Kiddush with a Southern Flair

The kiddush luncheon for MLK Shabbat (1/13/2024) was sponsored by participants from the November Civil Rights trip. In keeping with that experience, kiddush coordinator Dale Russakoff (who herself grew up in Alabama) planned a Southern-themed menu. The kiddush crew prepared these recipes: Southern Cajun Salmon, Soul Food Mac & Cheese, Southern-style BBQ Tofu (for a vegan option) and Sweet Potato Pie. There was also a chopped salad, “Sweet Cole Slaw” from Shoprite with bagged cole slaw and shredded carrots mixed in, and cornbread from a mix.

Thank you to Dale and to these other volunteers for preparing the kiddush luncheon: Lou Hammerman, Lynne Tapper, Gerry Blume, Linda Blume, Vicki Compter, Risa Bernstein, Fern Hening, Alex Kent, and Aileen Grossberg.  Continue reading

Shabbat – Our Way In Verona

On October 7th, when the war in Israel started, I began to feel vulnerable as a Jew. I started to consider where in my life I could find support as a Jewish person and where I might need to reconsider my personal safety. I quickly realized that, as a resident in Verona, I didn’t know more than a few Jewish neighbors. That made me feel vulnerable. What if something antisemitic were to happen to my family? Where could I find support in my own town? Continue reading

We Exceeded the Israel Medicycle Goal, Together!

Dear Shomrei Community,
It is with gratitude that we share that we exceeded our ambitious fundraising goal of $36,000 to send a Medicycle to Israel, which enables first responders to arrive within minutes of an emergency. With the continued conflict in Israel, we know that efforts to support the IDF and first responders will be much needed and appreciated. We look forward to ‘sending off’ the Shomrei-branded Medicycle to Israel in the new year.

Continue reading

Seeing the Other

The Montclair clergy who organized what they called “A Sacred Space for Lament and Love During a Time of War” feared that their best-laid plans could go awry. After several public disputes in town between Palestinians and Jews, the religious leaders believed that the community badly needed an interfaith gathering—a setting where Muslims and Jews, a Palestinian and an Israeli, could share their truths from the same stage. Continue reading

We’ve Been Busy


As summer is winding down and everyone enjoys the last few weeks of vacation, we wanted to share with you what to expect when you return to Shomrei.

Our preschool teachers completed another successful camp season and are now preparing their classes for the first day of school. The entire staff and all of our volunteers are hard at work preparing for the High Holidays and fall season filled with a number of activities. Continue reading

A Glorious Evening

With approximately forty-five other Shomrei members, Bruce and I attended the Musical Taste of Shabbat hosted by Ken Bannerman and Judy Wildman last Friday evening at their beautiful home.

The Service was glorious and memorable. Judy led the service, while Ken played the bass and Merrill Silver played the piano. We all sang the wonderful Kabbalat Shabbat songs, led by Judy, including Mizmor Shir, Lechu Neranina, etc. The music was so very wonderful! Continue reading

Addressing Antisemitism

Utilizing a microgrant provided by the Jewish Federation of Greater Metrowest NJ, CSE hosted an “Addressing Antisemitism Today” program on Thursday, June 8.

With antisemitism alarmingly on the rise, it is essential to foster dialogue within and between communities of faith, specifically in this program — the Jewish community and the Christian community.  Participants gathered for dinner and a program presented by Rabbi Julie and Pastor Nancy Truscott, Holy Trinity Lutheran Church in Nutley. Continue reading

New Social Group at Shomrei

A new social group called Boomers has been formed at Shomrei Emunah whose purpose is to encourage social, supportive and informational opportunities for Shomrei Community Boomer members and their friends. Activities will be aimed at the Baby Boomer generation, and, while membership is intended for fellow Baby Boomers, participation in activities will be fluid and open to all. Subgroups and activities might consist of groups for hiking, lectures, meet-and-greets, theater, and widows/widowers, as well as opportunities to connect/reconnect with people and events at Shomrei. Activities will be determined by the group. Continue reading