Page 1

the newsletter of woodlands community temple

April 2013 Nisan- Iyar 5773

Out of Africa Jeanne Bodin and Roberta Roos wrap up an 11-year odyssey. By Mike Winkleman

In 2002, Gershom Sizomu, a Ugandan Jew attending HUC on a six-month stipend, came to Woodlands to talk about the temple he served as spiritual leader. The congregation was rapt. Who knew there were Jews in Africa? Who’d thought that the charming black man on the bimah might be a rabbi? But his words resonated. Especially when he talked about how surprised he’d been to walk into his hotel room, flick the switch, and see the lights come on. How shocked he’d been by the hot water that flowed when he turned on the shower. “Where I come from,” he said, “there is no light, and there is no water unless women walk two miles to the spring and lug it back.” Continued on page 14

How Harriet’s

Garden Grows

Show your appreciation for 21 wonderful years with a journal ad

Size Full Page Full Page Full Page Full Page Half Page Quarter Page Business Card One line

Remembering the Holocaust p. 2 Honoring Derekh Grads p. 5, 9 Welcoming Noah Sadie Young p. 6 Rabbi Mara’s Back! p. 7 Woodlands’ Kibbutzniks p. 8 The Purim Paparazzi p. 12, 13 Maggie Anton: Talmudic Detective p.15

Spring has sprung. The crocuses and daffodils are getting serious. The leaves are budding. At any moment gardens throughout Westchester will be ablaze with color. All of which means we’re counting the days until Harriet’s Garden Party, the Woodlands gala at which we’ll toast the fruit of her labors (on June 1, following a special Shabbat service, the night before, that honors both Harriet and the education program that flourished under her care). But, when spring turns to fall and the gala is just a wonderful memory, the service program/journal we’re publishing will always be in bloom. So offer a bouquet to Harriet (and contribute to the temple’s biggest fundraiser of the year) with a journal ad. Here are “flowers” you can choose from. Go to for more information or to place an ad. Garden Grows Levels Tree of Life Perennial Garden Floral Bouquet Cherry Blossom Rose Petals Budding Tulips Daffodil Seedlings


Contribution $1,000 $750 $500 $360 $236 $136 $72 $36

The New Slate: A First Look p. 15 From Six Temples to One p. 24

Our Woodlands Community Rabbi Billy Dreskin Rabbi Mara Young Cantor Jonathan Ben Gordon Harriet Levine, Educator Ross Glinkenhouse, Youth Director Corey Friedlander, Sh'liakh K'hilah

Executive Committee Stu Berlowitz, President Jenna Lebowich, VP Education education@wct.og Dayle Fligel, VP Facilities Eugene Stein, VP Finance Michael Winkleman, VP Programming/Ritual Steve Sagner, Financial Secretary Mark Selig, Secretary Andy Farber, Treasurer

Board of Trustees Nancy Brown, Andrea Einhorn, Nancy Fishman, Gloria Falk, Aliza Garafalo, Jill Garland, Lois Green, Barry Leibowitz, Lisa Linn, Mike Scafidi, Cliff Schoen, Jay Werner, Rochelle Stolzenberg (ex-officio)

Office Staff ( Patricia Nissim, Temple Administrator Liz Rauchwerger, Rabbi’s Assistant Michele Montague, Educator’s Assistant

About Our Temple Woodlands Community Temple 50 Worthington Road White Plains, NY 10607 914.592.7070 phone 914.592.7376 fax email: web: Woodlands Community Temple is affiliated with the Union for Reform Judaism

Patricia Nissim, Makom Editor Melanie Roher, Makom Designer Charlie Strick, Makom Advertising


Yom HaShoah (Holocaust Remembrance Day) Sunday evening, April 7 Woodlands is mailing yellow candles to all our members. Please light yours to remember The Six Million.

“Muslims Who Rescued Jews” Holocaust Remembrance Shabbat Friday, April 5, 8:00 pm In 1934, the United States Ambassador to Albania wrote, “There is no discrimination against Jews in Albania.” Following the German occupation in 1943, Albanians refused to comply with orders to turn over lists of Jews residing within the country’s borders, and offered protection not only to their Jewish citizens but to Jewish refugees who had fled to Italy across the Adriatic Sea. Perhaps most remarkable, however, is that Albania was the only European country with a Muslim majority. And almost every Jew living there was saved. A remarkable story of honor and courage and interfaith brotherhood will be told by Rabbi Billy.

William Donat Visiting High School Holocaust Education Program Monday, April 1 Once again, a group of high school students comes to visit us from Champlain Valley Union High School in Hinesburg, Vermont, as part of a semester elective titled “Holocaust and Human Behavior.” The course teaches that “democratic institutions and values are not automatically sustained; they need to be nurtured, appreciated and protected. Silence and indifference are harmful to the liberty Bill Donat with rescuer Magda Grodzka-Guzkowska of all. The Holocaust occurred because individuals, organizations, bureaucracies, and governments made choices which legalized discrimination, allowing prejudice, hatred, and ultimately mass murder to occur. It is our hope that every student consciously understands the fragility of democracy and considers the behaviors necessary to sustain it.” 2-3 dozen participants will visit Woodlands on their way to the U.S. Holocaust Memorial in Washington, and hear presentations by a Holocaust survivor, an American soldier who liberated a Nazi death camp, and Rabbi Billy. Started in 2004 by our cherished friend, temple member and Holocaust survivor Bill Donat, Woodlands renamed the program after Bill died in 2009 to honor his memory, his work and his powerful goodness. Bill dedicated his life to telling his story to adults and children alike, always with the purpose of opening people’s eyes both to the risks and to the blessings in life. You are cordially invited to join us for any or all of the presentations (we begin late-morning and continue through the early afternoon). Please contact the temple office (, 914-592-7070) to let us know you’ll be with us.

Worship Schedule Shabbat Sh’mini

Shabbat Akhrei

Holocaust Remembrance Shabbat at 8:00 pm

Friday, April 19

Friday, April 5

Remembering the six million with candles, music and readings, our annual Yom HaShoah memorial observance. Torah reading from our Czechoslovakian Shoah scroll. Presentation by Rabbi Billy: “Muslims Who Rescued Jews.” Visual Worship tonight ... no prayerbooks needed (unless you want one). Babysitting available tonight, no reservations are necessary.

Saturday, April 6

Shabbat Morning Service at 10:30 am Celebrate with us as Sean Grossman, son of Tara Herman Grossman and Gary Grossman, becomes a Bar Mitzvah. Leviticus 9:1 - 11:47 ... II Samuel 6:1 - 7:17 ... 11th day of the Omer

Sunday, April 7


New Music Shabbat and Derekh Graduation at 8:00 pm Rabbi Billy and Cantor Jonathan are teaming up tonight to bring you an evening of worship with new melodies just emerging from the fertile soil of American Jewish creativity. Also, come celebrate Woodlands’ future as we honor the newest graduates of our leadership development program, Derekh. Babysitting available tonight, no reservations are necessary.

Saturday, April 20

Shabbat Morning Service at 10:30 am Celebrate with us as Claire Blaufox, daughter of Sau Fung and Andrew Blaufox, becomes a Bat Mitzvah. Leviticus 16:1 - 20:27 ... Amos 9:7-15 ... 25th day of the Omer

Yom HaShoah (Holocaust Remembrance Day)

Shabbat Emor

Shabbat Tazria-Metzora

Mishpakha Shabbat at 6:45 pm (note earlier time)

Light your yellow candle this evening.

Friday, April 12

Kidz Israel Shabbat at 7:00 pm In addition to our monthly 30-minute shenanigans, we’ll join in Shabbat celebration of Israel’s birthday too. Bring a buck for tzedakah!

Israel Shabbat (Yom HaAtzma’ut) at 8:00 pm In celebration of Israel’s 65th birthday, special readings, special music and more. Visual worship tonight. Babysitting available tonight, no reservations are necessary.

Saturday, April 13

Shabbat Morning Service at 10:30 am

Friday, April 26

Our newest worship experience for the whole congregation but earlier so families with kids can attend. Meaningful for adults, engaging for kids! Extra special treat tonight: Blessing for Noah Sadie Young, daughter of Mark and Rabbi Mara Young. If you like, join us for a quick 6:00 pm dinner – make your reservation at

Saturday, April 27

Shabbat Morning Service at 10:30 am Celebrate with us as Mia Wolosky, daughter of Frengiz Surty and Lee Wolosky, becomes a Bat Mitzvah. Leviticus 21:1 - 24:23 ... Ezekiel 44:15-31 ... 32nd day of the Omer

Celebrate with us as Joshua Ackerman, son of Faith and Marc Ackerman, becomes a Bar Mitzvah. Leviticus 12:1 - 15:33 ... II Kings 7:3-20 ... 18th day of the Omer

Hevra Torah Learning, Saturdays, 9:15-10:15 am April 6: Parshat Sh’mini Facilitated by Rabbi Billy April 13: Parshat Tazria-Metzora Facilitated by Cantor Jonathan April 20: Parshat Akhrei Mot-Kedoshim Facilitated by Rabbi Billy April 27: Parshat Emor Facilitated by Cantor Jonathan There’s abundant room around our table. Drop by once or often; we’d love to have you join our lively conversation. Usually in the Meeting Room.

Friday Night Shabbat Babysitting Babysitting is provided by teens from our religious school. April 5 April 12 April 19 No reservations are needed! Please contact with any questions.

Pesakh Yizkor Memorial Hour Monday, April 1 9:00 am - 10:00 am Dear Friends, Whether someone you love died recently or many years ago, Jewish tradition provides an opportunity through Yizkor to reconnect memory and heart for a few moments out of our busy lives. While we can certainly each stop anytime to do this ourselves, to come together with our synagogue community is a beautiful and meaningful way to honor those we love. Please join us for our 7th Day of Pesakh Yizkor Hour. We’ll sing, read, and share a few words and thoughts of remembrance. Then we’ll return to our regular day.

Please give to the WCT Annual Fund or Endowment Trust. Contact David Fligel (693-0520) or Chuck Fishman (674-4542).


Reminder to the 7th Grade

Family Torah Learning with the Rabbi “Section B” Sunday, April 7 (9:00 am-11:00 am) and Wednesday, April 10 (5:30 pm7:30 pm). See you there!

10th Grade Students and Parents

Confirmation Celebrations Are Coming! Now’s the time to make sure your family calendar is correct. Tuesday, May 14 (7:30-10:00 pm) is our Shavuot Evening Confirmation Service. Wednesday, May 15 (4:00 photograph, 4:30-6:00 service) is our Shavuot Daytime Confirmation Service. Everyone is at both services. If you have questions about either, give a holler.

Join Cantor Jonathan and Rabbi Billy for

New Music Shabbat Friday, April 19 at 8:00 pm The composition of new Jewish music has been happening continuously since the Temple stood in ancient Jerusalem. One finds innovative offerings in every conceivable style, from Ladino to Klezmer and folk to hip-hop. Our cantor and rabbi have come together to create a service filled with new American worship music, mostly in the folk-rock and folk-pop style. With guitar, keyboard, and their spirited vocals, you’ll be welcomed into an evening of new and uplifting prayer. The tunes may not be so familiar but we think you’ll be moved and inspired by them. Please join us.


from the Rabbi

Have I Ignored You? Navigating Pastoral Waters


’ve been a rabbi for twenty-five years. You’d think I’d have it down by now. But I don’t. Not always. And perhaps you have felt ignored, hurt, or even betrayed. I’m sorry for that. Truly. Being a rabbi is a big job. There’s more than I can ever possibly get done. I’d like to teach more. Know more. Have more time to prepare Divrei Torah (sermons) and to pursue social justice. But there’s nothing that gives me greater anguish than not being present for you in your moment of need. And while there are plenty of excuses, there really is no excuse. I’m supposed to be there for you, and sometimes I’m not. The crazy thing is that I work really hard. Each week, I prepare extensively when I’m to stand before you and speak (my prayer whenever I do so is, “Please, God, don’t let me waste their time”). I care deeply about social justice, and I try to help us stay involved. Through appointments, hospital visits, and life-cycle events, I have deep, personal interactions with many of you every week. But when I miss reaching out to even one of you, it doesn’t matter how many other hands I’ve held — I didn’t hold yours. I wasn’t there for you. That’s all that matters. A few days ago, I received my comeuppance from someone I’d missed. I deserved it. And I apologized for it. The next day, I started down the road to doing better for that family. When Moses stood before the Burning Bush and asked God’s name, the response was, “Ehyeh asher ehyeh ... I am who I am.” The Hebrew is future tense and can also be translated, “I will be what I will be.” This is helpful as I consider my first twenty-five years as a rabbi. I am not fully formed. I am always learning and, hopefully, I am improving. I’m certainly trying to do so. So while I am indeed who I am, I am my future me as well. Whenever you let me know that I haven’t taken care of you, I’m given the opportunity to move one step closer to the rabbi I can become. If you need a visit or a chat on the phone, please let me know. I have faith that I can do better. I hope you can have that faith, too.

Brad Zimmerman My Son the Waiter: A Jewish Tragedy Saturday, May 2 at 8:00 pm Adults $18, College students $10 Sign up at You don’t have to be Jewish or a waiter to relate to Brad Zimmerman’s ‘one man show’ about growing up, being an actor, being an actor who waits tables, and persevering through everything life throws at you. Brad’s stand-ups of his childhood, family, career and misbegotten love life are as warm and poignant as they are hilarious! He has acted in “The Sopranos,” and done his fair share of roasts at the famed Friar’s Club. To quote Joan Rivers, “I’ve had 3 great opening acts in my lifetime: Billy Crystal, Garry Shandling and Brad Zimmerman.” In the volatile world of comedy, Brad has had a long career, working with some of the best. He has made many television appearances on Conan O’Brian, Comedy Central, and The David Letterman Show.

from the Cantor

Freed but Unfulfilled


e again count the Omer, naming each of 49 days as they pass from Passover to Shavuot. Jews reenact the empty moments after finding freedom from slavery, before the granting of the Torah at Mount Sinai. This may be exactly where we stand today as liberal American Jews. Free from oppression, we have not found our way to commitment. We enjoy the convenience of the secular world and hardly note nagging dissatisfactions in our inner spiritual life. We give charity, strive to help the other fellow, and defend the powerless. However well this recipe may work for the secular citizen of our fair republic, it falls terribly short of the rich inner life Judaism offers. The Torah is not the Democratic Party platform. Liberal Jews are afraid of God. We fear that if we welcome the existence of God into our worldview, it might cost us our independence. In acknowledging that God exists, everything changes. Afterward, one lives either in loyalty or in defiance of the Divine presence. We prefer to relish our freedom just as it is. Does not the Torah limit the freedom of every Jew for all time? Yet all human history is elevated forever by its binding presence in the world. Perhaps the truth revealed to Israel on Mt. Sinai was the fact of God’s existence. The Torah is our way to keep God’s presence in our daily life. The Torah is Godly and God given, a Divine encounter. Traditional religious practices are as vital to the modern Jew as they have always been. Personal prayer, study, and the sanctity of the home deepen us as individuals in a community. Judaism is a religion of action: we act through tzedakah just as we act when we study our holy books. Both are transformative, both are essential. Accepting the Torah, Israel found an exalted harmony between the immediate and the eternal. Let us embrace it again, and again, and once again this year.

Derekh Leadership Program Honors Participants Friday, April 19 at 8:00 pm Sixteen members of our congregation will be honored as they complete Derekh, Woodlands’ leadership training program. Honorees that evening will include: Bonni Arbore, Nanci Brickman, Leora Cohen Friedman, Jennifer Gottfried, Michael Greenholz, Irene Gurdin, Deborah Halpern-Sinclair, Jennifer Korten, Julie Levine, Evelyn Lieb, Rochelle Novins, Lisa Sacks, Elizabeth Scafidi, Michael Silverman, Jaime Weiss and Michele Wise We will express our thanks, as well, to Derekh instructor Dale Glasser, beloved WCT member who, when he’s not here at temple, is training leaders, providing organizational assessment and resources for meeting ambitious strategic goals, and otherwise helping synagogues like ours to become the very best communities of practice and of honor that they can be. We are so fortunate to be partnering with him in our leadership development programming. Derekh fosters the development of future temple leadership for years, even decades, to come and we are grateful to all who are helping to make this program happen. We very much look forward to harvesting its fruits in the years ahead. Please plan to be with us.

Just Israel by Corey Friedlander

Founded by Silicon Valley entrepreneurial philanthropists in 2000, ISRAEL21c, an online news magazine (, explains its mission as follows: “Free from bias or prejudice, ISRAEL21c is a uniquely apolitical nonprofit organization...Focusing beyond the Middle East conflict, ISRAEL21c offers topical and timely reports on how Israelis from all walks of life and religion, innovate, improve and add value to the world. Our articles show how Israeli efforts have contributed incalculably to the advancement of health-care, environment, technology, culture, and global democratic values worldwide. The site redefines the conversation about Israel, offering a fair and balanced portrayal of the country, and focusing media and public attention on Israel’s vibrant diversity, humanity, creativity, innovative spirit, and responsiveness.” The website is updated daily. Many of the thousands of originally written and produced articles, videos, and blogs show us Israelis actively engaged in tikkun olam, in repairing the world.

Westchester Jewish Film Festival AJC Westchester is proud to sponsor the 2013 Westchester Jewish Film Festival at the Jacob Burns Film Center from April 3-25. This year’s festival is the 11th anniversary of AJC Westchester’s sponsorship of the Festival, the largest annual Jewish event in the County, with 34 programs, 13 lively discussions, six live performances, and receptions that celebrate the diversity of the Jewish experience. Tickets on sale now at



Education Update

Adult Learning Committee Sunday, April 7 at 9:00 am Scholar-in-Residence Committee Thursday, April 4 at 8:00 pm Executive Committee Monday, April 8 at 8:10 pm School Board Monday, April 15 at 8:10 pm Finance Committee Monday, April 1 at 8:00 pm Ritual Committee Monday, April 15 at 8:10 pm Board of Trustees Thursday, April 11 at 8:00 pm Monday, April 22 at 8:10 pm

Celebrating Israel

Rabbi Mara’s maternity leave is soon to end. She will return to us on Wednesday, April 3. We’ve missed her lots, and are thrilled to welcome both generations of the Young women into our building!

Welcoming Noah Sadie Young


years ago, on the 5th of Iyar, 5708, corresponding to May 14, 1948, the Jewish People’s Council gathered in Tel Aviv and approved a document, which declared the establishment of the State of Israel. Among other things, the document stated that the State of Israel will “be open for Jewish immigration and for the ingathering of the Exiles, would foster the development of the country for the benefit of all its inhabitants, would be based on freedom, justice, and peace as envisioned by the prophets of Israel, and will ensure complete equality of social and political rights to all its inhabitants irrespective of religion, race, or sex.” For 65 years Israel has had to defend its right to be that independent nation. As American Jews we have often had mixed feelings, not about Israel’s existence, but the way in which it conducts itself. During the first decades, it was easy to be proud of Israel, of its accomplishments, and of successes in things such as the Six Day War and the Entebbe Raid. We acknowledged with pride that within a short time the Jews of Israel had moved from immigrant poverty to unparalleled success in business, the arts, medicine, and technology. We still celebrate those accomplishments and recognize that Israel is a beacon of light and a thriving democracy in a part of the world where this is often not the case. In the more recent decades, however, more and more Jews in the Diaspora think of Israel as a place with little relevance to their lives. The conflicts between Palestinians and Israelis and between the Ultra Orthodox and pluralistic Jew have caused many Americans and citizens of other countries to look much more critically at the Middle East. As we seek to understand the relationship of Israel and the United States, we also seek to understand the relationship of Israel and its Arab neighbors. As we approach the celebration of Israel’s 65th birthday, we recognize that although the challenges for today’s Israel are many, it is still a shining light for us, still a place where, as Jews, we will always be welcomed. The land of Israel is an integral part of our faith. It is our spiritual homeland.

Bring the kids to a

Family Concert

Introduce your kids to cool Jewish music! 5:00-6:00 pm For families with school-aged children Grades 2-5. Silbings of all ages are welcome! $5 per person $20 per family

On Friday evening, April 26 at our 6:45 pm Mishpakha Shabbat, Mark and Rabbi Mara Young will bring their daughter, Noah Sadie Young, before God and our temple community for a blessing and a celebration of welcome. We hope you can be with us.

Full Concert at 8:00 pm For adults and older children $36 General Admission $18 Student Admission $180 Golden Gifter $72 Silver Supporter

Go to to purchase tickets for both performances. See you there!


from Rabbi Mara

“I’m Back!”


as it really been two months? Hard to believe. But here we are, my maternity leave has ended and Woodlands can count one more member on its roster. On February 2, Mark and I received the joyful Shabbat surprise of our daughter Noah Sadie. Since then we have been doting and diapering, bonding and bottling. And while we did spend nine months preparing ourselves to be parents, we quickly realized that you can know your life will change but you cannot understand it until it happens. Now I find myself a bundle of love and worry, totally controlled by a tiny little person who cannot even talk. I’ve learned new patience and the extreme joy of a small smile. And I think I’ve learned how to live with interrupted sleep. Our little Noah is named for loved ones, but the inspiration for her name also comes from the Book of Numbers, Chapter 27. Noah is one of the daughters of Zelophehad. We know little about Zelophehad except that he had died and he had no male heirs. Noah and her sisters go before Moses and the other Israelite leaders to argue that they should inherit their father’s property rights in the land of Israel. When Moses brings the matter before God, God proclaims that not only these women, but all women, have the right to inherit property from their fathers (if there is no male heir, that is). Given the climate of the ancient world, this was a massive step forward for women. We hope that our Noah will also be brave enough to step out into the public arena and affirm her rights as well as the rights of others. In the meantime, though, we’ll settle for her giving us an extra hour of sleep or a coo or two. Mark and I want to thank you all for the kind words, gifts, and donations in Noah’s honor. They brought us great joy and strength in two of the most challenging yet beautiful months of our lives. We cannot wait to share her with you, her Woodlands family. B’shalom,

Tikkun Layl Shavuot An Evening of Celebration and Learning Tuesday, May 14, 7:30-10:00 pm Hold the date for this extraordinary evening! In celebration of Shavuot, commemorating the receiving of the Torah at Mt. Sinai, we’ll gather in 15-20 small learning circles, led by temple staff and volunteers, for two 25-minute sessions, with a varied table of offerings that’s bound to whet your intellectual and spiritual appetite. And then we’ll “climb Mt. Sinai” together and receive the Torah all over again, just as our ancestors did 3200 years ago! Oh, and we’ll fill your bellies with Shavuot sweets too

Religious School Calendar

Monday, April 1 No Religious School or Academy – Passover Wednesday, April 3 4:00pm: Religious School Resumes 4:00pm: 7th grade will visit mosque or have special speaker at WCT Friday, April 5 8:00pm: 7th grade participates in Yom Hashoah Service Sunday, April 7 9:00am: 7th Grade Family Torah Study #7 Grp B Monday, April 8 4:00pm: 7th Grade visit to St. Joseph of Arimathea Church 6:00pm: Academy Wednesday, April 10 5:30pm: 7th Grade Family Torah Study # Grp B Last Session Friday, April 12 7:00pm: Kidz Shabbat Sunday, April 14 9:30am: Judaism 101 Monday, April 15 6:00pm: 7th grade moves to Academy 6:00pm: Academy Sunday, April 21 11:10am: 5th/6th grade Living Voices Program Monday, April 22 6:00pm: Academy 6:00pm: 7th/8th grade social action project in building 6:00pm: 9th grade Family Learning Wednesday, April 24 4:00pm: 7th Grade visit to Sacred Heart Church Friday, April 26 6:00pm: Mishpakha Dinner 6:45pm: Mishpakha Service Saturday, April 27 9:00am: Gan Hayeled Sunday, April 28 9:00 am: 3rd & 4th Grade Classesl 11:00 am: Family Carnival Celebration 11:10 am: No 5th & 6th Grade Classes Monday, April 29 6:00pm: Academy 6:00pm: Graduation Rehearsal

Todah rabbah (thank you!) ... ... to third grade teacher Leora Cohen Friedman for writing and sharing an iyyun during “A Joyful Noise!” in March.


Yo u t h M a t t e r s

Shalom, Woodlands! Sowing Our Wild Oats By Rabbi Billy Dreskin

In the Book of Psalms (25:7), it is written, “Forget that I sowed wild oats; mark me with Your sign of love.” The biblical writers often used human dynamics to express their ideas about God. Here, we ask for God’s love despite the failings of our devotion. We stumble, having sowed our oats, yet desire to return to the goodness we know is out there. Would that we understood the true value of those wild oats! They themselves are a sign of God’s love for us! Just look at this: Oats are a great source of slowburning carbohydrates and high-benefit fiber, just the kind of fuel we need to get our mornings off to a great start. Oats may reduce cholesterol count, lower blood pressure, and bolster cardiovascular health. They may prevent inflammation of arteries, curb weight gain, help prevent type 2 diabetes, and bolster the immune system. So if you think your days of sowing wild oats are behind you, grab your bowl and spoon and dig in. Perhaps the Book of Psalms was a tiny bit off and should have read, “Do not forget that I sowed wild oats; for this is a sign of Your love!” Each month, “Chew on This” offers a morsel of teaching on how to think Jewishly about food and eating. Dr. Joel Fuhrman’s Eat to Live is our inspiration. Consult a physician before starting your own wellness journey.

2013-2014 School Registration Packets Religious School registration packets for the 2013-2014 school year will be mailed out the first week of April. The forms are due back by May 15. If you have not received your packet, please contact the Religious School office. If you have any questions about registration, please contact Harriet Levine, 592-7070 or



few months ago, I learned that we have two students participating in NFTY’s EIE (Eisendrath International Exchange) spring semester, a four-month study abroad program in Israel for high school students. Right now, Hannah Stein and Anna Karmel are immersed in this exciting program. I thought this would be a great opportunity to share their experiences with the community, so this month they are the contributors for the Youth section of Makom. Be sure to check back in the May and June issues for updates about their experiences. You can also follow their adventures on the WCT Youth Experience Facebook page! If you have any questions about NFTY EIE, please do not hesitate to contact me. L’shalom

Shalom from Anna Karmel and Hannah Stein We live on Kibbutz Tzuba where we take classes in Hebrew and Jewish studies in addition to our normal, or general studies, classes. We eat in the dining hall and explore the huge kibbutz's beautiful terraces and ancient ruins and caves. And when we aren't on the kibbutz watching beautiful sunsets after long days of classes, we are out in Israel. For Jewish history class we don't just learn about things from a textbook; in fact there is no textbook! Instead, we have our class at the site where archeologists believe events happened. We've climbed though long winding caves, hiked through an ancient underground water tunnel and up Masada. We've visited the western wall, the southern wall, ancient archeological sites and ruins, museums, seen the Dead Sea scrolls and visited The Church of the Holy Sepulchre. And the best part is it doesn't even feel like we are in class! But leaving the kibbutz isn't always for school. We've visited malls, Tel Aviv markets, and Ben Yehuda Street in Jerusalem. We've gone to the Dead Sea and even dipped into the sulfur bath (if you ever get the chance to go in it's so painful, but so worth it!) We stayed in a youth hostel in Ein Gedi with a view of Jordan and the Dead Sea then headed to where we are right now, Gadna. Gadna is a program where Israeli teens get a taste of what the army (IDF) will be like, so in other words, "basic training." It involves discipline, formations, cold nights in the desert, and beautiful sunsets. Yesterday, after classes and careful instructions, we fired m16s at a shooting range. It was an amazing experience. After we all said how we felt about it, most of the kids agreed on how much power they felt when they were holding a gun and how horrible it is that people can abuse that power. Like many of the other trips and experiences we've had, this opened our eyes beyond our somewhat sheltered American viewpoints. In two days we leave Gadna for a weekend in Eilat where we will relax, go snorkeling, ride camels and sleep in Bedouin tents. So we have come to the conclusion that never in our lives have we ever been this happy, smiled so much or appreciated all we have: our families, friends and comfortable lives back in Hastings. We've been having the time of our lives with 83 of our new closest friends doing things we never expected we would ever do.

from the President

Another Derekh Graduation… As President of Woodlands, I am a member of a listserve for Congregational Presidents of URJ congregations. Much of the talk on the listserve is focused on temple leadership. As I read their posts, I realize how lucky we are to be part of a congregation where leadership development is of the utmost importance. Spearheaded by Dale Glasser and Rabbi Billy, we have a special training program, Derekh, that is the envy of congregations around the country. We’ve been privileged to have Dale, with all of his expertise in leadership training, share this gift of understanding the importance of temple leadership with our members over the years. WCT’s Executive committee spends much of its time discussing the future leadership of the temple. I believe very strongly that besides managing the temple on a daily basis, we are responsible for identifying and training the people that will lead WCT after us. On April 19th, our newest Derekh class will graduate. Almost all of our current temple leaders have gone through this program at one point or another during their temple journey. I am a proud graduate of the class of 2003-4. This year, I experienced Derekh in a totally different way. Quite honestly, attending the Derekh classes is a nice perk of being WCT’s president. The discussions and questions from our 16 graduates have provided me with much insight into what’s on the mind of many of our future leaders. This year’s class was given a project to work on for next year- they will chair and organize our Progressive Dinner. They will have the latitude to re-envision the event while keeping the fun and excitement of previous Progressive Dinners. So, when next year’s temple calendar comes out, you will surely want to put the date on your calendar! To the Derekh Class of 5773, I say Todah Rabah—thank you very much—for your time and effort to learn about temple leadership. Please join me on Friday, April 19 for Derekh Graduation Shabbat

With 5774 Just Around the Corner: A Look at Next Year’s Calendar The Woodlands calendar gets busier and busier each year as we continue to add creative and new opportunities for worship, learning, and social action. The risk of this is that we sometimes forget to partner or even communicate with other groups or to make sure that the programs we plan are covering the needs of our diverse populations. To address this issue, WCT is holding an enhanced “pre-calendar” dinner meeting for Sunday night, April 14 at 7:00 pm with the chairs (or representatives) from Ritual, Adult Ed, School Board, Social Action, Membership, WoodSY, the current and incoming VPs of Education and Ritual/Programming, the temple president, and the professional staff. At this meeting we’ll go through next year’s temple calendar, looking at each holiday and sketching out the ritual, programming, and educational elements we envision while making sure to delineate aspects for youth, older members, adults only, families, new members, etc. Since this meeting was announced, back in February, many committees have started working on their vision and plans, looking, in particular for ways to incorporate new members, youth, or social action efforts. The information developed through this meeting will build the 5774 congregational calendar—and, we’re sure, make for an exciting, busy year.

Woodlands Community Temple would like to thank the following congregants who solicited or donated items for our online auction. Special thanks to Helen Harper and Karen Bernard for their extraordinary efforts soliciting businesses throughout Westchester County. Stu and Karen Berlowitz, Karen Bernard, Martha Dubinsky-Witkowski, Gloria Falk, Joan and Andy Farber, Nancy Fishman, Dayle Fligel, Jill Garland, Ross Glinkenhouse, Cantor Jonathan Ben Gordon, Helen Harper, Adam Hart, Hildie Kalish, Shelli Katz, Susan Korsten, Jason Laks, Jenna Lebowich, Harriet Levine, Joanne Levine, Julie Levine, Greg and Lisa Linn, Michael, Leslie, Becca and Elana Litsky, Geri and Doug Pell, Keith Pray, Melanie Roher, Mark Selig, Charles Strick, Marge Thrope, Deborah Wiskind, and Mara and Mark Young.

Calling all Woodland Families!

Come to a Carnival and Celebrate Harriet Levine and Lag b’Omer Sunday, April 28 11:00am – 1:00pm Join in the fun as we honor our beloved Harriet Levine and celebrate the holiday Lag b’Omer! Sponsor your child in a potato sack traffic duty obstacle course and much more! If you missed having a carnival during Purim this year, here is your chance to play fun games, eat, and win prizes! Our WoodSY team is putting together a very special tribute carnival with funny booths and activities to remember. Don’t miss it! There will be religious school for 3rd and 4th graders, but no classes that morning for 5th and 6th graders. Instead, please bring your whole family to help celebrate Harriet and Lag b’Omer. This is an opportunity for our kids to thank Harriet for all her dedication to educating our community


Social Action


Lots of special occasions in the coming months – Mother’s Day, Father’s Day and of course, wedding season. The Judaica Shop at Woodlands has in-stock a broad selection of beautiful items that are sure to delight every recipient...but how about making it more personal? A number of the artists we work with are very excited about the custom-made pieces they offer. Susan and Michael Beames of Beames Designs will take a wedding couple’s invitation and re-create it as a glass sculpture using one of their signature patterns. The panels can also include a tube encasing the glass shards from the ceremony. Wedding glass shards can be incorporated into a myriad of Judaica from mezuzot to Kiddush cups to home blessings. Picture frames or bookends can be personalized with the date of a Bar or Bat Mitzvah celebration and Haftarah portion for the kvelling parents or grandparents. Or for a unique gift, a free standing mini-Torah cased in acrylic and rolled to the child’s Torah portion. Our jewelry artists are also very accommodating and will happily accommodate your special requests, including longer chains, different stones, etc. Please consider The Judaica Shop at Woodlands when purchasing a gift. With yet another area Judaica retail store shutting its doors, we are your neighborhood gift shop for gift giving...and getting. The Judaica Shop is open, by request, everyday the temple office is staffed. Evening and weekend hours are noted in the weekly email blast. Have a question? Want to volunteer to help staff the shop? Email:


Woodlands’ decade-long project for the Abayudaya will be coming to an end this summer. Our concluding activities for the Abayudaya will be sponsoring Sarah Nabaggala’s participation in the Brandeis Collegiate Institute and a second year of the Mama in the Schools program, which we supported this year. As we conclude the year you can 1) Donate any amount designated for Sarah’s participation in the BCI, 2) Purchase a Celebrate A Woman Card for Mother’s Day (see below for details) 3) Become an Associate Member of the Moses Synagogue ($50 donation per family). To help, go to To all of you who have participated in Woodlands’ Abayudaya project, on behalf of the Ugandan Jews, we thank you. You have truly prayed with your feet. A special thank you goes to Roberta Roos and Jeanne Bodin for their years of dedication to our Abayudaya family.

Knitters and Crocheters Wanted If you knit or crochet, or would like to learn, join us Sunday, April 7, 5:00 pm – 8:00 pm. We are making squares for a quilt to be given to women transitioning out of Hope’s Door. We’ll have a covered dish dinner, and a relaxing time talking and making squares. For more information about Hope’s Door go to RSVP to by April 5 if you can join us, and let us know what dish you will be bringing to share.

Cooking for VOA Residence Volunteer to help cook dinner for the Valhalla Shelter on Sunday, April 21 at 9:30 am. Join us by yourself or come with your kids (this is a great family activity), or come while your kids are in Religious School. We’ll prepare a full meal for the 20 people living in the shelter. If you can’t come, but would like to contribute part of the meal, let us know. RSVP by April 18 to

Abayudaya “Celebrate A Woman!” Cards for Mother’s Day This will be the last year you can purchase beautiful cards for Mother’s Day, $18 each. By purchasing these beautiful cards, you will help the Jewish women of Uganda to become self-sustaining. Place all orders by Monday, May 6. Cards will arrive in about five days. If you need to mail these out, order now to ensure they are received on time. As in past years, per the request of the women, the funds raised will be used to feed and educate their children. It’s a mitzvah to order these cards. Go to the order form or contact Roberta Roos, to order cards for Mother’s Day or any occasion.

Food of the Month Canned Fruits/Vegetables

Collection of the Month Full Size Toiletries

Adult Learning

Israel’s Founding Fathers Wednesdays, April 3, 10, 17 at 8:00 pm Rabbi Eve Rudin

Explore the writings and teachings of major Zionist thinkers such as Theodor Herzl, A.D. Gordon, Ahad Ha’Am, and Jabotinsky, and how they influenced the creation of the modern state of Israel.

Six Weeks of Talmud Rabbi Billy Dreskin Thursday, April 4, 11, 18, 25 11:30 am-1:00 pm

Ever been curious about what’s in those really big books known as “The Talmud”? You are warmly invited to join our intrepid team of adventurers and learners.

Judaism 101: Overview of Jewish History and Texts Rabbi Mara Young Sunday, April 14, 9:30 am

Our newest monthly adult class is a chance for you to experience an overview of Jewish ritual, history and literature.

Maggie Anton, author of Rashi’s Daughters Thursday, April 25, 8:00 pm

Maggie Anton, award winning author of the historical fiction series Rashi’s Daughters, will speak about the research for and writing of her newest book, Rav Hisda’s Daughter, which is set in the time of the Babylonian Talmud. It was recently selected as a Fiction Finalist for the 2012 National Jewish Book Awards.

Classics of Jewish Cantorial Music

Thursday, May 2, 8:00 pm Cantor Jonathan Gordon Come listen to recordings of the most famous cantorial masterpieces of all time. We will also explore the text of the prayers being sung and how they work musically.

Next session... Overview of Jewish Holidays Sunday, May 5, 9:30 am

S’forim Forum... Noir Fiction from the Ashkenazic Tradition Cantor Jonathan Ben Gordon Saturday, April 27, 4:30 – 6:00 pm including potluck refreshments and Havdalah

S’forim Forum will discuss The Cross and Other Stories by Lamed Shapiro (1878-1948). This author of groundbreaking and controversial short stories, novellas, and essays led a life marked by frequent ocean crossings, alcoholism, and failed ventures. His writings are models of precision, psychological insight, and daring. This collection also reveals Lamed Shapiro as an American master. His writings depict the Old World struggling with the New, extremes of human behavior combined with the pursuit of normal happiness. Through the perceptions of a remarkable gallery of men, women, children he reclaimed the lost world of the shtetl as he negotiated East Broadway and the Bronx, Union Square, and vaudeville. Although the book is out of print, we have secured a supply of reasonably priced books for participants.

Daytime Diversions Wednesday at 10:00 am Movie: 12 Angry Men Wednesday, April 3

The 1957 movie stars Henry Fonda, Lee. J. Cobb, Martin Balsam, and other stars too numerous to list. In the film, the prosecution and the defense have rested, and the jury is filing into the jury room to decide if a young Hispanic-American is guilty or innocent of murdering his father. What looked like an open and shut case soon becomes a drama of prejudices and preconceptions about the trial, the accused, and the members of the jury themselves. The story line is riveting and the acting is top notch. Since we start promptly at 10:00, come at 9:45 to settle in with morning snacks.

Speaker: Stan Friedman Ingelore…The Legacy Wednesday, April 10

We are pleased to welcome back Stan, who packed the house with his Home Run Project, but this visit is very different. This time, Stan brings us a film and discussion session called INGELORE…The Legacy. The program chronicles the amazing journey of Ingelore Herz Honigstein, who grew up Jewish and deaf in Nazi Germany. The film focuses on her immense courage, challenges, and triumphs, and celebrates the power of family and overcoming prejudice. Sounds like a “don’t miss event.” Come early to enjoy snacks and get a good seat for the viewing and discussion.

Current Events Group Wednesday, April 17

Welcome back to Bob Steinhardt who will be leading this month’s Current Events Group. No one leaves disappointed. We have much to discuss and Bob’s agenda will give us focus. Feel free to contact Bob at if you’d like to submit a topic for discussion. It’s a winning combo---doughnuts, coffee/tea, and good talk.


Photo Gallery

Thank You, Woodlands, For Helping Us Help! The Woodlands Community Temple-Dobbs Ferry Lutheran Church 2013 Katrina Relief Team in New Orleans.

Passport To Purim A very special Thanks to all of you who made Passport Purim possible! Elana Confino-Pinzon, Zev Kaufman, Liam Kaufman, Alison Werner, Jenna Lebowich, Rachel Wineberg and Mark Kaufman, Lance Rosenthal, Liz Scafidi, Juli Klein, Joey Pinzon, Rich Bloom, Jen Kline-Galkin, Merav Gur, Lisa Sacks and Jon Richer, David Feldbaum, Gene Sirotin. Ross Glinkenhouse, and, of course as always, German.

Building Jewish Lives Our Building Jewish Lives series was beautifully conducted by the following Co-chairs and their very effective committees. Interfaith: Martina Verba and Tom Beaudoin (co-chairs), Elly and Matt Kelly, Gary and Ann Stern, Bonni Arbore and Marie Cohen. Young Families: Dan and Miriam Emery (co-chairs), Lisa Sacks, David and Debbie Bertan, Rachel Posner, Miriam Kerness, Michele Wise, and Jenna Lebowich. Seniors: Herb Friedman (chair), Bobby Yeshion, Yvette and Larry Gralla, Roberta Roos, Ed Miller, Harriet Levine, Rabbi Lisa Izes, Marge Thrope and Jeanne Bodin. Sandwich: Caryn Donocoff (chair), Lesli Cattan, Mike and Marcia Kingston, Lois Green, Stacey Silverman, J. Heinlein, Andrea Olstein, and Marie Cohen.



Photo Gallery

Rocky Horror Purim Our Rocky Horror Purim was a fabulous success thanks to Co-Chairs Susie Brubaker and Rochelle Stolzenberg and their Rocky Purim Community. So many of you to thank including Ed Brubaker, Jeff Frankle, Mike and Marcia Kingston, Jay Zwicker, Mark Fox, Don Levan, Judy Levan, Eugene Stein, Lynn Goodman, Sura Rosenthal, Lance Rosenthal, Linda Zwicker, Barbara Cerf, Donna Chonigman, Becky Chonigman, Mickey Milbauer, Nancy Fishman, Chuck Fishman, Jill Strick, Charlie Strick, Pat Nissim, Liz Rauchwerger, Sophie Frankle, Damien BiFano, Stu Berlowitz, Ross Glinkenhouse, Harriet Levine and Billy Dreskin.

Havdalah on Ice

13 1

Save the Dates! Friday, May 31 Saturday, June 1 For Harriet’s Big Send-Off

Harriet Levine, educator extraordinaire, is about to start the next chapter of her life. Yes, she’ll still be found at Woodlands—just not every day, and never on traffic duty.

Come celebrate... the impact she’s had on our children’s lives (as well as our own) these last 21 years with:

Friday, May 31 A special Shabbat evening service

Saturday, June 1 Cocktails, dinner, and lots of tributes

Say your own... personal and public thank you to Harriet with an ad in the service program/journal that will be available at both events.

Help out by ... volunteering to plan and staff the June 1 event and sell ads for the journal. For information and to volunteer, contact the temple office: 914-592-7070 or


Out of Africa By Mike Winkleman

continued from page 1

Moved by Rabbi Sizomu’s talk, congregant Stefani Zevy z”l asked Billy how Woodlands might help the Jews of Uganda, known as the Abayudaya, and, at his suggestion, she asked the Social Action committee if they shared her enthusiasm. They did and took to heart Billy’s invocation that “if you do this project, you will never have as much impact with any other project as you will with this one.” “We came in early,” says Roberta Roos, who along with Jeanne Bodin has shepherded the Abayudaya program through the years. Eleven years later, the impact that Woodlands has had on the Abayudaya— and the Abayudaya on Woodlands—is inescapable. Rabbi Sizomu’s temple has electricity and running water. The school has three sets of Hebrew books. A nutrition program thrives. A program called Mama in the School brings in a youth counselor to provide teens with health and sex education. The impact on Woodlands has been no less dramatic. Describing the trip to Uganda she took with Jeanne in 2005, Roberta recalls “the first Friday night, when they asked me to light the Shabbat candles. It was the thrill of my life. It was so terribly exciting to be standing in Uganda, in this hut, saying the same words that were being said all over the world.” During their trip, Jeanne and Roberta helped make good on Woodlands’ promise to bring water and electricity to the Abayudaya. With funds collected at Woodlands (many through the “associate member” program—Murray Bodin’s brainchild—through which Woodlanders joined the Ugandan synagogue for $50), “we bought eight water tanks to catch the rainwater and pipe it to the ground,” Jeanne recalls. With Roberta and Jeanne watching, electric poles were installed on the hill approaching the village. Excitement about the projects ran through the temple. “It opened the eyes of our congregation to Jews who were very different from us,” Roberta says.

That difference was celebrated in 2007 when Aaron Kintu Moses, the school’s headmaster, came for a Shabbat service that featured Ugandan Jewish songs— and a Ugandan Oneg Shabbat. And the interest in the community remained strong through “associate memberships,” contributions to the Abayudaya Fund, and purchases of Mirembe Kawomera coffee. For both Uganda and America, the story has changed significantly in the last 11 years. Where once few American Jews were aware of this community, now, as Jeanne puts it, the Abayudaya “is part of the African tour.” And the Ugandan Jewish community itself has grown. Having discovered Judaism in the 1920s when Christian missionaries exposed them to the Old Testament, the Abayudaya were often forced to practice their Judaism while hiding in caves. But between 2005 and 2012, the very visible Jewish population of Uganda doubled. While some of that growth is the result of births, much of it, Jeanne notes, happened “because people heard that this community is thriving and they know their grandparents were Jewish and they want to be part of it.” At Woodlands, though there are a few projects still going on (see page 10 for details), Roberta and Jeanne are looking to build on what they’ve learned in other ways. “It’s been a very gratifying experience,” she says, “with people who are so different.” And yet, so very much the same. Stay tuned. It is inevitable that the people of WCT will find new projects to help others both near and far.

Maggie Anton: Talmudic Detective Award-winning author discusses her life, her writing, and why Rav Hisda’s daughter’s story has a lot to offer Jewish women—900 years later. Once upon a time, Maggie Anton was a clinical chemist at Kaiser Permanente in California, doing a form of medical detective work. Her task: to identify unexplained medical problems afflicting babies and children. Though she was a voracious reader, she hadn’t taken English in college. Though she spoke frequently with colleagues about her research, public speaking was not part of her repertoire. And, in fact, while she’d been born and raised a Jew, in a secular, socialist household, she reached adulthood with little knowledge of her Jewish roots. Today Maggie Anton does another type of detective work, investigating, one might say, the spaces between the letters in the Talmud, looking for insights, checking for details, and in some cases, imagining what might have been. The result: the best-selling, highly praised Rashi’s Daughters series and, most recently, Rav Hisda’s Daughter, the story of a woman who, when asked to choose between two suitors, chose— and married—them both (though not

simultaneously). This non-writer has become an award-winning author. This reticent speaker now travels the country telling tales from the Talmud and her own life. And this secular Jew is now observant, on the board of her Reform temple, continuing her education through frequent Talmud study. Join Maggie Anton at Woodlands on Thursday, April 25, at 8:00 pm and discover: • Why the rabbis who created the Talmud were the original Reform Jews • Why the ancient Jews had committees to elect sorceresses • How Rav Hisda’s daughter—a sorcercess, herself—cast spells, fought demons, and helped ward off the evil eye • Why Rav Hisda’s daughter’s second husband is mentioned more than 4000 times in the Talmud • Why no snide remarks are ever directed at Rav Hisda’s daughter by any of the Talmudic writers who invoked her name • Why life in Persia under the Zoroastrians was close to paradise • Why women should be studying the Talmud

Did all this happen? Was all (or any) of this true? Says Maggie Anton, “I’m a historical novelist, not a historian. So I don’t have to be right. I just have to be correct. Could this have happened? Certainly.” Judge for yourself.

Proposed Slate for Woodlands Community Temple Executive Committee and Board of Trustees for 2013-2014 The following slate has been submitted by the Nominating Committee and is subject to a vote by the congregation at the Annual Congregational Meeting on Wednesday, May 15 at 8:00 pm. Executive Committee: President: Stu Berlowitz; VP/Finance: Eugene Stein; VP/Education: Jenna Lebowich; VP/Ritual & Programming: Dayle Fligel; VP/Facilities: Cliff Schoen; Treasurer: Mark Selig; Financial Secretary: Herb Friedman; Secretary: Andrea Einhorn. Board of Trustees: Nancy Brown, Gloria Falk, Nancy Fishman, Jill Garland, Aliza Garofalo, Yvette Gralla, Lois Green, Barry Leibowitz, Lisa Sachs, Mike Scafidi, Jay Werner, Michele Wise. With thanks to the Nominating Committee: Jeanne Bodin, Aliza Garofalo, Barry Leibowitz, Michael Litzky, Michael Silverman, Jane Wachs (chair).

Kol HaKavod (a job well done!) to... Josh Berlowitz Josh, a freshman at Middlebury College, has recently been accepted to the Machon Kaplan internship program for undergraduate students interested in Judaism and social justice. Based at the Religious Action Center for Reform Judaism in Washington, DC, Machon Kaplan provides students with the opportunity to learn, through study and action, the interrelationship of Judaism and American democratic ideals, as well as the political interaction of the organized American Jewish community and the U.S. government. Congrats, Josh!

Kol HaKavod (a job well done!) to... Katie Dreskin Katie, a first-year art educator at Great Western Academy, an Imagine charter school in Columbus, Ohio, was elected “Teacher of the Year” by her peers and colleagues. Katie teaches 850 students each week in Kindergarten through Grade 8 and, although she is thoroughly exhausted by Friday afternoon, every Monday she brings dedication, passion, humor and caring to each and every class and student. Her mom and dad couldn’t be prouder. Congrats, Katie!

We Want to Hear from You It is always a pleasure to hear good news from members of our WCT family. It often helps to share the notso-good too. Please let us know if you or someone else is in need of a visit or phone call from our Clergy. Many assume that “everyone knows,” but this is not always true. A note of call to our temple office or Clergy will ensure that we are able to extend our support to Woodlands members in a moment of need.


There is Nowhere in the World Quite Like WCT By Sophie Parens I walked into the Hillel building for Shabbat dinner with no idea of what to expect. My roommate had requested that we attend the Orthodox service, and I agreed without giving it much thought. As a freshman at The New School, in the middle of New York City with no campus, I was willing to do anything for some sense of community. As the service began, I felt like I was in a different world. Having attended Woodlands from kindergarten to my senior year of high school, the strict service and unfamiliar prayers came as a shock to my system. But as the service progressed, I found myself feeling less and less alienated. The bits and the pieces of the service that I recognized made the unfamiliar feel less important. By the time we sat down for dinner, I felt at home. There is nowhere in the world quite like Woodlands Community Temple. One of the biggest blessings I got from growing up there is the fact that I always feel in complete control of my Jewish identity. When you get to go “GODshopping” with Rabbi Billy in Confirmation, something sticks with you permanently; Judaism can be whatever you want it to be. This knowledge gives me the power to feel connected anywhere and everywhere, be it at an Orthodox service or eating matzoh ball soup at the burger (yes, burger) restaurant around the corner from my dorm. Hillel will never come close to Academy or Friday night services, but I’m so grateful to be able to work with what I have. It’s the small things, like eating more bagels than socially acceptable and breaking my dorm’s “no fire” rule to light Shabbat candles, that help me to feel more at home in a new city and a new stage of my life. I am a very small fish in a huge pond, but being a fish with a WCT moral compass and the comfort of my Jewish identity, makes the pond feel a whole lot less scary. Sophie is a freshman at Eugene Lang College for Liberal Arts at the New School University studying psychology and drama. If you’ve embarked upon your post-high school life (college or elsewhere) and have a Jewish experience or story to share with us, we’d love to hear from you! Contact Rabbi Mara ( to volunteer.


April Yahrzeit (26 Nisan - 24 Iyar) Friday, April 5 Leonard Abramowitz Ruth Alexander Raphael Bocher Sarah Borwick Samuel Davidson Rosalyn Dobbs Frima Drewnowitz Leah Fefferberg Victoria Frost Agnes Graetz David L. Holzer Esther Jacobson Max Kane Abraham Klainbard Elva Gross Macrae William Migden Hannah Mills Elsie Newhouse Lena Pechman Minnie Pincus Julian Ratafia Bertha Rothberg Sara Roxenberg Samuel Shapiro Frank Sobel Diane Thau Ann Udoff Dorothy Zegster

Friday, April 12 Lola Altman Nathan Bauer Sally Bearman Michael Bliss Max Blumert Peggy Boehm Elizabeth Cohen Charles Davis Sylvia Donner Laura Kendall Garland Edith Gladstone Sol Jaffa Sam S. Kaufman Richard Knobler Samuel Marenoff Jerry Ponce Rae Ratafia Milton Rosenberg Joseph Rothberg Myrna Sacks Mendel Safier David Schlesinger Leonard Sloane Harry Stoltz Saul Turell

Friday, April 19 Steven Becker Charles Berlowitz Ruth Blumenfeld Rae Brown Edward Cohen David Cohen Dorothy Cowen Ida Doynow Barry Kenneth Dubinsky Merv Epstein Leo Falk Regina Feder Sherry Finkelstein Sol Friedman Moe Friedman Arthur Frisch Anna Goldstein Reba Greenberg Nissim Hadjes Theresa (Terry) Johnson Helen Klein Norman Levine Nathan Miller Samuel Resnick Edward Rosen Sylvia Schaffer Esther Schneider Flora Schoen Rick Stevens Jack Williams

Shirley M. Woolf Richard Zizmor

Friday, May 3 Henni Abeles Libbie Dambroff Benjamin Drew Clara Gamsu Steven Glasser Morrell Gurdin William Gurdin Harold Ignotofsky Mitzi Katz David Kliot Enzo Krahl I. Michael Lerner Samuel Lustgarten Marcia Morris Max Richter Toba Rochberg Rita Rudel Ralph Joseph Rugoff Allen Schneier Frances Selig Samuel Shohet Rose Stein Fay Tomashevsky Saul Weinert

Friday, April 26 Feige Adler Margaret (Manci) Alexander Abraham Altman Richard Braun Ida Cohn Noah Bailey Dreskin Judy Feder Robert Goldstein Joseph Goldstein Rhoda Green Dorothy Gussie Greenberg Minnie Kaplan Albert Kushman Charles Levin Irving Miller Ida Mitelman Marie Molloy Sylvia Paley Florence Pulver Rose Sachs Esther Silverman May Singer Fae Wiseman

HaMakom y’nakhem otam… may God bring comfort to all who are in mourning.

The Woodlands Community Mourns the Loss of Judy Benedek sister of Andy Sterling Mildred Donocoff mother of Brian Donocoff Anita Figlen mother of Karyn Schorr Jack Orr husband of Pamela Orr Herbert Ripin father of Peter Ripin Doris Schatz grandmother of Ross Glinkenhouse David Steinhardt son of Jane and Bob Steinhardt Mark Weingarten brother-in-law of Jeffrey and Janet Chester uncle of David and Susan Chester Howard Weiselberg step-father of Tasha Macedo

We Join in Extending Our Condolences

Honor a Loved One Bookplates Now Available It is a time-honored Jewish tradition to honor people we love by making tzedakah contributions on their behalf. Now, in addition to contributing to our regular funds, you and your family may purchase bookplates to dedicate individual copies of our High Holy Days makhzor, Gates of Repentance. And your donation will help us purchase new prayerbooks as the need arises. • Bookplates cost $36 each. •O  ne plate will be lovingly inscribed with both your and your loved one’s name. • Each plate will be placed inside one synagogue copy of our High Holy Days prayerbook. Order online at

Zekher tzadik livrakha ... may their memory be for a blessing.


WCT Funds Available for Your Support Professionals’ Mitzvah Funds Rabbi’s Mitzvah Fund Supports various individuals, organizations and/ or programs at the discretion of the Rabbi. (Checks should be made payable to the Rabbi’s Mitzvah Fund. Please specify Rabbi Billy or Rabbi Mara.)

Cantor’s Discretionary Fund

Supports various individuals, organizations or programs at the discretion of the Cantor. (Checks should be made payable to the Cantor’s Discretionary Fund.)

Educator’s Enrichment Fund

Provides special programs for the Religious School. (Checks should be made payable to the Educator’s Enrichment Fund.)

The Simkha Page

B’nai Mitzvah Sean Grossman

Joshua Ackerman

April 6

April 13

Torah Portion

Torah Portion

Sh’mini Hebrew Name


Tazria-Metzora Hebrew Name

Shumuel Yehoshua Halevi

Claire Blaufox

Mia Wolosky

April 20

April 27

WCT Program Support

Torah Portion

Torah Portion

Chai Fund (formally The General Fund)

Akhrei Mot-Kedoshim


Hebrew Name

Hebrew Name



Supports the general needs of the Temple. All unspecified gifts are placed into the Chai Fund.

Endowment Trust

Provides a long-term endowment to support the financial needs of Woodlands Community Temple.

Outdoor Memorial Garden

With the purchase of an inscription, you can memorialize loved ones, provide for the maintenance and beautification of our Memorial Wall and Garden, and contribute to the general needs of the Temple.

Mazal Tov Mazal tov to Gary Grossman and Tara Herman Grossman, as their son, Sean, is called to the Torah as a Bar Mitzvah. Mazal tov to Marc and Faith Ackerman, as their son, Joshua, is called to the Torah as a Bar Mitzvah.

Library Fund

Funds the purchase of books for our library.

Lifelong Learning Fund

Dedicated to creating an ever-growing love of Jewish learning and living through ongoing educational exploration for all members of our congregation.

Mazal tov to Andrew and Saufung Blaufox, as their daughter, Claire, is called to the Torah as a Bat Mitzvah. Mazal tov to Lee Wolosky and Frengiz Surty, as their daughter, Mia, is called to the Torah as a Bat Mitzvah.

Music Fund

Underwrites special music programs, purchases music for the Cantor and Woodlands Singers, and funds Jewish Music Month activities.

Rabbinic Intern Fund

Supports the hiring of a rabbinic student to assist our Rabbi and work with our Temple community.

Scholar-In-Residence Fund

Supports the Scholar-in-Residence program.

Torah and Ritual Fund

Provides for repairs of our Torah collection and for other ritual needs of the Congregation.

Prayerbook Fund

Funds the purchase and maintenance of siddurim, High Holy Days prayer books, and Torah commentaries through the purchase of dedicatory book plates.

Scholarships and Support Bernard and Frances Shapiro Chesed Caring Community Fund

Supports Temple members in need and the activities of the Chesed Caring Community.


Religious School Open Houses: Spread The Word It’s spring. And you know what that means: Spring cleaning. House hunting. Temple shopping. It also means the annual Woodlands Religious School Open House—the perfect opportunity through which temple shoppers—your friends and neighbors (especially your new neighbors)—can get to know one of our temple’s greatest attributes. And this year, they can also get to know our new Director of Congregational Learning, Rabbi Mara Young, who’ll be just back from maternity leave. Building on the success of our previous open houses, this year we’ve scheduled two. The first, on Saturday, April 27, will feature kindergarten, first, and second grades, with visitors partaking of T’filah, a Kiddush, some nosheri, creative programming, and a chance to visit with the clergy and our teachers. The second, on Sunday, May 5, features third and fourth grades—key grades for new temple members. So spread the word. Tell your friends. Tell your neighbors. For more information, check the website or call the temple office: 592-7070.


Expanding Jewish Horizons Fund

Provides support for individuals post college age for travel to and attendance at Jewish educational and cultural programs.

We appreciate the thoughtfulness of those who support Woodlands Temple by remembering and honoring their friends and loved ones through their generous contributions. Rabbi Billy’s Mitzvah Fund Educator’s Enrichment Fund Thanks to Ross Glinkenhouse

Lay Professional Development Fund

Thank you to Rabbi Billy and Cantor Ellen and in honor of the babynaming of Noah Sadie, from Mara, Mark and Noah Young.

College Enrichment Fund

Thank you to Harriet Levine and in and in honor of Samara Scharf honor of Samara Scharf becoming becoming a Bat Mitzvah, from The Scharf Family. a Bat Mitzvah, from The Scharf Family. Midnight Run Fund

Many thanks to Rabbi Billy and in In memory of David Steinhardt, honor of Samara Scharf becoming from Herb Friedman. a Bat Mitzvah, from The Scharf In honor of Jonathan Montague Family. becoming a Bar Mitzvah from the In memory of Rhoda Katz, mother School Board. of Karen Fox, from Ellen and Cary In memory of Doris Schatz, Bloom. grandmother of Ross Glinkenhouse Thank you Rabbi Billy for the from the School Board . beautiful service and in memory Chai Fund of Judy Benedek, from Judith In honor of the birth of Noah Rovenger. Sadie Young, from Todd Gordon In honor of Joe Rickles becoming and Susan Feder. a Bar Mitzvah, from Fred Rickles In memory of Esther Griff and and Kristin Tess. Stuart Lowenthal, from David In appreciation of Rabbi Billy and Griff and Roni Beth Tower. in memory of Doris Schatz, from In memory of Norma Leifer, The Glinkenhouse Family. mother of Elly Glasser, from In honor of Rabbi Billy on the Phyllis Opochinsky. occasion of Jonathan Montague In memory of Norma Leifer, from becoming a Bar Mitzvah, from Lois Green. Michele and Mark Montague. In memory of Mark Weingarten, In memory of Doris Schatz, from Gloria and Bill Falk. grandmother of Ross In memory of Herbert Ripin, from Glinkenhouse, from: Dayle and Dayle and David Fligel. David Fligel, Corey Friedlander, Yvette and Larry Gralla, David In memory of Jack Orr, husband Griff and Roni Beth Tower, Lisa of Pam Orr, from Lois Green. and Greg Linn, Leslie and Michael In honor of Noah Sadie Young, Litsky and Family, Nancy, Peter, from Arthur and Erica Pell. Michelle and Rachel Malkin, Bonnie and Alan Mitelman, In honor of Yvette and Larry Michele and Mark Montague, Gralla’s 60th Anniversary, from Phyllis Opochinsky, Julie and Scott Arthur and Erica Pell. Stein. In honor of Gloria and Bill Falk’s In memory of David Steinhardt, 30th Anniversary, from Arthur from Herb Friedman. and Erica Pell.

Rabbi Mara’s Mitzvah Fund Congratulations to Rabbi Mara and Mark Young on the birth of their daughter, Noah Sadie, from Julie and Scott Stein.

In honor of Gloria Falk’s birthday, from Eileen Spielman. Donation, from Michael Hess.

In memory of David Steinhardt, In honor of the birth of Noah Sadie, from Jeremy Fass. from Renee and Dave Doynow. In memory of Jeanette F. Steinhardt and Fanny Levy from In honor of the birth of Noah Jane and Bob Steinhardt. Sadie Young, from: Jackie and Nelson Leicht, Lloyd and Roberta Roos and Deborah Halpern Sinclair and Alex Sinclair.

In honor of Sarah Rosenfeld becoming a Bat Mitzvah, from Fran Rosenfeld.

Cantor’s Discretionary Fund

In memory of Mildred Donocoff, from Marjory and Mark Selig.

In honor of Joe Rickles becoming a Bar Mitzvah, from Fred Rickles and Kristin Tess.

In memory of Anita Figlen, mother of Karyn Schorr, from Dayle an David Fligel.

In honor of Cantor Jonathan on the occasion of Jonathan Montague Education and Youth becoming a Bar Mitzvah, from Activities Fund Michele and Mark Montague. In memory of Doris Schatz, from Thank you Cantor Jonathan Jeffrey and Elka Klarsfeld. and in honor of Jason Solano Many thanks to WoodSy, from Evi becoming a Bar Mitzvah, from and Steve Lieb. Albert and Lori Solano.

In memory of Mildred Donocoff, Marcy and Howie Wendrow, Eric and Jane Wachs, David Griff and Roni Beth Tower. Dale, Elly, Maya and Zachary Glasser, Gloria and Bill Falk, Roberta and Lloyd Roos, Dayle and David Fligel, Julie and Scott Stein. Donation, from Jeanne and Murray Bodin.

Endowment Fund In honor of Gloria Falk’s Birthday, from Sue and Jack Safirstein. Donation, from Michael Hess

Project Ezra Fund In memory of Lena and Gershon Pechman, parents, from Rochelle Novins. Lori Bluberg, Lois and Jay Izes, Lloyd and Roberta Roos

Social Action Fund In appreciation of Rabbi Billy and in honor of the naming of Zillin Rubin-Dulong, from Ellen and Harold Rubin. In honor of Dayle Fligel, from The Fein Family.

Gates of Repentance Bookplate Fund In memory of Judy Benedek, sister of Andy Sterling, from Leslie and Joel Fenigstein. In memory of Mildred Donocoff, from Lois Green and Family. In memory of Celia and Manny Gelberg, from The Montague Family. In memory of Irving and Thelma Lewis, from The Montague Family. In memory of Isadore and Rose Rubin, from The Montague Family. In honor of Jonathan Montague becoming a Bar Mitzvah, from The Montague Family.

Names of those that contributed to the Food Bank: Harriet Levine, Arthur and Erica Pell, Roberta and Lloyd Roos, Jack and Sue Safirstein, Julie and Scott Stein, Gary and Anne Stern, Elise and Jim Ballan, Jan and Jeffrey Friedman, Rabbi Mara and Mark Young

Supports members of the congregation pursuing lay professional activities for the benefit of the Congregation. Assists members of college age to attend Jewish programs such as URJ and NFTY conventions. Established in memory of Buddy Klein.

Confirmation Israel Study Fund

Aids Confirmation students where needed so they may travel to and study in Israel. Established in memory of Ellen Block.

Education & Youth Activities Fund

Funds special religious and educational needs for young people, other than college, including NFTY camp and program scholarships. Established in memory of Harriet Rosen.

Special Education Fund

Supports special education programs within the Religious School.

Steve’s H.O.P.E

“Helping to Open People’s Eyes,” this fund promotes social justice, individual responsibility, and moral action through the Civil Rights Journey, L’taken Political Action Seminar, and other projects. Established in memory of Stephen Lelewer.

Social Action Social Action Fund

Funds projects organized by the Social Action Committee.

Abayudaya (Jews of Uganda) Fund

Helps the impoverished Abayudaya community to become self sufficient.

Domestic Abuse Task Force

Helps us to provide assistance to victims of domestic violence leaving the Hope’s Door shelter and reestablishing their lives.

Hunger Fund

Support organizations that help the hungry and homeless in our community.

Interfaith Caring Community Fund

Consortium of local churches and synagogues that provide continuous care for those in need, here in our local Greenburgh community.

Midnight Run Fund

Supports the congregation’s participation in Midnight Run, which collects and distributes food, clothes and toiletries to homeless people living on the streets of Manhattan.

Mitzvat Mississippi

Supports trips to the Gulf Coast of Mississippi and Louisiana to aid in the rebuilding of the area following the devastion of Hurricane Katrina in 2005.

Project Ezra

Supports the elderly Jewish poor of the Lower East Side.


Woodlands Calendar April 2013 Nisan - Iyar 5773

Do we have your email address? If you have not been receiving temple emails, perhaps we do not have the correct email address on file for you. Please email with your corrected address and we’ll update our records.  

Special Note: If you have an “” email address, there is an issue with their spam filters. Please provide us an alternate address to use for your electronic temple communications 20


We are holding this space for your ad Contact Charlie Strick advertising

Weinstein Memorial Chapel 914-793-3800 1652 Central Park Avenue • Yonkers, New York 10710 (1 Block North of Tuckahoe Road) E-mail: The Only Jewish Family Owned Chapel in Westchester County

A Family Commitment to the Jewish Community with Dignified, Respectful Service. Four Generations of Personalized Service Mildred, Jack*, Seymour & Edward Weinstein (Owners) Arrangements Available in Westchester and Metro NYC 24 Hours a Day • 7 Days a Week We Accept All Major Credit Cards. MEMBER: Jewish Funeral Directors Assoc. of America New York State Funeral Directors Association Westchester Funeral Directors Association *Deceased


We t h a n k o u r A d v e r t i s e r s f o r t h e i r S u p p o r t

James Dowdle

We t h a n k o u r A d v e r t i s e r s f o r t h e i r S u p p o r t


Non-Profit Org U.S. Postage

PAID White Plains, NY

50 Worthington Road White Plains, NY 10607

Permit No. 1112

current resident or:


Our Woodlands Connection By Rachel Wineberg and Mark Kaufman


e think of ourselves as a mixed marriage. Mark grew up Reform, Rachel grew up Angry. Mark believed in God, Rachel believed in “Prove It.” In the City, we went to B’nai Jeshurun (“Progressive Conservative”). So, finding a synagogue where we both felt comfortable was complicated. Before we met a rabbi whom we could think of as our rabbi, before we had friends to greet us at Shabbat, before we knew to yell “Goooood SHABbos!” with Ross, before our children ran to babysitting and chased the teenagers, before our children became those teenagers, before Mark played clarinet at services and arranged music for “A Joyful Noise!,” before Rachel joined the religious school board and later became its President, before our boys wanted us to shlep them to shul, before we had a community, we were strangers. When we first moved to Hastings, we were involved in six different synagogues. (“Six?!” Nursery school in one place, BJ in the City, another where a friend was the rabbi, and so on...) It took us a while to realize we had found

what we were looking for. Being part more as well. With the beginning of of the ceremony where Zev became a adulthood will come the beginning of Bar Mitzvah gave us commitment; we choosing and acting in the shul. stopped attending multiple shuls and By giving of ourselves in any context settled down. -- whether to marriage or to friends But the Mitzvat Mississippi project -- we find the connection to others heightened that commitment and gave that we crave, and this is true for us community. For Mark and Zev, Woodlands as well. Because no matter sharing that week and working to help how often Rachel has said, “I don’t people still have time to volunteer,” We sit in the sanctuary. digging out a space opened in her from Katrina Sometimes light pours schedule. Of course, (and poverty) that space filled with through the tall windows... meetings, minutes, and brought a camaraderie administrative details. We entered as strangers. with other But that space also filled We built a home. volunteers. with friends, laughter Even if we and the fulfillment of hadn’t taken the same trip the following being part of something greater. Mark’s year, dayenu, we had become more arranging the horn parts and rehearsing dedicated to Woodlands. takes time, too, but that’s part of And that trip to New Orleans made building and decorating our communal the difference and community for our house of prayer. now 16-year old. Zev is now a teaching We sit in the sanctuary. Sometimes assistant, attends Monday-night classes light pours through the tall windows. with Academy, hangs out at WoodSY Sometimes we watch a storm, and we events and joined the WoodSY board all huddle together, sharing shelter and as “V.P.I.T.” Any and all of these not safety. We entered as strangers. Then only show who he is, but that he’s part we built a home. of a shul that invites and welcomes Here. his participation. The boys alternate If you’ve got a story that you’d like running the slides for Rabbi Billy’s to tell about belonging to Woodlands, visual worship services. And after Liam please contact Rabbi Billy becomes a Bar Mitzvah in June, he’ll ( have the opportunity to participate

April 2013  

Woodlands Community Temple monthly bulletiin called Makom

April 2013  

Woodlands Community Temple monthly bulletiin called Makom