October 2020 Newsletter



5150 Peridia Blvd E. BRADENTON, FL 34203     941-755-4900

Due to the COViD-19 Viral pandemic, live Shabbat Services are are cancelled until further notice.

Shabbat Services can be seen on youtube at Temple_Beth_El_Bradenton





Dear friends,

On the very eve of this most unusual and bewildering Rosh Hashana, we received the deeply saddening word that Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg had died. As I write this column, Justice Ginsburg has not yet been laid to rest. (So, I hope you will understand that I am writing about what is about to take place.) She will be buried beside the love of her life, her dear husband Martin at Arlington National Cemetery. Her casket will lie in state upon the Lincoln catafalque, first at the Supreme Court and then in the Rotunda of the United States Capitol. She will be the first woman ever so honored by the nation and only the second Justice of the Supreme Court. What a touching and completely appropriate tribute to that tiny but mighty woman who, by virtue of her wisdom, determination and vision, changed America forever. It is impossible to underestimate the immensity of her contributions to our nation. Every woman and girl in America, now and into the future, will be the beneficiary of the greatness of the notorious RBG.


So many of us wished that she could have lived forever, or at least through the upcoming election, as was her hope. Her death has left a void in the Supreme Court and in the conscience of our nation.  It is not likely to be filled soon or perhaps ever. It has been said that what Justice Thurgood Marshall was to people of color, Justice Ginsburg was to the women and girls of America.


We, the Jewish people, are incredibly proud that she was one of us. more important than her Jewish identity or her Brooklyn neighborhood of origin, the ideals that shaped her life came directly from our Jewish heritage of justice. What made her so much more than a famous Jewish woman is that she personified Judaism’s highest values, the belief in the equality of all people, the ceaseless pursuit of justice Although all members of the Supreme Court are referred to as Justice, this word deserves to be her first name.


How can America best pay its respects to this remarkable woman? There have already been two films made about her. There will be many books, including her own words. Law students will read her decisions and will use her precedents to argue future cases. There will be a statue created and placed in Brooklyn. Eventually that statue will become part of the New York landscape, invariably unnoticed by most of future generations. Pigeons will rest on that statue. But I doubt that would bother her in the least. She would probably find it humorous.


However, I do know what would disturb her immeasurably, namely if her successor will not be committed to the fight for full equality for women: equal pay for equal work, reproductive choice, the preservation of Roe v Wade, maternity leave and paternity leave too. Should whomever be nominated will not be as committed to these principles, then whatever posthumous honors may be bestowed on her will matter little. As I said in my sermon of September 25th, for an opponent of these hard-fought rights to be nominated and/or confirmed as the next Justice of the United States Supreme Court would be the equivalent of spitting on Justice Ginsburg’s grave.


This must not be allowed to happen. Our immeasurable debt to Justice Ruth Bader Ginsburg here and now is “to move heaven and earth” to make sure that her successor will be faithful to her steadfast principles.. Regardless of who wins this election, it is of utmost importance to this nation and future generations that the individual to whom such great trust will be bestowed will stand proudly and courageously on the shoulders of Justice Ginsburg. This is the best way to honor her memory. This in the only way to honor her memory. May she rest in the peace she so richly deserves.

Rabbi Michael P. Sternfield


Cantor Bard

Maddie’s homemade apple challah cake ! 

Special for the New Year and for Succot !

Created by one of our 6 th grade students , Maddie O.  with her sister Sydney and mom Ruth !


Here’s to a sweet year and a fruitful Succot !

“Etz Chayim “It is a Tree of Life"  How beautiful to see the blossomed etrog tree, lovingly planted by our students last year on Tu B’Shvat, new year of the trees!


“Looking  to the new year ahead when, God, and the Art of Science, -willing we can altogether rise and shine in song, sweet harmony ..For real!”

"Those who sing, pray twice." (Talmud)

Fruit Compote(Sweet for Sukkot)

The first fruits of the season cooked in syrup are a popular Sephardic dessert for the end of Yom Kippur and the beginning of Sukkot. This dish can be made a few days ahead of the holiday.

You'll need:

1 cup sugar                                        saucepan

3 cups water                                      wooden mixing spoon

1 teaspoon cinnamon                        measuring cup

1/4 teasoon ground cloves                    and spoons

juice of 1 lemon                                 peeler

8 firm apples, pears or plums           sharp knife

2 teaspoons vanilla                          glass bowl


1. Combine sugar, water, cinnamon, cloves and lemon juice in a large saucepan.  Bring to a boil, stirring constantly.

2. Boil mixture for 15 minutes. Lower to a simmer.

3. Peel fruits. Cut into quarters and remove cores.

4. Add fruit to saucepan. And cook for 7 minutes.

5. Remove saucepan from heat. Stir in vanilla.

6. Transfer to glass bowl and store in fridge.

Serves 6

Message from the President

Shalom Temple family and friends,

I hope everyone is healthy and safe! By now, many of you have had the opportunity to participate in our Rosh Hashana Video Services. I hope you enjoyed them and were able to share the links with anyone interested. For your convenience, the links will remain on YouTube for quite some time. I want to thank Rabbi Sternfield, Cantor Bard, Kate Richmond, and her Ritual committee members for all their hard work preparing the HHD Video Services. Also, I want to thank Joel Auerbach for his help with the recording and editing of the videos. We are still looking for volunteers to help with the Shabbat filming periodically. If you have the expertise or sincere interest in videography, please contact me to discuss it.

I am happy to announce that we will be hosting another TBE Zoom (Virtual) get together where everyone can see familiar faces and catch up. On Saturday, October 10th at 5:00 pm, we will have a brief Havdalah followed by a Happy Hour where everyone can sit with their wine and cheese (in front of your computer). I will be sending out the Zoom invitation the day before so please save the date and plan to join us. All you need to do is click on the link and follow the instructions.

Over the next few months, TBE will be upgrading our website and adding more content to share. If you have any suggestions on what topics you would like to see added, please let us know. Also, your Temple Board will be discussing other virtual programs to keep all of us connected. Last but not least, our board will be discussing some possibilities of reopening our temple for Shabbat services and Religious school. I will provide an update to you in a separate communication soon.

Thank you all for your continued support during these difficult times. If anyone needs help, please let us know.


Shanah Tovah,

Ron Eiseman



High Holy Days



The health of our members and guests is of utmost importance to us. Therefore, in this difficult year we will be holding all services “virtually”, meaning that they will be prerecorded and put on YOUTUBE. Everyone is invited to observe the Holy Days with us. We will send you an easy-to-use link prior to Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur. You will also be able to find the link on our web page ( You may attend our services on YouTube at times of your choosing, wherever you may be.


We hope that you will join us at this sacred Season!


Please call the Temple at 941-755-4900 and leave your name, address and email, so that we may send you the combined Prayerbook/Book of Remembrance for the High Holy Days. With this booklet you will be able to participate in our services, rather than just watch.


Erev Yom Kippur (Kol Nidre) – Sunday, September 27th 7 pm

Yom Kippur Day and Yizkor – Monday, September 28th 10 am

Havdalah-Shmooze and Get-Together – Saturday, October 10 th 5 pm Zoom 


I would like to ask all members to compose a small family history to add to each newsletter.  We have been unable to spend time with each other and this can be a way to meet a new friend or a nice reminder of a friend's background.

Membership in a synagogue represents a commitment to the community. It means that you are involved in keeping Jewish life alive and seeing it continue to the next generation. It also gives you a framework of giving and contributing to the Shul, and it means that you are a partner in supporting the financial needs of the Synagogue which we are all part of. If you are interested in joining Temple Beth El Bradenton, please contact our membership chair,

Helen Hammerman

Welcome New Members

B'ruchim HaBa'im" ! We are so happy that you are with us here at Temple Beth El!  We appreciate  your presence and welcome your active participation and look forward to getting to know you.  

Cantor Deborah Bard

* Calling all full time college and graduate students that would like to join the congregation… If you are a full time student 25 or under, you can belong to the synagogue for just $25 per year, yes per year! For more info  call the TBE office at 941-755-4900 and leave your name and phone number.

Men's Club

The Salvation Army Mitzvah Project is on hold while we celebrate the High Holy Days and Sukkot. I want to take this opportunity to thank all of you who have taken part in the program.  The number of participants and generosity

with both time and resources has been unbelievable.  Even though we are apart, we have managed to work as one unit.  I look forward to making more sandwiches.  Our next date will be October 8.  I will send out an email as

the date approaches.  Thank you all again.  It has been my pleasure to work with you.

Ken Handelman, Men's Club President

Article of the Month

The pandemic's first High Holiday season has synagogues wondering: Will people pay dues?  By Ben Sales 

Like many synagogues, Temple B'nai Hayim used to rely on the High Holiday season to survive financially.

The small Conservative synagogue in Southern California would receive the lion's share of its revenue in the run-up to the holidays: Members sent in their annual dues, which included entry to High Holiday services, and non-members purchased tickets just for the High Holidays.

But with the option of holding regular in-person High Holiday services off the table due to the coronavirus, the synagogue is anticipating a decline in revenue this year and responding by reimagining its financial model from the ground up. Going forward, as long as congregants give any contribution, they get access to everything the synagogue offers: High Holiday services, a bar/bat mitzvah ceremony, even religious school – virtually for now, someday in person. Annual membership dues, which once cost $2,000 per two-parent household, will be abolished.

"We know a lot of people are hurting, and even if they give us a penny, we know they are a true friend," said Rabbi Jason van Leeuwen, the synagogue's cantor. He added: "We should be worried, and I don't think we should reasonably expect this new model to cover all of our expenses."

Across the country, synagogues are bracing for a significant reduction in revenues. Though many are seeing increased attendance at virtual services, without the annual cash infusion that in-person High Holiday services bring, and with community members under financial pressure, congregations across the denominational spectrum aren't sure how they'll make ends meet this year.

"They're expecting that their revenue will be down, in some ways, for the next year," said Amy Asin, the Union for Reform Judaism's vice president for strengthening congregations.

"Congregations are places, now more than they have been in the past, where people want to belong," she said. "That doesn't mean that they're in a financial position to pay what they've paid in the past."

Adas Israel, a 1,700-member Conservative synagogue in Washington, D.C., is expecting a 20% drop in revenue this year even as it has seen a spike in attendance at its online services. One recent Friday evening service had about 1,600 screens tuned in – or nearly one for each member household.

To keep congregants comfortable, the synagogue is not planning to increase its annual dues this year, which can run to more than $3,000. And it's also hoping to save on expenses it no longer has, like food for kiddush after services. But whether Adas Israel can avoid any layoffs among its 170 employees as the synagogue moves into an unprecedented future remains unclear.

"My crystal ball broke a long time ago," said Laurie Aladjem, the congregation's president. "I believe that many of our members join and affiliate with Adas Israel not just for the High Holidays. We have a really robust education department both for children and adults. We have a preschool. We have a religious school that is bursting at the seams. We have really robust adult education programming."

For many U.S. synagogues, a fixed yearly membership payment has usually included a High Holiday ticket, with nonmembers paying for a seat for the Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur services. (Discounts on fees are often reduced based on need, and few synagogues actively turn away those who want to attend services.) Because so many people generally pack the sanctuary on those days, the holidays are often the driver of synagogue revenue.

That's true across denominations, though it's especially pronounced in non-Orthodox congregations. Congregation Rodeph Shalom, a large Reform synagogue in Philadelphia, would get 150 or 200 people at its Friday night service – and 10 times that number on the night of Yom Kippur. Beth Jacob Congregation, an Orthodox synagogue in Beverly Hills, California, sees as many as four times its normal Shabbat attendance on the Day of Atonement.

"We hope people understand that when they are buying a High Holiday ticket, what they're really doing is supporting the synagogue in its ability to exist throughout the year," said Rabbi Jacob Blumenthal, CEO of the United Synagogue of Conservative Judaism and the Conservative Rabbinical Assembly.

On the whole, High Holiday revenue is less critical to synagogues than it used to be, according to Rabbi Daniel Judson, one of the authors of a 2016 UJA-Federation study which found that 57 synagogues nationwide had eliminated annual dues entirely and now just ask for donations. As more synagogues are making their High Holiday services free, they are less dependent on the revenue they once generated.

Judson said, however, that those who donate to synagogues around this time of year do so regardless of the fee structure, and this year will likely be tough going. Historically, he said, for a medium-size synagogue, 60% of annual revenue comes from annual dues.

"I think synagogues are less dependent on High Holiday revenue than they've ever been before," said Judson, dean of graduate leadership programs at Hebrew College near Boston. "But it's still part of the regular calendar that people pay their dues so that they're ready for the High Holidays."

Orthodox synagogues may have an advantage, as surveys show that Orthodox Jews are more likely to attend synagogue regularly rather than just for the High Holidays. Still, Orthodox synagogues may see a drop in revenue, said Rabbi Adir Posy, the Orthodox Union's director of synagogue and community services. That issue, he said, could be particularly pronounced in large cities with big Orthodox communities, where families may bounce between synagogues and not feel a particular connection to one congregation.

"A larger percentage of our membership have robust connections to communal activity through the shuls throughout the whole year, so it's a conversation that is not waking up for the weeks before the High Holidays," Posy, an associate rabbi at Beth Jacob in Beverly Hills, said in discussing Orthodox synagogues in general. "That being said, we are seeing synagogues that are getting a lot more membership forms mailed back with associate memberships or limited things."

Rodeph Shalom, the Reform synagogue in Philadelphia, has three membership tiers for its 1,000 members, and also allows for reductions if needed. It's maintaining that system, but plans to make its livestream High Holiday services open to the public for free.

Senior Rabbi Jill Maderer said she isn't sure what the lack of High Holiday tickets will mean for the synagogue's bottom line, but believes that opening the prayers to the public is the right choice this year.

"We feel this is an opportunity to recognize people's spiritual needs across the community, and to open our tent to the broader community," she said. "I am concerned, and I am also extremely curious, as to whether people will show the commitment without that stick hanging over them. And I'm not afraid. I really believe in the community."

Smile of the Day

A Speedy-ish Recovery

Rabbi Kozlowky gets sick and is admitted to Cedars-Sinai Hospital for treatment. A few days after he is admitted, Max, the shul's secretary, goes to visit him.

"Rabbi," says Max, "I'm here on behalf of our Board of Trustees. They have asked me to bring you their good wishes for a speedy recovery and their hope that you should live to be 120."

"Thank you," says Rabbi Gold, "I'm pleased to hear of their good wishes for me."

"And so you should be, Rabbi," says Max, "it was touch and go for a while but the final vote on whether we should send you any good wishes ended up 11 to 9 in your favor."


Yahrzeit Information

October 2nd and 3rd

October 16th and 17th  

Michelle & Jose Torres IMO Helene Schneider

David Meier IMO Karl Heinz Mai


Paul Stahl IMO Rita Lewandoski

Anna Bever IMO Norma Neiman  

Jean Shames IMO Abraham Shames

October 23rd and 24th  

October 9th and 10th

Bayla Kolton IMO Evalyne Halasz


Jeanne Shames IMO James Dunne

Celia Strickler IMO Nathaniel Strickler


Susie Konicov IMO Rosa Halberstadt

Paul Stahl IMO Helen Slater


Marlena Johnsky IMO Florence Harris

Marlena Johnsky IMO Norman Harris


Anna Bever IMO Tewel Neiman

October 30th and 31st  

Ron Adelson IMO Julius Adelson


Sharon Carlson IMO Edward Ger




Thank you for supporting Temple Beth El with your donation. Please let us know if you would like your donation directed to a specific purpose.  Donate TBE

Sisterhood = Challah and Oneg


Temple Beth El yahrzeit plaques are now available for purchase. Purchase one for a loved one already deceased or purchase now for a future date. Plaques can be English and Hebrew or just English or just Hebrew. The cost is $250 per plaque. 


Freda Koff, Bonnie Krasik, Jean Ellis, Beverly Saffron, Kate Richmond, Brian Weiss, Susie Konicov, Ron & Robin Eiseman, Allen Cohn and Marlena Johnsky





To make a donation, go to

  October Birthdays

October Anniversaries

3 Joy Shames

30 Lisa and Joshua Leuchter

10 Brian Lipka  
15 Robert Sokol  
19 Micah Metcalf-Clark  
25 Daniel Muraskin  
26 Erwin Segal  
29  Stephanie Peshek  

Simcha Grams

TBE sends Birthday, Anniversary, Bar/Bat Mitzvah and other celebration "Simcha Grams" to members in honor of their special day. This is a wonderful way to contribute to your Synagogue and to send your TBE family good wishes.

Names must be received at the office by the 20th of the month prior to the birthday, anniversary or special event. Include a note with your name(s),the name(s) of whom and what you are honoring and how you would like your signature on the card they will receive. The donation is $2.00 per name. In the memo area of your check write "simcha gram and mail to:

Temple Beth El, Attention: Simcha Gram,. 5150 Peridea Blvd. East, Bradenton, FL 34203.

If you wish to pay by credit card use the yellow "donate"button above or call the TBE office, 941-755-4900, give them the above information and your credit card authorization.

The card will be mailed to those individuals prior to their special day and your donation will be acknowledged in the newsletter.

If we have somehow overlooked your Simcha or made an error in printing the date, please accept our apologies and call the temple office at 941-755-4900 so that we may update our records.

Contact the Newsletter editor(Kevin Thomas) at

Office: 941-755-4900  Address: 5150 Peridia Blvd East, Bradenton, Fl. 34203

5150 Peridia Blvd E Bradenton, FL 34203 (941)-755-4900 The Temple Office


Rabbi Michael Sternfield
Cantor Deborah Bard
Cantor Emeritus Alan Cohn
Religious Education Director Susie Konicov
President Ron Eiseman
Exec. Vice President Neil Clark
Treasurer Howard Hammerman
Secretary Bayla Kolton
VP of Membership Helen Hammerman
Immediate Past President Sandy Clark
Ritual Katherine Richmond
Board Member at Large Gary Weinberg
Women of Beth El Bonnie Krasik
Men's Club Ken Handelman


For Rabbi or Temple information or to RSVP for an event, please email The Office is located at Temple Beth El, 5150 Peridia Blvd E, Bradenton 34203. Please notate on your check what the monies are for ie: "donation", "dues". You can also find out information or RSVP to an event by going to .

Got pocket change? Remember Pushke money? Put your change each day in a ziplock bag, then bring the bag to the Temple as a donation. Every little bit helps! It is a great way to get the kids to contribute too!


"It is a Tree of Life to those who hold fast to it." Proverbs 3:18  Purchasing a leaf (or leaves) on our Tree of Life, is a wonderful way to mark and sanctify precious life events, such as: B'nai Mitzvah, engagements, weddings, birth of a child or grandchild, birthdays, anniversaries, or any special occasion.  It is also a loving way to remember those who have gone before us. Call the TBE office for more info -941-755-4900

















                                                                                                                                                           *This ad is not a political endorsement