [Defense Secretary] Hagel announces.” The text speaks of “advanced weapons include anti-radiation missiles, advanced radars for Israeli’s fleet of fighter jets, KC-135 refueling aircraft and the V-22 Osprey, which the U.S. has not released to any other nation.” Later, Hagel “stressed that the Islamic Republic [Iran] must be prevented from obtaining a nuclear weapon, and “that the military-to-military cooperation between the U.S. and Israel is stronger than ever and that defense cooperation will only continue to deepen in the future.” Later he says, “we believe that the military option, which is well-discussed, should be the last resort.” Where have we heard that line before, over and over? Is this what the Torah teaches? I think not. I do not have family in Iran, but I have dear friends who do. I fear for us all. I was an early supporter of the State of Israel. I no longer am in support of the direction of U.S. Israel relations. I am disappointed the Jewish News does not offer open dialogue on this issue.
Dr. Robert E. Young
Upfront. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 3 Briefs. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 4 Torah Thought. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 5 Celebrate Jewish American Heritage Month. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 6 Women’s Campaign luncheon. . . . . . . . 10 Giffords gets JFK Award. . . . . . . . . . . . . 12 First Person: Museum Anniversary. . . . 13 Ohef Sholom Mitzvah Day. . . . . . . . . . . 14 Action-packed Camp JCC . . . . . . . . . . . 15 CRC film series wraps up at Beth El. . . 16 It’s a Wrap. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 18 Krohn and Woodward wow crowd. . . . 19
Celebrating our Jewish Educators . . . . 20 News Analysis. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 21 Book Reviews. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 22 What’s Happening. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 24 UJFT Biennial Meeting’s coming up . . . 25 Calendar. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 26 Who Knew? . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 27 Preserving heritage of Morocco’s Jews . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 28 Obituaries. . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 29 Face to Face: . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 30 Special Health Section . . . . . . . . . . . . . . 33
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Reba and Sam Sandler Family Campus of the Tidewater Jewish Community 5000 Corporate Woods Drive, Suite 200 Virginia Beach, Virginia 23462-4370 voice 757.965.6100 • fax 757.965.6102 email firstname.lastname@example.org www.jewishVA.org Terri Denison, Editor Germaine Clair, Art Director Laine Mednick Rutherford, Associate Editor Hal Sacks, Book Review Editor Sandy Goldberg, Account Executive Sharon Freeman, Account Executive Mark Hecht, Account Executive Marilyn Cerase, Subscription Manager Reba Karp, Editor Emeritus United Jewish Federation of Tidewater Alvin Wall, President Stephanie Calliott, Secretary Harry Graber, Executive Vice-President The appearance of advertising in the Jewish News does not constitute a kashrut, political, product or service endorsement. The articles and letters appearing herein are not necessarily the opinion of this newspaper. © 2013 Jewish News. All rights reserved. Subscription: $18 year For subscription or change of address, call 757-965-6128 or JewishNewsVA email email@example.com.
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briefs Israeli attorney general accepts Women of the Wall court decision The activist group Women of the Wall will face no more legal challenges after Israeli Attorney General Yehuda Weinstein decided not appeal a court decision favoring the group. Weinstein’s office announced Monday, May 6 that he would not appeal last month’s ruling by the Jerusalem District Court that Women of the Wall were not breaking the law by conducting their monthly service. Members of the group have been routinely arrested or detained in recent months for wearing prayer shawls at the wall, a practice that prior to the ruling had been considered a violation of Israeli law requiring respect for “local custom” at the site. Weinstein’s statement also said that Religious Services Minister Naftali Bennett, of the Modern Orthodox Jewish Home party, would be formulating proposed amendments to the “local custom” law. Bennett and Women of the Wall Chairwoman Anat Hoffman met the previous week to discuss the proposed amendments. According to Hoffman, who said the meeting had a positive atmosphere, Bennett inquired into the group’s practices and mission. He said he had the ability to outlaw the group’s practices and would formulate the amendments in the coming month. “We felt a feeling that he was listening to us,” Hoffman told JTA. “He heard there was a lot of interest and concern about us among world Jewry. He wants to know that it’s possible to work with us.” In a gesture of good will, Hoffman told Bennett that the group would not read from the Torah at its upcoming service for the new Hebrew month. The group had planned to read from the Torah, which it has not done in more than a decade. In addition, Haaretz reported that Jerusalem police decided not to interfere with the service. (JTA) Billions of locusts hatched in southern Israel Billions of newly hatched locusts are spreading throughout Israel’s South. The young locusts identified in the Negev Desert area are the offspring of locust swarms that entered Israel from Egypt in March. They are unable to fly and are not yet big enough to cause crop damage, according to reports. Once the young locusts begin to fly, they could cause serious damage to southern Israeli fruit and vegetable crops. Spraying of the locusts as they were laying eggs was not as effective as anticipated.
A swarm of 30 million locusts first appeared near Cairo on March 2 and caused millions of dollars worth of crop damage in Egypt. (JTA)
Israeli official protests Google’s use of Palestine A senior Israeli official called on Google to reconsider its decision to change the wording on its services and products from “Palestinian Territories” to “Palestine.” Israeli Deputy Foreign Minister Zeev Elkin also told Google CEO Larry Page in a letter that he was in essence recognizing a Palestinian state that does not exist. Google spokesman Nathan Tyler told the BBC late last month that the company was “following the lead” of several bodies, including the United Nations, in adopting the name change from “Palestinian Territories” to “Palestine” across its products. In November, the United Nations granted “Palestine” the status of “non-member observer state.” “I would be grateful were you to reconsider the decision since it entrenches the Palestinians in their view that they can further their political aims through one-sided actions rather than through negotiations and mutual agreement,” Elkin wrote. “By doing so, Google is in essence recognizing the existence of a Palestinian state. “Such a decision is, in my opinion, not only mistaken but could also negatively impinge on the efforts of my government to bring about direct negotiations between Israel and the Palestinian Authority.” The name change on Google products occurred on May 1. (JTA) Netanyahu to eschew in-flight bedroom after cost revealed Israeli Prime Minister Benjamin Netanyahu will eschew a private bedroom on flights to Europe after an Israeli television station reported its cost. Israel’s Channel 10 reported over the weekend that the government paid an additional $127,000 to install a double bed surrounded by privacy walls on a fivehour chartered El Al flight to the funeral of former British Prime Minister Margaret Thatcher. Netanyahu’s office said in a statement that it was not aware of the cost to install the temporary bedroom on the plane. “When the prime minister learned of the costs, he issued an order not to install bedchambers on flights to Europe,” the statement said. The statement also explained that Netanyahu wanted to be at his best for
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meetings with world leaders on the sidelines of the funeral. In addition to the cost for the bedroom, the chartered flight itself cost $300,000. Netanyahu is limited to using local airlines for security reasons. (JTA)
Rally protests plan to close Jerusalem cineplex on Shabbat Jerusalem residents protested against a plan to close a new movie theater complex on Shabbat and Jewish holidays. Some 500 Jerusalem residents and supporters protesting at Safra Square in front of City Hall called for Cinema City to be open on Friday night and Saturday. The complex, which includes restaurants and a 15-screen movie theater, is set to open this summer. It will close on weekends in keeping with an agreement between the Finance Ministry, the property developer and the Jerusalem municipality. Among the groups protesting were Awakening, the Meretz political party and Be Free Israel. (JTA) Buffett completes purchase of Israeli company for $2 billion American billionaire Warren Buffett paid $2 billion for the remaining 20 percent of the Israeli firm Iscar. Buffett had bought 80 percent of the Iscar Metalworking Company Group, in which Iscar is the main company, for $4 billion in 2006, according to Globes. The company, which makes precision carbide cutting tools and is located in the Tefen industrial park in northern Israel, was founded by Israeli billionaire Stef Wertheimer. It employs 2,500 people in Israel and another 7,500 at its facilities around the world. (JTA) Report: ‘Mounting evidence’ Boston bombers involved in triple homicide There is “mounting evidence” that the Boston Marathon bombers were involved in the unsolved murder of three men in suburban Boston. Police officials said that some crime scene forensic evidence was a match to Tamerlan Tsarnaev and Dzhokhar Tsarnaev, the two brothers who are alleged to have set off two explosions at the Boston Marathon last month, ABC News reported. The officials also said records of cell phones used by the brothers put them in the area of the murders on that date. Three men—Brendan Mess, Rafael Teken and Erik Weissman—were found dead in September 2011 in an apartment several miles from the campus of
Brandeis University in the Boston suburb of Waltham. Tamerlan Tsarnaev knew Mess well but did not attend his funeral despite once referring to him as his “best friend,” and participating in boxing and martial arts training together. The bodies of the three men were discovered with their throats slit and about seven pounds of marijuana dumped on the bodies, as well as $5,000 in cash left behind. Two of the victims, Weissman and Teken, were Jewish. Tamerlan Tsarnaev was killed in a shootout with police several days after the bombing. Dzhokhar Tsarnaev was charged with using a “weapon of mass destruction”—a charge that could bring the death penalty. (JTA)
Galician left-wingers seeking boycott of Noa concert Left-wing parties from the Spanish autonomous region of Galicia are demanding their local government launch a boycott of Israel by canceling a concert by Israeli singer and peace activist Noa. In a statement published on Facebook, the education and culture council of the Galician Left Alternative—a coalition of parties that united last year to form the Galician parliament’s third largest bloc— ”condemned the employment of the Israeli singer Noa, whose sympathies to military Zionism are notorious.” The coalition, known by its Galician acronym AGE, urged the Xunta de Galicia —the decision-making body of the government of the autonomous community of Galicia—to cancel Noa’s May 21 concert because it “lends support and justification for the colonization of Palestine and violence that the Israeli state exercises against the Palestinian People.” Noa, the stage name of Achinoam Nini, defines herself as a peace activist and is a supporter of J Street, which calls itself a “pro-peace, pro-Israel” group. Last year she faced criticism in Israel for performing at a Memorial Day concert in Tel Aviv that commemorated Palestinian terrorists along with Israeli soldiers. In January, AGE vetoed a draft resolution commemorating the victims of the Holocaust, preventing it from going to a vote, according to the Federation of Jewish Communities in Spain. It prevented the Galician parliament from commemorating the Holocaust this year as it had done the previous two years. Noa appeared in Norfolk last month as part of the Virginia Arts Festival. (JTA)
Rethinking the Ruth-Naomi relationship by Deborah Rosenbloom
WASHINGTON (JTA)—Until recently, I thought of Ruth, the heroine of Shavuot, as a positive role model, a woman who made good choices, was strong and fulfilled. But lately I’ve been focusing on the strange dynamics of what appears to be an unhealthy, possibly abusive, relationship between Ruth and Naomi, her mother-in-law. Abuse is about power and control, and abusive relationships are not limited to romantic situations. Any relationship has the potential to be abusive, including relationships among friends and families or between bosses and employees. In this situation, Naomi is the more powerful woman and takes advantage of her daughter-in-law. A quick recap of the story: The book of Ruth opens as Naomi, accompanied by her two daughters-in-law, Ruth and Orphah, is beginning her journey back to Bethlehem after living in Moab for 10 years. We don’t know much about their lives in Moab, except that Naomi had followed her husband and their two sons there, escaping from the famine in Israel. Both sons had married Moabite women after their father died, and both sons died without heirs. Now Naomi, the lone Jewess, is traveling back to Israel, having heard that the famine has ended. Orphah accompanies Naomi for part of the way before turning back. She already has experienced life with this family—the marriage, the unfruitful relationship, the poverty. She chooses to end their family ties, head back home on her own and take her chances that way. But Ruth instead says to Naomi, “Wherever you go, I shall go, where you live, I will live; your people shall be my people, and your God will be my God. Where you die, I will die, and there I will be buried” (Ruth 1:16-17). Based on these words, the rabbis teach us that Ruth converted to Judaism, accepting all the laws of Israel. Despite the beauty of the words, I find them troubling. Ruth clearly is choosing not simply to choose Judaism but to merge her entire identity with Naomi. Why? “Wherever you go, I will go.” Who is that close to her mother-in-law that she wants to follow her wherever she goes? What was the power dynamic, what was the mystique? And Naomi was quite clear on what this obedience and loyalty would demand—much more than her marriage to a Jewish man did, as it appears that Ruth was able to live as a Moabite, even when married to her Jewish husband.
As part of accepting the laws of Israel, Naomi tells Ruth that Jewish women must be modest and refrain from sexualized conduct. The story emphasizes Ruth’s modest behavior, as she gathers grain in the fields of their wealthy relative Boaz once they reach Bethlehem. She bends her knees rather than bending over, making sure her skirt covers her legs rather than hitch it up as the other women do. But when Naomi tells Ruth to prepare herself to meet with Boaz at night, alone, Ruth does not protest. “Bathe, anoint yourself, put on clean garments, and lie down at his feet, Ruth is instructed.” So Ruth will approach Boaz at night, alone. Wait, isn’t that exactly what she was told would NOT be permissible? And yet, without a word, Ruth does as she is bidden. “I will do everything you tell me,” she says. Clearly, Ruth is under the spell of the dominant Naomi. Why does Ruth follow Naomi’s command? Boaz already had said he would protect her and Naomi. Is Naomi simply toying with Ruth or testing her loyalty? And once Ruth passes this test, what will be the next demand of subjugation? We find out soon enough. Boaz marries Ruth soon thereafter, and she conceives and bears a son. (Boaz conveniently dies immediately after their wedding night). And the women of the town said “there is a son born to Naomi.” Born to Naomi? The Talmud asks, was it Naomi who bore him? Surely it was Ruth! And the women of the town said to Naomi, “Blessed be the Lord, who had not left thee this day…and Naomi took the child, and laid it in her bosom, and became nurse unto it.” Wait a minute, why isn’t Ruth doing that? Did she give up her child to Naomi? Yes. Ruth gave up custody of her son! I wonder when I read the story of Ruth and Naomi about what their relationship was really like. I know that in my work in the field of violence against women, in which potentially abusive relationships are viewed through the lens of power and control, a relationship like this one might be suspect, might raise a red flag or two about power dynamics and questions about the underlying reasons for this behavior. “Wherever you go, I will go.” I would worry if that were my daughter. —Deborah Rosenbloom is the director of programs at Jewish Women International and an editor of JWI’s Rethinking Shavuot: Women, Relationships & Jewish Texts.
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31 things to do during Jewish American Heritage Month By Rebecca Soffer
NEW YORK (JTA)—May is Jewish American Heritage Month, a commemoration first recognized by President George W. Bush in 2006. Since then, hundreds of programs have taken place nationwide annually to honor the rich contributions of Jews to American culture and society. President Obama added to the annual festivities by launching an annual White House bash. But this year’s party was canceled because of the sequester. Not to worry: Here are 31 activities to keep you more than busy for the remainder of May. You’ll see some usual suspects, but will also find new ideas in entertainment, food and travel, and overall fun. We’re pretty sure you’ll find something of interest. For a rundown of official Jewish American Heritage Month events, visit www. jahm.us. You can also follow @USAJewish on Twitter. In no particular order, consider these options for celebrating:
1. Make cholent Our people are into stews. So is it really surprising that the great American CrockPot originally was coined the Naxon Beanery All-Purpose Cooker after its Jewish inventor, Irving Naxon? Naxon, who died in 1989 with more than 200 patents in his name, conceived an inexpensive and safe heating element inspired by his mother’s tales of making the traditional Sabbath meat-and-potato stew—a nearly 24-hour process—in her Lithuanian shtetl (his daughter recently wrote about her family memories for the Beyond Bubbie http://www.beyondbubbie.com/my-dadthe-inventor-of-the-crock-pot online food project). Not into the idea of cholent? Toss anything into a Crock-Pot, from lentils to grits to an entire chicken, and thank Mr. Naxon for making cooking so darn easy.
2. C elebrate Hollywood’s female showrunners In case you hadn’t heard, Jewish American women are taking the entertainment world by the beitsim. Writer-director-producer Jill Soloway won the 2013 Sundance Award for U.S. Dramatic Directing for her debut film, Afternoon Delight (she also founded the Los Angeles community organization East Side Jews). Allison Silverman, the former co-executive producer of the Colbert
Report, has been penning episodes for The Office and Portlandia, the IFC show starring hipster Jew Carrie Brownstein. And creatorstar-writer-director Lena Dunham, she of the $3.6 million book proposal, has turned the HBO series Girls into a cultural sensation along with showrunner Jenni Konner. Buy a movie ticket, subscribe to HBO or tune in to NBC, and thank the ladies for the laughs.
3. Start a book club Put down the Angry Birds and dive into a tale written by a young American Jewish author. Some ideas to start out the list: What We Talk About When We Talk About Anne Frank, Nathan Englander’s elegant and darkly humorous collection of short stories; Jujitsu Rabbi and the Godless Blonde, Rebecca Dana’s debut memoir about living with a lapsed hasidic rabbi in Crown Heights while nursing a broken heart; and Tomorrow There Will Be Apricots, Jessica Soffer’s (no relation) debut novel inspired by her love of cooking and her Iraqi Jewish heritage. All are available on Amazon, Kindle and Audible.com.
4. Take a Philip Roth bus tour Novelist Philip Roth, a Pulitzer Prize and National Book Award winner, turned 80 in March, and his hometown of Newark, N.J., has rolled out the red carpet for celebrations. For a man referred to as the greatest living American writer, the Newark Preservation and Landmarks Committee is running a bus tour showcasing highlights from his novels and early life in the city. It’s not too late to check out Philip Roth: An Exhibit of Photos From a Lifetime, a show of some 100 photographs running through Aug. 31 at the Newark Public Library. Can’t get to North Jersey? Check out the next PBS American Masters airing of Philip Roth: Unmasked, a documentary featuring the author discussing intimate aspects of his life, or just reread Portnoy’s Compaint and call your mother already. For all things Roth, visit rothsociety.org.
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5. Go shopping From Marc Jacobs to Zac Posen to Rachel Zoe and beyond, American Jews are some of the biggest players in the fashion design industry. In honor of Jewish American Heritage Month, treat yourself to some retail therapy at Bloomingdale’s, Loehmann’s (the legendary discount haven started by Frieda Loehmann, an American Jewish woman, in 1921) or any store near you. And after you schlep your overstuffed bags home, watch Schmatta: From Rags to Riches to Rags, the 2009 documentary about the once vibrant, but now fading Garment District in Midtown Manhattan, and marvel that the population of Jewish fashion talent and workers was so dense that the area warranted its own place of worship, the Millinery Center Synagogue.
6. Write a poem American Jews have produced a rich variety of poetry, including Allen Ginsberg’s Howl, Robert Pinsky’s tributes to baseball, and Adrienne Rich’s feminist and lesbian fury. A notable example is Emma Lazarus, a New York Jew and early Zionist of Sephardic descent who wrote the sonnet The New Colossus in 1883 at age 34, shortly after witnessing the Russian pogroms. If you don’t recognize the title, how about the lines: “Give me your tired, your poor, Your huddled masses yearning to breathe free.” They appeared on a bronze plaque in the pedestal of the Statue of Liberty in 1903, 16 years after her death. Compose your own poem on Smith Mag’s online Six Words on Jewish Life page. You can also read a compilation of its best submissions, including Nora Ephron’s words of wisdom: “Secret to life: marry an Italian.”
7. Rock out American Jews have long embraced pop, rock and hip-hop. We all know about the Beastie Boys, Van Halen and the Bangles (Susanna Hoffs is a nice Jewish girl from L.A.). Discover some newer bands this month, such as the San Francisco-based punk duo Happy Fangs featuring singer Rebecca Bortman, a Pittsburgh Jew; New York City’s The Sway Machinery, whose amalgamated style is rooted in band leader Jeremiah Lockwood’s early experience sing-
ing in the choir of his grandfather, Cantor Jacob Konigsber; and L.A.’s indie-folk pop duo The Wellspring, whose members Talia Osteen and Dov Rosenblatt had an official showcase at this year’s SXSW festival and who are scoring tracks for the upcoming feature film Coffee Town.
8. Make springtime pickles At least that’s what Jeffrey Yoskowitz will be doing. He helps run The Gefilteria, a Brooklyn-based purveyor that re-creates Old World Jewish foods such as gluten-free gefilte fish made with sustainably sourced fish, kvas (a naturally fermented beet tonic) and carrotcitrus horseradish. Try it with cukes by using lacto-fermentation, a process that preserves vegetables simply with salt, water and spices. Alternate plan: Order some Gefilteria products online and enjoy while watching Crossing Delancey, which was released 25 years ago.
9. L isten to Little Orphan Annie Before Annie was revived on Broadway— heck, before Annie was on Broadway the first time—that lovable red-headed scamp from the funny pages was primarily played by Shirley Bell Cole on the Little Orphan Annie radio show, which was broadcast nationwide by NBC to the afterschool set from 1931 to 1942. Cole, a Chicago-born Jew, supported multiple immigrant Jewish families in her Chicago neighborhood with her salary, which reached a whopping $7,514 in Depression-era 1937. The Paley Center for Media has several archival episodes available to members and My Old Radio http://www.myoldradio.com/oldradio-shows/little-orphan-annie has dozens for free online. Ironically, according to her obituary, Cole hated the taste of Ovaltine, the show’s main sponsor. Leapin’ Lizards!
10. Practice yoga Next time you do a downward dog, chant an ohm to Ruby Blue, aka Swami Neeladevananda. Blue was born Ruth Thaler in Poland and as a child immigrated to Washington with her parents. She was named a swami, the Hindu honorary title
for master, in 2003 at age 86. Known for her inspirational lectures, tiny frame and ability to get everyone from naval officers to housewives into contorted positions during her classes at a D.C.-area Gold’s Gym (where she began teaching at age 81), Blue stood on her head daily until 83 before grudgingly scaling back to a more conservative shoulder stand until her death at 89.
rities including Connie Francis, Leonard Nimoy and Harry Belafonte, who recall how the United States claimed Hava Nagila as its own in the second half of the 20th century (even Elvis took a stab at it).
11. Laugh with the classics Pray that a rainy day in May gives you an excuse to enjoy some classic American Jewish wit on film. Choose any or all of the following for a guaranteed better day: Mel Brooks’ History of the World Part I, Adam Sandler’s You Don’t Mess With the Zohan or Woody Allen’s Purple Rose of Cairo.
12. Visit South Florida Though the old haunts like Wolfie’s and Rascal House only live on in nostalgic anecdotes, one can easily re-create a classic Miami Beach Jewish experience with a little creativity. Step 1. Fly to Miami Beach. Step 2. Change into pastels. Step 3. Play some shuffleboard at North Shore Park and Youth Center. Step 4. Start a mah jongg game at the new JCC. Step 5. Enjoy a bagel and schmear at the 40-yearold Sage Bagel and Appetizer Shop in nearby Hallandale Beach. Step 6. Take a respite from the heat by splashing around in the Atlantic while shrieking “What a mechaya!” Rinse and repeat.
13. Go to therapy According to a 2012 issue of the Journal of Religion and Health, American Jews are significantly more open-minded to therapy and more tolerant of the stigma associated with it than participants in other groups. Jewish openness to psychological treatment shouldn’t come as a big surprise, given Woody Allen’s love affair with psychotherapy and the groundbreaking work of such American Jewish psychologists as cognitive behavior therapy pioneer Aaron Beck and social psychologist Thelma Alper. There’s also the generationslong tradition of Jews dispensing shrewd and practical advice through therapy’s more accessible cousin, the advice column: examples include Esther Pauline Friedman Lederer (aka Ann Landers); Emily Yoffe’s Dear Prudence column on Slate.com; and the Jewish Daily
16. Send the kids to camp Forward’s Bintel Brief, where editors for more than 60 years addressed the profound and humorous quandaries of the Yiddishspeaking immigrant population.
14. Ask questions Do you know your mother’s earliest memory? What about your grandmother’s? Embrace the most Jewish of traditions by asking questions about a relative’s life while he or she is still around to tell his or her stories. Whether it’s a conversation about a wartime experience, being a teenager in 1950s America or how they would like to be remembered, you’ll be thankful you took the time to get an oral history from someone you love. To record an interview, head to the nearest StoryCorps booth. If there’s not one nearby, it’s easier than ever to become your own sound studio: Check out The Next Web’s recommendations for DIY recording. You may even want to ask a son or daughter.
15. L earn about Hava Nagila You’ve danced the hora at hundreds of bar/bat mitzvahs and weddings. But do you really know anything about the song you’ve been dancing to—including the rest of the lyrics following the first two words? See director Roberta Grossman’s documentary Hava Nagila: The Movie, which has been working its way through the domestic Jewish film festival circuit (it was part of the Virginia Festival of Jewish Film in January) and is currently playing in select theaters nationwide. The film traces the song’s evolution from a Ukrainian shtetl to the blockbuster piece that Jewish American Olympian Aly Raisman used in her 2012 floor routine. It includes interviews with numerous celeb-
There truly are two types of people in America: camp and noncamp. If you’re the former, chances are that some of your best childhood memories involve hoarding money for canteen purchases, awkward first kisses and running someone’s underwear up the flagpole. Consider giving your kids the chance to run amok for a summer while also building independence, learning teamwork and maybe even meeting the loves of their lives when they’re not terrorizing the counselors (Ramah has a page on romantic success stories). Go to the American Camp Association and Foundation for Jewish Camp websites to find a good fit. After you’ve shipped them off, indulge in your own nostalgia with Camp Camp, a compilation of essays, letters home and more awkward photos than you can shake a color war stick at.
17. M ake Bob Dylan a birthday cake Embrace all things Robert Allen Zimmerman during his 72nd birthday month. Visit his birth town, Duluth, Minn., for Dylan Days, a lineup of Dylan-inspired activities running May 23–26. While you’re there, drive by his childhood home in Hibbing, Minn. Listen to “The Essential Bob Dylan,” available on iTunes. Read his autobiography, Chronicles One. Watch I’m Not There, the 2007 musical biopic starring six actors as different versions of Dylan (Cate Blanchett won a Golden Globe for her performance). And try to spot the Jewish influences throughout his works, from Highway Sixty One Revisited to his 1961 yodeling in Talkin’ Hava Nagila Blues.
18. G et to know a sports hero That scene in Airplane was an exaggeration: the list of famous Jewish sports legends would fill much more than a pamphlet. Watch last month’s DVD re-release of The Life And Times of Hank Greenberg, a documentary on the “Hebrew Ruth.” Pick up Jewish Jocks: An Unorthodox Hall of Fame, the recently published compilation of essays on Jewish male and female sports figures edited by Franklin Foer and Marc
Tracy. And check out The First Basket, a documentary about the enormous role played by American Jews shaping the sport of basketball, including the first points scored in the Basketball Association of America (the NBA’s precursor) by the New York Knickerbockers’ Ossie Schectman in 1946.
19. Visit a museum Make time for some structured culture. The Contemporary Jewish Museum in San Francisco will unveil its Beat Memories: The Photographs of Allen Ginsburg exhibit on May 23. The new National Museum of American Jewish History in Philadelphia houses several special exhibitions, including Beyond Swastika and Jim Crow: Jewish Refugee Scholars at Black Colleges (through June 2), and an enormous permanent collection. The Jewish Museum of New York has Six Things: Sagmeister & Walsh, the first exhibition of the Stefan Sagmeister and Jessica Walsh’s newly founded design firm. Plan an adventure to the Kansas City Jewish Museum or the Maltz Museum of Jewish Heritage in Beachwood, Ohio. If you need some lead time, the Alaska Jewish Museum will open in July. And, of course, check out the Jewish Museum and Cultural Center in Portsmouth. Go to www.cajm.net for more locations.
20. Get on Twitter If you still need an excuse to start tweeting, follow the Modern Seinfeld feed (@ SeinfeldToday). Started last December by Buzzfeed sports editor Jack Moore and comedian Josh Gondleman, the account has amassed a whopping half-million followers who re-imagine the sitcom’s plot lines set in today’s world. Some more memorable ideas include Kramer’s use of a gay app to meet friends, George getting dumped for texting on the toilet, Elaine’s Pinterest addiction, Jerry getting dumped for not liking Beyonce and Newman’s forbidden romance with the Flowers.com delivery woman. This feed is about anything but nothing.
21. Go to a deli David Sax charted the Jewish delicatessen’s heyday and steady decline in Save the Deli, but he also documented some jewels that are alive and kicking. Work up an appetite while reading and then head to Hymie’s Merion Delicatessen outside Philadelphia, Langer’s in L.A., or, of course, Katz’s in New York. Looking for something new? There’s a fresh crop of delis putting a twist on traditional Jewish comfort fare, such as Wise Sons in San Francisco (try the pastrami cheese fries) and Stopsky’s Delicatessen (latkes Benedict, anyone?) in Mercer Island, Wash., and Kenny & Zuke’s (organic rye bread) in Portland, Ore. continued on page 8
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22. Grow something Tap into the locavore movement by spending a day—or a week—at a center promoting Jewish sustainability, organic farming methods and spiritualism. The Isabella Freedman Retreat Center in Falls Village, Conn., offers an array of weekend program themes, and you can also pitch in making the farm’s goat cheese and pickles. Urban Adamah’s oneacre educational farm and community center in Berkeley, Calif., has numerous workshops integrating Jewish tradition, including composting workshops, skill-share community exchange markets and volunteer work days. Kayan Farm in Reisterstown, Md., offers courses on such Jewish agricultural topics as “botany and prayer,” and has its own goats, chickens and Community Supported Agriculture, or CSA. Go to www. hazon.org for more ideas on creating and sustaining your own community.
23. Find your match Spring is finally here, so rewrite that dusty profile, or write up one for the first time, and dive into the online dating world. Need further convincing? One in five people are now finding love online (possibly even more after counting the ones who don’t admit it). As long as you avoid the statements, “I’m just as comfortable in Converse as I am in stilettos,” you’ll likely be better equipped to take charge of meeting your bashert than a shadchan (traditional Jewish matchmaker). Pick up some tips from Spin Your Web: How to Brand Yourself for Successful Online Dating by JDate.com columnist and dating coach Damona Hoffman.
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24. Learn about the civil rights movement An indirect effect of the Holocaust’s vicious hatred on American Jews, combined with Jewish ethical teachings, was to spur great levels of participation in the American civil rights movement. Approximately half of the civil rights attorneys in the South during the 1960s and half of the white Freedom Riders who fought segregation were Jewish. They comprised nearly two-thirds of the whites who traveled to Mississippi in 1964 to challenge Jim Crow laws, including Michael Schwerner and Andrew Goodman, two of the three activists in the campaign who were murdered by the Ku Klux Klan (the case inspired the 1989 thriller Mississippi Burning). Through June 2, the National Museum of American Jewish History in Philadelphia is exhibiting Beyond Swastika and Jim Crow: Jewish Refugee Scholars at Black Colleges, which tells the story of Jewish academics from Germany and Austria who found positions at historically black colleges and universities in the Jim Crow South. It was also the subject of a 2011 documentary.
25. Watch your back The pursuits of Jewish American gangsters encompassed a cornucopia of criminal activities, including murder, racketeering, bootlegging, and prostitution. Read Tough Jews: Fathers, Sons and Gangster Dreams, Rich Cohen’s investigation and anecdotal collection about the Jewish mafia, including one mobster who refused to whack anyone on the Sabbath. Watch the 1991 Bugsy Siegel film Bugsy. Plan a visit to the new The Mob Museum in Las Vegas, where
you can learn more about infamous figures such as Siegel, Monk Eastman, Frank “Lefty” Rosenthal and the ruthless Meyer Lansky, the cat’s-eye, pinky ring-wearing mobster who established an international gambling empire but, in true Jewish form, was still concerned with his grandson’s math grades.
26. Go to the market You can easily make your next food shopping trip a nod to Jewish American contributions. Need hot sauce? In 1920, Jacob Frank and his business partner introduced Frank’s RedHot (fun fact: Frank’s RedHot Cayenne Pepper Sauce was the secret ingredient for the first Buffalo wing in 1964). Making a sundae? Thank Aaron Lapin, a reformed clothier from Missouri whose 1947 Reddi-wip® whipped cream was the first aerosol food product on the market (hence earning him the title “The Whipped Cream King”). Roasting a chicken? Look for one from Empire Kosher, founded in 1938 by Austrian immigrant Joseph Katz in his adopted home of Pennsylvania. Put all the ingredients in Oklahoman Sylvan Goldman’s shopping cart, which was first introduced in 1937 at his supermarket chain Humpty Dumpty.
27. Take in female Jewish comedy The contribution of funny Jewish American ladies to American culture could fill a thousand articles. Watch Goldie Hawn on an old Laugh-In episode or Madeleine Kahn’s scene-stealing Lili von Schtupp in Blazing Saddles. Pull up Gilda Radner’s “Baba Wawa” on a Saturday Night Live compilation. Catch Joan Rivers in anything from a mid-1960s Tonight Show appearance to a current airing of Fashion Police on E! Listen to a podcast starring Ronna & Beverly, the outspoken fiftysomething Jewish Bostonians played by comedians Jessica Chaffin and Jamie Denbo, or discover a new talent like New York-based Emily Heller, who performs stand-up across the country. The list goes on in Yael Kohen’s 2012 book We Killed: The Rise of Women in American Comedy, a collection of oral histories from female comic performers, television executives, talent scouts and writers, including anecdotes on the rampant sexism running through the industry.
28. Watch TV This may be the easiest suggestion of the list: Grab the remote and watch an iconic, Jewish-created sitcom. Meet The Goldbergs, the 1949–1956 series created by and starring writer-actress Gertrude Berg that inspired shows from The Honeymooners to Roseanne. Hum along with the Sanford
& Son theme song or hang with Archie Bunker during an All in the Family episode, two of Norman Lear’s masterpieces. Watch M*A*S*H Larry Gelbart’s Korean War dramedy starring Alan Alda. Brew an oversized mug of coffee and catch Friends in syndication, courtesy of co-creator Marta Kauffman. And take your pick from sitcom creator and showrunner extraordinaire Chuck Lorre’s roster, including Two and a Half Men, The Big Bang Theory, Dharma & Greg and Mike & Molly.
29. Swing the night away Invite some friends over for a night of American Jewish big band dancing. Prepare a soundtrack with “King of Swing” Benny Goodman’s soaring clarinet in King Porter Stomp and One O’Clock Jump, “King of the Clarinet” Artie Shaw’s Begin the Beguine and Interlude in B Flat, and Gene Krupa’s energetic drumming in Sing, Sing, Sing and Drum Boogie. Finish the night with a viewing of The Jazz Singer, the story of a young man who defies the traditions of his devout Jewish family to pursue his dream.
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30. Learn a show tune Watch the new PBS documentary Broadway Musicals: A Jewish Legacy, which investigates why the Broadway musical has proven such a long-standing success for Jewish artists (Cole Porter not among them, contrary to what many people assume). The list of composers reads like an embarrassment of riches: Stephen Sondheim (West Side Story, Merrily We Roll Along, Sweeney Todd, Company), Leonard Bernstein (On the Town, West Side Story, Candide), Jerome Kern (Showboat), Irving Berlin (White Christmas, Easter Parade) and Frank Loesser (The Most Happy Fella, Guys and Dolls), to name a mere few. Keep an eye out for local professional, community or high school productions of these musicals. In the meantime, several film versions are available on Netflix or iTunes.
31. Explore Jewish Tidewater Visit as many area synagogues and temples, including the Commodore Levy Chapel on the Naval Base, as possible. Go to the Jewish Museum and Cultural Center in Portsmouth and check out the historic Moses Myers House in Norfolk. Stop by the Sandler Family Campus and wander through its gardens and memorials and grab a bite at the Cardo Cafe. Register for a class and be sure to attend a CRC event. And, of course, read the Jewish News! —Rebecca Soffer is a New York-based writer and producer who has worked at The Colbert Report and Reboot. She tweets from @rebeccasoffer.
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UJFT Women’s Campaign moves from Strength to Strength by Amy Zelenka, UJFT Women’s Campaign director photos by Laine Mednick Rutherford
n Thursday, May 9, the Women’s Cabinet of the UJFT held its biennial Spring Installation Luncheon to thank and recognize the members of the Women’s Cabinet whose terms of service were complete and to welcome new cabinet members. In Honorary Cabinet member Ann Copeland’s beautiful home, more than 60 women participated in the passing of the torch from Laura Gross (Women’s Cabinet chair from 2011 to 2013) to Jodi Klebanoff, who will serve as chair of the Women’s Cabinet and the Women’s Campaign for the 2014 and 2015 campaign years. 2013 General Campaign Chair Amy Levy, serving in her role as Women’s Cabinet Nominating Committee chair, thanked those rotating off cabinet for their years of service; recognized those women who are returning to serve another three-year term; and welcomed new cabinet members: Deborah Casey Mona Flax Kim Gross Lynn Schoenbaum Levy then presented the new executive committee, whose members include the chair, vice chair, and heads of all cabinet sub-committees: Jodi Kleabanoff, chair Stephanie Calliott, vice-chair Laura Gross, immediate past chair and nominating committee chair Amy Levy, leadership chair Barbara Dudley, education chair Alicia London Friedman, community connections chair Janet Mercadante, outreach chair At-Large members: Kim Simon Fink, Charlene Cohen, and Amy Lefcoe In stepping down from her chairmanship, Laura Gross thanked her executive committee and the entire Women’s Cabinet for their support and hard work during two very challenging campaign years. Under Gross’s leadership the Women’s Campaign grew from approximately $1.25 million
to a projected $1.3 million. In addition, she cited a number of new milestone women’s gifts over the last two years. Gross also mentioned how pleased she was to be able to co-chair the Federation’s Women’s Mission to Cuba this past fall. She talked about the uniqueness of women’s missions and expressed her hope that the Federation would continue to offer these kinds of missions for the community. Gross was particBetsy Karotkin, Ina Levy, Laura Gross, Jodi Klebanoff, JDC professional Sandy Katz, Karen Lombart, Karen Jaffe, ularly pleased with Annie Sandler, JDC professional Avital Sandler-Loeff, Laura Miller, and JDC volunteer Shakked Auerbach, and Bonnie Brand. the efforts of the Women’s Division these past two years to reach out to the and increasing the number of endowed gifts and for showing up so often, to do the work women in the Jewish community—from within the women’s campaign. of the Jewish community.” all synagogues, all neighborhoods, all backKlebanoff recalled her own memories Cabinet member Susan Hirschbiel grounds, and with a wide array of interests. of the women’s mission to Cuba (which introduced the guest speakers, who came In recalling the Women’s Outreach events at she co-chaired with Laura Gross) and her to the community courtesy of the American Ohef Sholom and Beth El featuring violinist impression of the strong women who run Jewish Joint Distribution Committee, to Pavel Ilyashov; the Girls’ Afternoons at the the Jewish community of Havana. She talk about two of the wonderful programs Movies; the Jewlicious Passover Cooking talked in particular about Adele Dworin, that JDC runs in Israel, partially funded Demonstration; the Women’s Outreach the president of the Jewish community of by Tidewater campaign dollars: The JDC Community Seder; and the various Jewish Havana, emphasizing what a tremendous AMEN Youth Volunteer program and Israel Women’s Salon events. Gross announced impression she made on all of the women Unlimited—a partnership between JDC that together with Charlene Cohen, she of the mission, with her strength, her and the Israeli government designed to would begin spearheading a committee humor, and her deep desire to preserve the assist and promote opportunities for adults to engage in meaningful follow-up with community. “Without you… without your with disabilities. the women who’ve participated in these help,” Dworin had told the mission group, Shakked Auerbach is a wonderful ambasoutreach events, as well as those who will “the Jewish community of Cuba would dis- sador for JDC’s AMEN program. A “graduate” attend in the future. appear.” Klebanoff assured the group at the of the program, Orbach shared stories with “So you see,” she said, “I’m going away, luncheon, that far from disappearing, the the group of her wonderful experiences as a but not that far away.” Jewish community of Havana was strong, teen volunteer. She was drawn to working In her first remarks as new chair, Jodi united, and dedicated to preservation. with children and adults with disabilities. Klebanoff thanked Gross for her service, Klebanoff closed her remarks with At first, she was apprehensive and unsure leadership, and inspiration and presented thanks to several of the women in the how to interact with this population, but her with a small gift of appreciation from the room for being her mentors over the years, she quickly began to realize how rewarding Cabinet for her years of service. In articulating including her mother, Ann Copeland. And the experience would be. Orbach also talked her vision for the coming two years, Klebanoff she quoted her father, Bobby Copeland, about the wonderful opportunities that exist included her goal to continue growing the saying: “My dad always says there are for young people with creativity and initianumber and size of women’s campaign gifts friends…and there are ‘friends who show tive in Israel, and how JDC is willing to up,’ so thank you all for showing up today offer a framework to support the efforts
10 | Jewish News | May 20, 2013 | jewishnewsva.org
Ann Copeland with daughter Jodi Klebanoff.
Deb Segaloff, Betsy Karotkin, Bootsie Goldmeier, Connie Jacobson, and Alicia London Friedman.
of kids who want to create movements in Israel. With the help of JDC, Orbach was instrumental in developing a music club in Modi’in which still brings talented young musicians together today. Avital SandlerLoeff is the director of Israel Unlimited, JDC-Israel’s division for Disabilities and Rehabilitation. Shelly Simon with Leora Drory. Stacie Moss and Renee Strelitz. Sandler-Loeff talked about the JDC’s Centers for Independent Living throughout dollars are so Israel, including one that Tidewater funds important. in Tel Aviv. These are Centers run by people The 2013 with disabilities for people with disabilities, W o m e n ’ s and they create warm and welcoming com- Campaign will munities for people often felt like outsiders, wind down without communities of their own. Stating over the next with absolute conviction that “people with few weeks. For disabilities first and foremost have abilities.” those who have Sandler-Loeff described plans for new servic- not yet made a es and programs that would further improve gift, but would and enrich the lives of those with disabilities. like to be a part She thanked the women in the room for of the Women’s their role in giving and asking others to give, Campaign, call so that these kind of programs can have the Amy Zelenka, Avital Sandler-Loeff with Laura Miller. life-changing impact that they are having W o m e n ’ s for adults with disabilities in Israel. And she C a m p a i g n encouraged them to keep up the work that director, at 965-6139 or email azelenka@ujft. they are doing and to learn as much as they org. Gifts of support can also be made on-line can about the programs of the JDC, so that using the Federation’s secure server at www. they will understand why their supportive jewishva.org/women.
Bonnie Brand with Shakked Auerbach.
Miriam Seeherman and Robin Mancoll.
Ina Levy and Ellie Lipkin.
jewishnewsva.org | May 20, 2013 | Jewish News | 11
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Giffords accepts JFK award in Boston BOSTON (JTA)—Former Arizona congresswoman Gabrielle Giffords was awarded the John F. Kennedy Profile in Courage Award. Giffords, who has become an advocate for stricter gun control after being shot in the head in 2011, was recognized for the courage she has demonstrated in pushing for policy changes aimed at reducing gun violence. The ceremony was held Sunday, May 5 at the John F. Kennedy Presidential Library and Museum in Boston. Earlier this year, Giffords and her husband, former astronaut Mark Kelly, founded Americans for Responsible Gun Ownership, an organization that is lobbying for stricter gun control laws. “Today we honor a woman who inspires the entire world,” said Caroline Kennedy, president of the John F. Kennedy Library Foundation, which gives the award. She commended Giffords for turning a personal tragedy into a movement for political change. “When others would have withdrawn
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from public life, she has challenged us all to reengage in the political process,” Kennedy said. “I believe we all have courage inside,” Giffords said at the ceremony. “I just wish there was more courage in Congress,” she added, alluding to the defeat by the U.S. Senate in April of a gun control bill that would have toughened background checks for gun purchasers. “It’s been a hard two years for me,” Giffords said, “but I want to make the world a better place more than ever.” The award, which is presented annually, is named for President Kennedy’s 1957 Pulitzer Prize-winning book Profiles in Courage. While in Boston, Giffords and Kelly visited victims of the Boston Marathon bombings at the Spaulding Rehabilitation Center. Giffords, a Democrat, was the first Jewish woman elected to federal office from Arizona.
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The 20th Anniversary of Our Conscience
Elie Wiesel delivers remarks at the event.
by Elena Barr Baum
t a tribute dinner on Sunday, April 28 in Washington DC, I sat with Holocaust Commission members Deb Segaloff and Marilyn Ashe, and her husband Michel, a child survivor from Paris, and applauded the presentation of this year’s U.S. Holocaust Memorial Museum Elie Wiesel Awards to those who best exemplify the museum’s motto, “What You Do Matters.” Founding Chairman Elie Wiesel emphasized to those assembled the museum’s importance. “The end of the story is written by us, not by destiny,” he stated. “We decide what to do with our memories.” Accepting an award via video from Poland on behalf of all rescuers of Jews during the Holocaust was Wladyslaw Bartoszewski, a Polish leader in the Zegota (Council for Aid to Jews) who provided assistance during the Warsaw Ghetto uprising and relayed vital information to the Polish government in exile. This 93-year-old was matter-of-fact about what he did during the war. He made dangerous choices at the time because they represented “the right thing to do.” Accepting an award on behalf of all World War II veterans was Susan Eisenhower, granddaughter of President Dwight D. Eisenhower. Then General Eisenhower, upon witnessing the liberation of the Ohrdruf Concentration Camp, stated, “I felt it my duty to be in a position from then on to testify firsthand about these things, in case there ever grew up at home the belief or assumption that the stories of Nazi brutality were just propaganda.” Eisenhower praised her grandfather’s foresight, and the mission of the museum, noting the proliferation of Holocaust denial today.
The dinner kicked off the museum’s 24-hour 20th Anniversary celebration, dedicated to the survivors and the World War II veterans who were their liberators. Museum leadership wanted to hold the event in 2013, knowing that by their 25th anniversary in 2018, there will be far fewer of these survivors and heroes around to participate. Monday morning, just as he had done 20 years earlier at its opening, President Bill Clinton addressed a drizzle-dampened crowd, and spoke of the importance of the national treasure that is the United States Holocaust Memorial Museum. In addressing more than 3,500 people, including 875 survivors and 140 World War II veterans, Clinton said, “Of all the monuments in Washington—the Lincoln Memorial, the Washington Monument, the Vietnam War Memorial, on down the line—this Museum is our Conscience.” Luckily, instead of being windblown on the mall, this year the attendees had the luxury of a comfortable tent behind the museum with big screens set all around. Colors were paraded of every military unit that fought in WWII, and many of their ranks were in attendance, some even in their old uniforms! Eighty-seven-year-old Virginia Beach veteran Bill Jucksch, whose 71st Infantry unit liberated Gunskirchen death camp, was there with his wife Terry, sitting with the family of Simon Braitman, a prisoner whom he’d freed from the camp. President Clinton recalled that he said at the museum’s opening, “no matter how smart a people is, if you have a head without a heart, you’re not human.” He reminded those gathered that it was his friend Elie Wiesel who told him not to make the mistakes of his predecessors when it came to countries violating human rights. He noted the sweet irony that it was Jews of conscience like Wiesel who led the drive to save the lives of European Muslims in Kosovo. Wiesel also spoke on Monday, as did the museum’s long-time director, Sara Bloomfield, and its president, Tom Bernstein, who articulated that, “All actions have consequences, as do inactions.” Two museum activists spoke, one the grandchild of survivors, one an African American woman who was inspired by the museum as a student and made Holocaust education her personal mission, becoming a teacher out of college and then coordinator of leadership programs at the museum. There were informative seminars through-
Bill Jucksch, Helen Braitman, Josephine and Simon Braitman, and Terry Jucksch.
out the day in the museum, as well as access to its newest exhibit, Some Were Neighbors: Collaboration and Complicity in the Holocaust. One of the seminars on saving Holocaust artifacts focused on the recent donation of a letter written by Deb Segaloff, Dr. Ludwig Sternlicht and Elena Baum Vilma Grunwald. The woman penned this letter to her hus- also there for the events, and our “delegaband Kurt as she was on her way to the gas tion” met up with our community’s 2011 chambers in Auschwitz with their disabled Yom Hashoah speaker, Ruth Hartz, who son, whom she did not want to die alone. She came from her home in Pennsylvania. charged Kurt with looking after their other What We Carry chair, Mickey Held, felt son, Frank, their “Golden Boy.” Frank, who inspired to witness the humility of the surfound that letter only after his father passed vivors, rescuers, and liberators present, and away, was Tidewater’s Yom Hashoah speaker proud of the Holocaust Commission’s dedithis year. The letter he donated, and all of cation to perpetuating the memory while his stories, are detailed in the 2012 award- teaching the Holocaust’s lessons. Betsy winning documentary film, Misa’s Fugue. Karotkin loved seeing “how the museum (available online or through the Holocaust is using memory to ‘change the world’ Commission) one visitor at a time. It is a place where Joining their Holocaust Commission Truth abides, reminding us of the evil and colleagues for Monday’s events were Alicia good that resides in each of us.” For Alicia Friedman, Anne Fleder, Mickey Held, Elise Friedman, the “emotion of being surroundBerkowitz, and Betsy Karotkin. We spotted ed by our country’s cherished survivors, local survivor Dr. Ludwig Sternlicht in the Elie Wiesel, and Bill Clinton, made it very crowd, and also met up with Rachel Becker, clear that this [day] was an indelible mark granddaughter of local survivor Hanns on life’s history lesson.” Loewenbach, of blessed memory. Becker It was a wonderful tribute, and one that volunteers at the USHMM. Community none who were there will soon forget. members Joseph and Lynn Familant were jewishnewsva.org | May 20, 2013 | Jewish News | 13
Ohef Sholom—Mitzvah Day 2013
rom packaging soup kits to making hospital bears, “Mitzvah in Motion” had the congregation at Ohef Sholom Temple abuzz with outreach activities throughout the morning of Sunday, April 21. Two hundred and fifteen Religious School students, from pre-K through Confirmation, along with adult members and friends joined together to
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Closet and Summer Camps; Make-A-Wish Foundation; Jewish Braille Institute; Susan G. Komen Race for the Cure Foundation; Hope for Life Animal Shelter; Juvenile Diabetes Research Fund, and Children’s Hospital of The King’s Daughters.To kick off Ohef’s 7th annual Mitzvah Day, Rabbi Rosalin Mandelberg held a brief service in the chapel. Class representatives, each adorned with a color-coded bandanna to identify their “team,” described their cause and its importance. Then, the colorful crowd took off on a 1-mile sponsored walk around the Hague before returning to Ohef to participate in a slew of activities. The Men’s Club held its annual blood drive for the Red Cross in Simon Hall, the library was the site of the Foodbank Backpack program—a year-round program to supply food to hungry schoolchildren in Norfolk; the kitchen was put to use for making ForKids casseroles and doggie treats; the chapel for Braille education, and Kaufman Hall held a dozen stations with opportunities for hands-on participation. The CHKD Bear Project, which supplies hand-made bears to hospitalized children, set up an impromptu sweat shop with an assembly line with some cutting patterns, others stuffing, and two valiant sewing machine operators putting together almost 100 bears. Another assembly line had fifth-graders making 50 soup kits for residents of Virginia Supportive Housing’s Gosnold Apartments, an independent living project
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Fifth graders make soup kits.
Mitzvah Day participants on the walk around the Hague.
that Ohef congregants support year round with food and household supplies. Sharon Ross again provided the accompanying recipe. Another year-round project, “Hot Meals and Homework” ForKids supported by the Sisterhood, received 19 casseroles from the morning’s endeavors led by Jeanne Miller, Sharon Nusbaum and Sandi Levi. Meanwhile, 16 second-graders stepped up to fill bags with paper goods and toiletries for the JFS Food Closet. The Jewish Braille Institute drew strong interest from its fourth-grade benefactors as Debbie Prost made Braille name cards for each of them and congregant Rabbi Connie Golden spoke with them about its work. Children of all ages enjoyed adding sprinkles to cookies, shaping doggie treat dough; and making posters and decorating race boxes for the Susan G. Komen for the Cure. Visitors to the Hope for Life Animal Shelter booth met its canine friend (later adopted) and learned about its care for animals. The Make A Wish and Juvenile Diabetes groups also had educational displays about their work. The participation of so many—OST staff and clergy, Religious School teachers, parents, room parents, students, families, congregants and friends—made for another outstanding day of caring and outreach in the spirit of tikkun olam.
Camp JCC 2013 Field trips, special days and… by Leslie Shroyer
With camp beginning in just one month, the staff and committee for Camp JCC presented by the Simon Family JCC, are busy planning an action packed summer filled with variety and great events. “We are so appreciative of all the hard work of the task force members and our camp consultants, “says Shana Prohofsky camp committee co -chair. “They (the task force members and camp consultants) have collaborated on planning a great summer camp experience for our community. And now, with Jill Sava, our experienced camp director at the helm, we are excited to see how much fun our children are going to have this summer,” says Laura Wingett, camp committee co‑chair. Some of the special events planned include an Israeli fair, Purim in July, a day with the Israeli Scouts, a penny drive to raise money for a special cause chosen by campers, a 4th of July barbeque, Olympic Day, a dress up day each week, and an arts show. Chris Fenley will lead arts activities at Camp JCC. A visual arts instructor at Granby High School, Fenley has also worked at area day camps including the JCC, and looks forward to returning in June. “I am pleased to be the art specialist, which allows me to share my passion for things colorful and creative. One goal I
have is a camp wide art show. Some amazing things get created in the art room, and I would like to provide an opportunity for a greater audience to see them,” says Fenley. Different camp values will be emphasized during each of the eight weeks of camp. These values include respect, sportsmanship and friendship. Campers of all ages will also enjoy late nights at the JCC. For the small ones, nighttime events will take place for the entire family, for first and second graders, two late nights will be spent with fellow campers, including dinner and special games. Third and fourth graders will enjoy two overnights at Camp JCC, and fifth and six graders will enjoy four such overnights. An Israeli counselor will help infuse camp with Israeli culture, from dance and song to food and customs. Noga Wigelman, the camp’s Shlicha, will be at Camp JCC all eight weeks this summer. It’s not too late to register for one week or eight weeks of camp. Camp starts June 17. For more information about Camp JCC including a brochure, visit www.Campjcc. org, call Jill Sava, camp director at 3212306, or stop by the JCC front desk. Camp continues with an extended camp for the three weeks leading up to school in August. The Simon Family JCC is a constituent agency of United Jewish Federation of Tidewater.
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Virginia Beach Law Day examines Jewish lawyers in Nazi Germany The Holocaust Commission and the Business and Legal Society of the United Jewish Federation of Tidewater were partners in the reception and presentation of the profound and illuminating exhibit “Lawyers without Rights: Jewish Lawyers in Germany Under the Third Reich” as part of Virginia Beach Law Day on May 2. A presentation, Eroding and Restoring the Rule of Law sponsored by the Virginia Beach Bar Association at the Sandler Center for the Performing Arts included a panel discussion by U.S. Senior District Judge Henry Coke Morgan and Sandra Schulberg, film producer, showing excerpts of her film, Nuremberg: Its Lesson for Today. The film depicts that the rule of law was implemented to exact justice upon the Nazi regime. The Panel was moderated by Susan Blackman, Esq, Willcox & Savage.
Justice Robert H. Jackson making his opening statement at the Nuremberg Trials in 1945 where 24 Nazis stood trial in an international court for crimes against humanity and other war crimes. As part of his army service, Sandra Schulberg’s father was assigned to find, recover and document the original films made by the Nazis, which were used by the prosecution. jewishnewsva.org | May 20, 2013 | Jewish News | 15
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hen speaking up for Israel, remember the ABCs: Answering the claim, Bridging to give perspective, and Closing, with YOUR message. These and other techniques for effectively educating others about Israel were included onscreen and reinforced on a handout given to audience members at the final film in the five-part Step Up For Israel series. Presented on May 1 at Congregation Beth El in Norfolk, the film—Speak Up for Israel—shared insights, communication tips, strategies and speaking points to use in discussions involving Israel. Suggestions included focusing on positive messaging, Megan Zuckerman and Kim Zwifler. giving narratives and stories rather than facts and figures, and refraining from getCRC arranged with the films’ producer, ting too emotional or defensive in JerasulemOnlineU.com, to host the controversial discussions. screenings, and essentially turn I hope “I do think it’s incredibly an online, virtual course, into an necessary that when there’s ongoing, physical one. you will someone around who is not Since January, an area pro-Israel, that you are presynagogue has hosted a film go to your 10 pared to speak up on behalf each month, with the rabbi of Israel. These are strateof the respective synagogue friends who gies that work,” says Rabbi serving as moderator of the Jeffrey Arnowitz of Beth El, discussion. aren’t here and the evening’s moderator. Harriett and Harvey Eluto About 50 community were in the audience at Beth explain what members attended the screenEl, as they had been for the you’ve seen ing and discussion, a program other films in the series. sponsored by the Community “All of the films have been outRelations Council of the United standing,” says Harriett. “I hope that Jewish Federation of Tidewater. The the teenagers in our community, espe-
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cially the ones who are of confirmation age, will have the ability to see these films, too.” While Speak Up for Israel was meant to be a wrap-up of all five films, it was not necessary to see all of them to understand the importance of speaking up for Israel, says Arnowitz. “I’d like to thank you all for coming and caring, and the CRC for providing this program,” he said. “Most importantly, I hope you will go to your 10 friends who aren’t here and explain what you’ve seen—in all of the five movies and what you’ve seen tonight, and be comfortable speaking up on Israel. “No one will have a better influence on the people you speak to, than you, their peers, will. No matter what the TV says,
no matter what the newspaper says—your friends respect you and they’ll respect your voices,” said Arnowitz. The four other short films in the series included historical and current footage and facts about Israel’s strength as a democracy, its founding, its struggles with media bias, and its innovations. Host synagogues and leaders were Temple Israel with Rabbi Michael Panitz, B’nai Israel Congregation with Rabbi Sender Haber, Temple Emanuel with Rabbi David Barnett, and Ohef Sholom Temple with Rabbi Rosalin Mandelberg. For more information about the CRC of the UJFT, upcoming events and a wealth of resources, visit www.jewishva.org/crc. To see more photos from this event, “Like” JewishNewsVA on Facebook.
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18 | Jewish News | May 20, 2013 | jewishnewsva.org
It’s a wrap
Lag B’Omer inspires Ohef Sholom community gathering by Alyssa Muhlendorf
“I didn’t know my armpits tasted so good!” was the quote of the evening at the Ohef Sholom Lag B’Omer bonfire on Saturday, April 27. Ohef Sholom’s Young Adult Community and Interfaith committees co-hosted the second annual Lag B’Omer Bonfire at the home of Cantor Wally and Tammy Schachet-Briskin to celebrate the break in the semi-mournful period between Passover and Shavout. More than 60 adults and children learned about the holiday and rejoiced in each other’s company on a beautiful sunny afternoon.
One of the many highlights of the evening included grownups and kids making “arm pit fudge”—a tasty dessert that can only be created by putting the ingredients in a plastic bag, placing it under one’s armpit, and waving an elbow up and down like a chicken, and then eating the final product out of the bag with a spoon. A guitar duet with Cantor Wally Schachet-Briskin and Andy Fox around the campfire during a sing-a-long and roasting of marshmallows was another of the event’s treats. The evening closed with a beautiful Havdallah. Smiles abounded amid promises of another great Lag B’Omer celebration next year.
Beth El holds Genizah ceremony by Sharon Wasserburg
ow do Jews dispose of materials containing the name of G-d? Shaimot (articles with G-d’s name) are kept in a safe, special place in the synagogue or community called a Genizah. Once a ‘critical mass’ of material accumulates, a grave is opened in a Jewish cemetery and the sifrei kodesh (holy books), parchments, tefillin that have become pasul (unfit for use), and even Sifrei Torah (Torah scrolls) are buried with kavod (respect) and dignity. Students of Congregation Beth El’s Religious School, their parents, and a number of other congregants gathered at Holly Lawn Cemetery in Suffolk on a clear, chilly Sunday morning in April to do just what was needed: bury their accumulated shaimot with dignity. Beth El member Norman Soroko handled the arrangements with Altmeyer Funeral Home and a double grave was opened and prepared for the brief ceremony. There are a number of differences between the ceremony for burying books
and the ceremony for burying a person, such as participants do not help shovel dirt or need to remain present for the filling of the grave. As attendees gathered around the open graves, Rabbi Jeffrey Arnowitz described the reason for the Genizah and the ‘why’ of what was about to happen. Following his explanation, attendees participated in a virtual ‘bucket brigade’ to load the grave with the materials to be buried, which were many, as this was Beth El’s first Genizah burial ceremony in more than 17 years. It was a wonderful learning opportunity and not something that will likely take place again soon.
It’s a wrap
David Krohn and Chuck Woodward entertained with song at JCC
by Leslie Shroyer
or many who knew David Krohn as the boy who loved to sing with his father Rabbi/Cantor Philip Krohn* at Gomley Chesed Congregation, the man they heard at the Simon Family JCC on Saturday, May 11 was a delightful reminder. “David was always comfortable singing in front of a crowd, because he has done so since he was little,” says his mother, Susan Krohn. As a boy, he sang on the Bema, and performed with the Hurrah Players, and with the Virginia Children’s Chorus. His impressive resume since leaving The Peabody School of Music and then Juilliard has taken him all over the world to perform, and he is now a regular with the Seattle Opera. For his Virginia Beach performance, entitled “Songs from My Heritage,” Krohn
Marcia Hofheimer, Chuck Woodward, and Alan Bartel.
selected songs of special meaning to him, from religious to Gershwin, Bernstein and Mahler. Before and after each piece, he shared the song’s history and his personal attachment. Krohn was accompanied on piano by Chuck Woodward, music director at Ohef Sholom Temple, and artistic director of Virginia Chorale. The 28-year-old Krohn was the final performance in this season’s Performing Arts at the J, presented by Leah Wohl.* For information about next year’s Cultural Arts calendar or to become a volunteer for cultural arts events, contact Michele Goldberg at 321-2341 or firstname.lastname@example.org. *of blessed memory
Alan Bartel, Marilyn Buxbaum, Delores Bartel, and Stuart Buxbaum.
Mitzvah Day at Temple Emanuel Temple Emanuel held their annual Mitzvah Day to help the community on Sunday, April 21. The third grade and seventh grade students went to the Foodbank of Southeastern Virginia to assist however possible. The group took cans to contribute, which ultimately help feed 93 families. The K-second grade students Temple Emanuel student at the Foodbank. painted hats for Children’s Hospital of The King’s Daughters The day was organized by Terry Blevins. for cancer patients.
Preschool takes a virtual trip to Israel by Alene Kaufman, Strelitz Early Childhood Center director
One of the preschool’s favorite celebrations takes place annually at Yom Ha’atzmaut, Israel’s “birthday.” This year was no exception, but preparing for the big day came first. Students compared and contrasted the flag of the USA with that of Israel, looked at the geography of Israel, did computer research, created personalized passports for their big trip, baked celebratory cupcakes, sang songs, and listened to stories. On Tuesday, April 16, the celebration began with a delicious snack of Israeli food—pita, hummus, and falafel. Then, with bags packed and hats and sunglasses in place, they were off on their tour of the land. The students traveled with their classes, stopping at each bulletin board in the preschool hall. Each student/teacher created board represented a different area in Israel. At every interactive stop, teachers put stickers representing the boards in the students’ passports. At the “Kotel,” students wrote notes and put them in the wall. In Eilat,
they donned goggles and pretended to look at the fish in the water. In Tel Aviv, they bought items in the Shuk haCarmel by day and danced on the colorful lighted dance floor in the club at night. They talked about planting trees in the Jerusalem forest and looked at the colorful boats in the Haifa port. The students “climbed” Masada, floated in the Dead Sea while reading the newspaper, and sat on a “camel” in the Negev! It was a great morning of celebration, but the day did not end the students’ study of the beloved homeland. Gan Gimel students opened HAT’s Yom Ha’atzmaut program in the afternoon with a rousing rendition of Craig Taubman’s Big Trip. Snack for the rest of the week included popular Israeli food —cucumbers and oranges—and students continued to learn about the country. One class painted beautiful hamsahs and wrote about the day in their journals. For more information about the Strelitz Early Childhood Center preschool, contact Carin Simon, admissions director, email email@example.com or call 424-4327.
jewishnewsva.org | May 20, 2013 | Jewish News | 19
Jewish Education Night celebrates teachers and Jewish learning in Tidewater by Miriam Brunn Ruberg photographs by Laine Mednick Rutherford
he emphasis placed on Jewish learning in Tidewater was evident both in the number of people honored and the crowd that attended the Jewish Education Night ceremony on April 30. Professional, volunteer and youth educators were honored at the annual event, presented by the Simon Family Jewish Community Center, sponsored by the United Jewish Federation of Tidewater, and underwritten by the Lee A. and Helen G. Gifford Jewish Education Council Fund of the Tidewater Jewish Foundation. Annabel Sacks, chair of the Jewish Education Council, began the program. As Sacks gave her welcoming address, honorees and supporters continued to stream into the JCC auditorium, prompting volunteers and staff to quickly find more seating for the larger than anticipated audience. “We’re clearly a community dedicated to Jewish education,” said Sacks. “We are grateful for our teachers.” More than 130 people came to recognize the multitude of educators listed in the program. Awards were given to teachers, administrators, assistants and staff of Hebrew day schools, synagogue religious schools and other area Jewish institutions of learning. “When I counted all of the names of the teachers and students who are receiving awards, I saw how many people here are committed to helping move forward the continuity of our community,” said Scott Katz, executive director of the JCC. “This is truly what community is all about.” Highlights of the evening included special awards given to educators who have served the community for chai (18) years, or are retiring. Alene Jo Kaufman, director of the Strelitz Early Childhood Center presented these honors to Amanda Becker, Yafa Bosler, Nettie Groves, Becky WinsteadRoberts and Rita Yashaev. “The most anticipated moment of the event is the announcement of the Jewish Educator of the Year, which is intended as a surprise,” says Miriam Brunn Ruberg, director of Jewish Life and Learning at the JCC. The 2013 Educator of the Year honoree is Becky Winstead-Roberts, who has taught students of all Jewish affiliations and levels throughout Tidewater. During her acceptance remarks, Winstead-Roberts expressed
Young people receiving Youth Awards.
Amanda Becker was recognized as principal of Beth Chaverim.
appreciation and an ongoing dedication to teaching. Past Educators of the Year participating in Jewish Education Night included Alene Jo Kaufman, Ina Mirman Leiderman, Lorna Orleans, Kathryn Morton, and Kitty Wolf. Community leaders who participated in parts of the evening’s program included Cantor Elihu Flax, Rabbi Mordechai Wecker, Alvin Wall and Rabbi Israel Zoberman. The Simon Family JCC is a constituent agency of United Jewish Federation of Tidewater.
20 | Jewish News | May 20, 2013 | jewishnewsva.org
Lorna Orleans, 2012 Jewish Educator of the Year.
Educators receiving Continuing Education Certificates.
Becky Winstead Roberts won Tidewater Jewish Educator of the Year 2013.
Will controversies hurt liberals’ support for Obama? WASHINGTON (JTA)—What happens when the rabbi who delivered the invocation at your nomination inveighs against you? Three controversies in quick succession have earned President Obama opprobrium from some of his most steadfast liberal supporters, including Rabbi David Saperstein, who directs the Reform movement’s Religious Action Center. The controversies besieging the White House in recent weeks have included State Department emails suggesting the White House tried to change the administration’s talking points concerning the deadly attack last year on the U.S. consulate in Benghazi; an acknowledgment by the Internal Revenue Service that it focused specifically on conservative groups in directing additional scrutiny to applications for taxexempt status; and the revelation that the Justice Department tracked phone calls of Associated Press reporters in a bid to identify government leakers. Conservatives were quick to pounce, and more than one compared the latest revelations to the scandal-mired administration of Richard Nixon. “Who would have guessed that just a few months into his second term, President Obama would be compared to Tricky Dick,” wrote Joe Battenfeld, a columnist for the conservative Boston Herald. Liberals expressed chagrin, too. “Reports that the IRS focused attention on applications for tax-exempt status from groups with apparently politically conservative names and ideologies are deeply concerning,” the Religious Action Center said in a statement. “No individual or organization should incur extra attention from the IRS solely on the basis of political ideology and no entity should feel implicit or explicit pressure to alter its mission or actions based on fear of politically motivated action from the IRS—or any other government agency.”
Still, Saperstein, a constitutional scholar who has been close to the Obama administration and delivered the invocation at the 2008 Democratic convention in Denver nominating Obama, dismissed any comparison to Watergate. “That was totally pervasive and violated a range of laws,” Saperstein said of Nixon’s excesses, which included domestic spying on political rivals. “These appear to be aberrations.” Comparisons to President George W. Bush, Obama’s immediate predecessor, might prove sturdier. The Bush-era IRS in 2004 sought an audit of the NAACP, saying its activities were overly political. NPR reported that the Bush administration on multiple occasions subpoenaed journalists’ phone records under the same terms that the Obama Justice Department used to investigate the AP. One of the Bush administration’s attempts to control information was its prosecution of two former staffers for the American Israel Public Affairs Committee for receiving allegedly classified information. The prosecution, had it proved successful, would have criminalized not just leakers but those who receive leaks, like journalists. Notably, Eric Holder, Obama’s attorney general, shut down the case of the AIPAC staffers in 2009 within months of assuming the job. Saperstein said Obama needed to come up with answers fast to allay concerns that he was disengaging government from its constituents. “These become the filters through which people will remember an administration,” he told JTA. “It behooves the administration to move effectively on this.” Or, as comedian Jon Stewart of The Daily Show put it, “This has in one seismic moment shifted the burden of proof from the tin-foil behatted to the government.”
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22 | Jewish News | May 20, 2013 | jewishnewsva.org
BOOK REVIEW Examining an evolving field Flourishing In the Later Years (Jewish Pastoral Insights On Senior Residential Care) by Rabbi James R. Michaels and Rabbi Cary Kozberg Mazo Publishers, 2012 297 pages This second edition—the first one was published in 2009—proves that Flourishing In the Later Years is a flourishing and welcome addition to the Rabbi Zoberman growing field of Jewish pastoral care, particularly its geriatric focus, receiving long overdue professional attention. The Christian denominations and seminaries have been ahead in the essential area of pastoral care, though our Jewish counterparts are finally catching up. The editors, our colleagues Rabbis James R. Michael and Cary Kozberg, are pioneering professional Jewish chaplains whose critical contributions to their chosen vocation, and avocation, are deeply appreciated. In fact, their present book is not restricted to those who serve or live in senior residential facilities, but offers invaluable information and insight to all who are touched by and care for the human condition-spiritually, psychologically, and physically-with particular emphasis on Jewish settings. Four major factors are emphasized that impact geriatric care that have emerged since the first edition was published: “senior residential care” is replacing “long-term care,” with focus on the individual’s needs; the 2010 Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act; the new Jewish “Green House” residences in Dedham, Mass. and the use of technology to benefit the elderly. The book, an eye-opener, is divided into three parts: Clinical Issues, Pastoral Programming, and What Will the Future Bring.
As a son of Polish Holocaust survivors, I was interested in Dr. Paula David’s chapter, “More Battles: Age-Related Challenges for Holocaust Survivors.” The one by Sara Paasche-Orlow, “Revealing The Jewish Voice In Clinical Pastoral Education,” reminded me of my four CPE units from Saint Luke’s Methodist Hospital in Cedar Rapids, Iowa, in the 1970s. I was fortunate to be among the early rabbis to receive this unique and essential training, followed in 1980 by a doctorate in Pastoral Care and Counseling from McCormick Theological Seminary in Chicago, the first rabbi to earn the degree from the Presbyterian Church, USA, affiliated seminary. The 23 contributors, including the editors, reflect wide and varied backgrounds, expertise, and experience that we ought to learn from and celebrate. Rabbi James. R. Michaels is director of Pastoral Care at the Charles E. Smith Life Communities (the Hebrew Home of Greater Washington) in Rockville, Md., and Rabbi Cary Kozberg is director of Religious Life at Wezner Heritage Village in Columbus, Ohio. Rabbi Michaels poignantly concludes, ‘as the Baby Boom Generation enters its senior years, the need to provide spiritual comfort and guidance for them and their families will continue to grow and evolve. Will we create new pastoral models to fulfill the need? This is the question that we who are concerned about the welfare of Jewish seniors must address. In doing so, may we work to fulfill the Jewish people’s mission of bringing kedushah / sanctity to the world.’
I was fortunate to be among the early rabbis to receive this unique and essential training.
—Rabbi Israel Zoberman is the spiritual leader of Congregation Beth Chaverim. A certified Pastoral Counselor, he was the first rabbi to earn a doctorate in Pastoral Care and Counseling from McCormick Theological Seminary in Chicago in 1980.
Jewish groups join call for ban on religious profiling
wo Jewish organizations joined the Interfaith Alliance in calling on the U.S. Senate to include a ban on religious profiling in its immigration reform bill. Rabbi David Saperstein, director of the Religious Action Center of Reform Judaism, and Nancy Kaufman, CEO of the National Council of Jewish Women, joined other religious leaders in criticizing an immigration reform bill for not including religion or natural origin on its list of items banned as profiling. “This glaring loophole must be closed,” the Interfaith Alliance wrote in a letter to the Senate Judiciary Committee, which is reviewing the proposal drafted by a bipartisan group of senators nicknamed the “Gang of Eight.” “By omitting religion and national origin in this manner, Congress would effectively give law enforcement the go-ahead to target Americans based on these defining characteristics.” The letter also was signed by the Rev. Dr. C. Welton Gaddy, president of the Interfaith Alliance, and the Rev. J. Brent Walker, executive director of the Baptist Joint Committee for Religious Liberty. (JTA)
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Interested in furthering your Jewish Knowledge? A new class of the Florence Melton Adult Mini-School is being formed this October on Tuesday mornings! Join this fabulous opportunity to learn more about Judaism and make new friends! For more information and to register contact Miriam Brunn Ruberg at 321-2328 or email her at firstname.lastname@example.org
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Ohef Sholom Temple offers Learners’ Service Saturday, June 22, 10:30 am
ave you ever felt lost in a Jewish Shabbat service? Wondered when to bow or what the Hebrew prayers mean? To help make sense of these customs and to offer insights into the service, Ohef Sholom Temple will offer a four-week series called Learners’ Service. Led by Kathryn Morton, Rabbi Rosalin Mandelberg, Rabbi Arthur Steinberg, and Cantor Wally Schachet-Briskin, these classes are for those new to Judaism, as well as for people eager to learn more. Beginning with “OMG! We’re Doing What Comes Naturally,” the class will look at the natural human impulse to make an emphatic noise when delighted, shocked, or frightened. The class will learn that that instinct is the energy at the heart of avodah and of t’fillah. The next session will look at the prayer book or siddur as a GPS device providing a route to get from place to place. Next, the class will explore the fact that the liturgy is a series of pre-packaged quotation pies to serve up on days when people don’t have the “oomph” to cook up
their own offerings from fresh local ingredients. And, finally, the group will consider “Prayerobics,” the actions of body and of mind that illumine how Avodah can mean both worship and work. Kathryn Morton, an immigrant to Judaism, writes, “I was surprised to learn a lot of things that are hardly noticed by life-long Jews: there’s no creed, questions and diverse viewpoints and insights are welcome; pride isn’t a sin, but a source of pro-active energy; and one doesn’t bow and shrink to pray, but stands tall. There is a whole different way of thinking that undergirds Jewish life and ritual. The categories are different, the structure of time is different, the relationship to God and to self are different.” She is eager to help guide other newcomers to Judaism in these four learning services. The Learners’ Services series is free and open to the public. For more information contact Linda at 625-4295 or linda@ ohefsholom.org.
Third Annual JCC Presidents’ Cup Golf Tournament Monday, June 10
Life is good for my family, but it’s had its moments. My parents and brother had extended illnesses before passing away, and we endured an amazing, though long and difficult adoption process in China. Through it all our fellow Temple Israel congregants, including Rabbi Panitz who married us, were there, enthusiastically welcoming Jemma and always comforting Steve and me. Today the future is bright, for the Brodies and my synagogue. Marcia & Jemma Brodie
An egalitarian, welcoming place of worship Affiliated with the Conservative Movement
by Leslie Shroyer
www.templeisraelva.com (757) 489-4550
24 | Jewish News | May 20, 2013 | jewishnewsva.org
The Simon Family JCC’s Presidents’ Cup Tournament, which will take place this year at Heron Ridge Golf Club in Virginia Beach, has existed since the 1980s, but was renamed the Presidents’ Cup two years ago to honor past JCC presidents. The Golf Tournament raises funds to support JCC programs that help improve the lives of thousands of people in Tidewater. Programs it supports include the Kids Connection Before and After School Program, Beginnings Infant and Toddler Care Center, Camp JCC summer day camp, special needs day camp and teen programming, among others. “For so many years, many dedicated lay leaders have worked hard at making the JCC Golf Tournament a premiere event here in Hampton Roads,” says golf committee member and supporter, Jason Hoffman, associate vice president of investments, The Alcaraz Mercadante West Investment Group. “Every year it gets tough with many worthwhile causes competing for our time and money during what I call ‘Tournament
season.’” Those who have made early commitments as sponsors include Wall, Einhorn & Chernitzer, Lois and Barry Einhorn, VBS Financial Services, Traci Corcoran, Towne Bank, The OBMS Partners-Merrill Lynch, The Alcaraz Mercadante West Investment Group, Harbor Group, Summit Group of Virginia, Scott N. Alperin, P.C. and Samuel I. White, P.C. “We need to continue to remind all of our great players and fantastic sponsors how vital their participation is in the tournament,” says Hoffman. “The JCC uses this tournament as its main fundraiser, and without the money raised, the JCC would have a harder time delivering both the quality programming and fantastic facility that we are fortunate to have here in this community.” To register to play, visit SupportYourjcc. org. Great golf, give-aways, raffle prizes and a reception are all part of the tournament. For more information, Contact Alex Pomerantz at 965-6136 or apomerantz@ ujft.org. The Simon Family JCC is a constituent agency of United Jewish Federation of Tidewater.
what’s happening Kempsville Conservative Synagogue and Temple Israel to celebrate “Bar Mitzvah Year” of programming partnership
Friday, June 7
embers of Kempsville Conservative Synagogue and Temple Israel are not sure if anyone remembers exactly how their “programming partnership” began. They do remember that Sharon Grossman, then president of Temple Israel, and Alene Jo Kaufman, then president of Kempsville Conservative Synagogue/ Kehillat Bet Hamidrash enjoyed working together. They know that “KBH” wanted to engage in additional adult education and had investigated some possibilities. Rabbi Michael Panitz of Temple Israel offered to teach a mini-series at KBH for members of both congregations, and since then, the relationship between the two synagogues has grown and developed. The original mini-series became an annual event and education for the children became a joint affair as KBH’s students joined the Temple Israel Sunday School and KBH members served as teachers. The two synagogues continue to share worship services for specific holidays at Temple Israel and annually, join together at Beth Sholom Village to lead services. KBH annually hosts Temple Israel members for Shabbat dinner and the congregations often support each other’s celebrations and fundraising events. “Thirteen years is a long time in the life of our still young congregation and, as in any life, it is sometimes difficult to remember every detail. However, as we prepare to
celebrate our “bar mitzvah” year, it brings us such joy to acknowledge the influence we have had on each other in our congregations and the friendships we have formed as a result of this distinctive relationship.” says Kaufman. Rabbi Panitz adds, “Ten or a thousand, a minyan is a minyan! The partnership of the Kempsville Conservative Congregation and Temple Israel is characterized by deep and mutual respect. Each of us recognizes the vital work of Jewish community-building, worship and Torah study that constitutes the missions of both congregations. This mutual respect allows us to celebrate our Jewishness together, regardless of the difference of our demographics. As we celebrate the bar mitzvah year of our partnership, we are proud to serve as an example of k’lal yisrael.” The kick-off to the 13th year of the programming partnership will take place at KBH with Shabbat services, followed by Shabbat dinner prepared by the catering committee of KBH. In the spirit of continuing collaboration, services will be conducted by Cantor David Proser of KBH along with Rabbi Panitz, with melodies and traditions of both congregations woven throughout the service. To join the celebration, contact KBH at email@example.com for dinner reservations and additional information.
Simon Family JCC kicks off summer with May 20–24 “Member Appreciation Week” To mark the start of summer, the Simon Family JCC is planning activities for families and individuals over the next several weeks. Monday, May 20, Older Americans Appreciation Day, featuring free gifts Tuesday, May 21, 5–7 pm, Family cookout Wednesday, May 22, free snacks for members Thursday, May 23, 6–10:30 am, a pancake breakfast Friday, May 24, free gifts for all members Saturday, May 25, outdoor pools and water park open for the season Sunday, June 7, 1–4 pm, the community is invited to join JCC leadership and staff for an open house, featuring fitness demonstrations, chair massages, kids activities, open swim time and more.
UJFT to celebrate Tidewater Jewish community in Biennial Meeting
Monday, June 3, 6 pm
very other year, the leadership and staff of the United Jewish Federation of Tidewater come together to celebrate accomplishments, honor leaders, and chart the future. The Biennial meeting, taking place this year at the Sandler Family Campus, is an opportunity for the community to officially thank those whose work guides and sustains the health of the Tidewater Jewish community. Alvin A Wall, outgoing UJFT president (who will be honored for his tenure as president that night), says of the event, “it’s a great opportunity to get together and recognize the hard work that happens every day. It was an honor for me two years ago to be on stage with [my predecessor] Lonny Sarfan and all of the other leaders of this community, and I look forward to passing the torch to Miles [Leon, incoming president].” In addition to honoring Wall’s presidency, the meeting will see the installation of incoming president, Miles Leon, by his father, Arnold Leon. Leon, president of S.L. Nusbaum Realty Co., has a family legacy of commitment to maintaining a strong community. He has honed his leadership skills with decades of involvement in both the Jewish and greater communities. A former UJFT Annual Campaign chair and past president of Hebrew Academy of Tidewater, one of Leon’s goals during his presidency is to bring community awareness to the UJFT’s positive impact, and the number of ways the organization extends its helping arms. During the meeting, the UJFT also will acknowledge and pay tribute to exceptional volunteer and professional members of the Tidewater Jewish community. Karen Lombart will be presented a
Special Community Recognition Award. Marc Abrams and Jason Hoffman will both be presented the Leonard R. Strelitz Young Leadership Award. Kurt Rosenbach will receive the Joseph H. Strelitz Miles Leon Community Service Award. Jewish News’ Terri Denison Budman is to be presented the Jewish Communal Professional’s Award. Outgoing UJFT committee chairs will be honored for their service, including Miriam Seeherman, outgoing Community Relations Council Chair, Alicia London Friedman, outgoing Holocaust Commission Chair, Laura Geringer Gross, outgoing Women’s Campaign Chair, and Jay Kelbanoff, General Campaign Chair from 2010-2012. Other highlights of the evening will include a D’var Torah by Rabbi Jeffrey Arnowitz of Congregation Beth El, and the installation of new UJFT board members. The entire Jewish community is invited to attend the event. Miles Leon, incoming UJFT president, says, “it’s so easy to focus on where we need to go. I think it’s important that we take a moment and celebrate just how far we’ve come. That’s an important part of what the Biennial Meeting does.” The meeting takes place on the Sandler Family Campus of the Tidewater Jewish Community, 5000 Corporate Woods Drive, Virginia Beach and is open to the community. Kosher hors d’oeuvres and cocktails will be served. RSVPs are strongly recommended. RSVP to Cynthia Wildes cwildes@ ujft.org or 757-965-6131.
All events take place at the Simon Family JCC on the Reba and Sam Sandler Family Campus. Visit SimonFamilyJ.org for more information about summer membership, summer camps, and all that the JCC offers.
jewishnewsva.org | May 20, 2013 | Jewish News | 25
what’s happening YAD prepares to celebrate
Saturday, June 1, 8 pm
he Young Adult Division of United Jewish Federation of Tidewater will host a celebration of their recent success in the 2013 Annual Campaign. Tidewater’s young leaders have nearly tripled the dollars brought in through the Young Leadership Campaign in the past three Campaign years. “The young leaders in Tidewater are making an investment in their Jewish community locally and globally—and we are celebrating their extraordinary deeds,” says Amy Weinstein, director, Young Adult Division, UJFT. The event will begin with a Havdalah service, followed by a brief speaker, one of the current notable National Young
Camp out with the Israeli Scouts Sunday, June 23, 6:30 pm
Leadership Cabinet members, who will thank Tidewater’s young leaders and share a personal story about their passion for Jewish Federation. During the evening, the group will recognize YLC’s newest society level donors (Ben Gurion Society—$1000+, Power of 1—$365–$999, Habonim—$118–$364) for their meaningful investment in community. The group will continue celebrating with hor’dourves, dessert and drinks. This event is by-invitation-only, to those young leaders in Tidewater who have made a pledge to the UJFT 2013 Annual Campaign. Approximately 75 to 100 people are expected to attend this function.
Israel Today: Leadership How Israel is grappling with the Middle East crises Thursday, May 23, 7 pm
he fun-filled, internationally acclaimed Israeli Scouts Caravan will perform at the Simon Family JCC. The Israeli Scouts Caravan is comprised of ten 17-year-olds who crisscross North America each summer as emissaries of Israel, sharing their lives through song, dance and story. Presenting Israeli culture, spirit and experience, their performances are an important partnership between American and Israeli Jews. The program promotes an understanding of not only the similarities and ties that connect, but of the differences that separate these two cultures. The Scouts, who stay with local host families, will meet the audience after their show at approximately 7:30 pm. For more information, contact the JCC, at 321-2338.
irectly off of a plane from Israel, National Press Award-winning journalist and Middle East Peace Process director David Makovsky will speak about current events, tensions, David Makovsky and chances of peace in the Middle East at the Sandler Family Campus of the Tidewater Jewish Community. As the third and final speaker in the Community Relations Council’s Israel Today series, Makvosky will focus on leadership from Israel Today. Makovsky has traveled extensively in the Middle East and has met leaders both in the region and in Washington. He sketches fascinating portraits of Mideast leaders and will explain how they shape that critical region. Makovsky will share details from his most recent trip, from where he’ll travel directly to Tidewater, including the topics on everyone’s mind these days, Iran, Syria and the Israeli-Palestinian peace process. This event is not one to be missed. Reserve a seat as a full house is expected. RSVP’s and questions to: JJohnson@ujft.org or 321-2323. For more information on David Makovsky, Israel Today or the CRC, go to www.jewishva.org/crc.
26 | Jewish News | May 20, 2013 | jewishnewsva.org
M ay 20, M o nd ay Older Americans Month c e l e b r a t e d a t S i m o n F a m il y J C C. S e e p a g e 21. M AY 22, WED NESDAY The JCC Seniors Club a t t h e S i m o n F a m il y J C C. B o a r d m e e t i n g a t 10:3 0 a m. C a t e r e d l u n c h a t 12 p m. P r o g r a m w ill b e a H a w a iia n g r o u p o f h u la d a n c e r s l e d b y J o J o C a ll e s. L u n c h w ill b e f r e e t o a ll c l u b m e m b e r s. G u e s t a n d n o n - m e m b e r s c o s t , $ 7 f o r l u n c h. C a ll M a r il y n M o r a n h a a t 4 2 6 -74 2 3 f o r r e s e r v a t i o n s. D r e s s i n a H a w a iia n s h i r t o r a n y isla n d c l o t h i n g t o h e lp g e t i n t h e m o o d. M ay 23, T hur s d ay Israel Today with David Makovsky p r e s e n t e d b y t h e C o m m u n i t y R e la t i o n s c o u n c il a n d c o m m u n i t y p a r t n e r s. M a k o v s k y w ill f o c u s o n L e a d e r s h ip f r o m Is r a e l To d a y. A s t h e s e n i o r f e ll o w a n d d i r e c t o r o f T h e Wa s h i n g t o n I n s t i t u t e’s P r o j e c t o n t h e M i d d l e E a s t P e a c e P r o c e s s, M a k o v s k y h a s t r a v e l e d e x t e n si v e l y i n t h e M i d d l e E a s t a n d h a s m e t l e a d e r s b o t h i n t h e r e g i o n a n d i n Wa s h i n g t o n. H e w ill s k e t c h f a s c i n a t i n g p o r t r a i t s o f M i d e a s t l e a d e r s a n d e x p la i n h o w t h e y s h a p e t h is c r i t i c a l r e g i o n. Ta k i n g p la c e a t 7 p m o n t h e S a n d l e r F a m il y C a m p u s, t h is e v e n t is f r e e a n d o p e n t o t h e c o m m u n i t y, a n d t h e s e a t s a r e e x p e c t e d t o b e f ill e d. R S V P t o d a y t o J J o h n s o n @ u j f t .o r g t o e n s u r e a s e a t . S e e p a g e 24. M ay 28, T ue s d ay Adult AD/HD 101 L e a r n t h e b a si c s o f h o w A D / H D m a y a f f e c t y o u a s a n a d u l t a n d s o m e b a si c t o o ls f o r m a k i n g li f e e a si e r a t h o m e a n d i n t h e w o r k p la c e. S p o n s o r e d b y J e w is h F a m il y S e r v i c e. 6:3 0 –7:3 0 p m. C a ll o r e - m a il t o r e s e r v e a p la c e: 75 7- 4 5 9 - 4 6 4 0 o r C o u n s e li n g @ j f s h a m p t o n r o a d s.o r g. M ay 26, S und ay Swimmers’ qualifying day f o r S w o r d f is h S w i m Te a m a t t h e S i m o n F a m il y J C C. F o r a g e s 5 -18, M o r n i n g o r a f t e r n o o n p r a c t i c e s e s si o n s a v a ila b l e. 3 21- 2 3 0 8 o r t e d w a r d s @ si m o n f a m il y j.o r g o r v isi t si m o n f a m il y j.o r g. JUNE 2, SUNDAY Brith Sholom’s meeting w ill t a k e p la c e a t t h e B e t h S h o l o m H o m e. B o a r d m e e t i n g b e g i n s a t 10 a m. C a n t o r E li h u F la x w ill o f f i c ia t e a t o u r a n n u a l M e m o r ia l S e r v i c e a t 11 a m. F o ll o w i n g t h e Y i z k o r S e r v i c e b r u n c h w ill t a k e p la c e. June 9, S und ay First Beth El Sports and Games Day — a c t i v i t i e s f o r a ll a g e s. C o n t a c t B e t h E l f o r m o r e i n f o r m a t i o n a t 6 2 5 -7 8 21. JUNE 19, WED NESDAY The JCC Seniors Club a t t h e S i m o n F a m il y J C C, b o a r d m e e t i n g a t 10:3 0 a m. L u n c h a t 11;3 0 a m. f o ll o w e d b y a s h o r t b u si n e s s m e e t i n g a n d t h e n a n a r t s a n d c r a f t s p r o j e c t w i t h e q u ip m e n t a n d g u i d a n c e b y C o l o r M e M i n e. $12. F o r f u r t h e r i n f o r m a t i o n, c a ll M a r il y n M o r a n h a a t 4 2 6 -74 2 3. D e a dli n e t o p a y is M a y 2 2 o r s e n d c h e c k f o r $12 p a y a b l e t o t h e J C C S e n i o r s C l u b t o o u r Tr e a s u r e r, A n n e P y la t e a t 4 8 2 3 P o o lsi d e R o a d, V i r g i n ia B e a c h, VA 2 3 4 5 5. Send submissions for calendar to news@ujf t.org. Be sure to note “calendar” in the subject. Include date, event name, sponsor, address, time, cost and phone.
Who Knew ? Park named for Beastie Boys’ Adam Yauch
Lena Dunham’s expensive digs It’s often hard to figure out how much of the real-life Lena Dunham makes it into the character she plays on her HBO series Girls. It’s certain, though, that Hannah Horvath would never have gone with a real estate agent to see the apartment Dunham checked out over the weekend. The three-bedroom pad in the hip Williamsburg section of Brooklyn features twin walk-in closets, a giant living room-kitchen area and a 1,900-square-foot wrap-around terrace with views of the Manhattan skyline and the Williamsburg Bridge, the New York Daily News says. (JTA)
New York City honored the late rapper Adam Yauch, MCA of the Beastie Boys, by bestowing his name on a Brooklyn playground. The park, formerly called Palmetto Playground, is just a couple of blocks from where the musician grew up. At the dedication ceremony earlier this month, speakers included bandmate Adam Horovitz (aka Ad-Rock); Yauch’s parents, Frances and Noel, and Borough President Marty Markowitz, who rapped his own version of the Beastie Boys’ “Open Letter to NYC,” according to USA Today. (JTA)
Mila Kunis, world’s sexiest woman
Barbara Walters says “It’s time” After 37 years at ABC, Barbara Walters is calling it quits. “It’s time,” said Walters, 83. “I keep thinking of the line from Cabaret: ‘When I go, I’m going like Chelsea.’ When I go there is not going to be any, ‘Please can I have another appearance?’ I don’t want to do any more interviews. I don’t want to do any other programs. I’m not joining CNN. This is it.” Over the course of her 50-year career, Walters did more than interview an endless list of VIPs. As the nation’s first female
FHM magazine put Mila Kunis at the top of its annual 100 Sexiest Women in the World list. The super classy publication (tagline: “It’s great to be a man”) praises her work on That ’70s Show, Forgetting Sarah Marshall and Black Swan. Surely Ashton Kutcher would agree with the editors, who call the Ukrainian Jewish star the “Dream Girlfriend.” Other chosen ladies who made the arbitrary cut: Scarlett Johannson at No. 49 and Alison Brie, No. 57. (JTA)
anchorwoman, she also was a broadcasting pioneer. Don’t mourn just yet—she’s not leaving for another year, and it’s going to be a busy one. According to The New York Times, upcoming projects include a final edition of the 10 Most Fascinating People, an interview with President Obama and first lady Michelle Obama, a series of retrospective clips from The View, and a possible return to the Academy Awards special she stopped doing several years ago. (JTA)
Amy Winehouse exhibit Most of the images we’ve seen of Amy Winehouse tend to depict only the wild and tragic parts of her life. That’s about to change. This summer, The Jewish Museum in Camden, Winehouse’s former London neighborhood, will feature Amy Winehouse: A Family Portrait. The exhibition, which will commemorate what would have been the late singer’s 30th birthday, is focused on her style, family life and Jewish heritage. “Amy was someone who was incredibly proud of her Jewish-London roots,” her brother, Alex, told Vogue U.K. “We weren’t religious, but we were traditional. I hope, in this most fitting of places, that the world
gets to see this other side, not just to Amy, but to our typical Jewish family.”
Angelina Jolie’s mastectomy The mother of actress Angelina Jolie died at 56 after years of fighting breast cancer, having never met five of Jolie’s six children. In an attempt to avoid a similar fate, the Oscar-winning actress underwent a preventive double mastectomy in February, she revealed in a piece that appeared in The New York Times. “I have always told [my children] not to worry, but the truth is I carry a ‘faulty’ gene, BRCA1, which sharply increases my risk of developing breast cancer and ovarian cancer,” Jolie, 37, wrote. The BRCA1 mutation, especially common in Ashkenazi Jewish women, puts Jolie at an 87 percent risk of breast cancer and a 50 percent risk of ovarian cancer. As Jolie pointed out, breast cancer kills 458,000 people each year, according to the World Health Organization. It is estimated that one in 300 to one in 500 women carry the BRCA1 or BRCA2 gene mutation. In the piece Jolie described the surgery, emphasizing her relatively quick recovery. (JTA)
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Moroccan king funding preservation of Cape Verde Jewish heritage—but to what end? by Cnaan Liphshiz
PRAIA, Cape Verde (JTA)—A Portuguese rabbi and a Moroccan diplomat stood shoulder to shoulder in a Catholic cemetery here while 200 mourners howled in grief as they buried a resident of this island off the western coast of Africa. The foreigners had come to Cape Verde’s main cemetery earlier this month not to bury a local, but for the rededication of 10 gravestones of Moroccan Jews—members of an extinct community whose roots trace to the 1860s. With virtually no practicing Jews on Cape Verde today, the cemeteries had fallen into neglect. Now a Washington-based nonprofit is spearheading their restoration. The Cape Verde Jewish Heritage Project has a board stuffed with prominent Jewish Washingtonians, but its funding comes almost entirely from one man—King Mohammed VI of Morocco. According to the group’s U.S. tax filings, the king was the organization’s sole donor in 2011 and 2012, giving $100,000 each year. Andre Azoulay, a senior Jewish adviser to the king and a member of the project’s advisory board, told JTA that the effort is
reflective of the king’s “deep commitment” to preserving Jewish heritage in Morocco and elsewhere. But even if, as some speculate, it is motivated by a desire to attract tourists and curry favor with American Jews, the king’s drive clearly sets Morocco apart from other Middle Eastern countries where Jewish sites have faced increasing threats under new Islamist governments. “This is all part of a strong push from His Majesty the King that started three, four years ago, when we saw cemeteries have become vulnerable because of lacking care by all of us,” Azoulay says. Approximately 3,000 Jews are living in Morocco, a North African monarchy about the size of Texas that had been home to a large and thriving Jewish community for centuries. In the 19th century, a number of Moroccan-Jewish families resettled in Cape Verde, attracted by the financial potential of this transatlantic hub. Over time the families totally assimilated, though their Creole-speaking, Christian descendants include some of Cape Verde’s most prominent businessmen and politicians, including the country’s first democratically elected prime minister, Carlos Alberto Wahnon de Carvalho Veiga.
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Unlike many Arab countries with once the State Department out of this idea. The sizable Jewish communities, Morocco has Jewish lobby is a very strong one.” taken wide-ranging steps to preserve its The board of the Cape Verde Jewish Jewish history. The Casablanca Jewish muse- Heritage Project includes Howard Berman, um was restored, the small but colorful a former California congressman who 17th century synagogue in Fez was chaired the House Foreign Affairs renovated, and dozens of former Committee until his defeat last The Jewish schools and more than year; Daniel Mariaschin, the king’s 100 synagogues were rehaexecutive director of B’nai restoration bilitated with funding from B’rith International; Herman the crown. activity already has Cohen, a former U.S. assisIn 2011, in a move that tant secretary of state; and brought benefits in Toby Dershowitz, who heads Azoulay calls unprecedented in the modern Middle a Washington public affairs the form of East, the Moroccan consticonsultancy. increased Jewish tution was changed to note But Azoulay grows indigtourism. that the country has been nant at any suggestion the king “nourished and enriched…[by] has his eye on the economic or Hebraic influences,” among others. political benefits of his largesse. The Moroccan parliament adopted the “This effort is the concrete manifesnew language along with amendments that tation of a consensus in Moroccan society, transferred some powers from the king to that our society is partly built on Jewish elected parties. culture, a culture deeply rooted in three “I am not trying to paint a one-sided millennia of history,” he says. rosy picture. There are some difficult and “You have to understand the purity of maybe black pages in the book of Moroccan it,” Azoulay added. “Those who think it is Jewry,” Azoulay says. “But there are many, to attract tourists are just out of order.” many more beautiful chapters.” As popular revolutions have swept the The king’s restoration activity already Arab world since late 2010, Jewish herihas brought benefits in the form of increased tage has suffered under newly empowered Jewish tourism. More than 19,000 Israelis Islamist governments. Two Jewish cementered Morocco in 2010, a 42 percent leap eteries were desecrated earlier this year in from the previous year, according to Israel’s Tunisia, prompting Israel to express conTourism Ministry. The World Federation of cerns for the safety of the country’s Jews, Moroccan Jewry says the kingdom receives the daily Maariv reported. another 30,000 non-Israeli Jews annually. In Egypt, the government prevented Among them was Joel Rubinfeld, the several dozen Israelis from making the Brussels-based co-chair of the European annual Passover pilgrimage to Alexandria’s Jewish Parliament, who spent 12 days in main synagogue, one of the few properly Morocco in March meeting with govern- maintained and functioning Jewish sites in ment officials and visiting his mother’s the country. Egypt also briefly censored a hometown. Rubinfeld believes the govern- film about the flight of its Jews following ment’s intention to honor the country’s Israel’s establishment. Jewish past is sincere, but he says other But in Morocco, a similar film, titled considerations are at work as well. Tinghir-Jerusalem: Echoes from the Mellah, “There may certainly be pragmatic won a prize last month at the Tangier Film incentives: attracting tourism and invest- Festival. It also triggered protests from ments down the line,” Rubinfeld says. “For a few hundred Islamists and left-wing some, it is a political calculation to improve activists saying the film promoted “normalMorocco’s international standing.” ization” of ties with Israel, The Associated A Moroccan diplomat, who spoke to Press reported. JTA on condition of anonymity, says the Still, many Jewish visitors speak of restoration project could bring political Morocco as a friendly place. Nuno Wahnon dividends for Morocco, which has been Martins, the director of European Affairs accused of human rights abuses in Western at B’nai B’rith International, says he felt Sahara, a disputed territory to which the safe enough to abandon all caution when kingdom lays partial claim. asking for directions to synagogues during “To Morocco’s great consternation, the a recent visit. And Rubinfeld says he was U.S. last month proposed the U.N. peace- surprised to hear a Hebrew song blasting keeping mission in Western Sahara help from the stereo of a shop in Casablanca’s monitor human rights,” the diplomat says. main market. “It’s very useful for us to have someone—a “Being a Jew in Morocco is safer today than strong lobby group, perhaps—to help talk on some streets in Brussels,” says Rubinfeld.
obituaries Greta Gunzburger Friedhoff Virginia Beach—Greta Friedhoff died May 5, 2013, at 92 in Virginia Beach, where she had moved to be near family: daughter Lynn Feigenbaum; granddaughter Nancy, husband Bob Evans and daughters Julia and Elena, in Williamsburg; and grandson John, wife Rachael and children Ben, Abby and Aiden in Virginia Beach. “Oma,” as they called her, was born in Mannheim, Germany. Her carefree childhood ended with the rise of Hitler, and at 15 she took refuge at her sister Lili’s home in England. From there she moved to the United States, where she met her beloved “Schwupsie,” Paul, a fellow German refugee. Their 60 years together took the family to New Jersey and ultimately Puerto Rico. A doting mother and grandmother, Greta also served as a hospital volunteer, recorded books for the blind, and was active with Hadassah and San Juan’s pioneer synagogue. She and Paul kept strong ties to family from California to Switzerland—the Fromsons, Gladstones and Bridels among many others. Wherever they went, Paul and Greta made lifelong friends, retiring in Clearwater, Fla. But in 1997, they said good-bye to this community to be near Lynn and her husband David on his diagnosis of ALS (Lou Gehrig’s Disease). They settled in Williamsburg, where Paul died in 2001. Greta’s final years were spent at The Memory Center. Condolences can be made at www. altmeyer.com. Anna Stern Virginia Beach—Anna Rita Stern, 79 of Silver Sands Circle in Virginia Beach passed away peacefully on May 11, 2013. A native of Norfolk, she was the daughter of the late George J.and Mildred Forman and was preceded in death by her husband Allen Stern, her brother Sam Forman of Palm Beach and her Sister Roslyn Albert, also of Virginia Beach. She was a member of Temple Beth El for many years and a lifetime member of Hadassah. She was retired from Roundtree’s Luggage in Virginia Beach, where she worked for over 20 years. She was a beloved figure both in her family and in her community. Anna Rita is survived by her sons Robert Stern, Jay Stern, Steven Stern and his wife Diana, and her Grandson Alex Stern and many nieces and nephews. Graveside services were held in Forest Lawn Cemetery. H.D. Oliver Funeral Apts. Norfolk Chapel. Memorial donations may
be made to the American Cancer Society and online condolences may be offered to the family at hdoliver.com.
Dr. Joyce Brothers, TV psychologist Dr. Joyce Brothers, the Jewish psychologist who achieved fame by dispensing advice on TV and radio, as well as winning the top prize on a 1950s game show, has died. Brothers died Monday, May 13 in New York. She was 85. The Dr. Joyce Brothers Show in the 1950s helped normalize the public discussion of psychological issues, setting the stage for future media psychologists such as Dr. Phil and Dr. Laura. She went on to become a syndicated columnist, the author of 15 books and a frequent guest on The Tonight Show. She also made cameos in movies and on TV shows such as Happy Days, Taxi and The Simpsons. Before earning her psychology degree at Cornell University and her master’s degree at Columbia, Brothers became well known with a 1955 appearance on The $64,000 Question game show. Brothers won the top prize after an intense course of study on the subject of boxing. She participated on the show to earn money after leaving work following the birth of her daughter while her doctor husband, Milton Brothers, was a low-paid hospital resident. Brothers was called to testify before a grand jury investigating game show scandals in the late 1950s, where she was quizzed about her knowledge of boxing. (JTA)
Stanley Abramowitz, longtime JDC relief worker Stanley Abramowitz, who in his 65 years working for the American Jewish Joint Distribution Committee was involved in many of its major operations, has died at 93. Abramowitz, who was working in the former Soviet Union until last year, was buried in Israel. “Stanley’s story is really the story of JDC,” the relief group said in a statement, adding that Abramowitz was a “constant force in our mission for more than 65 years.” Born in Poland, Abramowitz was recruited by JDC in London in 1945 shortly after World War II. He was sent to Germany, where he helped alleviate conditions for thousands of Jews in internment camps. He later took on assignments in Iran, North Africa and Israel, where he made his home in 1972.
In 1988, Abramowitz was on the verge of retiring when the JDC sent him to the Soviet Union to help organize the emigration of Jews from the country and provide them with aid. A JDC spokesperson said he was still working in the former Soviet Union until last year, when he retired at 92. “How sad to have lost one of JDC’s righteous giants,” the organization said. “Our memories of him will be treasured always— a good, kind, smart, gentle man who filled his long life with countless good deeds on behalf of the Jewish people.” (JTA)
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face to face
“Tzagate De Hart”
The Salber Sisters: Charlene Cohen and Ilana Benson by Karen Lombart
Just before Purim, Charlene Cohen and Ilana Benson, sisters as well as friends, attended United Jewish Federation of Tidewater’s Ezine program, “Who is your Esther?” Moderated by Farideh Goldin, director of Old Dominion University’s Institute for Jewish Studies and Interfaith Understanding, the event’s goal was to engage participants in a dialogue about their Jewish mentors. With hand gestures accompanied by South African adjectives and nuances, the two women described the matriarchs in their family with great love and respect. Again, Cohen portrays their “Bubbah” while Benson nods her head in agreement. “Our grandmother was a strong character. She lived with our Aunt Chavie and Uncle Davey and on Fridays, she would cook for our weekly family Sabbath celebration. ‘Come and vatch me’ she’d call to the two of us. ‘A couple of schpoons’ she’d point out as she added the ingredients to our favorite traditional recipes. With the dogs underfoot, Bubbah would kvech, ‘Getz a vey’.” Benson interjects with a giggle, “Charlene and I would be doubled over in a fit of laughter from her Yiddish, Lithuanian accent.” “Every Sunday, our parents would take Bubbah for a drive and bring her to our home to have dinner and play rummy,” Benson continues. Cohen finishes her sister’s thought, “She loved to listen to the music of the Chazzanut-the Cantors. She would close her eyes and whisper in Yiddish, ‘Tzagate de hart-It makes my heart melt.’” A Lithuanian immigrant, their grandfather’s true passion was helping the new arrivals settle in South Africa. “Our grandparents went down to the Cape Town docks and offered housing to the newcomers. When our father, Israel Salber, was a young boy, he and his three older siblings were forced to adjust their sleeping arrangements despite the fact that they lived in a very large house. Our grandfather was an enterprising butcher, raising chickens.” Benson explains. Harry, the oldest son, left South Africa at the age of 19 to join the Haganah, fight-
ing in Israel’s War of Independence. He was one of the halutz (a pioneer) who founded the kibbutz, Mayan Baruch in Northern Israel where he met his Moroccan wife and raised four children. Israel’s sister, at age 24, moved to Israel after she attended college in Cape Town to become a teacher. The Salber sisters’ cousins became paratroopers and officers in the Israeli army. With family members in Israel, the news of the Middle East travelled by letters, cards, air grams and radio between relatives. The family remained close despite the geographical distance. Cohen offers, “We regarded Israel as our Jewish homeland, and it was of all importance to us in South Africa. We were isolated from so many other countries, we felt connected to Israel. We believed in its centrality, and we wanted to keep it strong.” Benson adds, “We were Jews first and then South Africans. We knew it was the land of milk and honey, and we felt an obligation to support it.” Their father, a founder of the neighborhood synagogue, Hebrew Congregation Camps Bay, took great pride in its expansion. First in a very small house, the congregation quickly outgrew its original accommodations. Cohen likes to call their observance, “Conservadox.” The men and women sat separately during services, and there was never any English spoken, only Hebrew. Their life revolved around the synagogue. Families attended Friday night services, and were back again on Saturday morning and Saturday night for Havdallah and social gatherings. Both sisters, although seven and a half years apart, remember sneaking out of schul with their middle brother to meet others at the glen to catch tadpoles while the rabbi gave his sermon. Each week, instead of Sunday school, the students of Hebrew Congregation Camps Bay met in social clubs. As early as nine years old until age 15, Cohen and Benson stayed involved in the youth group, “Habonim.” Cohen shares, “We wore uniforms, did community service, attended seminars, learned outdoor survival skills and loved it all because it was fun. There were Friday night activities, seminars and campfires. Yet, there
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was no religious component.” Studying two days a week in Cheder after public school, the girls never resented the hours that they spent. They were each given a test before their Bat Mitzvah celebrations. Unlike the boys, they were not permitted to read from the Torah, however, they did chant Hebrew prayers. Both remember having a party after their Sunday service. Benson recalls that Ilana Benson and Charlene Cohen all the girls wore variations of a light blue dress. Summertime, brought three mom, Bernice, was in the Sisterhood, Ladies weeks of Jewish camp. Guild and Bnoth Zion WIZO, taking on “There were 80 to 100 kids from all leadership positions in each organization.” of the different suburbs who came to the Cohen became passionate about WIZO ‘open parties’ where 95% of the teens were by the time she was 24 years old. In 1972 Jewish. It seemed as if there was an unwrit- when her oldest son, Anton, was born, she ten law among the teenagers that all of us was involved in the weekly meetings. A lot would congregate at a designated spot on of their information about Israel came from the beach or the boardwalk,” says Benson. relatives. “It was incredibly exciting. In South Africa, As the political climate of South Africa we lived in divided ethnic communities: began to change, Benson’s friends became The Jews; Christians and Muslims. No fearful that their children would not stay matter your age or affiliation, if you were in the country to raise their families. Jewish, you participated in Jewish life.” Conversations at parties always started with The men organized the Allied Jewish a list of questions: Where are you going? Appeal fundraising campaign, relying on the When are you leaving? Do you have a structure of the neighborhoods. Emergency container yet? Their friends were immigratdrives unfolded based on their urgency. ing to Texas, San Diego, Toronto, Sydney, “The women worked together as members America and Israel. Only one couple out of of WIZO: The Women’s International Zionist 12 had chosen not to emigrate. organization,” Cohen emphasizes. “They Benson and her husband, Nathan, handled many of the fundraising events decided to move to the United States and for the community: Debutant balls, auc- stay on the East coast because the extra five tions with antiques and jewelry and huge hour flight to Los Angeles, where Nathan marketplaces. Because the activities were already had family, made the trip for visihumongous, everyone participated. Our tors much longer. Their friends, the Turoks
had already decided to relocate to Virginia Beach. Vivian Turok was employed in Cape Town by the Divaris family, which was immigrating to Tidewater. As a professional, Nathan was able to come to America on an H1 work visa instead of waiting for a green card. He looked for a job in June, and by January, 1987, they moved when Benson was 30 years old. Although many of their friends had been thrilled with their transitions, the Bensons had no idea what to expect. To their sheer delight, the family felt welcomed and immediately included in Tidewater. Within two days, they found a home at Hebrew Academy of Tidewater, with Glenn entering first grade and Carla in the four-year-old preschool class. Although, Glenn knew no Hebrew, Mrs. Baer gave him private tutoring lessons to teach him the skills to catch up to his classmates. The teachers were accommodating and nurturing. “The passion of the staff was palpable,” according to Benson. Soon after arriving, Benson was offered the opportunity to substitute teach and in September, she was given a permanent teaching position. Benson adds, “I don’t know what we would have done without the warmth and kindness of the HAT family. I was like a robot, just getting through each day. I wrote eight-page letters home, never once mentioning how I felt. I just told everybody what I was doing. To this day, I continue to feel a deep sense of gratitude to the school.” Unlike her sister’s friends, Cohen’s peers were not emigrating. She had no thoughts of leaving South Africa three years prior to arriving in America in 1990. “However when Ilana and Nathan left, there was such a void in our lives. My children were devastated. And then, Anton, our oldest, was graduating from 12th grade, and his papers for mandatory enrollment in the army arrived. There was a lot of fighting on the borders for causes that we could not understand. It was a scary time even in our neighborhoods. Government officials went knocking door to door to monitor the Black workers, checking for authorized passes. I hated the intrusions and felt that they were an invasion of my privacy,” Cohen states emphatically. Life had been good up until this point, but the family realized that leaving made more sense for their future. Although there were seven Hebrew Day schools at the time, anti-Semitism was becoming more prevalent. It took two years for David to receive his green card. The day that they left in February, 1990, the papers’ front page read, “Nelson Mandela released from prison.” There was a change in government. David was 43 years old.
Cohen wrote long faxes home to her parents in South Africa. Her father’s first words, each morning were “Where’s the letter?” Cohen insisted that her parents come to America instead of going to England to live close to her brother. According to Benson, “The process for their emigration was arduous. At the time, there were no computers. Our contact in Washington, D.C. was no longer available. We searched for somebody locally. Eventually, three years later, our father at 71 and our mother at 63 years old, arrived.” This time, Cohen and Benson, together, settled their parents at Freemason Harbor, unpacking the last of the containers. The Salbers became congregants of B’nai Israel. Cohen, in the meantime, had also become involved with HAT. Her youngest daughter, Donna, was just six years old when they arrived. Lori, 14, went to Kempsville Junior High, hoping to be immersed in the American culture immediately. Very soon after emigrating, she joined BBYO and became extremely involved, quickly holding office regionally and attending the national seminars. Anton, although he had already graduated 12th grade in South Africa, needed training for the SAT’s, so he went to Norfolk Collegiate. Playing tennis for the school, he then went on to ODU until scouts from the University of Maryland came to recruit him. For many years, Donna spent her summers at Camp Ramah, eventually becoming a CIT and then a counselor. All three children easily assimilated into the American lifestyle. The South African contingency brought an energy and an entrepreneurial spirit to HAT, arranging Casino nights, dances and big fundraisers to include the rest of the Tidewater community. Under the leadership of then director, Ada Michaels, Benson and Cohen wanted to share their love for the school and raise money for its wellbeing. They also found a home at Beth Sholom Village for their parents. “It was our saving grace,” both sisters agree. While living at the Terrace, their father was able to fulfill his life-long dream of becoming Shomer Shabbas. The Chapel services, overseen by Cantor Elihu Flax, were on the premises. “Cantor Flax is marvelous,” Cohen enthuses. “He brings such compassion to the Home. The residents come in their wheelchairs and rolling beds to pray. With joy, he brings the Torah to them. He makes everyone feel special, because he treats them with respect and dignity. Our father was able to go to minyan every day. As a Levi, he enjoyed having an aliyah. Ilana and I went on Kol Nidre and the service was beautiful. Our father was so happy there.”
“Our mother died in 2003 at the Home while our father was still living in Norfolk,” says Benson. “A year later, he moved in, residing there for five years. We decorated his apartment to help him feel comfortable. And then he met Elsa Chapel Bonnevey, and the two of them became inseparable. They spent two wonderful years together, never wanting to leave each other’s side. It was beautiful to watch their relationship blossom.” The two women agree, “Although our father passed away earlier this year, we continue to help fundraise by running events for Beth Sholom Village. It is the best way that we know how to give back.” When Benson decided to leave her teaching position at Hebrew Academy of Tidewater 12 years ago, Cohen was working part time for her husband. She had also been an interior decorator. David had co-owned an antique store in Cape Town that dabbled in jewelry. The two sisters launched, “Windsor Antiques,” building its success from their love for the social side of their business, their customers and shoppers, as well as their passion for jewelry. The two women sell imaginative, estate, signed one-of-a-kind Victorian, deco and retro treasures. As a gesture of gratitude,
they give a percentage of their proceeds to a charity. Always close, the two women have raised their families as if they are one. Their spouses, children and grandchildren know that if they cannot find “their mother,” all they have to do is call the other. Holidays are shared. Their joy of family is contagious, and it has filtered down through the generations. The Salber sisters continue to give their time and attention to HAT, Beth Sholom Village, Congregation Beth El, Women’s Cabinet of UJFT and participate in community missions. Benson is one of the co-chairs for this summer’s UJFT mission to Budapest and Prague. Beyond the golden links and locket of their jewelry collection, Cohen and Benson have created an even stronger unbroken chain. They have lovingly passed on to their children and grandchildren the joy of their Jewish heritage and the memories of their lives in South Africa. Now as American citizens, with a sense of sincere gratitude and pride, they graciously work to ensure that Tidewater’s Jewish community stays vibrant. Witnessing their passionate involvement makes the heart melt.
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