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June 2020

 

A REFORM CONGREGATION  

5150 Peridia Blvd E. BRADENTON, FL 34203

www.TempleBethElBradenton.org
TBEBradentonfl@yahoo.com     941-755-4900

Shabbat Services are every Friday night at 7:00 pm
Saturday morning at 10 am followed by Torah Study

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

 

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NEWS AND VIEWS

BY RABBI MICHAEL STERNFIELD

 

Dear friends,

I would like to use this monthly column to familiarize you with a small but significant controversy in Israel. It raises a most intriguing question for Jews everywhere.

 

An evangelical broadcaster that airs Christian programs in Israel is at risk of being shut down. The reason? The channel appears to be trying to get Jews to become Christians. The channel, called “GOD TV,” has put both Israel and its evangelical Christian supporters in a difficult position. It has also shown tensions between the two groups that have long been ignored.

Israel has been inclined to ignore any possible hidden goal the group has to convert Jewish people. Israel has long accepted evangelicals’ political and financial support. They are especially devoted to AIPAC. American Evangelicals are strong supporters of Israel largely because they see Israel as a predictor of the second coming of Jesus and the end of days.

Still, most Jews rightly see any effort to convert us to Christianity as deeply offensive.

“GOD TV” is known as “Shelanu” in Israel. It broadcasts in the Hebrew language, even though most Christians in Israel speak Arabic. It describes itself as making shows for Christians and began airing programs about three weeks ago.

Ahead of the channel’s launch, “GOD TV,” its head Ward Simpson made a video announcement. In it, critics say, he spoke of the channel’s real goal: to convert Jews to Christianity. Simpson said God was letting him take Christianity into the home of Jews. “They’ll watch secretly, they’ll watch quietly,” he said. “God is removing the blindness from their eyes.” That video has since been taken down. Simpson said "GOD TV" has no plans to go off the air in Israel. “We love Israel,” he said and we have no reason to doubt this.

 

You may not be aware of this but freedom of religion is an important part of Israeli law. Proselytizing is permitted as long as the efforts do not involve money or people under the age of 18.

Mr. Simpson denies trying to convert Jews to Christianity. But he also said Jews who accept Jesus as the messiah can continue to practice their faith. I am sure he was is alluding to “Messianic Jews,” also known as “Jews for Jesus.” All branches of Judaism agree that Messianic Jews are not Jews at all. Though some are of Jewish descent, Israel considers them to be converts to another religion.

Ah, what to do about these Messianic Jews? Such congregations exist all across our country, including right here. One of the Christian broadcasting networks continuously airs programming whose undeniable purpose is to convince Jews that they can remain Jewish while still accepting Jesus at the Messiah.

I have no desire to shut down this kind of programming in our own country primarily. Judaism can easily weather any attempt to win us over. Whether they should be permitted to do so in Israel, and in Hebrew no less, strikes me as pretty chutzpadik. Still, if Israel does respect freedom of religion, then I suppose they ought to be allowed to continue.

But an intriguing question remains. Can one remain a Jew and embrace Jesus? Let’s face it: Jesus was Jewish. His early followers were Jews. All of them undoubtedly practiced Judaism, the last supper being an obvious example of how they observed Pesach (even though the last supper was not a seder, per se.) Early on the followers of Jesus were more a branch of the Jewish people than a totally separate religion. The heart of the dilemma is what Evangelicals mean when they claim that Jews can remain Jewish while accepting Jesus.

Yes, we can easily accept that Jesus existed and that he had a profound impact. We should have no problem accepting that Jesus was a historic personality, a charismatic Jewish teacher, a rabbi or even a kind of a prophet. Most of his moral teachings were mirror images of mainstream Jewish teachings. But to accept that Jesus was the Messiah, the physical embodiment of God, is where we part company.

We are still praying for the arrival of the Messianic age. From all appearances, our world still has a long way until we arrive at Messianic perfection. So until then, thank you for your concern for our salvation. But I think we will stick with Judaism while respecting their right to believe and even proselytize as they wish. I am confident that Israelis overwhelmingly will be more amused than threatened by God TV.

Shalom,

Rabbi Michael P. Sternfield


Music

Cantor Bard

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

Voice! The gift we all possess! If you love to sing (more or less on pitch) and have a musical ear in ensemble, then the congregational choir is for you! For more information: please contact Cantor Bard (773-484-8149)

TBE_Choir

 


Message from the President

Shalom Temple family and friends,

As always, the TBE board and Religious leaders hope that you and your loved ones are staying safe and following all the necessary guidelines. We also hope that you are enjoying our online services as we stay sheltered. We are now in the process of evaluating how and when we will be able to come back together at our temple home to observe Shabbat services.

The Security Preparedness Committee members are working on a specific action plan to ensure everyone’s safety when it is appropriate to reopen our doors. Of course, Temple Beth El will be following all CDC guidelines at that time. The Phone Tree Committee continues to call all members and I am encouraging everyone to let us know if you need help.

 

With regards to the High Holy Days, we are looking into different venues so that we can observe safely. Once we decide on a plan, if there are members still unsure of coming to the temple, please know that Rabbi Sternfield and Cantor Bard will continue to record services for you to observe at home. Also, we will be implementing a new online program offering Saturday Torah services where you can participate remotely.

 

In closing, I want to thank all of you for your patience and support as we work through these challenging times. I am very confident that our Temple family will be much stronger when we return.

Stay Healthy and Stay Safe!

Ron Eiseman

President


span class="tbe_header">OUR CALENDAR

In line with recommendations from the CDC, Temple Beth El will not hold any services, meetings or special events until further notice. Please stay healthy and safe. You will be notified of any updates.


MEMBERSHIP

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.


MENS CLUB NEWS

It is time to start thinking about 2020-2021 Men's Club Membership. 

This last year, half of the Temple's male members joined the Men's Club.  That response was better than what we normally get. I would like to take this opportunity to pitch membership to all the men of Beth El.

People tell me that they don't join the Men's Club because most of our activities take place on Sunday.  Some people believe, that as Temple members, they are entitled to participate in all Men's Club activities whether or not they join the Men's Club.  This, by the way, is true. So why join?

The way our Temple is structured, essential Temple operations are performed by the Men's Club (and Sisterhood).  There is no Ways and Means Chair on the Temple Board, for example, because Temple fundraising is the responsibility of the Men's Club.  Along with fundraising, the Men's Club provides the Temple membership with outings, social activities, mitzvah projects, and whatever support is needed.  When you go to the Temple on the High Holidays, and find the room set up, you can be sure that the Men's Club was there. 

We cannot do any of this without the operating expenses that come from dues.  We do not raise any money for ourselves: what we raise goes directly to the Temple.  We were able to have the Italian fundraiser this year, because Men's Club dues enabled us to cover the cost of the meal. 

The bottom line is that even if you don't attend our meetings and events, as a Temple member, you benefit from the Men's Club.  The Temple could not do the things it does without a functioning Men's Club.  That is why, when contacted about membership, it is so important that you join. 

 

Ken Handelman  Mens Club, President 


Women of Beth El

If you're not a member, come and try us out! 

We are alone….Together! Nothing stops our wonderful “Women of Beth El” from performing Mitzvahs. Not even a Pandemic! A special salute to the following WBE members who have teamed up to become the Temple “Phone Tree:” Jean Ellis, Linda Hoffman, Marlena Johnsky, Beverly Safron, Carol Segal, Florence Shulman, & Kate Richmond. Plus our Men’s Club President & supporter Ken Handleman. Together they reach out their branches to the entire congregation every week. Their many friendly phone calls make sure we are all safe and connected.

 

Bonnie Krasik "Women of Beth El", President

bkrasik@aol.com (248) 661-4583


Hebrew and Religious School

The Temple Beth El Religious School students chose, as their Mitzvah project of the year,

 to support the Heifer International Program. Heifer International works in the areas of livestock and agriculture to develop programs that alleviate hunger and poverty. They have a field staff of livestock specialists and their programs are considered among the most successful in the world.

 

The kids raised $142 and bought, for Heifer, the following:

$10 – towards a goat

$60 – a trio of rabbits

$30 – Honeybees

$20 – a Flock of Chicks

$20 – Ducks/Geese

 

$2 left over that will be added to money ($8) earned at our booth at the Sisterhood Fair, last fall, for groceries being collected by TBE for the Food Bank.

 

Rabbi addressed and taught our students Sunday, May 24 for the last day of Religious School for the year,

 

We expect and hope to see all the students again next fall.

 

Shalom, Susie Konicov

TBE Education Chair, and teacher

swkonicov@gmail.com

If you know an unaffiliated Jewish family with young children, who is looking for a shul, please tell them about us! We want to build our religious school and are looking for more students.  

The Jewish Education Loan Fund (JELF) provides interest free loans to Jewish students for college and graduate school. For further information go to their website:      http://JELF.org


The Treasurer's Corner

 

We applied for and received a $10,832 loan through the Federal Payroll Protection program. It will be turned into a grant once we show that the money was used to pay our rabbi and cantor during the months that we were shut down due to the COVID-19 pandemic. We will use part of the money to upgrade the equipment we use to record and broadcast our services.

 

We can now accept both donations and regular dues payment through direct debit from checking accounts. Donations can be accepted in this way on-line. If you would like your monthly dues to come out of your checking account, please contact me.

 

As we near the end of our fiscal year, it is time to look at our actual financials results in comparison to the budget formulated twelve months ago.

FY 2019-2020
Budgeted and Actual Revenue and Expenses
Projected
  Budget Actual Difference
Revenue 138,926 146,874 7,948
Expense 123,984 126,983 2,999
Total 14,942 19,891 4,949

 

While our expenses increased by 2 percent, our revenue increased by almost 6 percent. As a result, our next surplus will be about one-third higher than estimated a year ago.

 

We are grateful to all members and guests who have made donations and who plan to make donations in the coming year. We are also grateful to the Sarasota-Manatee Jewish Federation who paid half of the improvements to our Temple’s security. Please consider including Temple Beth El in your estate plans.

 

The recently passed Federal CARES act increased the limit of charitable contributions from 60% of adjusted gross income to 100% for taxpayers who itemize. And you can carry forward contributions greater than the limit for five years. Taxpayers who do not itemize and give money to charitable institutions, can take up to $300 for individuals and $600 for joint returns as an adjustment against adjusted gross income. That will reduce tax liability by the marginal tax rate. Please check with your tax advisor.

 

During the past year we sold the last of the cemetery plots that we had previously purchased. It only makes sense to buy plots five at a time. If you are interested in spending the afterlife with other members of the Temple, please let Sandy Clark know. She is keeping a list.

Howard Hammerman
Treasurer
410-430-3019


Article of the Month

What Ruth Can Teach Us About Celebrating Shavuot

BY RABBI SALEM PEARCE

Ruth and Naomi

In preparation for God’s appearance on Mount Sinai, Moses and the Israelite people “stood at the foot of the mountain” Exodus 19:17 waiting to see and to hear what transpires.

The unusual preposition — be-tachtit (“at the foot of”) — is understood in the Midrash to mean that the Jewish people were literally standing under the mountain. That is, at the moment God speaks the Ten Commandments, God also uproots Mount Sinai from the ground and holds it over the people, as if to say, “If you accept the Torah, fine; if not, here shall be your grave.” Avodah Zarah 2b. The implication is that the Jewish people accepted Torah only through coercion.

The description of the ensuing events only reinforces that interpretation. The thunder, lightning, and thick clouds that accompany God’s presence on Mount Sinai terrify the people Exodus 20:14 and they beg Moses to be their intercessor.

Many Jewish communities will commemorate this moment during the holiday of Shavuot. The event is often referred to as z’man matan torateinu (“the time of the giving of our Torah”) and some celebrate its anniversary by staying up all night in study. But given both the biblical and rabbinic understanding of that moment, we may well wonder about the celebration of a “gift” both forced and fear-inducing.

Another Shavuot custom may provide some insight: the recitation of the Book of Ruth, which many communities read on the second day of the holiday.

The short story revolves around the deep relationship between the heroine and her Bethlehemite mother-in-law, Naomi, forged after the death of the latter’s husband and two sons. As she journeys back home, Naomi urges her daughter-in-law to stay in her native Moab, but Ruth refuses, speaking these iconic words: “For wherever you go, I will go; wherever you lodge, I will lodge; your people shall be my people, and your God, my God” Ruth 1:16.

These words can be read in dialogue with the story in Exodus. They certainly show no less commitment than the joint affirmation of the Israelites at Sinai: “All that the Lord has spoken we will do, and obey.” Exodus 24:7. Indeed, Ruth’s declaration is understood as evidence of her taking the covenant upon herself. In the rabbinic imagination, she becomes the prototypical convert. Just as the Jewish people all gathered together at the mountain in the desert in the presence of the God of Israel, so too does Ruth cling to Naomi on the road in Moab, invoking the God of Israel

 

But the contexts are very different. The animating value in the book of Ruth is chesed (loving kindness) and loyalty that surpass the simple duty implied in the Israelites’ dispassionate response of na’aseh v’nishma (“we will do and obey”). After all, Ruth’s pledge to Naomi ends with the ultimate vow: “Where you die, I will die, and there I will be buried” Ruth 1:17. Later in the book, Naomi returns her daughter-in-law’s care and concern, the wealthy landowner Boaz shows kindness and generosity to both women, and all three find joy in the birth of Obed.

Even God is different. In Exodus, God is a loud, physical force that moves mountains. In the book of Ruth, God is the quiet but inexorable activity that moves the characters from emptiness to fulfillment.

It is perhaps for this reason that there is a practice of saying Ruth’s words each morning when laying tefillin, her credo of devotion and faithfulness recited as the boxes are placed between the eyes and on the arm — literally taking the words of Torah upon oneself. The ritual conjures the image of Ruth speaking to Naomi as they journey, each having lost her husband, two women cleaving to each other in hope for a better future together. It is an act of making oneself a partner in God’s ongoing work in the world.

Ruth’s relationship to Naomi and to Torah can be a model for our own orientation to the celebration of Shavuot. In Exodus, the Israelites experience an overwhelming display of power and might that leaves them shaking in fear and desiring to distance themselves from what may emerge from those clouds around the mountain. In the book of Ruth, she — no less in the dark — bravely and wholeheartedly faces what may come down the road.

Shavuot is called “the time of the giving of the Torah” rather than “the time of the receiving of the Torah.” The sages point out that the giving took place on one day to one people, but the receiving takes place at all times and in all generations.

As we celebrate the giving of the Torah on Shavuot, may we may act each day with the love and intimacy modeled by Ruth in the receiving of Torah.


Voting by mail

Per a wonderful sugestion by Marion, we have included information on how to vote by mail. More information can be found here https://dos.myflorida.com/elections/for-voters/voting/vote-by-mail/

 

Vote-by-mail refers to voting a ballot received by mail or picked up by or for a voter instead of going to the polls to vote during early voting period or Election Day. Except on Election Day, no excuse is needed to vote a vote-by-mail ballot (see Who Can Pick Up a Vote-by-Mail Ballot below). Unless otherwise specified, a request to receive a vote-by-mail ballot covers all elections through the end of the calendar year for the second ensuing regularly scheduled general election. A vote-by-mail ballot that is returned undeliverable cancels a request for future elections and must be renewed.

How to Request a Vote-by-Mail Ballot Be Mailed

A request for a vote-by-mail ballot may be made in one of the following ways:

  • To request a ballot online, here are links for each county  votemanatee.com, or sarasotavotes.com 
  • In writing (e.g., by email, fax, mail) to Supervisor of Elections. Mailing address can be found on respective website.
  • By telephone call to Supervisor of Elections. Manatee County 941-741-3823, Sarasota County 941-861-8600

To make a request, the following information is required:

  • The name of the voter for whom the ballot is being requested;
  • The voter’s address;
  • The voter’s date of birth; and
  • The voter’s signature (if the request is written).

If an immediate family member or legal guardian is requesting a vote-by-mail ballot for a voter, the following additional information must be provided:

  • The requestor’s address;
  • The requestor’s driver’s license number (if available);
  • The requestor’s relationship to the voter; and
  • The requestor’s signature (if the request is written).

The deadline to request that a vote-by-mail ballot be mailed is no later than 5 p.m. on the 10th day before the election. However, the ballot must still be received by the Supervisor of Elections no later than 7 p.m. on Election Day if the voted ballot is to count. Exceptions exist for overseas military and civilian voters. See Military and Overseas Citizens Voting for further information. 

 

 *This ad is not a political endorsement by Temple Beth El.

                                     


Smile of the Day/h2>

David Epstein came home from work to see his wife and young daughter Rivkah, reviewing the girl’s Hebrew homework.

“What are you learning honey?” asked David.

"Well we’re learning Bereishit (Genesis) and Mommy told me how Hashem made the first man and the first woman. He made the man first. But the man was very lonely with nobody to talk to him. So Hashem put the man to sleep. And while the man was asleep, Hashem took out his brains, and made a woman from them."


Donations

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


Yahrzeit Information

June 5th and 6th June 26th and 27th  

Katherine Richmond IMO Weed H. Richmond

Brian Weiss IMO Jack Weiss

 

Florence Shulman IMO May Shyr

Katherine Hoffman IMO Sam Eder  

Sharon Carlson IMO Roberta Ger

Sandy Clark IMO Harry Kleinman

 

Jack Jawitz IMO Aaron Jawitz

 

 

Bernice Kipnes IMO Morris Chasen

 

 

June 12th and 13th

July 3rd and 4th  

Jean Shames IMO Dorothy Dunn

Dick Solyn IMO Myron Solyn

 

Jean Ellis IMO Marie Levy

Ruth Weiss IMO John B. Estrada

 

June 19th and 20th

   

Dick Solyn IMO Alice Solyn

   

Florence Shulman IMO David Aron Shur

   

Beverly Safron IMO Peter Hartwich

   

Paul Stahl IMO Jeanette Lichner

   

 

Sisterhood = Challah and Oneg

YAHRZEIT/MEMORIAL PLAQUES

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. 

GENERAL DONATIONS

SPECIAL DONATIONS

CANTOR BARD's MUSIC FUND

SIMCHA GRAM CARDS FOR BIRTHDAY, ANNIVERSARY, GET WELL, OR CONGRATULATIONS and SYMPATHY CARDS

RABBI'S DISCRETIONARY FUND

To make a donation, go to www.templebethelbradenton.org/Donate


  June Birthdays June Anniversaries
4 David Gutman 25 Susan and Bill Speilberg
7 Ron Eiseman  
10 David Meier    :
13 Florence Shulman    
14 Eli Lerner  
20 Alan Cohn  
22 Gerry Ronkin  
24 Katherine Hoffman  

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 yinfiss@hotmail.com

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

www.templebethelbradenton.orgwww.facebook.com/TBEBradenton


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

TBEBradentonFL@yahoo.com 

www.templebethelbradenton.org

www.facebook.com/TBEBradenton

 

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 Robyn Spirtas
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 TBEBradentonfl@yahoo.com. 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 www.templebethelbradenton.org/events .

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

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

                                                                                                                                                                      Please see our temple supporter, Jay Givarz at Fidelity Bank, for all your mortgage needs

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Newsletter

A REFORM CONGREGATION  

5150 Peridia Blvd E. BRADENTON, FL 34203

www.TempleBethElBradenton.com
TBEBradentonfl@yahoo.com     941-755-4900

Shabbat Services are every Friday night at 7:00 pm
Saturday morning at 10 am followed by Torah Study

"NEWS AND VIEWS"

BY RABBI MICHAEL STERNFIELD

It may seem like a small matter to most people, but the installation of the new sign at the entrance to the church/synagogue is especially significant. Obviously, it will make it much easier for guests and visitors to find us. But there is much more to this improvement.  First of all, we are truly grateful to Rev. Shannon Jung who really pushed for the new signage. In the short time that he has been the spiritual leader of Braden River Presbyterian Church, he has shown himself to be a true friend of Temple Beth El. His recent guest sermon on the occasion of the Martin Luther King, Jr. national holiday Shabbat service was well received.  He and Patti obviously were very pleased to be with us and our members were equally happy to welcome them. I should add that in the aftermath of recent violent anti-Semitic events in Jersey City and Monsey, NY Rev. Jung was the first to express his concern.

I hope that you have noticed that the new sign has our two congregations listed side by side. This is especially generous on the part of BRPC. After all, we are tenants in their church. It is definitely their building and yet they were gracious to list us side-by-side. To me, this speaks volumes. Until recently, we felt mostly like renters. Things are much different now. We are here to stay for the foreseeable future and, much more important, we are in the process of becoming spiritual partners with BRPC.  Rev. Jung and I have high hopes that our congregations will develop many possibilities for joint activities, while continuing to be distinctive entities with our own traditions and beliefs.

I found it both amusing and illustrative that, during the month of December, the sanctuary was decorated with both wreaths and Chanukah decorations. When our ark was in place for Shabbat services, brilliant red poinsettia plants surrounded it. The best part of this was that nobody complained. It seemed both natural and appropriate.

For our part, we have always treated the facilities with great respect. Our members, particularly Kate Richmond and the Women of Beth El, are well aware that we want to do our very best to take care of the facilities as if they were our own.

I hope you understand more fully why the new sign is such a lovely gesture. We are blessed to have such friends.

Shalom.

Rabbi Michael P. Sternfield

MESSAGE FROM THE CANTOR

MUSIC

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

Cantor BardVoice! The gift we all possess! If you love to sing (more or less on pitch) and have a musical ear in ensemble, then the congregational choir is for you! For more information: please contact Cantor Bard (773-484-8149)

 

 




Message from the President

Shalom Temple family and friends,

I am pleased to report that a new exterior sign at our front entrance was recently installed and is being shared with our friends at the Braden River Presbyterian Church. We are very appreciative of our relationship and are thrilled to be doing some mitzvah projects together!

Our Temple will be participating in a blood drive with the BRPC on Sunday, January 26, 2020, from 10:00 AM -12:30 PM on our premises. You will need to show an ID and I encourage all healthy congregants to help out. Each donation can save up to three lives!

With Regards to Security, TBE Security committee members have been working hard behind the scenes and we have obtained all required bids on protecting our windows in both buildings as well as adding exterior LED lighting. Our Board of Directors will be voting on approving these Security enhancements at the upcoming meeting and we will be applying for a Jewish Federation matching grant. I anticipate the Security improvements will begin sometime in February. 

On January 24, 2020, our URJ Ambassador Greg Miller will be joining us during our Shabbat service to present the charter to our congregation. I am asking that all Temple members participate and support this major milestone at Temple Beth El. I believe our affiliation with the URJ is very important for the future of our congregation!

The Temple Men's Club is preparing for our 3rd Annual Italian Dinner, TBE's only fundraiser of the year! Please join us on Saturday, February 22ND at 6 PM. Please save the date and join us for a fun-filled evening!

I would like to ask everyone to please continue supporting our mitzvah projects, Habitat For Humanity, Meals on Wheels, as well as the Women of Beth El monthly charitable programs. These are all very important causes and we are always looking for new volunteers.  If anyone has an interest in joining us, please contact me. Special thanks to all our congregants that generously give their time and financial support to both our Temple and those that are less fortunate than us

Ron Eiseman

President


OUR CALENDAR

TBE Special Events

01/24   Erev Shabbat TBE 7:00pm. URJ charter presentation by URJ Ambassador Greg Miller.

01/26   Meet and Greet in Lakewood Ranch. 3:00 pm – 5:30 pm..

01/27  Rosh Chodesh. 6:00pm. Clubhouse Sarabay Condo complex. 1714 69th Ave. W, Bradenton. Open to all TBE women.

02/09  Men's Club trip to Chihuli Glass Museum.1:00pm. 720 Central Ave S,  St. Petersburg

02/12 International Movie Night and Dinner. 6:00pm. TBE. A contemporary Israeli/Palestinian satiric comedy that has had excellent reviews, The dinner will be contemporary Israeli cuisine. $13.00 pp members, $18.00 pp guests, $5.00 pp without advance payment. Register before 02/09 online or call TBE 941-755-4900.

02/22  3RD ANNUAL "BUONO APPETITO"! NOW THAT'S ITALIAN  FUNDRAISER. 6 pm. TBE.. $30 pp members $35 pp guests. Great Food – Great Desserts – Music – Entertainment – Silent Auction – Live Auction. Sign up sheet in the temple or call the office at 941-755-4900

02/26 Women of TBE Luncheon. 12:00pm. Peridia Golf Club.

03/08 Topaz Shopping Center, Meet for lunch at 12:00 pm at Stonewood Grill,5415 University Parkway.

04/08 Save the Date. Annual TBE Seder. 6:00 pm. Watch for more information.

 

Regarding the fundraiser on February 22nd – the meal cost and all monies made from this fun and delicious event goes to your temple. The Men's Club and the Women of Beth El donate their cost of food and their time to make this event run smoothly. The monies we make from the silent and live auction is the bulk of the monies taken in. Each of you have a special talent and we would love for you to donate 1 or 2 items to the auction. 

We also need gift certificates to restaurants, theaters, spas, nail salons, beauty parlors etc for our silent auction. So please contact all places you frequent

Please call me as soon as possible with your wonderful items for this event.

Sandy Clark

 

MEMBERSHIP

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

All prospective members are invited to a "Meet and Greet" on Sunday, January 26th. Come by any time from 3 – 5:30 pm..13908 Messina Loop, Lakewood Ranch. Schmooze with TBE clergy, nosh on refreshments and get to know some of our members. Current members are encouraged to bring guests. Please rsvp with number of people coming so we can plan appropriately. Send your RSVP to helenwh33@gmail.com

 

All prospective members are invited to a "Meet and Greet" on Sunday, January 26th. Come by any time from 3 – 5:30 pm..13908 Messina Loop, Lakewood Ranch. Schmooze with TBE clergy, nosh on refreshments and get to know some of our members. Current members are encouraged to bring guests. Please rsvp with number of people coming so we can plan appropriately. Send your RSVP to helenwh33@gmail.com

"It is everyone's responsibility to help our congregation grow. There are two things that everyone can do. First, invite your Jewish (and interfaith) friends and neighbors to a Friday night or Saturday service or special event and accompany them. Second, send their names to me at helenwh33@gmail.com 

We all want to see Temple Beth El grow and thrive. We are ready to expand our congregation and share it. You can help us to grow. It's easy. As Membership Chair, I promise that I will follow up with your guests to show them that we care. So, let's give back to the place that loves us and let's love it back. Let's share our little space of Jewish delight and help grow our Temple membership. To paraphrase a famous quote: 

" 'Ask not what your Temple can do for you. Ask what you can do for your Temple.' I have an answer. Help us grow. It's up to you".  – 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.

 

MENS CLUB NEWS

Reservations have been made for our trip to the Morean Arts Center in St. Pete to view the Chihuly Glass Collection. The address is 720 Central Ave St. Pete 33701.  The date is Sunday February 9.  Our tour of the Museum starts at 1:00 PM.  At 2:00 PM we are scheduled to attend a glass blowing demonstration.  It is important that we arrive on time.  We have been booked as a group which allows us to pay the discounted price of $16.25 per ticket.

However, we cannot buy the tickets individually.  People planning to attend are requested to make payment in the form of a check to the "Temple Beth El Men's Club".  Payment in advance would be much appreciated.  A sign up sheet we be placed in the lobby on Friday January 17.

Reminder: Anyone interested in donating to the Jewish Family Services Book drive can leave their donations in the Temple lobby.

President

Ken Handelman

 

Women of Beth El

As Margaret Fuller said, "Today a reader. Tomorrow a leader" You can change the life of needy children by becoming a part of our "Women of Beth El Mitzvah Project".  Throughout February & March we're collecting new books for children Pre-K through 5th grade.

 

 

It's a team effort with the Men's Club that's tied into JFCS's annual Book Drive. Your donations will go to schools, hospitals, and several service agencies throughout Manatee County. 

Our annual "Topaz" shopping trip is set for Sunday March 8th. We'll have lunch at noon at Stonewood Grill on University Parkway.  At 2 o'clock we'll "shop til we drop" at "Topaz", buying beautiful wholesale clothes before they hit the stores. You are also welcome to just come for lunch. We still have a few openings for "Women of Beth El" members. So contact me if you haven't already done so. 

Finally, February 26th at Noon is our regular "Women of Beth El" luncheon meeting. Peridia Golf Club. If you're not a member, come and try us out! 

Bonnie Krasik "Women of Beth El", President

bkrasik@aol.com (248) 661-4583

 

Hebrew and Religious School

Our Hebrew & Religious school is an interactive, hands-on teaching experience.  If you are interested in registering your child for Religious school, please contact our Education Director, Susie Konicov, by calling the Temple office at 941-755-4900.  

If you know an unaffiliated Jewish family with young children, who is looking for a shul, please tell them about us! We want to build our religious school and are looking for more students.  Thanks for being a link. Susie Konicov, Education Chair

The Jewish Education Loan Fund (JELF) provides interest free loans to Jewish students for college and graduate school. For further information go to their website:      https://jelf.org

A TBE MEMBERS STORY

"What's a Nice Jewish Boy Doing Here?"  Part I

 

The year was 1965. The place was Hattiesburg, Mississippi. I got there in January and stayed until April. I was a junior in college, taking a semester off to make a difference in the world.

            It all started the previous spring. Antioch College was in a small town not far from Dayton, Ohio. There was a White section of town and a Black section. Caucasian men got their hair cut at Gegner's on Main Street. Bay street had a shop that cut the follicles of the other races. In April a few students protested in front of Gegner's barbershop. Then the group grew and grew.

            I was a reporter and photographer for the student newspaper. The protests doubled when students from the nearby historically Black college joined the march. What had once been an orderly procession, turned into something close to a riot. More than 80 students moved from the sidewalk and onto the main road through town, a state highway. I was on the outskirts of the action, taking pictures. The police came in and started arresting students. The students sat down and locked arm. The police started indiscriminately hitting students with their clubs then carrying them to waiting vans. Then came the tear gas. Most observers ran away.

 I was safely taking pictures from the porch of the bank. But I couldn't just stand there while my friends were getting beat. I gave the camera to a friend, sat down and locked arms with an African American student.  We sang "We shall overcome." The police hit my friend then grabbed me. Soon I was sharing a jail cell with about fifteen other students. We were arranged the next day, fined a few dollars and released. I managed to get back to the dorm just before my parents came to visit.

That summer Martin Luther King, then the head of the NAACP, along with other civil rights icons and organizations called for an all-out effort to end blatant voter suppression in Mississippi. The call was answered by over a thousand activists, mostly White college students from the North and West who joined with local Black activists to register voters and teach in "Freedom Schools." The white residents resisted, sometimes with violence. In Hattiesburg the local paper published a weekly column headlined, "Negroes who registered to vote this week." In most cases, those with jobs were fired the next day.

           On June 21, 1964 three civil rights workers, Goodman, Chaney and Schwerner were murdered. Goodman and Schwerner were Jewish. Goodman's brother went to Antioch.

           By September most of the college kids had returned to their campuses leaving a skeleton crew to man the movement they had started. The call for help went out again and despite my parents' opposition, I joined five other classmates and went to Mississippi right after new years 1965.

 I lived with a Black family in a barely heated two-bedroom house a long walk from the civil rights office on Mobile street, the main business street for the Black community. Church groups fed us. We helped by driving people to doctors' appointments etc. Occasionally, we facilitated voter registration. We held a march or two. We held some classes in church basements. I did some career counselling and prepared tax returns. We tried to stay warm. It was a very cold winter.

         Shortly after I arrived the office manager quit. I took over and handled the money, communications and wrote weekly reports to headquarters in Jackson and bulletins to the New York Times. The police arrested me once, at gun point, for driving a few miles over the speed limit. Someone shot at me once but thankfully missed. I was beat up once and left in a ditch.

         The Jewish community in Hattiesburg was organized in 1938. They still exist and have an attractive brick synagogue in the White part of town. The Mississippi social order placed Jews somewhere above the Blacks but below the Whites. Jewish families made their livings as contractors, merchants and professionals.

         The congregation didn't want the disruption caused by the civil rights activists. Anti-Semitism was a close cousin to racism. The temple's young rabbi visited our offices several times and became my friend and councilor.In late February the Rabbi's son turned 13. The Rabbi insisted I attend the Bar Mitzvah and meet his extended family who were coming from New York.

        After the ceremony, the congregation moved to the social hall where a huge buffet table beckoned. During the previous eight weeks my diet consisted of ham, collard greens and grits, I was transfixed by the sight of pastrami, lox and bagels. Grabbing a plate, I started at one end with iron determination not to stop until I reached the other end where cream-filled New York pastries awaited. While my body was in Mississippi, my taste buds had never left New Jersey.

 I was twenty-two years old, the only college-age person in the room. Everyone smiled at me and let me know I was welcome. A woman with a five-year-old in tow approached me. Her name tag announced that she was the vice-president for membership. "You're a new face," she said with a broad smile. "What's your name? Do you go to the local college?"  "No," I replied. "I manage the civil rights office on Mobile street."

       There was a deadly silence. It was as if I had turned into a pile of manure. She grabbed her son and pulled him away as if I would infect him. As I got to work with a knife and fork, I could see her speaking in low tones to the temple hierarchy. Just as I started working on the lox and bagels, the president approached and asked, "What's a nice Jewish boy doing here?" I didn't answer. I was too busy chewing the delicious food. Then he told me to leave.

      Outside the building one of the Rabbi's relatives, offered me a ride back to New Jersey. I declined. Clutching my doggie bag of roast beef and pastrami, I caught a taxi back to Mobile street and continued my work for another six weeks. I was in Hattiesburg during Dr. King's famous Selma, Alabama march.

      Harold Hammerman  (Author of "Flying Blind", 2018 Finalist Royal Palm Literary Award Competition.)


Let the congregation share your joy or memory. Please consider sponsoring an Oneg Shabbat in celebration or remembrance

Friday: Challah and wine $25; food $25 both $50

Saturday: Challah and Wine for Sat. morning. $25

Entire Shabbat,  $75.00

Please make all checks payable to: WOMEN of BETH ELTemple Beth El

 

Memorial Plots are available from Temple Beth El. Located in Palmetto, Florida, Skyway Memorial Gardens has been serving the residents of Manatee County since 1952. The tranquility of Skyway ensures a peaceful resting place for years to come. Call TBE for more info on the "Garden of Abraham".

Monthly payment plans now available through TBE.

Please remember TBE in your will, there is no greater gift.   

A project of the sisterhood is to feed the hungry. There is a food barrel in the foyer, waiting for your contribution. Please bring your nonperishable food items as often as possible. Hunger has no season.

  • Traditional burials as well as burial for those who choose cremation available.   
  • Monthly payment plans are available through TBE. Call 941-755-4900

 

The Treasurer's Corner

Thanks to everyone who has paid their dues on time. Let me remind our members that if you pay for the entire year in one transaction, you can subtract $45.

We accept cash, checks and credit cards. Those that have given us their credit cards with instructions to charge the card once a month should consider "Bill Pay." This is a service offered by almost every bank. Once you set it up the bank will cut a check to the Temple once a month on the date you specify. There is no charge either to you or to the Temple for this service. Unfortunately, the Temple pays a 2.5 percent fee on all credit card transactions.

If you are not sure of your current account balance, feel free to contact me.

Howard Hammerman
Treasurer
410-430-3019

 

 

Article of the Month

The Brandeis University Steinhardt Social Study Research Institute  has released a report "2019 Sarasota-Manatee Jewish Community Study". 

It provides a detailed socio-demographic portrait of the regional Jewish community and describes community members' participation in Jewish communal life, their private Jewish activities, and their attitudes about Judaism and Israel. This is their summary of some of the findings:

"As of 2019, the Sarasota-Manatee Jewish community numbers approximately 35,300 adults and children living in 17,100 Jewish households. This total includes 25,400 Jewish adults and 3,400 Jewish children, as well as 6,100 non-Jewish adults and 300 non-Jewish children.

Since 2001, the number of Jewish individuals living in Sarasota-Manatee increased by 86%. This growth rate approximately doubled the regional population growth rate.

Forty-eight percent of Sarasota-Manatee marriages including a Jewish partner are interfaith marriages.

The Jews of Sarasota-Manatee can be divided among four regions: Lakewood Ranch, Coastal Areas/Downtown Sarasota, Rest of Sarasota County, and Rest of Manatee County

The largest share of the community, 42% of Jewish households, are located in the Rest of Sarasota County area. Lakewood Ranch is home to the smallest share of Jewish households among the geographic regions. However, the rapid growth in this area is indicative of a shift in the population center of the Sarasota-Manatee Jewish community.

The Sarasota-Manatee Jewish community is getting younger. There are now 3,700 children living in Sarasota-Manatee Jewish households, 3,400 of whom are being raised Jewish. This figure is more than double the estimate from 2001, when 1,500 Jewish children were being raised Jewish in the area.

Ninety-two percent of children in Jewish households are being raised Jewish in some way.

 

Twenty-eight percent of households in Sarasota-Manatee include someone who belongs to a synagogue or another Jewish worship community of some kind. This is a decrease in the percentage of synagogue participation since 2001, but an increase in the raw number of membership households due to population growth in the area.

Eighty percent of households (and 82% of Jewish adults) report making a charitable contribution in the past year.

Twenty-seven percent of Sarasota-Manatee Jews report that they personally experienced antisemitism in the past three years. When asked to describe these experiences, the most common incidents described were antisemitic comments made in either a conversational or aggressive tone.Members of the Sarasota-Manatee Jewish community are concerned about antisemitism, but that worry is directed more at the national (79%) than the local level (40%).

Among Sarasota-Manatee Jews, 56% have been to Israel at least once. The Sarasota-Manatee rate of travel represents a higher proportion than among US Jews in general.

Twelve percent of Jewish households have been constrained from participating in Jewish life due to financial issues.

Twenty-three percent of Jewish households in Sarasota-Manatee include at least one person who is limited by some sort of health issue, special need, or disability."

 

This is a link to the full report:

https://www.brandeis.edu/ssri/communitystudies/sarasotareport.html

The Jan 14th Sarasota Herald Tribune editorial titled " "This place is no place for anti-Semitic slights" discussed this report and concluded with reference to the 27% who reported experiencing an antisemitic comment saying:it is"one data point that does not speak well for the 96.4% of non-Jewish residents". It goes on to repudiate casual cruelty.

Smile of the Day

Newspaper Bloopers

Ladies, don't forget the rummage sale. It's a chance to get rid of those things not worth keeping around the house. Bring your husbands.

The Temple Office

5150 Peridia Blvd E Bradenton, FL 34203 (941)-755-4900 
TBEBradentonFL@yahoo.com Office hours: Monday – Thursday 9:00 a.m. – 12:00 p.m. 

www.templebethelbradenton.com

www.facebook.com/TBEBradenton

 

Rabbi Michael Sternfield
CantorDeborah Bard
Cantor EmeritusAlan Cohn
Religious Education DirectorSusie Konicov
PresidentRon Eiseman
Exec. Vice PresidentNeil Clark
TreasurerHoward Hammerman
SecretaryBayla Kolton
VP of MembershipHelen Hammerman
Immediate Past PresidentRobyn Spirtas
RitualKatherine Richmond
Board Member at LargeGary Weinberg
Women of Beth ElBonnie Krasik
Men's ClubKen Handelman

 

The TBE office is available to you or for your questions. We are typically open Tuesdays thru Thursday, 9:30 am – Noon.  For Rabbi or Temple information or to RSVP for an event, please call the Temple office. 941-755-4900. 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 www.templebethelbradenton.com/events .

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

A donation  to Temple Beth El will be new clients.

 

Yahrzeit Information

February 7th and 8th February 21st and 22nd

Beverly Hurowitz IMO Joe Hurowitz

Freda Koff IMO Molly Koff

Neil Clark IMO Paul Clark

Ruth Weiss IMO Ruth Smith

Robert Hadessmith IMO Donald Hadesmith

Joe Roback IMO Gladys Roback

February 14th and 15th February 28 and 29

Susan Koff IMO Leon Schiffman

Judy Rothhauser IMO Eugene Rothhauser

Linda & Craig Hoffman IMO Gilbert Okum

Loren Hoffman IMO Morris Hoffman

Howard Hammerman IMO David Hammerman

Jean Shames IMO Irving Shames

Ishmael Baal-Shem IMO Marie Dawn Connor

 

Freida Koff IMO Herbert Koff

 

Susie Konicov IMO Werner Weiner

 

Josh IMO Joel Leuchter

 

Please see our temple supporter, Jay Givarz at Fidelity Bank, for all your mortgage needs

 

 

Donations

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.

Yahrzeits

Katherine Richmond IMO L.Richmond

Beverly Saffron IMO Henry Hartwich

Florence Shulman IMO Alice Shur

Marlena Johnsky IMO Harry Klein

Sisterhood = Challah and Oneg

YAHRZEIT/MEMORIAL PLAQUES

GENERAL DONATIONS

SPECIAL DONATIONS

CANTOR BARD's MUSIC FUND

SIMCHA GRAM CARDS FOR BIRTHDAY, ANNIVERSARY, GET WELL, OR CONGRATULATIONS and SYMPATHY CARDS

Marlena Johnsky for Betty and Arnie Klein

RABBI'S DISCRETIONARY FUND

To make a donation, send checks payable to Temple Beth El, 5150 Peridia Blvd E, Bradenton, Fl. 34203 or go to www.templebethelbradenton.com/Donate

  February Birthdays February Anniversaries
1 Evan Kozmits (2010) None
2 Beverly Hurowitz  
7 Karen Knoell  
12 Ishmael Baal-Shem  :
13 Irv Zamikoff  :
14 Staci Rosenstein  :
17 Beverly Safron  
18 Jean Steiger  
21 Lois Gerber  

 

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 at barry@steigers.us

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

www.templebethelbradenton.com     www.facebook.com/TBEBradenton

Categories
Uncategorized

February 2020 Newsletter

A REFORM CONGREGATION  

5150 Peridia Blvd E. BRADENTON, FL 34203

www.TempleBethElBradenton.com
TBEBradentonfl@yahoo.com     941-755-4900

Shabbat Services are every Friday night at 7:00 pm
Saturday morning at 10 am followed by Torah Study

“NEWS AND VIEWS

BY RABBI MICHAEL STERNFIELD

It may seem like a small matter to most people, but the installation of the new sign at the entrance to the church/synagogue is especially significant. Obviously, it will make it much easier for guests and visitors to find us. But there is much more to this improvement.  First of all, we are truly grateful to Rev. Shannon Jung who really pushed for the new signage. In the short time that he has been the spiritual leader of Braden River Presbyterian Church, he has shown himself to be a true friend of Temple Beth El. His recent guest sermon on the occasion of the Martin Luther King, Jr. national holiday Shabbat service was well received.  He and Patti obviously were very pleased to be with us and our members were equally happy to welcome them. I should add that in the aftermath of recent violent anti-Semitic events in Jersey City and Monsey, NY Rev. Jung was the first to express his concern.

I hope that you have noticed that the new sign has our two congregations listed side by side. This is especially generous on the part of BRPC. After all, we are tenants in their church. It is definitely their building and yet they were gracious to list us side-by-side. To me, this speaks volumes. Until recently, we felt mostly like renters. Things are much different now. We are here to stay for the foreseeable future and, much more important, we are in the process of becoming spiritual partners with BRPC.  Rev. Jung and I have high hopes that our congregations will develop many possibilities for joint activities, while continuing to be distinctive entities with our own traditions and beliefs.

I found it both amusing and illustrative that, during the month of December, the sanctuary was decorated with both wreaths and Chanukah decorations. When our ark was in place for Shabbat services, brilliant red poinsettia plants surrounded it. The best part of this was that nobody complained. It seemed both natural and appropriate.

For our part, we have always treated the facilities with great respect. Our members, particularly Kate Richmond and the Women of Beth El, are well aware that we want to do our very best to take care of the facilities as if they were our own.

I hope you understand more fully why the new sign is such a lovely gesture. We are blessed to have such friends.

Shalom.

Rabbi Michael P. Sternfield

MESSAGE FROM THE CANTOR

MUSIC

“Those who sing, pray twice.” (Talmud)

Cantor BardVoice! The gift we all possess! If you love to sing (more or less on pitch) and have a musical ear in ensemble, then the congregational choir is for you! For more information: please contact Cantor Bard (773-484-8149)

Shalom Temple family and friends,

I am pleased to report that a new exterior sign at our front entrance was recently installed and is being shared with our friends at the Braden River Presbyterian Church. We are very appreciative of our relationship and are thrilled to be doing some mitzvah projects together!

Our Temple will be participating in a blood drive with the BRPC on Sunday, January 26, 2020, from 10:00 AM -12:30 PM on our premises. You will need to show an ID and I encourage all healthy congregants to help out. Each donation can save up to three lives!

With Regards to Security, TBE Security committee members have been working hard behind the scenes and we have obtained all required bids on protecting our windows in both buildings as well as adding exterior LED lighting. Our Board of Directors will be voting on approving these Security enhancements at the upcoming meeting and we will be applying for a Jewish Federation matching grant. I anticipate the Security improvements will begin sometime in February. 

On January 24, 2020, our URJ Ambassador Greg Miller will be joining us during our Shabbat service to present the charter to our congregation. I am asking that all Temple members participate and support this major milestone at Temple Beth El. I believe our affiliation with the URJ is very important for the future of our congregation!

The Temple Men’s Club is preparing for our 3rd Annual Italian Dinner, TBE’s only fundraiser of the year! Please join us on Saturday, February 22ND at 6 PM. Please save the date and join us for a fun-filled evening!

I would like to ask everyone to please continue supporting our mitzvah projects, Habitat For Humanity, Meals on Wheels, as well as the Women of Beth El monthly charitable programs. These are all very important causes and we are always looking for new volunteers.  If anyone has an interest in joining us, please contact me. Special thanks to all our congregants that generously give their time and financial support to both our Temple and those that are less fortunate than us

Ron Eiseman

President