October 19, 2003 and Tishre 22, 5764
Rabbi Joshua Hammerman, Temple Beth El, Stamford, Connecticut
And Hag Sameach
THE FINAL DAYS OF THE FESTIVAL:
Erev Shemini Atzeret
Kabbalat Shabbat 6:30 p.m. YOUNG COUPLES SHABBAT
Special “theme” service focusing on Nature, Autumn and Creation. The service will take place on the Bima in the Main sanctuary
Tot Shabbat at 6:45 p.m., in the lobby
SHEMINI ATZERET & SHABBAT - Saturday, October 18th
Services 9:30 a.m., including Yizkor
Erev Simhat Torah - Services & Celebration 7:00 p.m.
Featuring SHIMON & DROR from the Tuvia Orchestra
with keyboard, clarinet & sax.
THIS SERVICE IS NOT FOR KIDS ONLY – THE MUSIC WILL APPEAL TO ALL AGES. IF YOU DON’T HAVE THE PITTER PATTER OF LITTLE FEET IN YOUR HOME AND THOUGHT THAT SIMHAT TORAH WAS MOSTLY FOR THE “YOUNGER GENERATION” SO HAVEN’T BEEN TO IT FOR A WHILE, THIS IS THE TIME TO COME BACK!
SIMHAT TORAH - Sunday, October 19th - Services 9:30 a.m.
Join our celebration as we circle our Temple carrying all of our Torahs! We’ll honor Herb Horowitz as our Hatan Torah (Bridegroom of the Torah) and Ellen Gordon as our Kallat Bereisheet (Bride of Breisheet – Genesis) also, we’ll be rededicating our Torahs in memory of Robert Malin, Mollie & Jack Malin; grateful for the generosity of Stephanie & Larry Sherman.
Our students will be leading many of the prayers and reading Torah.
Seventh grade are invited to lead Aleinu
Sixth Grade are invited to lead Adon Olam
Fifth Grade Ein Keloheinu
Fourth Grade Shema V'ahavta
Day School students will lead the Shacharit Amida
and all grades K-7 will participate in the Hakafot.
And don’t forget, all students receive bonus Shabbat morning attendance credit for coming on Sunday (as well as Saturday) this week! Plus there will be the normal assortment of goodies, (yes…blowpops)
ON BOTH SIMHAT TORAH EVENING AND MORNING, FEEL FREE TO BRING YOUR OWN FLAGS FOR THE PARADES. IF YOU HAVE TIME BEFORE THE HOLIDAY, IT’S A GREAT FAMILY PROJECT TO MAKE ONE. WE HAVE SOME TO HAND OUT, BUT IT’S MUCH BETTER TO SEE ORIGINAL WORK. SUGGESTED THEMES MIGHT INCLUDE JEWISH SYMBOLS, HOLIDAY SCENES, AND TORAH-REALATED DESIGNS (E.G TORAH PORTION’S NAMES OR GREAT HEROES FROM THE TORAH). SURPRISE US!
LET’S MAKE THIS THE MOST SPIRITED (RUACH-FILLED) SIMHAT TORAH YET!!
High Holiday sermons (Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur) are now available online at www.tbe.org
PARENTS OF COLLEGE STUDENTS – GET YOUR KIDS ON OUR E-MAIL LIST!!!!
SEND E-MAIL ADDRESSES TO firstname.lastname@example.org
MY ANNUAL WORLD SERIES PREDICTION:
Each year at this time I offer a World Series prediction based on Jewish sources. As you recall, I am almost always right. Unfortunately (especially for Yankee fans), I am unable to make a prediction at this time because the identity of the American League entry is not yet known. Therefore I will make my prediction in next week’s Shabbat-O-Gram. …Seriously, I hope to have a handle on matters by Shabbat morning so I can at least give a quick rabbinic analysis
JUST THE FACTS…
Healing Service at Stamford Hospital (every 1st and 3rd Friday): 2:30 PM – at the second floor chapel, or on the hospital’s channel 46. The next one will be THIS WEEK on Friday, October 17. If you know of anyone in Stamford Hospital, please let him or her know.
Friday Evening – Shabbat and Shmini Atzeret
Candles: 5:52 PM (we break the 6:00 barrier – as we slide into the wintry darkness…)
Services: 6:30 PM in the sanctuary (on the bima)
YOUNG COUPLES SHABBAT, with the theme of Nature
Tot Shabbat with Nurit, at 6:45 PM
Shabbat Morning and Shmini Atzeret
Service: 9:30 AM, including the reading of Ecclesiastes, Yizkor and the Prayer for Rain
Mazal Tov to Lee Shapes, who becomes Bar Mitzvah this Shabbat morning.
Mazal Tov to Melanie Berkman and Andrew Milgram, soon to be married, who will be celebrating their Aufruf this Shabbat morning
Children’s services: 10:30 AM
Torah Portion – Shmini Atzeret Reading
Read the Masorti commentary at http://www.masorti.org/mason/torah/index.asp. JTS commentary is at: http://learn.jtsa.edu/topics/parashah/. USCJ Torah Sparks can be found at http://uscj.org/item20_467.html. UAHC Shabbat Table Talk discussions are at http://uahc.org/torah/exodus.shtml. Other divrei Torah via the Torahnet home page: http://uahcweb.org/torahnet/. Test your Parasha I.Q.: http://www.ou.org/jewishiq/parsha/default.htm. CLAL’s Torah commentary archive: http://click.topica.com/maaaiRtaaRvQhbV2AtLb/. Nehama Liebowitz archives of parsha commentaries: http://www.torahcc.org/nechama/gilayonarchives.htm. For a more Kabbalistic/Zionist/Orthodox perspective from Rav Kook, first Chief Rabbi of Israel, go to http://www.geocities.com/m_yericho/ravkook/index.html. For some probing questions and meditations on key verses of the portion, with a liberal kabbalistic bent, go to http://www.jewishealing.com/learning.html. To see the weekly commentary from Hillel, geared to college students and others, go to http://www.hillel.org/hillel/NewHille.nsf/FCB8259CA861AE57852567D30043BA26/DF7D129F15B3DF0885256AB80058E9C3?OpenDocument. For a Jewish Renewal and feminist approach go to http://rabbishefagold.hypermart.net/Torah1.html or to http://www.reclaimingjudaism.org/TakingTorahPersonally.htm
Simhat Torah Evening – 7 PM
DANCING, SINGING, GOODIES & MUSIC, MUSIC, MUSIC!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
Sunday Morning, Simhat Torah
Services at 9:30, led in large part by our youth
Young Children will come in and out of the main service, and Nurit will also be here
Morning Minyan: Daily at 7:30 AM, Sundays at 9:00 AM in the chapel PLEASE SUPPORT OUR MINYAN!
NEXT WEEKEND IS THE 7TH GRADE SHABBATON, WHICH I ALWAYS HAVE THE PLEASURE OF ATTENDING. 7TH GRADERS, PLEASE MAKE SURE TO GET YOUR RESEVATIONS IN PRONTO!
The Highest Level of Tzedakkah
About a month ago, a congregant asked that I spread the word about a position open at her office, Coldwell Banker. Well, I am delighted to report our success. The e-mail was seen by another congregant who had a family member seeking employment. This young woman started the job this week and all seems to be going well. As this congregant said to me in thanking the congregation for its help, “Finding jobs for those who need employment and assisting our elderly congregants adds meaning to our phrase "Temple Beth El community."”
Amen to that!
This article appeared this week in the New Canaan Advertiser. The idea of this fund-raising Swim-A-Thon came from one of our recent B’not Mitzvah, Stephanie Walker.
Well done, Stephanie!!!!
New Canaan Y Swimmers Go The Distance To Help Sink Cancer
The New Canaan YMCA swim team will devote all its practice sessions on Monday October 27 to raising funds for the American Cancer Society. Swimmers will be challenged to complete a set number of laps during their regular practice time. The number of laps to swim will be determined by the team member’s age and group. The Red team, primarily an eight and under group, will swim close to 2000 yards, or just over a mile, in one hour. The White and Blue teams, comprised mainly of 9-12 year olds will swim over 2 miles in 90 minutes. The Stripes, Stars and National teams, primarily thirteen and older, will swim varying distances up to 8000 yards (eighty football fields, or approximately 4.8 miles) during sessions ranging up to two hours. All swimmers will be looking for sponsors to support their effort.
The idea for the “swim-a-lap” fundraiser came from Stripes team swimmer Stephanie Walker. As part of her Bat Mitzvah, she’s required to perform a good deed or do something to support a charity. Rather than simply donate money, Stephanie decided to take it a step further by combining a fundraiser with a favorite activity – swimming. Stephanie’s coaches and teammates enthusiastically endorsed her idea, as well as supporting the American Cancer Society.
Anyone interested in supporting this event should obtain a sponsorship form by contacting their favorite Y swimmer or by logging on to the New Canaan YMCA swim team’s web site at http://www.ncyac.org. All sponsorships are level-based, with a choice of Friend (under $25), Bronze ($25), Silver ($50), Gold ($75) or Platinum ($100). All checks should be made out to the American Cancer Society, and returned to a Y swimmer or mailed to the attention of Pam Libertiny, New Canaan YMCA 564 South Avenue New Canaan, CT 06840.
Help the Y swimmers go the distance!
And Speaking of Swimmers…
Daniel Madwed is a Beth El teen with lofty dreams – Olympian even. He is a world-class swimmer with the chance to participate in the Pan American Maccabi Games – and he is seeking our help. Please read the following letter, and please respond in kind.
Dear Rabbi Hammerman,
This past summer I participated in the JCC Maccabi games. It was an awesome experience. I made so many new friends from Stamford and around the world as well. I still am in touch with many of my friends from Maccabi in the United States and in Israel. I competed with different types of kids from all over the world, but the part I liked the most was that we were all connected in the sense that we were all Jewish. Parading around at the opening ceremonies in the Continental Airlines Arena was amazing. Everyone was watching and it felt like I was in the Olympics. Winning 12 gold medals was cool too. We also had events in the evenings where we could socialize with each other and one day where we did a mitzvah project.
While I was at Maccabi I was asked to join the United States team and go to the Pan American Maccabi Games in Santiago, Chile this December. There will be kids from over 20 countries there giving me a chance to compete and socialize with other Jewish athletes. Participating in the Maccabi games is an experience of a lifetime, one that will build Jewish pride and a bigger appreciation of my heritage. Hopefully, this will lead to the Maccabi games in Israel.
Athletes have the opportunity to have their community help support them as well as supporting the Maccabi USA Sports for Israel Program. One way to do this is through the Raffle Extravaganza. Tickets are $100 each and 3 winners will be drawn for every 1000 tickets sold. The prizes are choices of merchandise, travel and cash prizes worth from $2000 to $5000. Community members can make contributions of any amount as well. I need your help in promoting this to the Synagogue Board and other Community Members that you think might like to support this exciting and wonderful program. Checks can be made payable to Maccabi USA/Sports for Israel and sent to me at 34 Malibu Road, Stamford, CT 06903. Please have anyone call me at 968-2570 if anyone has any questions, or would like to speak to me about my summer Maccabi experience.
Spiritual Journey on the Web
As many of you know, I sent out yesterday the sad word of the collapse of the Beth El Sukkah. Since then I have received a number of heartfelt messages and reminiscences. If you have a special memory involving our sukkah, we would like to compile them and include some in future Shabbat-O-Grams. Meanwhile, plans are already afoot to replace our old one. We’ve done the research and a good 20 X 40 foot Sukkah will cost us about $5,000. If you are interested in helping us out, please contact Jeannie Kasindorf, who is spearheading this effort, or let me know.
It turns out that yesterday’s 50 mph winds did damage to lots of sukkahs. So we have little to complain about, especially in light of the tragic events in New York Harbor. Our goal now is not so much to grieve as to rebuild, and to celebrate the legacy of that sukkah.
For those who may have missed it, here is my letter from yesterday:
Our Sukkah Has Fallen (Requiem for a Sukkah)
Anyone who was planning to eat in our congregational Sukkah over the latter days of the festival should adjust plans. This morning, the combination of heavy, waterlogged cornstalks and a huge gust of wind conspired to flatten our Sukkah.
It is a humbling sight right now. The damage to the structure is irreparable and we will have to start from scratch for next year. It is totally flattened. Fortunately -- and this is by far the most important thing -- no people were near the structure when the collapse occurred. Just yesterday several Religious School classes spent time there. They were the last to enjoy what was arguably our most beautifully decorated Sukkah ever. So everyone is safe, thank God (although I've yet to do a head count of all the squirrels and the bees).
Our Sukkah was designed and built by skilled congregants (along with Alberto and other dedicated employees, naturally), including Dan Buehler and of course, Frank, about a quarter century ago and has been added to, with love, every year since. About a decade ago, one of my favorite confirmation classes donated a beautiful lantern, along with a framed print by Harriet Lacker. About five years ago, the ritual committee decided to move the structure to its current location adjacent to the Religious School, in order to get out from under some overshadowing trees that had grown considerably over the years. When chestnuts were continually plopping into our apple juice, while the squirrels scampered about, we knew it was time to move.
Some of the most memorable family programs of my earliest years here were Sukkah decorating parties. After school got out on Sunday, we had craft tables set up so that kids and parents could create paper chains and decorate pine cones and so many other items together, and then hang them. It was around then that Richard Cohen began donating the produce from Bongiornos, as he has every year since. One year we created a burlap mural that covered the entire rear wall. In more recent years we've added more substance to the walls, enclosing them in colorful plastic sheeting (thanks to Rabbi Barb, our resident expert shopper at Home Depot), and most recently, Jeannie Kasindorf has raised the art of Sukkah decorating to a new and even higher level. Our Sukkah has hosted youth programs and young couples dinners, seniors programs and everything in between. Also, it has hosted total strangers. Every so often a car would come veering off the Merritt Parkway and a family, searching for a Sukkah in which to eat their meal, would see that we are a synagogue and stop in. For them we were Howard Johnsons, complete with the orange roof (albeit a bit holier), a "Host of the Highways" that helped them out on their way to Hartford, Boston or other points north.
In short, this Sukkah is something that unites all generations here. So many have poured heart and soul into what Judaism calls "Hidur Mitzvah," the beautification of a mitzvah, which is the essence of the celebration of Sukkot. All of which makes this a very sad moment for all who have left a little part of ourselves in the Beth El Sukkah. If it's any consolation, when I came in this morning, the wind was gusting so hard that the plastic sheeting billowed on all sides and it looked for a moment as if our Sukkah was about to take off and fly away. Perhaps that's what it was trying to do. Perhaps not, but if kids see it and are sad (after all, their artwork is in there too), tell them that their Sukkah was trying to fly.
In the Talmud there is a discussion as to whether a Sukkah, to be considered valid, should be able to withstand powerful winds (Sukkah 23a). After all, the structure has to be safe for habitation, but cannot be so strong as to be seen as a permanent abode. The consensus answer is that it should be strong enough to withstand land winds but not sea winds (which were considered stronger). I would say the strong gusts and storms we've been dealing with today definitely qualify as being in the sea wind category.
In the Birkat ha Mazon (Blessing after Meals), we add a line on Sukkot: "Harachaman hu yakim lanu et Sukkat David ha-nofalet." "May the Compassionate One raise the fallen Sukkah of David." The reference is to the Temple and the plea is messianic, but for us this line has added meaning now.
May our fallen Sukkah be rebuilt speedily -- or at least may we find a donor before next Sukkot! In the meantime, if you are in need of a Sukkah for this year, mine is still standing next door...I think.
When Halloween Coincides with Shabbat
From the Shalom Center
E-MAIL ME IF YOU WOULD LIKE TO ADD OTHER SUGGESTIONS TO THE QUESTION OF DEALING WITH HALLOWEEN WHEN IT COINCIDES WITH SHABBAT – AS IT WILL THIS YEAR. I’LL INCLUDE THEM NEXT WEEK
How do you deal with kids' coming around for "treats"?
And what about your own?
On the first: How about making a number of little bags of say --
* a chocolate bar or nuts and raisins ("ruzhinkas und mandlen," as the Yiddish song says);
* plus a small check made out ahead of time to UNICEF or another tzedakah (American Jewish World Service?),
endorsed "Payable to acct only",
* plus an envelope addressed there (but with no stamp);
* plus a little photocopied note with a brief explanation of the work the organization does and an explanation that it's up to the kid to write in her/his own return address, put on a stamp, and send it.
The visiting kid then not only gets a sweet but also gets to understand at least a little bit of what tzedakah/ "charity" is; becomes responsible to send the check in; and gets the thank-you card from the tzedakah.
On the second:
If your kids would enjoy the costumed walk around the neighborhood but because of Shabbos you don't want
them receiving "treats," you could –
* figure out a time to walk either before or after family Shabbos celebration or congregational service;
* give the kids a pre-written IOU from you for x amount of pleasant special small food treats to be provided during the next week;
* and ask them to set aside tzedakah $$ from their own money.
The walk and costumes are then for sheer fun. "Practice for Purim!"
Please feel free to forward these suggestions to friends, family, congregants, on-line pals, etc ---
including encouraging them to explore the biweekly on-line Shalom Report by writing -
We read the Prayer for Rain on Shmini Atzeret.
Here are some web sites explaining why …
As Rabbi Hiyya bar Abba said: "Rain is as important as the resurrection of the dead. For the resurrection applies only to man, rain to both man and beast; the resurrection only to Israel, rain both to Israel and the heathen." Genesis Rabba, Bereisheet 13:4-6.
Here are some sources on this prayer for rain and the water shortage. When you read these, you’ll be praying fervently too, right alongside me.
http://www.bjeny.org/prayer_for_rain.htm -- great basic introduction to the Geshem (rain) prayer for kids, from the New York Bureau of Jewish Education
http://www.jhom.com/topics/rain/tefillat.html -- really nice overview of the prayer, with LOTS OF historical background – DON’T FORGET TO RUN YOUR MOUSE UNDER THE TABLE OF CONTENTS – THERE’S MUCH MORE MATERIAL TO SEE, you can also find it at http://www.jhom.com/topics/rain/index.html
http://www.ou.org/chagim/shmini-simchat/windnrain.htm -- more traditional approach, from the Artscroll siddur
http://www.prayforrain.net/ -- I kid you not: the text of Geshem is there of course
http://www.us-israel.org/jsource/History/scarcity.html -- the facts on Israel’s water shortage, also http://www.us-israel.org/jsource/History/watermap.html
http://www.biu.ac.il/SOC/besa/water/zaslavsky.html -- defining Israel’s water problems
http://www.bridgesforpeace.com/publications/dispatch/signsoftimes/Article-2.html -- more on the water shortage
http://184.108.40.206/2002/me_turkey_09_02.html - buying water from Turkey
http://www.columbia.edu/cu/lweb/indiv/mideast/cuvlm/water.html -- the generic problem throughout the Middle East
And, just to end this on an optimistic, universalistic note: here’s “A Kabbalistic Approach to an Eternally Enduring World Peace.” http://www.thehope.org/nech.htm
Hah Sameach! Let’s hope it’s a wet one.
Required Reading and Action Items
From B'nai B'rith magazine, Fall 2003, p. 11 - "Recycled Ink Revives Kibbutz": Israel Ink, a non-profit company launched in January by Canadian businessmen Howard Herzog and Larry Tarof, collects empty printer cartridges and sends them to Kibbutz Afik in the Golan Heights, where they are refilled and sold domestically and to European markets. Empty ink cartridges are being collected throughout Canada, with collection boxes at Jewish community centers, synagogues, and schools in Ontario, Ottawa, Toronto, and Montreal. Beginning this fall, Israel Ink is expanding to the United States.... A Jewish day school in Newton, Mass. Has already signed up to participate in the program....To set up a collection box in your area, contact Tarof or Herzog at email@example.com, or visit www.israel-ink.com .
From http://www.thecrimson.com/article.aspx?ref=348959: · Harvard: Dershowitz's Biggest Client to Date: Israel by Jayme J. Hershkopf
Professor of Law Alan M. Dershowitz is so confident about his latest book that he has publicly offered to write a personal check for $10,000 to the PLO should it find any factual errors in it. "The Case For Israel" is aimed at students hoping to defend the Jewish state in the debate surrounding the Middle East. Dershowitz said that he has been dismayed by the tone of debate about Israel on college campuses, where he says there is a clear lack of "balanced historical representation" on the issue. Dershowitz says he is donating royalties from the book to a campaign supporting Israel on college campuses. He says that he is also making free copies available, "particularly on campuses that would not usually receive them."
Watch Rabbi Michael Lerner, editor of Tikkun Magazine and author, most recently, of Healing Israel/Palestine and Alan Dershowtiz, author of The Case for Israel, debate Israel's current policies on Canadian national television. Go to: http://www.counterspin.tv/ and scroll down to the Wednesday, October 8 show: ISRAEL AT A CROSSROADS
THINK-ISRAEL features essays and commentaries that provide context for current events in Israel. It aims at being somewhere between a magazine and a blog. A blog - short for weblog - is a website run by a single writer or several writers with informal pieces and a very personal, sometimes a unique, way of looking at the world. Check for new articles at the think-israel.org website. Please take a look.
Dangerous Religion: George W. Bush's Theology of Empire
"In our own American history, religion has been lifted up for public life in two very different ways. One invokes the name of God and faith in order to hold us accountable to God's intentions—to call us to justice, compassion, humility, repentance, and reconciliation. Abraham Lincoln, Thomas Jefferson, and Martin King perhaps best exemplify that way. Lincoln regularly used the language of scripture, but in a way that called both sides in the Civil War to contrition and repentance. Jefferson said famously, "I tremble for my country when I reflect that God is just." The other way invokes God's blessing on our activities, agendas, and purposes. Many presidents and political leaders have used the language of religion like this, and George W. Bush is falling prey to that same temptation...."
Peace Index / Mood Of Skepticism Shrouds Israeli Public's Opinions
"Even before the devastating terror attack in Haifa, an overwhelming majority of the Israeli Jewish public supported the Israeli government's policy of targeted assassinations, with the minority that opposes this policy doing so mainly due to pragmatic considerations - namely, that the assassinations strengthen the Palestinians' desire for vengeance - and not for moral reasons...."
Gibson’s Movie About Jesus Sparks Internal Jewish Debate
“Movie star Mel Gibson’s controversial $25 million film about Jesus has sparked a new battle — among Jews. For months, Gibson’s “The Passion” has spurred headlines… Much of the media coverage has focused on the conflict between Gibson… and some Jewish figures who warn the film will stir anti-Semitism … Now that debate is turning inward, as Jews point fingers at one another over the way they have dealt with Gibson and argue over just how Jews should deal with Christian portrayals of the Jesus story in popular culture....”
Worth reading: http://www.frontpagemag.com/Articles/ReadArticle.asp?ID=10242 - Symposium: The Muslim Persecution of Christians By Jamie Glazov FrontPageMagazine.com | October 10, 2003 and http://www.frontpagemag.com/Articles/Printable.asp?ID=10189: New Targets for Suicide Bombers By Dr. Walid Phares FrontPageMagazine.com | October 7, 2003
Tea with Ariel Sharon - Cal Thomas (Washington Times)
From an interview in Jerusalem this week with Prime Minister Sharon:
- As of Oct. 11, Israel had seen 884 of its people murdered and 5,956 injured. Israel has a population of 5 million. In Russia, the comparable number of dead would be 25,636; in the European Union, 67,184; and in the United States, 49,150. No other country would put up with such attacks on its own citizens as Israel has been repeatedly pressured to do.
- About the recently resigned Palestinian prime minister, Mahmoud Abbas, Mr. Sharon said, "Arafat was undermining him from the first day. Instead of taking necessary steps against the terrorist organizations, [Abbas] decided to make a deal with them. We talked to him many times. I always warned him. I told him they are going to hurt [you], they are going to hurt us. But he still preferred to make deals with them, and that's what...sent the prime minister to his end."
- Mr. Sharon said President Bush "understands the danger of terror, and that one cannot compromise with terror and has to fight terror." He added, "In the past, if we had had such a determined leader when the world was watching the Nazis and their preparations [for war], maybe the terrible tragedy we suffered in World War II might have been avoided."
- Is he optimistic about the future? "Yes, I'm an optimist. This is not the hardest period [in our history]. We have had much harder situations."
Bush: "Palestinian Authorities Should Have Acted Long Ago to Fight Terror"
In reaction to "the vicious act of terrorism directed against Americans in Gaza" Wednesday, President Bush said: "Palestinian authorities should have acted long ago to fight terror in all its forms. The failure to create effective Palestinian security forces dedicated to fighting terror continues to cost lives. There must be an empowered prime minister who controls all Palestinian security forces, reforms that continue to be blocked by Yasser Arafat. The failure to undertake these reforms and dismantle the terrorist organizations constitutes the greatest obstacle to achieving the Palestinian people's dream of statehood.
"The Americans who were attacked today were pursuing a vision for a better future for the Palestinian people. The U.S. embassy officials traveling in Gaza were there to interview young Palestinian candidates seeking Fulbright scholarships to study in the United States. This is another example of how the terrorists are enemies of progress and opportunity for the Palestinian people." (White House)
See also Kurtzer: A Right to Self-Defense
House of Representatives Approves Sanctions on Syria
The U.S. House of Representatives voted 398-4 on Wednesday to impose sanctions on Syria, tightening the economic and diplomatic squeeze on a nation the U.S. says is harboring terrorists and developing weapons of mass destruction. House Majority Leader Tom DeLay (R-Texas) said Syria "has evidently chosen to side with the terrorists in this war and it's time for their government to start feeling the consequences of their actions." (AP/Washington Post)
U.S. Loses Interest in the Road Map - Aluf Benn
Since the fall of Mahmoud Abbas's cabinet, President George Bush has lost interest in the political process and motivation. Envoy John Wolf, whose posting in Jerusalem clearly signaled the promoting of the road map, has not returned from home leave. American officials speak of the Palestinians with disappointment and despair. A senior American official said Wednesday: "We kept telling them to unite the security forces and enforce one law with one army. If they had, the attack would not have happened, and if it had, there would have been an accountable party. In the present situation, the only one above everyone is Arafat."
The main implication of the attack will be a weakening in the calls to post international forces or American inspectors in the territories. In the present situation, the PA cannot ensure the safety of American diplomats in its territory and it is doubtful that Washington will want to take additional risks. (Ha'aretz)
See also On Pause: U.S. Pulls Back - Steven R. Weisman
The Bush administration's involvement in the Israeli-Palestinian peace efforts, and its willingness to push either side, is at a low ebb. Administration aides say a kind of hiatus has settled in, primarily because the Palestinian leadership is in disarray and the Bush administration has declined to talk with the Palestinian leader, Yasser Arafat. "On the Palestinian side, there is no one to talk to," one official said. (New York Times)
Temple Mount is More Important Than Peace - Natan Sharansky (Ha'aretz)
- As much as we long and hope for peace, it is not a value that stands by itself. It is an essential condition for the existence of a country that wishes to live, but it isn't the goal. It was not for the sake of peace that the State of Israel was established, and it was not because of peace that millions of Jews gathered here.
- Nor was it peace for which the Jewish people prayed for thousands of years. The Jewish people prayed for Jerusalem. Because of Jerusalem, the Jewish people returned to Israel from the four corners of the earth, for it they were willing to make all the necessary sacrifices.
- If we totally relinquish every value for the sake of peace, we won't have peace either. Just as in the past, this time, too, the Palestinians will interpret such a relinquishing of what constitutes our very identity as a tremendous weakness that calls for war.
- The values symbolized by Jerusalem are not only religious in nature. One doesn't have to be religious to understand that without our historical connection to Jerusalem, without the link to the past, without the feeling of continuity with the ancient kingdoms of Israel for whom the Temple Mount was the center of existence, we really are foreign invaders and colonialists in this country.
- One doesn't have to be religious in order to understand that relinquishing the Temple Mount is a justification of the Palestinian argument: You have no right to exist in this country, you have no connection to it, get out of here. One doesn't have to be religious in order to understand that relinquishing the Temple Mount is not only relinquishing the past, it is primarily relinquishing the future of all of us, here.
HAROLD HOFFMAN MEMORIAL LECTURE
Ambassador Dore Gold
October 28 @ 8:00
TGIS (Thank God it’s Shabbat)
A rotating series of Friday night experiences
For all tastes and all ages
At 6:30 PM
Week 1 --- in the chapel, a traditional Beth El Service
Week 2 --- in the Sanctuary, Family Friday
Week 3 --- in the lobby: a creative Theme services
(on October 17, we will be welcoming Young Couples and the theme will be nature)
Week 4 --- a Carlebach-style service, featuring Hasidic nigunim and joyous meditation.
Plus our ongoing Tot Shabbat series (weeks 1 and 3 at 6:45, and Tiny Tot Shabbat on week 2 at 4)
Previous Shabbat-O-Grams can be accessed directly from our web site (www.tbe.org).
WE ARE STARTING ANOTHER ADULT BAR/BAT MITZVAH CLASS!!!!
THE CLASS WILL BE TAUGHT BY RABBI HAMMERMAN, CANTOR JACOBSON AND BARB MOSKOW,
COVERING ALL THE BASICS: SYNAGOGUE SKILLS AND PRAYER, JEWISH TRADITIONS, LITERATURE AND HISTORY.
THE CLASS WILL ORGANIZE THIS SPRING, CONTINUE IN THE FALL AND CULMINATE IN
A B’NAI MITZVAH SERVICE IN NOVEMBER OF 2004.
PEOPLE WITH DIVERSE BACKGROUNDS ARE WELCOME
PLEASE RSVP IF YOU ARE INTERESTED, TO OUR EDUCATION OFFICE, 322-6901 X306
Temple Beth El Holds Art Auction
Art lovers, mark your calendars for Sunday, November 15, when Temple Beth El will hold an auction of fine art and sculpture on Sunday, November 15.
High quality works of art are now being collected and catalogued for an evening that promises excitement and opportunities to meet fellow art lovers. Patrons can enjoy dessert and light refreshments while previewing the works in the synagogue's social hall.
Free babysitting is available to those who pre-register by November 7.
New and seasoned collectors will have the opportunity to bid on pieces that will enhance their home and office decors while helping to support the area's largest Conservative synagogue.
Temple Beth El, an egalitarian synagogue, is an area leader in offering innovative religious services and programs in education and music, not just for members but for the community at large. Admission is $10.00 per person ($18.00 per couple) in advance, and $15.00 per person ($25.00 per couple) at the door. All major credit cards will be accepted for the auction. Temple Beth El has ample and secure parking. The preview runs from 7:00 to 8:00, just before the auction. For more information, please contact Janice or Michael Greenberg at (203) 322-6221 or go to www.tbe.org>>upcoming events.
Lunch and Learn Series
Led by Rabbi Joshua Hammerman
Judaism, Business and Ethics for Our Time –
Using rabbinic sources, the group will explore the ethics of the marketplace, including deceptive advertising, employer-employee relations, consumer rights (and wrongs) and insider trading.
Meets Monthly, next on Wed. Nov 5, 12:30 -1:30
At Benjamin and Gold, P.C., 350 Bedford Street 4th floor
Parking in rear of building (at corner of Pedigree Ski Shop), or metered parking on the street in front of building and also behind Baby and Toy Superstore, across the street.
(many thanks to Dan Benjamin for providing the space)
Please join us on
Thursday, November 6th at 7:30 p.m.
Temple Beth El
“Conservative Judaism in the Midst of Israel’s Challenges”
Rabbi Elisha Wolfin
First Masorti Rabbi in Zichron Ya'akov to develop a Conservative Congregation,
Beit Midrash for Adult Study and Tali School
Rabbi Elisha Wolfin, born and raised on Kibbutz Kfar Hanassi in the Galilee, served as an officer in the Intelligence and Education Corps and earned his BA at the Haifa University. He was a shaliach at the Hillel of Berkeley and a Jewish educator. He began his rabbinic studies at the University of Judaism in Los Angeles and transferred to the Schechter Institute in Jerusalem, where he was ordained in 2001. Rabbi Wolfin has extensive experience in informal education with all age groups, especially in the field of educational travel around Israel, prayer and meditation. Please join us for this dynamic speaker and important topic.
Co-sponsored by Congregation Beth El of Norwalk and Temple Shalom of Greenwich
A Note From the Cantor:
I look forward to seeing you at Temple Beth El on Saturday evening, Nov. 8th, at 7pm as we welcome Magevet, Yale University’s coed a cappella grou, devoted to singing Jewish, Hebrew, and Israeli Music. Founded in 1993 in the Calhoun College sauna (the reason for the unusual name, which in Hebrew means “towel”), Magevet is known worldwide for its sweet blend of voices and unique repertoire. Throughout the year, Magevet travels around the globe. They appeal to an audience of ALL ages. I brought them to West End Synagogue, where I served as Cantor before coming here, and everyone loved them. They have a varied, innovative repertoire and a warm, interactive performance style. They recently recorded their 4th CD, which will be on sale at the concert and in our gift shop along with their other CD’s.
Please do join us at 7pm for Havdalah …Magevet has a wonderful rendition of Eliyahu Hanavi that you don’t want to miss… Followed by their concert. Then stay after the concert and meet these impressive young men and women over dessert and coffee. Spread the word so we give them a great Beth El turnout. I thank Milton and Norma Mann for underwriting part of this program. Suggested Donation for the evening is $10.
LEARNING AND LATTE AT BORDERS
WEDNESDAY, Nov 19, @ 7:30
THIS SEAASON FEATURES A THREE-WAY INTERFAITH DIALOGUE
MOSLEM, CHRISTIAN AND JEW
"Sacred Passages: A Multicultural Exploration of the Peak Moments of Our Lives."
Rabbi Joshua Hammerman -- Temple Beth El
Rev. Douglas McArthur - First UNited Methodist Church
Dr. Behjat Sayed -- Dr Sayed is a lay representative of the Islamic Center of Stamford and a chiropractor, who has spoken in Islam before many groups locally.
Oct. 15 -- Celebrating Birth: When does life begin? Is abortion ethical? What are the rituals of birth
Nov. 19 -- Celebrating Coming of Age: What are the rituals marking the passage from childhood to adulthood (Bar Mitzvah, Confirmation, etc)? When is one an "adult?"
Dec 17-- Celebating the Season: How are the sacred days of December linked? How do they differ? How can we all celebrate so that no one feels left out?
Jan 21 -- Celebrating Relationships: Courtship and Marriage in different faith traditions. How do different faith groups respond to homosexuality?
Feb 11 -- (2nd Wed.) Celebrating Family: What are the responsibilities of parenthood and the role of family in various traditions? How do we handle divorce, domestic violence, etc., as well as the proliferation of non-traditional family units? Where do singles fit into all of this?
Mar 17-- Celebrating Diversity: How do we coexist despite our differences? How do we approach dual faith families? What are the limits of missionary activity? How to we handle conversion?
April 21 -- Celebrating Healing: How do we confront illness in our various traditions and how do we define "wellness?" How do we approach the patient? Where do spirituality and medicine intersect? Special focus on AIDS.
May 19 -- Approaches to the End of Life: Death, Dying and Life Eternal in different faith traditions.
United Jewish Federation of Greater Stamford, New Canaan and Darien
2004 Annual Community Campaign
December 7, 2003
On December 7, 2003, United Jewish Federation is holding its annual
SUPER SUNDAY phone-a-thon at the Stamford JCC.
Please answer your phone and make a generous gift to the 2004 Annual Community Campaign.
If you would like to volunteer to assist with phone calls or other critical tasks on SUPER SUNDAY,
please fill out the attached Sign-up Sheet and send to: firstname.lastname@example.org
YOUTH PROGRAMMING and EDUCATIONAL OPPORTUNITIES
Yo! Check this out! Jewish Hip Hop?
Rap with Remedy of Wu Tang Clan
Ross Filler, better known as Remedy, is the only white and Jewish member of the superstar Staten Island rap group, Wu Tang Clan.
An unconventional advocate for the Jewish people, Remedy has performed worldwide and will be joined by his friend, Lukas Brenowitz of the Israeli Consulate Speakers’ Bureau, for an exceptional morning of music and relevant issues confronting Jewish youth today.
October 26, 2003 • 9:45 AM to 12:45 PM
UCONN, Stamford Campus
8th through 12th Grade Welcome!
LIMITED SEATING • RSVP required for entry.
For information or RSVP: Ilana De Laney at 321-1373, ext. 114, or email email@example.com
Rap with Remedy! • Brunch & Socializing!
8th Graders and Parents
Schechter High of Westchester
Fall Open House
Wed. Oct. 29, at 7:00 PM
RSVP to Sandra by Oct. 21,
at 914-948-8333 (x157)
Come to a
WESTCHESTER FAIRFIELD HEBREW ACADEMY
AT THE HOME OF
LEE AND STEVEN STEINMETZ
FIND WHAT MAKES THIS WONDERFUL SCHOOL UNIQUE!
WEDNESDAY, OCTOBER 23, 2003
44 NEWFIELD COURT
(OPPOSITE NEWFIELD GREEN SHOPPING CTR)
RSVP (203) 358-9837