Sat, Feb 2, 10:30 am
Free and open to everyone
Good Coffee and Nosh!
It takes courage to leave the known world for new frontiers. The panel members will share their experiences and open up the discussion to the audience so that we can all explore the journey of finding meaning in work and life.
Our panel, led by Dale Russakoff, who left her longtime job as a reporter at the Washington Post in 2008 to become a freelance writer, will consist of:
A public interest lawyer who represented low-income clients in the Bronx, Harlem and London, then chose to become a stay-at-home mom to her two daughters. She has begun to share her passion for social justice with her older daughter, Abigail, now 3, and together they volunteered with IHN for the first time in December. Continue reading →
How do you really fix a broken pipe? You get together with a hundred and thirty of your friends and focus on something that matters! Such was the case last Saturday night as Shomrei honored Dale Russakoff and the volunteers of the Mensch Squad and IHN (Interfaith Hospitality Network). (See the lists of all honorees below). Dale co-chairs Shomrei’s chapter of IHN and she leads the Mensch Squad. Continue reading →
In 1994, Dale Russakoff moved to Montclair with her husband, Matt Purdy, a reporter at the New York Times, and their two sons, Sam and Adam. She worked as a reporter for the Washington Post in their New York office. Soon after arriving in town, the Purdy/Russakoff family was greeted by Judy Post, Neal Yudkoff, and their daughter, Sunny, neighbors who live immediately behind them in their neighborhood. This connection was meaningful and reinforced the family’s interest in becoming part of the Shomrei community. They joined the synagogue, signing Adam up for the Shomrei nursery school. Dale remembers their first Rosh Hashanah in Montclair when she saw Neal addressing the congregation as its president. Participating in the services helped the family feel part of Shomrei. Continue reading →
Dear Members and Friends of Congregation Shomrei Emunah:
Each year Shomrei Emunah’s Ad Journal honors congregants who have had a significant impact on our community. It is my privilege to inform you that this year’s honorees are the people of Shomrei—the volunteers who bring solace, safety and joy to our congregants and to others in the wider community through the Mensch Squad and IHN (Interfaith Hospitality Network). And this peaceful army of mensches is led by our own Dale Russakoff who has kept these vitally important services going at Shomrei. Continue reading →
Thanksgiving is a day for thanks although we Jews often give our thank yous at the New Year, Rosh Hashanah.
So I am taking this opportunity to put the THANKS back into Thanksgiving and express my thanks to people involved in activities that I have a stake in.
So thank you to all the volunteers who help to get food on the table for those weekly kiddushes. Even when I am not directly involved, I thank them. Without our volunteers we would have no bountiful weekly spreads and the fellowship that comes with sharing a meal. Continue reading →
Have you been in Shomrei over the past two weeks? One of our members, and a friend, whispered in my ear, “it’s happening”. I did not need to ask him, “unhh?”, because I knew exactly what he meant.
Change. It is finally visible. Big change, cultural evolution, does not happen immediately. The ideas need to be conceived, then nurtured, and finally “happening”. It has been five years (that I know of) since the theme of “Making Shabbat the central day of the week” was conceived. Even before that, the Education Board , conceived the idea of a Shabbat School. JLC will be Saturdays instead of Sunday. This new concept meant a whole new way to think about Shabbat for both students and parents. Shabbat School had its inaugural day two Shabbats ago. Continue reading →
Nourish your brain, body and being on Shabbat at Shomrei. Open to the public. The Shomrei Jewish Learning Center is introducing a series of topical conversations and/or activities for adults to be held on alternating Saturdays. Meeting from 10:30-11:30 am @nourish will offer great coffee, great noshes and great conversation! The topics will relate to current events, Jewish living in a modern world, food, history, or anything, well, nourishing!
“A flow of energy and a charge of possibility is generated by our getting together. That’s especially what we hope for tonight.”
With these words, Rabbi Greenstein introduced a program at Shomrei last Thursday night (June 2) to acquaint the community – not just our own congregants, but all of Montclair – with the human cost of the Syrian civil war and refugee crisis. More than 100 men, women and children came from many corners of New Jersey – Muslim women with heads covered, Jewish men with heads covered, people of a variety of faiths, students and adults. Continue reading →
A few weeks ago, it came to our attention that the Thursday evening MESH Cafe (Montclair Emergency Services for the Homeless) was not going to be serving dinner on Christmas Eve. Aileen Grossberg was signed up to prepare a meal for our IHN guests (Interfaith Hospitality Network, temporary housing for homeless families) that night and Aileen graciously offered to expand the meal to include our MESH guests.
Aileen prepared a feast that was so much appreciated by 14 of our MESH regulars, complete with holiday tablecloths and paper goods and sparkling cider! Please note the menu which was displayed on the dinner table. Continue reading →
Shomrei had a very successful and meaningful experience housing four homeless families — 14 adults and children — in the last week of August. We had a wide range of volunteers– many of our longtime participants as well as some new ones, from elementary schoolers to the over-eighty generation — and everyone had an impact. Craig Eichner taught an 8 year old boy named Vinnie to do magic tricks, and he was so excited that he asked on the last day if he could call Craig just to talk to him. We called Craig to let him know, and he came by to say goodbye in person. For good measure, he taught Vinnie yet another magic trick. Fanya Hoffman continued her tradition of painting all the girls’ nails, and the girls expressed great excitement about going to the first day of school with their new manicures. Charlie Breslin and his family took everyone to the Glen Ridge pool to cool off and have fun on a sweltering Saturday afternoon. And that is only a small representation of the Shomrei volunteers who contributed their time and loving care to our guests.
We had almost 50 volunteers in all, cooking meals, engaging in activities with kids and parents, sleeping over as night guardians and coordinating the activities. The families were with us because of terrible misfortunes in their own lives, but as always, our volunteers created an oasis in which they could eat good meals, meet really nice people, enjoy some good times. Little Vera came up to one of us as she left on Sunday Aug. 30, flashed a radiant smile, and said, “Every day here was a trip.” We hope they have many more good times ahead of them.
If you weren’t able to join us this time, but would like to do so next time, be on the lookout for our next hosting week in late December.