We are now in the month of Elul, leading up to the Jewish spiritual New Year. Elul is traditionally a month for introspection culminating a few weeks later on Yom Kippur.
To help you get in the mood of the upcoming holidays and gain some insights, The editors of the Jewish Review of Books have selected 10 previously-published articles that follow the arc of the fall holidays, from Rosh Hashanah and Yom Kippur to Sukkot and Simchat Torah, and created a High Holiday Companion ebook.
After months of anticipation and mounds of boxes waiting to be unpacked, the Lampert Library is again ready for operation.
Thanks to a hard working crew of volunteers, almost all the books were put back on the shelves in a week’s time. There’s still some adjusting to be done but our library looks like a library again.
Here’s what it looked like as numerous volunteers- including some who were camera shy- sorted and shelved:
Tributes and donations were made in July for the General Budget, Interfaith Hospitality Network (IHN), Kiddush, Mensch Squad, MESH, Prayerbooks, Shiva, Lampert Library Fund, and Rabbi’s Discretionary Fund. Continue reading
Summertime is perfect for cool food especially when the temperature soars as it has these last few days.
So we’ll start our meal with a cool soup. As they say…”cool as a cucumber.”
Technically gazpacho is a Spanish-style soup made from tomatoes and other vegetables and spices, served cold. But today all kinds of cold vegetable soups are called gazpacho. Continue reading
“I went to the birthday party because I thought Shomrei should be represented,” said Beryl Hiller, who is a member of our Refugee Assistance Group.
The party on July 15 was for Ghiahi, the one- year- old son of a Syrian family in Elizabeth, one of five helped by our synagogue under the auspices of that group. Continue reading
Shomrei Refugee Assistance Group, July 19 Update
Three important updates since last week:
Good News #1: One of our member-families has offered to match — DOLLAR FOR DOLLAR — the first $1,500 that is donated to our campaign to help send recently resettled refugee children to summer camp! So, we now need to raise only $1,500 to meet our goal of $3,000! The funds will be used to send refugee children to summer camp at the Wayne Y and Elizabeth Y in August for one or two weeks (depending on the total funds that we raise) .
If you can, please contribute. Any amount would be appreciated. The camp sessions are just around the corner and we need to make payment to the Y by July 25, so time is of the essence.
TishaB’Av, a fast day and day of mourning, occurs Saturday night through Sunday evening. The day marks great tragedies for the Jewish people. The destruction of the Temples in Jerusalem, the beginning of the First Crusade, the expulsion of the Jews from England, the expulsion of the Jews from Iberia and the deportation of Jews from the Warsaw Ghetto were among the tragic historic events that took place on that day on the Jewish calendar.
Since one is supposed to abstain from food and drink, various Jewish cultures have come up with recipes for the meal before the fast. They are always meatless as the nine days prior to Tisha B’Av are solemn and mournful, marking the period between the breaching of the Temple walls and its actual destruction. Continue reading
The Anne Frank House conveys the narrative that Holland protected its Jews. To quote the fact checker for the New York Times: this requires context.
Conversos settled in Amsterdam during the 16th and 17th centuries. It’s important to note that Holland was not uniformly welcoming as they were not allowed to settle in other towns and it took a while before they were comfortable living openly as Jews. They also did not know much about being Jewish. Rabbis from other countries – Italy, Morocco, Germany – came over to teach them about Judaism. Ashkenazi Jews came to Amsterdam later and during the 18th century this was the larger of the two communities. Continue reading