Ahavath Achim Synagogue

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Morning Minyan

February 1, 2017 @ 7:15 am – 8:00 am Ellman Chapel

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Unraveling the Siddur

February 1, 2017 @ 4:30 pm – 5:30 pm Koplin/Borochoff Library

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B’nei Mitzvah Meeting

February 1, 2017 @ 6:45 pm – 8:15 pm Paradies

“Looking Beyond The Bar and Bat Mitzvah”

-Pre-Beresheit and Beresheit Cohorts (last cohort meeting)

-Teens and Parents

-Parve dessert (fruit and cookies)

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Morning Minyan

February 2, 2017 @ 7:15 am – 8:00 am Ellman Chapel

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Morning Minyan

February 3, 2017 @ 7:15 am – 8:00 am Ellman Chapel

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Shabbat Morning Services – Sermon by Rabbi Chaim Listfield

February 4, 2017 @ 9:00 am – 12:00 pm Ellman Chapel unless otherwise specified

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Morning Minyan

February 5, 2017 @ 8:30 am – 9:15 am Ellman Chapel

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Bet is for Baby

February 5, 2017 @ 10:30 am – 12:00 pm Ahava

Sundays on January 29, February 5, and February 12, 10:30 am – 12:00 pm: Bet Is for Baby is a three-part program offering information and guidance to first-time, expectant parents about Jewish traditions and parenting. The program also offers participants an opportunity to meet and network with past participants and other new parents. Bet Is for Baby is free and open to the community. All first-time, expectant parents are welcome and encouraged to attend. To register or for additional information, contact Jill Rosner at 404.603.5741 or jrosner@aasynagogue.org.

January 29 Jewish Parenting….The Jewish Family: Introduction, ideas and practical understanding on starting your Jewish family – Rabbi Laurence Rosenthal

February 5 Bris and Baby Naming: Celebrating the birth and capturing the moment – Rabbi Laurence Rosenthal and Rabbi/Mohel Ariel Asa

February 11 Creating a Jewish Home, Raising your Jewish Child: Jewish education and nurturing at all moments – Hannah Williams Director of Ahava Early Learning Center

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Morning Minyan

February 6, 2017 @ 7:15 am – 8:00 am Ellman Chapel

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Naomi’s Book Club

February 6, 2017 @ 10:15 am – 12:15 pm

The Black Widow by Daniel Silva. Discussion facilitated by Rina Wolfe.

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Morning Minyan

February 7, 2017 @ 7:15 am – 8:00 am Ellman Chapel

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Community Yom HaShoah Event planning committee meeting

February 7, 2017 @ 7:00 pm – 9:00 pm Paradies

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Morning Minyan

February 8, 2017 @ 7:15 am – 8:00 am Ellman Chapel

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Piedmont Learning Group w/ the Rabbis

February 8, 2017 @ 2:30 pm – 3:30 pm The Piedmont at Buckhead, 650 Phipps Blvd NE, Atlanta, GA 30326

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Unraveling the Siddur

February 8, 2017 @ 4:30 pm – 5:30 pm Koplin/Borochoff Library

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Morning Minyan

February 9, 2017 @ 7:15 am – 8:00 am Ellman Chapel

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Morning Minyan

February 10, 2017 @ 7:15 am – 8:00 am Ellman Chapel

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Shabbat Morning Services – Sermon by Rabbi Judith Beiner

February 11, 2017 @ 9:00 am – 12:00 pm Ellman Chapel unless otherwise specified

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Morning Minyan

February 12, 2017 @ 8:30 am – 9:15 am Ellman Chapel

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Bet is for Baby

February 12, 2017 @ 10:30 am – 12:00 pm Ahava

Sundays on January 29, February 5, and February 12, 10:30 am – 12:00 pm: Bet Is for Baby is a three-part program offering information and guidance to first-time, expectant parents about Jewish traditions and parenting. The program also offers participants an opportunity to meet and network with past participants and other new parents. Bet Is for Baby is free and open to the community. All first-time, expectant parents are welcome and encouraged to attend. To register or for additional information, contact Jill Rosner at 404.603.5741 or jrosner@aasynagogue.org.

January 29 Jewish Parenting….The Jewish Family: Introduction, ideas and practical understanding on starting your Jewish family – Rabbi Laurence Rosenthal

February 5 Bris and Baby Naming: Celebrating the birth and capturing the moment – Rabbi Laurence Rosenthal and Rabbi/Mohel Ariel Asa

February 11 Creating a Jewish Home, Raising your Jewish Child: Jewish education and nurturing at all moments – Hannah Williams Director of Ahava Early Learning Center

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Tu B’Shvat Tree Planting

February 12, 2017 @ 12:30 pm – 4:00 pm The Carter Center, 453 Freedom Parkway NE, Atlanta, GA 30307

Celebrate Tu B’Shvat, the Jewish New Year of the Trees -L’avdah ul’Shamrah, to serve and to protect the land. Bring your family, friends, and fellow congregants – rain or shine! We’ll meet in the parking lot on the north side of the Carter Center for fruit, nuts, and Tu’B'Shvat schmoozing. We will begin planting at 1:00 pm. Please wear clothes that can get dirty, and bring garden gloves if you have them. There will be hot coffee, juice, and snacks available throughout the planting. Young children’s programming led by Dr. Leah Zigmond, Executive Director of Camp Judea and former Director of Education for Kibbutz Lotan’s Center for Creative Ecology in Israel. For more information, contact Myrtle Lewin ataagreening@gmail.com.

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Evening Minyan

February 12, 2017 @ 6:00 pm – 6:30 pm Ellman Chapel

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Morning Minyan

February 13, 2017 @ 7:15 am – 8:00 am Ellman Chapel

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Evening Minyan

February 13, 2017 @ 6:00 pm – 6:30 pm Ellman Chapel

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Morning Minyan

February 14, 2017 @ 7:15 am – 8:00 am Ellman Chapel

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Evening Minyan

February 14, 2017 @ 6:00 pm – 6:30 pm Ellman Chapel

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Morning Minyan

February 15, 2017 @ 7:15 am – 8:00 am Ellman Chapel

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Lunch and Learn

February 15, 2017 @ 12:00 pm – 1:00 pm Offices of Birnbrey, Minsk, Minsk, and Perling, 1801 Peachtree Street NW #300, Atlanta, GA 30309

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Unraveling the Siddur

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Ahavath Achim Synagogue

Entering a Synagogue – My Jewish Learning

Tips for the novice shul-goer. By Sharon Strassfeld

In addition to the tips listed below, it is important also to remember that in Orthodox synagogues, men and women sit separatelyand often enter the sanctuary through separate entrancesso visitors need to find the appropriate sections and entrances for each gender. Reprinted with permission from The Second Jewish Catalog, edited by Sharon Strassfeld and Michael Strassfeld (Jewish Publication Society).

1. When you enter a traditional synagogue, put on a kippah [yarmulke] if you are a male (supplies are kept in almost every shul), and keep it oneven during the Kiddush and/or meal that follows the service. [In some liberal congregations, women cover their hair as well, while Orthodox women generally cover their hair if they are married. See #6 below for more information.]

2. In traditional synagogues it is forbidden, even after the service, to smoke on Shabbat (ask if youre not aware of synagogue policy).

3. On some occasions, following the Kiddush there will be a lunch to which guests of the Bar/Bat Mitzvah are invited. [Kiddush is the blessing of sanctification of Shabbat over a cup of wine, but in this context, it used more broadly to include also the snacks or light meal provided after the blessing is said.] Dont automatically assume that if youve been to services, you are invited to the lunch. However, you are usually invited for Kiddush.

4. It is bad form to take a Bar/Bat Mitzvah gift with you when you go to a traditional synagogue on Shabbat. Carrying is prohibited on Shabbat, and most traditional synagogues treat this prohibition seriously. Taking a monetary gift with you even in envelopes is especially offensive, since this not only ignores the prohibition against carrying, it also ignores the prohibition against handling money (and things representing money, such as checks, bonds, etc.) on Shabbat.

5. The no-carry principle in a traditional synagogue on Shabbat is also, by extension the dont-bring-a-pocketbook (handbag, suitcase briefcase, etc.) dictum.

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Sharon M. Strassfeld is co-author of the Jewish Catalog series.

In addition to the tips listed below, it is important also to remember that in Orthodox synagogues, men and women sit separatelyand often enter the sanctuary through separate entrancesso visitors need to find the appropriate sections and entrances for each gender. Reprinted with permission from The Second Jewish Catalog, edited by Sharon Strassfeld and Michael Strassfeld (Jewish Publication Society).

1. When you enter a traditional synagogue, put on a kippah [yarmulke] if you are a male (supplies are kept in almost every shul), and keep it oneven during the Kiddush and/or meal that follows the service. [In some liberal congregations, women cover their hair as well, while Orthodox women generally cover their hair if they are married. See #6 below for more information.]

2. In traditional synagogues it is forbidden, even after the service, to smoke on Shabbat (ask if youre not aware of synagogue policy).

3. On some occasions, following the Kiddush there will be a lunch to which guests of the Bar/Bat Mitzvah are invited. [Kiddush is the blessing of sanctification of Shabbat over a cup of wine, but in this context, it used more broadly to include also the snacks or light meal provided after the blessing is said.] Dont automatically assume that if youve been to services, you are invited to the lunch. However, you are usually invited for Kiddush.

4. It is bad form to take a Bar/Bat Mitzvah gift with you when you go to a traditional synagogue on Shabbat. Carrying is prohibited on Shabbat, and most traditional synagogues treat this prohibition seriously. Taking a monetary gift with you even in envelopes is especially offensive, since this not only ignores the prohibition against carrying, it also ignores the prohibition against handling money (and things representing money, such as checks, bonds, etc.) on Shabbat.

5. The no-carry principle in a traditional synagogue on Shabbat is also, by extension the dont-bring-a-pocketbook (handbag, suitcase briefcase, etc.) dictum.

6. An extension of the no-money principle is the dont jangle the change in your pocket if youre bored rule.

7. In traditional synagogues, women commonly cover their hair during the service. Frequently, lace nets are provided for women who forget to wear a hat or scarf.

8. In traditional Judaism, writing is prohibited on Shabbat and holidays, so needless to say, dont go to synagogue with your Bic sticking out of your breast pocket (or with cigars sticking out eithersee no. 2 above).

9. While there is no problem in the Reconstructionist, Conservative, and Reform movements about riding to synagogue in a car on Shabbat, Orthodox synagogues do not condone driving. Accordingly, try to be sensitive to such feelings when confronted with the situation. There is no reason to park your car in the synagogue parking lot or right in front of the building when you could park a block away and offend no one.

10. In many synagoguesmen [and women] wear tallitot [prayer shawls] during the morning service (both Shabbat and weekdays). On weekdays, men [and in some communities, women also] wear tefillin for the Morning Service. If you own these articles bring them to the appropriate services. If you dont own a tallit, almost any synagogue will provide you with one; if you dont own tefillin, some synagogues will be able to provide and some wont. In any case, in some shuls it is not a social solecism to pray without tefillin. Women should use their own sensitivity and discretion to guide them in the matter of wearing tefillin and tallitot. [In Orthodox synagogues, most women do not wear them, though some individual women choose to do so. In liberal synagogues, women and men generally follow the same customs.]

11. For all occasions when you enter a synagogue you should dress appropriately. Perhaps it is not fitting to approach God when you are not carefully attired; certainly it shows no respect to a community to ignore its standards of dress. In traditional synagogues women should wear dresses with sleeves and men should wear clean, pressed slacks and shirts Most synagoguesprefer jacket and tie. Some synagogues are tolerant of women in slack suits; others are not. Check the local policy before sallying forth.

12. Except for nos. 1, 3, 7, 10, and 11 above, these rules do not apply during a normal weekday service

As you enter the synagogue/sanctuary/prayer room, you should have the following (women are not required [by traditional Jewish law] to don the first three; some synagogues may even frown on a woman wearing these articles [while other synagogues actively encourage it], so let your own sensitivities decide):

kippah (except in many Reform temples)

tallit (ditto)

tefillin (ditto; you need them only on weekdays)

siddur [prayer book]

Humash [Bible] (only on Shabbat, holidays, Monday and Thursday)

The last two items can usually be found in bookcases either right before you enter the room or right after. In some shuls the siddurim (plural of siddur) are placed on each seat, and the Bibles are given out by the usher just before the Torah service begins. In some traditional shuls you dont take a humash from the bookcase until the time for the Torah reading. In such shuls you simply amble over to the bookcase at that time (along with everyone else) and pick one up.

The tallit (and/or tefillin) can be put on either before entering the room or when you get to your seat (the latter is usually the case with tefillin).The kippah is put on before entering the room.

In most synagogues you can sit wherever you like. If you are there for a simhajoyous occasionsuch as a bar/bat mitzvah, an usher may show you to the area where the family and relations are sitting.

If it is an Orthodox synagogue, remember that men and women sit in separate areas.

In a few synagogues the regular members have customary seats. Sometimes there are seat plaques to indicate such seats; at other times you just have to step (sit) carefully. Often you will be told which areas are open territory The eastern wall (the wall with the ark) is a place of honor in old-style synagogues, and in general you shouldnt just wander over and sit down there.

More here:
Entering a Synagogue – My Jewish Learning

The Synagogue, Church Of All Nations SCOAN Prophet T.B …

“A Christian should keep his body and mind pure and clean because he is a temple of the Holy Spirit (1 Corinthians 6:19-20)”

“When a miracle happens, it takes the spiritual mind to conceive/ appreciate the force behind it (John 9:33)”

“As a Christian, when your mind becomes the watchman, you would do what Jesus expects you to do; you would see what Jesus is looking at; you would watch and pray (Matthew 26:41)”

T.B. Joshua

“Everyone sees through different eyes, feels with different hearts, hears through different ears (John 7:12)”

T.B. Joshua

“Great thoughts produce great decisions (Romans 12:2)”

“If you have the mind of Christ no one can influence you (Acts 21:12-14)”

“If your heart and mind are filled with God’s Word, you will talk that Word (Luke 6:45)”

T.B. Joshua

“In the mind of God you are a successful person. For you to put that success into your life, you need to retrain your mind with the words of Joshua(Joshua 1:8)”

T.B. Joshua

“Jesus Christ never rejects anyone who asks for healing(Matthew 20:29-34)”

“Jesus Christ came down from heaven to give help to the helpless and hope to the hopeless (Luke 19:10)”

“Jesus Christ opened prison doors; He healed the sick; He delivered the oppressed. Jesus preached the Good News (Luke 4:17-19)”

T.B. Joshua

“When you listen to the Holy Spirit, you will be protected from the pitfall of every enemy (Isaiah 30: 21) ”

T.B. Joshua

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The Synagogue, Church Of All Nations SCOAN Prophet T.B …

A proposed real estate development in the historic center of Manchester is pitting two ex-Manchester United soccer … – Tablet Magazine

A proposed real estate development in the historic center of Manchester is pitting two ex-Manchester United soccer stars and a Reform synagogue against Englands heritage lobby.

Former pros Ryan Giggs and Gary Neville are the public face a plan for two new skyscrapers in the St. Michaels area of Manchester, the heart of what has traditionally been a low-rise city, near the sight of the historic town hall and central library. Developers have called it a landmark development for Manchester.

Construction would necessitate the demolition of three older buildings, including Manchester Reform Synagogue, the citys centers only shul, founded in 1857. The current structure, an imposing red brick building with stained glass windows noteworthy for their depictions of full human figures and faces, was opened in 1953. Their previous synagogue was bombed and largely destroyed during the Blitz in 1941.

Though the St. Michaels project would involve the loss of their synagogue, its president Danny Savage said the demolition has unanimous support from membership. The present structure, he said, is dilapidated and poorly built, suffering from damp, failing electrical and heating systems, and is without parking, disabled access, and youth facilities.

With this in mind, Manchester Reform struck a deal with the developers. In return for their prime real estate, a new, purpose-built synagogue and cultural center will be built into the lower levels of one of the proposed skyscrapers. Along with a new, accessible sanctuary, they will gain parking spaces and multi-purpose meeting rooms. Some of the current structures original fixtures, such as the stained glass and Torah ark, will be retained. The developers argue this arrangement will enable the congregation to continue to enjoy its city center location and play an important role in the civic life of the city. Savage believes their plans offer Manchester Reform a chance to reinvigorate the membership and keep the congregation safe for future generations.

Standing in their way, however, are a coalition of heritage organizations who believe St. Michaels constitutes an architectural eyesore and aberration that would dominate its vicinity. The conservation group SAVE Britains Heritage argues: If the proposal gets the go-ahead it will be a town planning disaster of a magnitude not seen in decades. The Twentieth Century Society, which campaigns to safeguard architecture and design in Britain from 1914 on, saidthe design of the towers shows no consideration to Manchestersspecial sense of place.

These groups also oppose the demolition of Manchester Reform Synagogue itself and submitted an urgent application to save the buildingwhich the government rejected. Historic England, a public body that champions and protects Englands historic places, agreed, telling me in a statement that the building is not distinctive architecturally and has been subject to fairly extensive alterations over the years.

Still, Historic England believes the demolition of Manchester Reform Synagogue would harm the character and appearance of the center of town, so it would have to be very clearly justified.

The Twentieth Century Society and [Historic England] seem to be hell bent against the development and have never contacted the synagogue ever to see how it affects us, Savage told me. We as Jews welcome change, as most of Manchester does, in the hope that regeneration of the city center will create and secure jobs and prosperity.

Manchesters city council is expected to consider the planning application for St. Michaels in the next few months.

Liam Hoare is a freelance writer whose work on politics and literature has featured in publications including The Atlantic, The Daily Beast, and The Forward. He is a graduate of University College Londons School of Slavonic and East European Studies.

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A proposed real estate development in the historic center of Manchester is pitting two ex-Manchester United soccer … – Tablet Magazine

1800-year-old Hebrew stone inscriptions found in ancient Galilee synagogue – Jerusalem Post Israel News

The 1,800-year-old inscribed stone.. (photo credit:COURTESY OF BEIT ZINATI)

An 1,800-year-old limestone column capital engraved with two Hebrew inscriptions dating to the Roman period was discovered during a recent restoration and conservation project carried out in an ancient synagogue in Peqiin, located near the Western Galilee.

The Israel Antiquities Authority said the work is being conducted by the Council for Conservation of Heritage Sites in Israel, as part of a project by the Jerusalem Affairs and Heritage Ministry.

The stone was found upside down in the buildings courtyard, and upon discovery of the inscriptions, archaeologists from the IAA arrived at the site in order to examine the special find, the Authority said in a statement on Tuesday.

A preliminary analysis of the engravings suggests that these are dedicatory inscriptions honoring donors to the synagogue.

According to Yoav Lerer, the IAAs inspector of the Western Galilee, the Talmudic and Midrashic sources tell of Galilean sages who lived in Peqiin, including Rabbi Shimon Bar Yochai, who hid from the Romans in a cave.

However, he noted that there are scholars who disagree with the identification of the location of Peqiin.

I believe that these inscriptions will add an important tier to our knowledge about the Jewish settlement in the village of Peqiin during the Roman and Byzantine periods, said Lerer.

In the past year, restoration and conservation work was carried out in Peqiins ancient synagogue and nearby Beit Zinati to upgrade the visitor center located at the latter.

When completed, the visitor center will inform tourists of the 2,000-year-old history of the Jews inhabiting the village, and the unique story of the Zinati family, the villages oldest remaining Jewish residents.

Margalit Zinati, the last member of the clan, resides in a house next to the synagogue.

Minister of Jerusalem Affairs and Heritage, Zeev Elkin, described Peqiin as one of the most significant sites in the Galilee.

It is a place where there has always been a Jewish presence, said Elkin. Its a great honor for me that during my tenure in office such an important discovery has been made that tells this 2,000-year-old story of the Land of Israel.

Uriel Rosenboym, director of Beit Zinati, described the find as a historical discovery of unparalleled importance, that unequivocally confirms what the late president Yitzhak Ben Zvi long maintained in the early 20th century about the Jewish settlement at Peqiin.

No one can argue with a written artifact, said Rosenboym. There was an ancient synagogue here, and the synagogue was built in its current form in recent centuries. We thank the Ministry of Jerusalem Affairs and Heritage, which aims to preserve the heritage of Peqiins Jews.

Rosenboym continued: We are pleased to open the new museum, with a historic message about this ancient community. Although the stone itself was taken to be studied by the Israel Antiquities Authority, this unique story of the keepers of the flame in Peqiin is revealed in the renewed museum.

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1800-year-old Hebrew stone inscriptions found in ancient Galilee synagogue – Jerusalem Post Israel News

Why Our Synagogue Became A ‘Sanctuary Synagogue’ – Forward

Each Passover, as we gather around Seder tables with glasses of sweet wine and with plates overflowing with charoset, egg and bitter herbs, Jews read the words Arami oved Avi, which translates to My father was a wandering Aramean. Slavery and liberation are personal; we read the story in the first person: The Exodus happened to me.

This is personal.

Earlier this month, the Board of Trustees of Shir Tikvah, the congregation in Minneapolis that I serve, voted to declare our synagogue a Sanctuary Congregation for any undocumented person seeking refuge.

Why?

Because unless you descend from the indigenous peoples of North America, you have immigrant ancestors. Every one of us has an immigrant story, a refugee story. My own in-laws fled Germany at the dawn of World War II in 1939, the Nazis literally hot in pursuit. Every one in our community has a similar, yet distinct, story of family arriving in this country poor, lacking English, hungering for the promise of America.

Aside from being personal, sanctuary is also theological.

The most frequently mentioned mitzvot in the Torah command Jews to love the stranger, the immigrant. The Torah further explains that there should be one law for immigrant and citizen alike.

wikimedia commons

Our very name, Shir Tikvah, means Song of Hope.

How could we be a song of hope and turn away people from our doors? How many of the MS St. Louis the ship full of refugees turned away from the United States in 1939 and returned to Europe, where most were murdered by the Nazis would have lived and their stories and lives flourished here if we had welcomed them?

Our Sanctuary Team, lead by a group of passionate congregants committed to bringing Torah values to life, are busy working to make our synagogue a welcoming home should people need to seek refuge within our walls. They are busy collecting bedding, dressers and other furnishings to make our space more comfortable. We solicited bids to build a shower. We have joined with hundreds of other synagogues, churches and mosques that make up the Sanctuary Movement to stand boldly and proudly with those who, like our ancestors, came to the shores of America seeking a new life.

We do not know if anyone will come. But each Friday night, as we sing Lecha Dodi which includes the lyrics Sanctuary of the Creator city royal / Arise, go out from amidst the turmoil we rise and open our synagogue doors to the street. If our undocumented neighbors show up, we will embody Abraham and Sarah and rush to greet them, feed them, house them and shelter them for as long as they need.

We hear rumors that the new administration may no longer respect the cherished boundary of houses of worship and may forcibly enter churches, mosques and synagogues to arrest undocumented people. I pray that God will open the presidents heart, that he will see that these families are exactly like our families hardworking, loving and seeking to build a better life for themselves and their children.

Regardless of the immoral, heartless policy targeting immigrants and refugees, we, the descendants of the first wandering Jew, must fling open the doors of our sanctuaries to all of Gods beautiful, busted, holy creation.

Michael Adam Latz is the senior rabbi of Shir Tikvah synagogue, in Minneapolis.

The views and opinions expressed in this article are the authors own and do not necessarily reflect those of the Forward.

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Why Our Synagogue Became A ‘Sanctuary Synagogue’ – Forward

Historic East Village Synagogue to Resume Services After Four-Year Closure – DNAinfo

The Adas Yisroel Anshe Meseritz synagogue is located at 415 E. 6th St. View Full Caption

DNAinfo/Allegra Hobbs

EAST VILLAGE A historic synagogue that shuttered for several years while its upper levels underwent a luxury condo conversion will hold its first prayer service at the beginning of March.

The Adas Yisroel Anshe Meseritz synagogue at 415 E. 6th St. will finally open its doors again after a four-year hiatus to allow for extensive renovations and the partial transformation of the property into a trio of condos part of a million-dollar deal brokered with a developer that has allowed the tiny house of worship to stay afloat.

The synagogue in 2013 signed over its upper levels to East River Partners LLC for a condominium conversion in order to retain the ground floor and basement level as part of the roughly $1,225,000 deal, the developer also carried out renovations on the crumbling synagogue space.

The three condominiums housed inside the synagogues upper levels including a sprawling $4.395 million penthouse hit the market in September 2016.

On Friday, the synagogue will celebrate its reopening, while its first evening prayer service in roughly four years will be held on March 1, according to the representatives.

Beloved Rabbi Paul Ackerman, who served as the head of the congregation for more than four decades, didn’t live to see the synagogue’s second life he died months after the deal was made, leaving the century-old structure in the hands of the synagogue board.

The deceased rabbi’s son, Sandy Ackerman, now serves as vice president and secretary of that board, and saysthe historic structures restoration would have made his father proud.

Im happy for my dad my father would have loved this, said Sandy Ackerman.

We so much wanted him to be the first person walking though the door, and thats not the case. But I am doing this in his honor.

The renovations brought much needed improvements to the house of worship, said Ackerman. The roof had been leaking, he said, and the building is also now affixed with air conditioning and is wheelchair accessible. The landmarked exterior has also been refurbished, he said.

When services finally commence again inside the 107-year-old structure, Rabbi Kalman Nochlin will be filing the shoes of the elder Ackerman a prospect the new rabbi says is both exciting and nerve-wracking.

I know I am filling the shoes of a person who was renowned for his character, said Nochlin, a longtime Lower East Side resident who teaches Judaic Studies at the Yeshiva of Flatbush. He was known as a person who was accepting of others, was known on the streets as someone who was welcoming.

Nochlin says he is thrilled to carry on Ackermans legacy while nurturing a new congregation at the reborn synagogue.

And while the leadership position will mark his first time serving as a full-time congregational rabbi, Nochlin said he had served as rabbi in the summer months for the Congregation Chasm Sopher on Clinton Street in the Lower East Side for roughly 15 years. He also hopes to bring his passion as an educator to the position, he said.

I love education it really gives me a feeling of energy and of vitality, said Nochlin. For the most part, my days are dedicated to Judaic Studies, and I feel this position will give me an opportunity to reach out to others in an educational ways, and that to me is a very exciting prospect.

The renovated interior of the synagogue will be unveiled for the first time at noon on Feb. 24, said Ackerman, noting the redonespace will blend elements of the century-old synagogue’s history with new furnishings.

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Historic East Village Synagogue to Resume Services After Four-Year Closure – DNAinfo

Historic Ogdensburg synagogue being offered for sale – WatertownDailyTimes.com

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OGDENSBURG The historic Anshe Zophen synagogue on Greene Street once one of the most active Jewish houses of worship in the area is now up for sale.

The Congregation Anshe Zophen was founded in 1875 but it wasnt until 1924 that the group purchased the former Unitarian Church at 416 Greene St., according to historical archives.

For approximately the past seven years, the building has been vacant, according to Dr. Robert Saidel, an optometrist in Gouverneur, who serves as the caretaker of the synagogue, as well as the Anshe Zophen Cemetery on Route 812 near the Ogdensburg International Airport. He said continuing acts of vandalism, coupled with the reality that there are few Jewish families to serve in Ogdensburg, are the main reasons for selling.

It was broken into twice in the last month, he said of the recent acts of vandalism. It made me realize that its time to sell it.

Mr. Saidel said he is willing to donate the building to another non-profit entity, or to sell it outright.

Id give it away if it was for a good cause, he said.

Rena Goldberg, 81, believes she is the last of the synagogues congregation to still live in Ogdensburg. Her father, Mayer Sperling, started the Sperlings Furniture store business, a company that once flourished across the north country. She said in the Ogdensburg synagogues heydey there were at least 100 active members, with people traveling weekly from across Northern New York and parts of Canada to worship and find fellowship among Ogdensburgs once sizeable Jewish community.

It breaks my heart, it just breaks my heart to see it boarded up like this, said Mrs. Goldberg as she stood outside the synagogue Monday. We had such times here.

Like many north country communities, Ogdensburgs business district once boasted a large number of Jewish entrepreneurs. Some of those names, like Edwin L. Dobisky, still remain part of the city as the namesake for the communitys Dobisky Visitors Center.

But the names of other early and prominent Ogdensburg retailing families, including the Fisher, Sperling, Rothenberg and Scwartz families, have been lost to all but area historians, according to Mrs. Goldberg.

The streets used to be buzzing back in those days, said Mrs. Goldberg, who stays active as the owner of the Way Back Inn bed and breakfast on Proctor Avenue. Now they are all gone. Urban Renewal.

Mrs. Goldberg said she understands the need to sell the synagogue building, and like Mr. Saidel, hopes a new use is found for the historic structure. She said she also understands that time changes many things in life, and that there is no reason to expect a new flood of Jewish immigrants to Ogdensburg or the north country any time soon.

It used to be such an active place, she said. We had doctors from the St. Lawrence Psychiatric Center, and people who would come over from Canada to our synagogue. Others would come from Massena or Potsdam. It was so much fun when I was a teenager.

The earliest written record of the Congregation Anshe Zophen shows up in the form of a deed conveying the original cemetery lot to Nathan Frank and Charles Paris on Oct. 21, 1873, according to historical records. On Sept. 6, 1875, the Congregation Anshe Zophen was incorporated under state law.

Although the cemetery was purchased in 1873, the Congregation did not own a synagogue, and for many years, the third floor at 207 Ford St., in the former Fisher Building served as a Hebrew School as well as a synagogue. In 1924, the congregation bought the unused Universalist Church.

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Historic Ogdensburg synagogue being offered for sale – WatertownDailyTimes.com

Conway man accused of planning attack at local synagogue in to appear in court Tuesday – WACH.com

HORRY COUNTY, SC (WPDE) A Conway man accused of planning an attack on the Temple Emanu-El synagogue in Myrtle Beach is scheduled to appear in federal court in Florence Tuesday afternoon. Benjamin McDowell, 29, is scheduled for a preliminary and detention hearing.

15th Circuit Solicitor Jimmy Richardson says that’s where McDowell should enter a plea and his bond, if any, will be determined.

McDowell is charged with violation of possession of a firearm and ammunition by a prohibited person. He was arrested by the FBI on Feb. 15, according to J. Reuben Long Detention Center.

According to court documents, McDowell planned a shooting similar to the one carried out by Dylann Roof -the man convicted of the Charleston Mother Emanuel AME Church shooting.

ABC 15 sat down with Richardson to talk about the federal court process for McDowell. Richardson said since McDowell’s arrest, federal prosecutors are now working against the clock as they prepare for a potential trial.

“Really once you make an arrest at the federal system – you best be ready to try that within three months,” said Richardson.

He said federal prosecutors only have 90 days to prepare for trial. He said investigators typically have the case ready for trial before there’s an arrest.

“There are very few cases that are handled in federal court anymore, very few. In fact, any one of our prosecutors will have 400 or so cases well that might suffice for the whole federal system in the state,” said Richardson.

Richardson explained when a person enters a guilty plea or is convicted in federal court, it takes time for a judge to determine the length of their sentencing.

“Even if a federal person were to plea guilty, they wouldn’t be sentenced like in state court, where it’s immediate. In federal court they will do a pre-sentence investigation,” he said.

He said that could take up to three months. If it does go to trial Richardson said the jurors could come from anywhere in the state.

Court documents show McDowell has requested a public defender. Richardson said a federal attorney will represent McDowell. We reached out to the federal public defender’s office in Florence to see who was assigned to his case, but their offices are closed for Presidents Day.

ABC 15 requested a SLED background check for McDowell.

It showed that he was convicted of first degree burglary and attempted burglary in 2008 and was sentenced to six years in prison, but that was suspended to three years on probation under the Youthful Offenders Act.

He was also convicted of third degree burglary and aggravated assault in 2009. He was sentenced to five years in jail, but it was suspended to three years probation.

Later in 2009, he was convicted of another burglary charged and sentenced to six years in prison.

In 2011, he was convicted of petty larceny and then later of second degree burglary. He was sentenced to 18 months in prison for the burglary charge.

In 2013, he was convicted of malicious injury to personal property and third degree assault and battery. He was sentenced to 30 days in jail.

Richardson said a federal judge may take McDowell’s criminal background into account when discussing bond at his hearing.

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Conway man accused of planning attack at local synagogue in to appear in court Tuesday – WACH.com

For sale to benefit NJ synagogue: Japanese novelties collected over a lifetime – Philly.com

As an 18-year-old Army private in occupied Japan, Mel Spiegel started to amass what grew into an eclectic collection of novelty knickknacks. I just fell in love,” he explains, “with the uniqueness of this stuff.

Decades later, the Philadelphia native and his wife, Verna, had great fun scouring South Jersey flea markets for hard-to-find Japanese ashtrays, salt-and-pepper shakers, flasks, figurines, and other decorative items of porcelain, china, or bisque.

The Spiegels ended their flea marketing about six years ago, after Verna became ill. She died in 2014, and after he turned 89 a few weeks ago, he decided to sell most of their lovingly curated array of curiosities on eBay.

The proceeds will help pay for interior renovations at Spiegels synagogue, Congregation BNai Tikvah-Beth Israel (cbtbi.org) in Gloucester County.

You hear about how people tell someone they dont look their age, says Spiegel, who doesnt.

And the next day they drop dead, he says, laughing, then adding: No one in my family is interested in the collection. Id hate to die and then have some auctioneer come in here and say, $100 for the whole thing.

The retired owner of a Pitman apparel factory, Spiegel worked in banking and sales as well. Hes also a longtime hobbyist and crafter. He designs stained-glass pieces and creates menorahs out of branches, wine corks and shell casings he gets from a shooting range in Glassboro.

Mel has had a very interesting life, says Rabbi Jordi Gendra, who finds fascinating the pieces of the collection Siegel has shown him.

As a community, adds Gendra, we are very grateful for this donation.

Says Ron Cohen, a Gloucester Township resident and friend of mine whos also a synagogue member: At our mens club breakfast a month ago, Mel said he wanted to help with the sanctuary renovation project and that he had all these Japanese collectibles.

Cohen directs TV commercials and took photographs of items in the collection which he had never seen to prepare the eBay listing.

I was just so impressed with the intricacies of detail and all the beautiful little designs, he says.

Eager to see for myself, I meet Spiegel at his home in Washington Township, where the sale items are packed in boxes.

Ive kept our favorite pieces, he says, directing my attention to a handsome display cabinet a vintage bookcase he has customized with lighting and glass shelves.

This is just a smattering of what we collected, he says.

Ah, but what a smattering: Hand-painted tea sets, sake sets, toothpick holders, cigar snuffers, and naughties, novelty items characterized by geisha imagery or bathroom humor.

Theres an entire [genre] of ashtrays that are donkeys pulling toilets on carts, Spiegel says, picking up a pristine specimen to demonstrate how the tiny little seat opens for, well, ashes.

Most of the hundreds of pieces in the collection were manufactured from the early 20th century through the 1960s. Many are copies of more expensive German or Italian designs. And during World War II, Spiegel says, some Americans threw away their Japanese knickknacks or painted over the Japan on the bottom.

He and his wife continued prospecting for finds at flea markets as long as she was able. But the sort of pieces that first fired the imagination of a young soldier from Philly in 1946 the delicate cups, the clever ashtrays resembling clown faces were growing harder and harder to find.

Verna used to say, You know why? Spiegel recalls. Because you got them all.

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For sale to benefit NJ synagogue: Japanese novelties collected over a lifetime – Philly.com

VIDEO: PM Netanyahu Visits Singapore Jewish Community At Maghain Aboth Synagogue – Yeshiva World News

[VIDEO IN EXTENDED ARTICLE]

Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu on Monday 24 Shevat, visited the Singapore Jewish community, at the Maghain Aboth synagogue. Community children greeted him at the entrance singing and waving Singapore and Israeli flags. The prayer for the State of Israel was read.

Prime Minister Netanyahu told the crowd I bring to you greetings from our eternal capital Jerusalem and I bring you greetings from a kindred nation. And I feel that Singapore and Israel are kindred nations. I find it a special privilege and an honor to be the first Israeli Prime Minister to make an official visit to Singapore. This follows the visit of Premier Lee to Israel, the first official visit of the Prime Minister of Singapore to Israel and its an obvious bond, a growing bond.

70 years ago, if you looked at Israel and you looked at Singapore, there wasnt much to see. But theres a lot to see and its not I think accidental that our two nations formed this bond between us because we are both inspired to do things, to punch above our weight. Israel is the innovation nation, were both entrepreneurial centers. We have innate talent and we have great drive to succeed.

I believe that great powers around the world look at Israel and Singapore today and see tremendous economic opportunities. Tremendous. And one reason that that is the case is that we have an unbridled spirit and we put it to use. That spirit is something that weve enshrined in our peoples for a long time, for a long time. The Jewish people have passed learning from one generation to another, an inquisitive mindset and the ability to produce new things.

I dont have to say that to the Jewish community in Singapore because youve been here for almost two centuries and you have that entrepreneurial quest for many, many decades and I think that you serve as a human bridge between Singapore and Israel. I know that you care for the State of Israel. I know you care for Jewish traditions. This gathering is an indication of that concern and that passion.

I also want to point out to you that I recently visited two Muslim countries, one is Azerbaijan and the other is Kazakhstan. And in those Muslim countries, in Kazakhstan I visited a synagogue. And Jewish children in Kazakhstan were singing Hebrew songs, as they sang here, in a Muslim state and that reflects the kind of world wed like to see: a world of tolerance; a world of diversity; a world that is opposed to the world that is being challenged today by the forces of barbarism and intolerance. This is a battle for the future of humanity. That future is represented in Israel, which also is a diverse country, which also has minorities, which respects peoples. And we see that same respect here in Singapore. So its not only that were both innovation nations, its not only that were small people and have defied the limitations of our size. It is that we are committed to a better world, a world of diversity, a world that follows the values that we as a people have held for so many years, for so many decades and in fact, for a millennium.

It is therefore for me a tremendous pleasure to be here and I want to ask you, all of you, a simple question: Who of you has not been to Israel? No shown hands. All of you have been to Israel? Then I have one request of you, come again. I want a reciprocal visit this year. This year in Jerusalem, I look forward to meeting you there.

(YWN Israel Desk, Jerusalem/Photo Credit: Haim Zach, GPO)

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VIDEO: PM Netanyahu Visits Singapore Jewish Community At Maghain Aboth Synagogue – Yeshiva World News

Netanyahu visits Singapore synagogue – Arutz Sheva

Binyamin Netanyahu with Lee Hsien Loong

Haim Tzach/ La’am

Speaking on Monday at a synagogue in Singapore during his first official visit to the country, Israeli Prime Minister Binyamin Netanyahu emphasized the close relationship between the two nations and his hopes for a better world in the future.

“I feel that Singapore and Israel are kindred nations, and I find it’s a special privilege – and an honor – to be the first Israeli Prime Minister to make an official visit to Singapore,” Netanyahu said. “I think there is something special about our two nations.

“These are two small countries, two small nations, that defied the laws of political gravity, defied their small size, and achieved global predominance. This is what is happening. It happened because of leadership, vision, the talent and passion of the people.

“It’s not accidental that our two nations formed this bond between us. Because we are both inspired to do things…we’re both entrepreneurial sectors, we have innate talent and we have a great drive to succeed.

“What happened in the founding of Singapore is that Israel and Singapore bonded – we bonded for Singapore’s defense, but we’ve expanded that to include many, many areas since… I believe that great powers around the world look at Israel and Singapore today and see tremendous economic opportunities…one reason that is the case is that we have an unrivaled spirit.

“The Jewish people have passed learning from one generation to the other, a desire to learn and an inquisitive mindset, and the ability to produce new things… You’ve been here for almost two centuries, and you had that entrepreneurial quest for many many decades. I think you serve as a human bridge between Singapore and Israel.

“We are committed to a better world, a world of diversity, a world that follows the values that we as a people have held for so many years, for so many decades, in fact – for millennia.

“It is therefore, for me, a tremendous pleasure to be here. I look forward to greeting you in Jerusalem.”

After Netanyahu finished speaking, Singapore Rabbi Mordechai Abergel community recited the Prayer for Israel in both Hebrew and English, followed by the Israeli national anthem “Hatikva.”

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Netanyahu visits Singapore synagogue – Arutz Sheva

Top European rabbi: Synagogues no longer a safe haven – Jerusalem Post Israel News

Armed French soldiers stand in front of a Synagogue during a visit of French Interior Minister Bernard Cazeneuve after an attack in front of a Jewish school in Marseille’s 9th district, France, January 14, 2016.. (photo credit:REUTERS/JEAN-PAUL PELISSIER)

Synagogues are no longer a safe haven, a top European rabbi said Sunday at a special panel about the situation of Jews across the continent, held in the framework of the Munich Security Conference.

At the back of almost every Jews mind is the possibility of what could happen. Sadly, in Copenhagen, Brussels and in Paris, that has become a reality, said Chief Rabbi of Moscow Pinchas Goldschmidt, president of the Conference of European Rabbis, at a breakfast event he was hosting titled Securing Jewish Communities across Europe.

The Jewish community finds itself targeted from a number of directions; from the extreme Right, the extreme Left and Islamic terrorism, Goldschmidt said, referencing terrorist attacks that have targeted Jews in different European countries in recent years.

The event took the form of a panel discussion featuring MK Tzipi Livni, Deputy CEO for Diplomacy of the World Jewish Congress Maram Stern, director of the International Center for the Study of Radicalization Dr. Peter R. Neumann and former director of Europol Jrgen Storbeck. German journalist Richard Schneider moderated the discussion.

Stern expressed a similar sentiment to Goldschmidt, noting that while he feels comfortable walking the streets in general, when the synagogue is his destination he begins to feel uneasy.

People are curious who walks in and who walks out, it is like you are in a zoo, he remarked.

Livni said that while Israel feels a responsibility for the security of Jews around the world, it is the responsibility of every state to protect its citizens and we cannot take away from that.

Every Jew should be able to walk around looking Jewish and not face discrimination, she added.

For his part, Stobeck addressed Berlins capabilities to deal with the threat of terrorism, saying that prior to the 2016 ramming attack at a Christmas market, German security services did not have enough money.

After the attack in Berlin, security services got a lot of money, he said. But you need to improve information management both nationally and internationally. We are still not quick enough, and we do not have a good [long-term] forecast.

Neumann described Jews as a priority target.

They are the first ones to be targeted. If Jews are being targeted, then all citizens should be worried because there is more to come, he warned, indicating that nobody should be lulled into a false sense of security by a period of calm. Just because the Jewish community has not been attacked in the last year, it does not mean it is not a target, he added.

Turning to the rise of the far Right in Europe, Neumann said: At the core of every far-right party, there is bona fide antisemitism.

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Top European rabbi: Synagogues no longer a safe haven – Jerusalem Post Israel News

Torah covers from Fall River businessman donated to Ponta … – Fall River Herald News

Michael Holtzman Herald News Staff Reporter @MDHoltzman

FALL RIVER For 35 years he manufactured womens clothing in Fall River and he became known as Mr. Apparel while his imprint stretched far and wide, including to the Azores, where the Jewish businessman yearned to restore a forgotten synagogue.

Now one year after Aaron N. Mittleman died at age 90 in New Jersey, two regal velvet covers will bear his name and be placed on two holy-scripture Torahs in that reborn synagogue sanctuary founded nearly two centuries ago after the Inquisition.

These two beautiful and meaningful Torah covers were donated by Cheryl Mittleman Stern, Aarons daughter, and Dr. Cathy Stern, Aarons niece, said Paula Raposa, a retired city business leader who had been part of the pioneering Azores Synagogue Restoration Committee that Aaron Mittleman had chaired decades ago.

What beautiful Torah covers! Thats wonderful the Mittlemans have donated them and its such an honor to receive them, Gideon Gradman, president of the Azorean Jewish Heritage Foundation, wrote fellow-member Raposa.

Raposa had been with Mittleman and a few other Fall River business people on a trip to Ponta Delgada when they were first led to 16 Rua de Brum, a non-descript site in a rabbis home of the Sahar Hassamain Synagogue.

The synagogue name translates to Gates of Heaven. It was in ruins.

That restoration committee evolved into the AJHF that has worked for years and raised funds from Greater Fall River along with officials in Ponta Delgada.

On April 23, 2015 they celebrated the synagogue rededication to international acclaim. Ambassadors from Portugal, America and Israel were among the dignitaries that attended to view what also houses a museum and library bearing witness to its origins.

My father when he went somewhere was always interested in finding out about Jewish history, Cheryl Mittleman Stern said recently.

Too old and infirm to take that synagogue dedication trip from Boston almost two years ago with a large delegation of about 80 people including many legislators, Mittleman had read the accounts in The Herald News. He was busting with pride, his daughter said.

His highly regarded company in Fall River, which employed approximately 85 people until he retired in 1989, was called Cheryl Manufacturing after his daughter and located on County Street.

During that period he headed the New England Apparel Manufacturers Association, a trade organization, for 14 years. Hed lead efforts to improve the textile industry locally and at the state and national levels, directing the chambers of commerce in Fall River and New Bedford.

The two Torah covers manufactured by Jewish Bazaar are a white one with a tree of life and gold trim honoring him as a founder of the synagogue restoration committee; and a maroon one with gold trim, in memory of him, his late brother Sandy and late sister Connie.

State Rep. Michael Rodrigues, D-Westport, a AJHF member, whos been active with the rededication and continued efforts, plans to deliver the two Torah covers to the synagogue during a personal trip to Portugal in April, his office said.

In October, Temple Beth El in Fall River had donated a royal blue Torah cover with the name of both synagogues embroidered on it to Ponta Delgada Mayor Jos Bolieiro during his visit here in October. It signified the an agreement to preserve Jewish history in both lands.

Sahar Hassamain has four original Torahs. It began as a synagogue in 1836 to allow Jews the freedom to worship after the Inquisition.

Email Michael Holtzman at mholtzman@heraldnews.com or call him at 508-676-2573.

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Torah covers from Fall River businessman donated to Ponta … – Fall River Herald News

Boston-area high school principal turns to local synagogue after … – Jewish Telegraphic Agency

(JTA) After swastika graffiti was discovered at a Boston-area high school, the principal turned to a local synagogue for help in educating the students about its significance to Jews.

The swastika was found drawn on a bulletin board in an English classroom at Westwood High School, the Fox Boston affiliate reportedWednesday.

The principal emailed parents to inform them of the incident and then contacted a synagogue located down the street from the school.

Westwoods a small community, so we really feel close with all our neighbors and we want all students especially to feel very comfortable in school and in the town, Rabbi Karen Citrin of Temple Beth David told Fox.

Citrin said students at the school who are members of her synagogue were upset about the swastika. The rabbi said she would visit the school and talk to the students about what the swastika symbolizes to Jews.

John Antonucci, the superintendent of the Westwood schools system, called the incident a teachable moment.

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Boston-area high school principal turns to local synagogue after … – Jewish Telegraphic Agency

7 Design Highlights of the Stunning Eldridge Street Synagogue in NYC – Untapped Cities

Image via Wikimedia:Acartelli

In 1987, local residents and urban preservationists joined forces to save the Eldridge Street Synagogueone of the first erected in the United States by Eastern European Jews. The 20-year, $18.5 million endeavor, called the Eldridge Street Project, culminated in December 2007, transforming the iconic Lower East Side institution into the stunning architectural marvel it is today.

It presently sits on a crowded street betweenCanal and Division, framed on all sides by multi-story brick buildings that house an eclectic collection of stores. With its Moorish Revival style arches and stained-glass windows, its easy to forget that the structure was once in a dire state of disrepair.

In celebration of the synagogues 120+ history, were hosting an after hours touron Thursday, February 23rd that will delve deeper into its backstory. In the meantime, lets take a closer look at some of its most notable architectural and design highlights, from its domed ceilings to its dented wooden floors.

Secrets of the Eldridge Street Synagogue After Hours Tour

Image via Wikimedia:AnneRuthmann

TheEldridge Street Synagogue is home to 67 stained glass panels that are arranged into sets. Walk inside and you can spot rectangular windows on the sides of the sanctuary and keyhole windows across the facade. In addition, roundels are found in the vestibule and arched windows decorate the area around the balcony and in the stairwells.

The windows incorporate similar elements into their designs:Stars of David, intersecting circles and thick cast-glass jewels.Although they date back to the late 19th century, they were restored between 1986 and 2007. According to the Museum at Eldridge Street, roughly eighty percent of the original colored shapes have been reused. The pattern for all windows in each set is identical, but the colors in each panel are purposely alternated by the artists.

Stained glass is a common feature seen in many religious institutions because of its aesthetic beauty. However, it also served an utilitarian purpose,as the windows were used to depictreligious stories when literacy rates were low. The windows also help to foster a grand and holy atmosphere, as light is ableto filter in, without allowing visitors to get distracted by whats taking place on the outside; this is especially necessary for the Eldridge Street Synagogue, which sits on a bustling Lower East Side street.

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7 Design Highlights of the Stunning Eldridge Street Synagogue in NYC – Untapped Cities

Jerusalem synagogue to honor Druse policeman killed in Har Nof attack – Jerusalem Post Israel News

The memory of Zidan Saif, the Druse policeman killed in the November 2014 terrorist attack on worshipers in a synagogue in the Jerusalem neighborhood of Har Nof, will be honored this Sabbath at the capital citys Great Synagogue.

The Torah reading for this Sabbath is named for Jethro, who in addition to having been the father-in-law of Moses, is regarded as the spiritual founder and holiest of prophets by the Druse community. Many Druse regard Jethro as the ancestor of all Druse . Decision makers at the Great Synagogue believe that recalling Saifs bravery when the portion about Jethro is read aloud in the synagogue is the most appropriate way for Jews to pay tribute to Saifs courage. Saif fired at the terrorists from outside the synagogue, but collapsed when one of them ran out and shot him at close range. Saif was rushed to hospital, but died of his wounds.

Four rabbis Aryeh Kupinsky, Avraham Shmuel Goldberg, Kalman Levine and Moshe Twersky were killed in the attack inside the synagogue.

In recognition of Saifs courage, a New York Jewish couple added the name Zidan to that of their baby son Yaakov in order to perpetuate both his name and his memory.

Hundreds of people including Druse, Jews, Christians and Muslims including President Reuven Rivlin attended Saifs funeral in the Druse village of Yanuh-Jat.

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Jerusalem synagogue to honor Druse policeman killed in Har Nof attack – Jerusalem Post Israel News

Synagogue-where-Trumps-grandchild-goes-to-preschool-condemns- – WSYR

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WASHINGTON (CNN) – Amid the weekend’s reaction to President Donald Trump’s travel ban one may hit close to home for Ivanka Trump and Jared Kushner.

Adas Israel Congregation, the Conservative synagogue in Washington’s Cleveland Park neighborhood where Trump and Kushner send one of their three young children to preschool, issued a statement Sunday evening condemning the President’s controversial executive order.

The child attends Gan HaYeled Preschool at Adas Israel, per a source close to the temple community.

The order, which Trump signed at the Pentagon Friday, temporarily halted US refugee entry into the US for 120 days, and barred all citizens of seven Muslim-majority nations from entering the US for three months.

“The leadership and clergy of Adas Israel Congregation stands with the entire Conservative movement and other local organizations such as the Jewish Community Relations Council of Greater Washington in advocating for the rights of immigrants, rejecting the targeting of individuals based on religion, and calling on the US government to reject policy proposals that would halt, limit, or curtail refugee resettlement in the US or prioritize certain refugees over others,” the synagogue wrote on Facebook and in an email sent to congregants.

Adas Israel, which describes itself as a “socially conscious congregation” on its website, reaffirmed a longer statement from the Conservative Jewish community.

“Our religious tradition repeatedly forbids us from oppressing the stranger,” that statement reads. “We call on the US government to reject policy proposals that would halt, limit or curtail refugee resettlement in the US or prioritize certain refugees over others; and urge President Trump and the US Congress to instead take bold leadership by providing robust funding to support refugees around the world as well as provide necessary resources to refugees who are already resettled in the US.”

Other area Jewish groups also joined the synagogue in condemning the ban, and a small group of DC-area Jewish congregations are gathering to respond to the refugee crisis.

The White House did not immediately respond to a CNN request for comment.

Although Ivanka Trump does not have a formal title in her father’s administration, she was spotted in the West Wing on Sunday by the White House pool reporter. She was a key adviser throughout her father’s campaign, and is expected to continue to play an important role in the Trump White House.

The first daughter formally stepped away from the Trump Organization and her namesake apparel and accessories brand earlier this month, writing at the time that she was planning to focus on settling in her children to their new home and schools. Her husband, Jared Kushner, is serving the administration in a more formal capacity as senior adviser to the President.

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Synagogue-where-Trumps-grandchild-goes-to-preschool-condemns- – WSYR

The Jewish Chronicle – Outside the synagogue intermarried are … – thejewishchronicle.net

Danya Shults Photo by Bridget Badore

Julianne was raised by Catholic and Presbyterian parents, while Jason grew up culturally Jewish. At first, it was simple to mark their different backgrounds. In December, the couple celebrated Christmas with Juliannes relatives and lit a menorah and served latkes at Christmas dinner.

But now that theyre thinking of having kids, the Kanters have started to talk religion more seriously. And they realized they needed a space to learn about Judaism without the expectations that came with joining a synagogue.

To talk about how are we going to incorporate Judaism into our lives what does that mean? What will that look like? Julianne Kanter said. I didnt know enough about it to feel comfortable teaching my kids about it.

Since last year, the Kanters have found Jewish connection through a range of initiatives targeted at intermarried or unaffiliated couples. Last June, they went on a trip with Honeymoon Israel, a Birthright-esque subsidized tour of Israel for newlywed couples with at least one Jewish partner. And in the months since, they have built community at home in Brooklyn through two discussion groups where intermarried couples get together to meet, eat and talk about shared challenges and experiences.

In one group, called the Couples Salon, five to six couples sharea light meal, introduce themselves and drop questions they have prepared in advance into a bowl. A moderator who can also participate picks out a question and the group talks whether about how to deal with familial expectations, how to celebrate holidays or how to share a ritual with your kids. The salons have happened once a month, with different couples, since August.

We wanted the perspective of people who were in similar situations, which the synagogue is not, Jason Kanter said. It was nice to go to a group where everyone was in the same sort of boat. Theres real dialogue rather than someone telling you their opinion of what your situation is.

A growing number of initiatives are giving intermarried couples a Jewish framework disconnected from synagogue services and outside the walls of legacy Jewish institutions. Instead of drawing them to Judaism with a preconceived goal, these programs allow intermarried couples to form community among themselves and on their own terms.

I wanted to find a way to create a space for couples that come from mixed religious backgrounds to ask questions in a safe space, said Danya Shults, who runs the Couples Salons as part of Arq, a Jewish culture group, and organized her fifth salon earlier this month. Im not a synagogue. Im not expecting them to join. Im not expecting them to convert.

The salons began last year, as did Circles of Welcome, a similar initiative by JCC Manhattan, where five to seven intermarried or unaffiliated couple meets monthly, usually in someones home, to learn and talk about Judaism with a rabbi or rabbinical student who serves as mentor. In Northern Californias Bay Area, two somewhat older programs, Jewish Gateways and Building Jewish Bridges, offer group discussions, classes and communal gatherings for intermarried couples.

The programs are at once a reaction to rising intermarriage rates and to the rejection that intermarried couples have long experienced from parts of the Jewish community. While most Jews married since 2000 have wedded non-Jews, the Conservative and Orthodox movements do not sanctionintermarriage, while the Reform movement, the most welcoming to intermarrieds of the three largest Jewish denominations, encourages conversion for the non-Jewish spouse.

Because of the history of interfaith families not being welcomed and not being accepted that has meant, in some instances, for interfaith families that want to experience Jewish life, they have to figure that out using other resources, said Jodi Bromberg, CEO of InterfaithFamily, which provides resources for intermarried couples exploring Jewish life and inclusive Jewish communities.

Often, said Honeymoon Israel co-CEO Avi Rubel, intermarried couples also have friends from a range of backgrounds. So theyre uncomfortable with settings that, by their nature, are not meant for non-Jews.

When it comes to building community and meeting other people, people want to bring their whole selves into something, Rubel said. Which often in America means being inclusive of non-Jews and other friends. When theyre at a Jewish event, they dont want it to feel exclusionary.

Mainstream Jewish organizations have become more supportive of including intermarried families. Several Conservative rabbis have voiced support for performing intermarriages, and the movement is set to allow its congregations to accept intermarried couples as synagogue members. Honeymoon Israel, launched in 2015, is funded by various family foundations and Jewish federations.

But organizers of the independent initiatives, and intermarried couples themselves, say even a welcoming synagogue can still be an intimidating space. The couples may not know the prayers or rituals, may feel uncomfortable with the expectation of becoming members, or may just feel like theyre in the minority.

Its a privilege of inmarried Jews with children in any social circumstance, said Steven M. Cohen, a Jewish social policy professor at Hebrew Union College-Jewish Institute of Religion, referring to synagogue membership. The people that fit the demographic of the active group are the people who feel most welcome.

Rabbi Avram Mlotek, a Circles of Welcome mentor and Orthodox rabbi, says his movements staunch opposition to intermarriage doesnt come into play as he teaches couples about Judaism.

Because of my own commitment to my understanding of halacha, there will be areas in which the couples and I will not see eye to eye, he said, using a Hebrew term for Jewish law. But thats like the 10th or 15th conversation. Thats not the first or second or third or even fifth. Theres so much more to learn about them, and for me to be able to share also about myself, before even getting to that point.

That doesnt mean intermarried Jews will remain forever separate, said Rabbi Miriam Farber Wajnberg, who runs Circles of Welcome at the JCC Manhattan. She sees the program as a stepping stone to a time when the larger community is more open to non-Jewish spouses.

We expect and hope that this program wont need to exist in the future, that we wont need to create a special program to help couples get access to Jewish life, she said. It will just be happening automatically.

But Julianne Kanter, who facilitated her own Couples Salon on Feb. 8, isnt sweating over which synagogue to join. She said that for now, she and her husband feel a sense of belonging in the intermarried groups that have formed.

To me, I feel like these are the people who get us, she said. This is our community, and were just really lucky.

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The Jewish Chronicle – Outside the synagogue intermarried are … – thejewishchronicle.net

When politics came to synagogue – New Jersey Jewish News

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Sefi, left, and Sarit Greenwood of West Orange accompanied their father, Matt, to a political rally.

Photo courtesy Greenwood Family

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by Johanna Ginsberg NJJN Staff Writer

February 15, 2017

Anat Cohen of Livingston and her family dropped their membership this year at the Conservative-affiliated Congregation Agudath Israel of West Essex in Caldwell. Her increasing discomfort as a Trump supporter in a liberal environment was one of several factors that went into her familys decision.

It was annoying that there was not another voice, said Cohen, who asked that her real name not be used to protect her familys privacy. While she said the rabbi and cantor were very careful in their rhetoric, nonetheless, The message got across that we are terrible Jews if we do not open our border to refugees. The social action aspects of Judaism just take precedence over Judaism.

Not too far away, West Orange resident Matt Greenwood, an avowed socialist and member of the Orthodox Congregation Ahawas Achim Bnai Jacob & David (AABJ&D), quipped that he and the others among the congregation who share liberal political views have their own secret handshake. Meanwhile, Greenwoods rabbi, Eliezer Zwickler, is committed to keeping politics off the pulpit.

Increasingly Reform, Conservative, and Reconstructionist Jews are championing liberal causes, whereas Orthodox Jews appear to be siding with the GOP.

In interviews with several members of the Greater MetroWest Jewish community it became clear that in todays polarized political climate, congregants can be left scrambling to hold onto their respective spiritual homes when ideological and religious views fall out of alignment.

When religiously liberal Jews are politically conservative, it can be uncomfortable to sit in synagogue and listen to sermons on tikkun olam and social justice, and have discussions with fellow worshippers who rail against Trumps immigration ban.

The same disconnect occurs for Orthodox Jews on the left side of the political spectrum, whose viewpoints are shaped by more than just U.S. policy toward Israel, and who are concerned about how the presidents orders affect people of all religions. For rabbis, the challenge comes in maintaining an inclusive congregation in a divisive political climate.

A resident of Maplewood, who also asked not to be named, told NJJN he feels unwelcome at any of the non-Orthodox congregations in the area, which include South Oranges Temple Sharey Tefilo-Israel, Oheb Shalom, Congregation Beth El, and Congregation Bnai Israel in Millburn. He wrote, via email, Not that the clergy isnt nice to us, they are, but they set a tone that says the congregation is all about social justice (and not broadly, but narrowly defined as immigration rights, LBGTQI rights, attending the womens marches, Black Lives Matter, etc.).

Youth programming can serve to extend these rifts. For example, a February USY event at Oheb Shalom focuses on becoming an activist in the 21st century.

The Maplewood resident no longer brings his children to synagogue, saying that congregants are quick to hurl labels if he doesnt conform to others views on hot-button issues.

Is that welcoming? he asked.

Clearly we want to take care of those who are less fortunate, said Anat Cohen. Im not a terrible ogre who wants people starving and dying in the streets. But we also have an obligation for self-preservation, and there are sources for that. In the end, she said, between the pulpit and the community feeling, I felt constantly lectured at. I became a pariah for expressing my views.

Even those who said they dont feel unwelcome in synagogue because of their politics acknowledge the existence of a palpable tension.

Greenwood thinks that his position is easier theologically than his counterparts who are on the outs in liberal synagogues, as he sees a socialist strain running through the Torah. I can quote sources and primary texts that make it perfectly clear we are not meant to lord it over others, he said, adding, You can look at the Torah all through the prophets and thats what it is.

The strain in synagogue doesnt really bother Greenwood. As a British expatriate who holds a green card, he said he takes a sort of outside observer approach. My biggest disappointment is not that people are on the other side of the political divide, but that they are unwilling to think about anything other than Israel and whats good for Israel. Theres no substantive discussion, he said, about other issues, which he views as myopic. But he added that he thinks its a mistake to conceive of synagogues as monolithic. Usually, they are actually tapestries with many threads and there is not one megaphone for the shul.

Greenwood credits Zwickler for refusing to take an active role in the political back and forth. He works hard to be apolitical from the bima and maintain shalom bayit [peace in the house].

Naftali Falda, also a member of AABJ&D in West Orange, considers himself certainly left of most in my community. He said he wears his views as a badge of honor, and knows who he can talk to about politics. While he relishes being the odd man out, he acknowledges that there are some people with similar views in his cohort of friends in their 30s and 40s.

The older generation is more doctrinaire, he said, adding that for his parents, who also live in the community, things are more complicated than they are for him. Among people their age, its better not to talk politics at all. It doesnt go to a happy place.

He respects Zwicklers intention to remove politics from the institutions Jewish practices. It would be totally inappropriate for the shul to take a position, he said. It would make people feel left out.

Dave Esrig, a member of the Conservative Bnai Shalom in West Orange, said although his rabbi, Robert Tobin, is to the left of me, he generally feels included, as the congregations members dont seem to lean overwhelmingly to one side or the other. He wrote in an email that Bnai Shalom has a number of regulars (like me I go most Saturdays) who are Republicans or will vote for candidates of either party depending on the particulars of the race. He added that he does sometimes adamantly disagree with the rabbis sermons but with few exceptions he prefers to hew to the weekly text and how it affects our lives.

However, Esrig said that he is careful about attending events at other synagogues. I dont like to be on the wrong side of a leftist harangue that has no apparent basis in Torah or any special expertise by the speaker.

Its not an accident that Esrig feels comfortable at Bnai Shalom. Tobin made conscious decisions on how to manage post-election tensions back in November, starting with not taking sides. I have extremely strong political views, he told NJJN, but my vote is not my rabbinic voice.

In an email exchange with NJJN, he wrote, I am regularly pressured to speak politics from the bima, while others pressure me not to. I have chosen to speak only when the Torah mandate is clear and unequivocal.

He explained, I will assert that we must protect the widow, the orphan, and the stranger, as that is what the Torah commands of us. But I respect that how we protect the widow, the orphan, and the stranger can be a matter of sincere difference in a political system.

Tobin said there is an imbalance and natural source of conflict, since approximately 30 percent on Jews identify as Republican and the rest Democrats. His role, he said, is to tread cautiously. In a January post on his blog he encouraged members to pursue Jewish beliefs and values through political advocacy and engagement, and even to do so through the synagogue. But he wrote, I will not lead such efforts myself. I need to be everyones rabbi, and I take that very seriously.

Similarly, Rabbi Eliezer Zwickler at AABJ&D spoke to the entire congregation on the Shabbat following the presidential election to set the tone. This is a place where everyone needs to feel at home and welcome, he recalled telling the community. If anyone comes to shul with the goal of making someone feel bad for their political leanings, they have no place in our shul.

With regard to politics, he said, I try to stay pareve on that. My role is to develop a spiritual connection between a person and their creator. The synagogue, in his view, is a place to spend intimate time with God. Its not meant to be political.

Even when politics is impossible to ignore he sets it aside, he said. When former President Barack Obamas decided not to veto the UN resolution condemning Israeli settlements, some congregants questioned whether they should continue to recite the prayer for the American government. Zwickler responded that the prayer would remain in the liturgy. Even when people have different approaches, he said, We always have a modicum of respect for the institution of government of the U.S.

Others feel there are moral issues at stake that preclude neutrality. Rabbi Jesse Olitzky at Beth El, perhaps the most outspoken of the local Jewish clergy, fasted on Jan. 20, the day of Trumps inauguration; was among the Truah rabbis arrested in Manhattan last week; and together with the other South Orange rabbis, has been an active participant in welcoming two refugee families in recent weeks, one from Syria, the other Iraq (see related story).

Olitzky recently wrote in his blog, I understand that as a rabbinic leader and public figure, every action has an impact potentially positively or negatively on others. I think deeply about the statements I make, the stances I take, and the forms of protest that I may participate in. I also consider those things that for many reasons I choose not to say or share. I know all may not always agree with what I say or do, but I hope that the decisions I make are respected because ultimately, everything I say, and everything I do, every statement I make, and every stance I take, is not rooted in politics, but rooted in Torah. They are rooted in the teachings of Pirkei Avot that remind us to especially speak up and act when others wont. They are rooted in God serving as my strength and my song. They are rooted in my attempt to walk in Gods ways and fight for all made in Gods image.

Rabbi Dan Cohen of Sharey Tefilo- Israel thinks a synagogue should be welcoming for everyone, and he has had conversations with members who feel disconnected. However, he said, he will not keep quiet when he believes issues rooted in Jewish values and commitments arise and require him to speak out.

I cannot help if they fall into one side of the partisan divide or the other, but just because they do does not mean I wont address them, he said. When I do, however, I am not raising them because they are the position of one party or the other but because they are moral issues for me.

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When politics came to synagogue – New Jersey Jewish News