Summer Issuepub by abstraks

VIEWS: 133 PAGES: 16


Inside                                                    A Few Words
                                                                                       Kesher           A Few Words
                                                          From Rabbi                                    from Cantor
2-3                                                       Marjorie                                      Bob Freedman
Messages from:

• Rabbi Avi Winokur                                                                                       have already met

• Staci Schwartz, President                                olomon ibn                                    many of you at
                                                           Gabirol, an                                   services and en-
4-5                                                        Andalucian                  joyed the warmth and generosity of
                                    Hebrew poet and Jewish philosopher,                SHS.
• Birthdays & Anniversaries
                                    wrote in 11th Century Spain:
                                                                                       Anticipating the pleasure of getting to
6-7                                 With the ink of its showers and rains,             know many more of you during the
                                    With the quill of its lightning,                   High Holy Days and the year follow-
• Ann Spak Thal Hebrew School
                                    With the hand of its clouds,
• Playschool                                                                           ing, I’ll begin by introducing myself.
                                    Winter wrote a letter upon the garden,
• Development Committee             In purple and blue.
                                                                               I learned how to read music as soon as I
                                    No artist could ever conceive the like of that.
• Social Action Committee                                                      learned to read words, and after
                                    And this is why the earth, grown jealous of
                                    the sky,                                   becoming Bar Mitzvah, sang for my
8-9                                                                            synagogue on Shabbat and High Holy
                                    Embroidered stars in the folds of the flower-
                                    beds.                                      Days. My love of music led me to earn a
• Interfaith Group
                                                                               bachelor of music degree at the
• Baby & Me                         My garden is busy embroidering stars of University of North Carolina and a
• Young Professionals Group         every shape and hue, not to mention a master's degree in vocal performance at
• Connections                       few tomatoes and peas and sundry other the Eastman School in Rochester, NY.
• Religion Committee                vegetables. In just a few short months,
                                    when the garden has reached its peak After singing professionally for seven
                                    and then some, I will be joining you as years in Toronto, Ontario, performing
10 - 11                             your interim rabbi while Rabbi Winokur in diverse settings that ranged from op-
• Contributions                     is on his sabbatical.                      era to synagogues to beer commercials, I
• An Evening with Evan Fallenberg                                              returned to the United States to enroll
                                    It is with great pleasure and anticipation in the cantorial program at the Hebrew
                                    that I approach the coming year. Having Union College School of Sacred Music.
12 - 13
                                    been privileged to study with many of The following year I took the post of
• Community News                    you over the last six years, I know what a student cantor at the Jewish Center of
• Wish List                         warm, hamish, participatory, intellectu- Princeton, NJ. Upon my investiture in
• Pajamarama                        ally challenging, and creative place       1985, they appointed me fulltime
                                    Society Hill Synagogue is. I am looking Hazzan, and I served them for 14 years.
                                    forward to davenning together on
14 - 15                             Shabbat and the hagim (holidays), to Wishing to expand my ability to serve
• July and August Calendar          learning from each other at Torah study the Jewish community and to deepen
                                    and monthly classes, to working with my Jewish knowledge and understand-
                                    some of our exceptional young people ing, I resigned from the Jewish Center
         418 Spruce Street          and their families as they prepare for the in 1996 and enrolled in the rabbinical
         Philadelphia, PA 19106
         215.922.6590 Phone         momentous occasion of their B’nai          program at the Academy for Jewish
         215.922.6599 Fax           Mitzvah, and to traveling with one         Religion. As a student I was Rabbi and
                                    another on an exciting trip to explore the Cantor of the String of Pearls
                                    art, architecture, and Jewish roots of congregation in Princeton, and after
                                    Spain’s Golden Age at the conclusion of receiving rabbinic ordination in 2000 I
                                    the year.                                  served for seven years as rabbi and
                                                                Continued on page 13                          Continued on page 13

                   Rabbi’s Column                                   speeches is magnified in the closing speeches. The power-
                                                                    ful, soaring but lyrical quality of the oratory mixes
                                                                    powerfully with a tone of anxiety, fear and pleading as if
                    Forget Danielle Steele and                      Moses is attempting to reach into the future and protect the
                    Robert Ludlum; For Great                        people against their own nature.
                    Summer Reading Try                              This sense that Moses is trying to guide the people for
                    Deuteronomy                                     centuries to come is heightened from what we know about
                                                                    the writing of the Book of Deuteronomy. The core of the
    Rabbi Avi Winokur                                               book was “discovered” in 622/1 BCE during the reign of
                                                                    King Josiah.

    T       he Five Books of Moses are out of order. Genesis
            and Exodus are fine. You start the New Year with
            the great narrative epics of Genesis (think Thomas
    Mann’s Joseph and His Brothers) and the great founda-
                                                                    Historians believe that this “discovered” scroll was written
                                                                    and later edited by a group of literate scribes sometime
                                                                    between the reign of Hezekiah (around 700 BCE) and
                                                                    622/1 BCE and ascribed to Moses. Why?
    tional epic of the Jewish people in Exodus.

    The problem is Leviticus, Numbers and Deuteronomy. In           After the Davidic and Solomonic empire (legendary? think
    the middle of the school year, when youngsters are              King Arthur) collapsed at Solomon’s death (think break up
    becoming Bar/Bat Mitzvah and Shabbat attendance is              of the Round Table) around 922 BCE., there was a civil war
    relatively high, we spend between two and three months          in which the north (Israel) seceded from the south (Judah).
    on the third book of the Torah, Leviticus. Leviticus, with      These two little rump kingdoms survived, sometimes as
    its several chapters on the laws of sacrifice; Leviticus with   adversaries and sometimes as allies, until 722 BCE, when
    its laws of purity and impurity and its colorful evocations     the Assyrian empire swooped down from the north and east
    of bodily emissions and mold on houses; Leviticus with          and swallowed up Israel.
    its description of the ordination of priests. Sure, there is
    some wonderful and inspiring, interesting and                   According to the first four books, this was not supposed to
    provocative material, but much of the book…well; it isn’t       happen. Israel was to come into the Promised Land and all
    exactly Numbers or Deuteronomy.                                 was to proceed swimmingly. In other words, the basic
                                                                    premise of Exodus, Leviticus and Numbers had been
    Poor Numbers, poor Deuteronomy. While mid-Atlantic              undermined by history! The Holy Scriptures were wrong! It
    Jews are ”downa shore” and no one wants a midsummer             appeared that God had reneged on God’s promise. A
    Bar/Bat Mitzvah, we come to the second half of the Book         full-fledged crisis of faith was unfolding. While we have no
    of Numbers with its soaring prose and moving pathos.            records of how it was handled on a day-to-day basis, we
    Poor Numbers, poor Deuteronomy—they never get their             know that the end product was Deuteronomy.
                                                                    In Deuteronomy, a new theology was grafted onto the old.
    For those of you who are around on Saturdays during the         It stipulated that the Israelites’ sojourn in the Promised
    summer, let me introduce you to Deuteronomy. More               Land was conditional on their meeting the terms of the
    than any other of the five books, we know the most about        covenant. Thus it was that the Israelite violation of the
    Deuteronomy’s provenance.                                       covenant—most especially idolatry, arrogance and
                                                                    mistreatment of the poor—brought about the Assyrian
    As written, the book purports to be Moses’ final speeches       conquest of the Northern Kingdom of Israel. However, if
    to the Israelites before they cross into the Promised Land.     the people repented, then God would gather the exiled
    God has told Moses that he will not cross the Jordan nor        Israelites and bring them back to their ancestral land.
    lead the people into the Promised Land, and so Moses is
    keenly aware that this is his last opportunity to address       Thanks to the insights of history, we know that even as the
    the people. The book is composed of introductory                Deuteronomists were putting new words in Moses’ mouth,
    hortatory speeches (including the Shema and v’ahavta            they knew that those words had come to pass with respect
    passages) and a compendium of laws, followed by closing         to the conquest of the Northern Kingdom and the exile of
    hortatory speeches and concluding poems/songs.                  its leaders.

    The soaring prose of the speeches has an almost desper-         What the writers did not know was that the Southern
    ate quality, constantly exhorting the Israelites to be true     Kingdom would face the same fate at the hands of the
    to the covenant and warning them of their likely failure        Babylonians, who also destroyed the first temple in
    and its consequences. The intensity of the opening                                                          Continued on page 7
                                                                                      SUMMER 2009 | 5769                     3

                 President’s Column                            Next, I am pleased to report that all High Holy Day
                                                               information packets have been completely revised and
                                                               mailed to each member household. Please take the time
                 The Kesher: Hot Off the                       to go through the forms and update your membership
                 Press in Hard Copy                            information. The office has provided the information we
                                                               have in our data base; please fill in what might be miss-
                                                               ing! Then, fill out request, volunteer, and Memorial Book
Staci Schwartz                                                 forms so that all planning for the High Holy Days can be
                                                               completed over the summer.
Mrs. Goldfarb takes her son, Moishe, to the beach. She sets
up the chairs and umbrella and places the cooler in the        In several recent Kesher articles, Terry Novick, Religion
shade. Then the routine begins:                                Committee Chair, and I have laid out for you the plans
                                                               for Rabbi Winokur’s sabbatical in the year ahead. As
“Moishe, come over here. Don’t go in the water—you’ll          mentioned, Rabbi Winokur will officiate with Cantor Bob
drown!”                                                        Freedman at all High Holy Day services in September.
                                                               Rabbi Winokur’s sabbatical begins on October 1, after
“Moishe, don’t play with the sand—it will get in your eye      which Rabbi Marjorie Berman will begin leading our
and scratch your cornea!”                                      weekly Shabbat services through June of 2010. (See
“Moishe, stay out of the sun—you’ll get sunstroke!”            Rabbi Berman’s remarks on Cover.) She also will be
                                                               teaching a monthly class (dates and times TBA). In
“Oy vey, Moishe, how did you get to be such a nervous          addition, she will be working with our B’nai Mitzvah
child?”                                                        candidates and officiating at all holiday and B’nai Mitzvah
                                                               services that occur between October 2009 and June 2010

        lthough I have several updates to share with you in    along with Cantor Freedman, who will also be providing
        this summer issue of our newsletter, by far the most   B’nai Mitzvah tutoring for our students on an individual
        conspicuous development is that you are once again     basis. (See Cantor Freedman’s remarks on Cover .)
able to hold a hard copy of the Kesher in your hand!           On July 31, Cantor Rebecca Carl will complete her
                                                               appointment as our Interim Cantor (please see Terry
As you know, the Board elected to switch the Kesher to an      Novick’s article on page 9 for information about Cantor
on-line version in keeping with the many “green” changes       Carl’s future plans), but we are happy to announce that
we have been implementing at our shul over the past few        she will continue to teach the B’nai Mitzvah group class
years. Additionally, the on-line version saved the costs of    on Tuesday evenings following Hebrew School. Please
staff production hours and the printing and mailing of hard    join us on Saturday, July 25 for Cantor Carl’s final
copies to our membership. We have learned, however, that       Shabbat service as our Interim Hazzan followed by a
for a variety of reasons, a majority of our members do not     special Kiddush luncheon in appreciation of all of her
like the on-line version of the Kesher. The result has been    hard work this past year.
that fewer folks are reading it, and consequently, they are
not feeling as connected to the activities, programs, and      The next issue of the Kesher will be sent out at the
special events that are going on at SHS. Apparently, many      beginning of September. Until then, please check the
of our members prefer a newsletter they can hold in their      weekly congregational e-mails for Synagogue news and
hands, one they can read without sitting in front of their     information.
computer screens where they must scroll through the text,
and one from which they can tear items of interest to tack     Finally, I want to wish everyone a safe and relaxing
onto their refrigerators. Because the Board of Directors       summer. And remember, when you are out enjoying the
along with Rabbi Winokur unanimously agree that it is of       sunshine at the park, on the beach, or at the pool—tell
vital importance to keep our members informed,                 your friends, family, and colleagues about our wonderful
engaged, and excited about what is going on in our             “gem of a shul,” and invite them to join!
community, we have elected to solicit ads from local
businesses and individuals to support the cost of producing
and mailing hard copies of the Kesher to accommodate our
congregation. To those members who do like the on-line
version of the Kesher—no worries—each month, it will still
be posted on the SHS Web site as a PDF file. Of course, if
you would prefer not to receive the hard copy version, you
should call the office at 215.922.6590 and ask that your
name be removed from the mailing list.

    Birthdays                  Birthdays               Birthdays
    July 1                     July 15                 July 31
    Neil Epstein               Ethan Pearlstein        Judy Gelles
    Abigail Shapiro            Norman Rosenthal        Sam Singer
    Amy Steerman               Betty van de Rijn       Lev Ziskind
    July 2                     July 16
    Stanley Barg               Laurette Feltoon        Anniversaries
    Carmen Hayman              Liza Gendler
                               Estelle Packer          July 2
    July 3                                             Daniel and Madeleine Becker
    Noah Marston Davidson      July 17
    Meta Sklar                 Juliet Englander        July 4
    Gabriel Stemmer            Jeff Morgan             Richard and Judy Gelles
                               Judy Woloff
                                                       July 22
    July 4
                                                       Steven and Sally Gendler
    Jacqueline Rick            July 18
                               Johanne Greenblatt      July 29
    July 5                     Anna Rubinov
                                                       Theodore and Diane Siegel Danoff
    Claire Golding             Gabriel Steerman
                               Michael Temin
    July 6                                             Birthdays
    Madeleine Becker           July 20
    Howard Levin               Mary Ann Stover         August 1
    William Steinberger                                Irving Gitomer
    Alton Sutnick              July 21                 Gabriel Nadel
                               Macy Krohner
    July 7                     Joseph Poulshock        August 2
    Richard Gelles                                     Peggy Backal
    Joseph Gifford             July 23
    Adam Glasofer              Harry Oxman             August 3
    Alice Goldenberg           Craig Pressman          Mary Kirson
                               Melanie Rivkin          Irving Shapiro
    July 8                     James Wilson            David Weisman
    Carla Krasnick
                               July 24                 August 4
    July 10                    Samantha Chaikin        Nina Saligman
    Robert Becker              Reuben Treatman         Debbie Stewart
    Marcia Gitomer
                               July 26                 August 5
    July 11                    Zachary Goldberg        Fran Newberg
    Mitchell Bach                                      Louis Pearlstein
                               July 27
    July 12                    Libby Harwitz Blender   August 6
    Jacqueline Ewenstein       Gideon Siff             Michael Ladenson

    July 13                    July 28                 August 7
    Matthew Siff               Baruch Blumberg         Sophia Becker
    Amelia Squires                                     Mark Steinberger
    Madeline Squires           July 29
                               Juliette Snyder         August 8
    July 14                                            Enid Kozlov
    Marc Schwartz              July 30                 Myer Magen
                               Tony Lalli              Jerry Roller
                                                                    SUMMER 2009 | 5769               5

Birthdays               Birthdays                              Anniversaries
August 9                August 25                              August 15
Valerie Pipano          Karen Edelstein                        Bruce and Charlene Hirsch
                        Jeffrey Lichtman                       Raphael Licht and
August 11               Jacqueline Sirota                              Gabrielle Applebaum
Leo Aaron
Cobrin Ballen Stanish   August 26                              August 17
                        Dan Rosin                              Mark and Tobey Dichter
August 12               Tracey Weiss                           Alton and Mona Sutnick
Wendy Rosen
                        August 28                              August 18
August 13               Bonny Hohenberger                      Julian and Sheila Katz
Wendy Leebov            Michael Naidoff
                                                               August 19
August 14               August 29                              Peter and Susan Eizen
Abigail Bladen          Corey Becker
Judith Schiller         Barry Bernsten                         August 20
                        Hannah Prokup                          Harry and Eleanor Oxman
August 15
Lola Ender              August 31                              August 21
Marsha Silver Heit      Claudia Balderston                     Brian Rotter and Marsha Silver Heit
                        Anu Khatri
August 16                                                      August 23
                        Hillary Ladov
Amy Cuker                                                      Bart and Betty Kaplan
                        Brett Pinto
Andrew Mathis                                                  Jerry and Joan Roller
                        Marvin Sachs
Isaak Popkin                                                   Stanton and Merle Salkin

                                                               August 24
August 17
                                                               Dan and Anya Rosin
Debby Freedman
Harvey Weiner                                                  August 25
                                                               Jeffrey and Jodi Scott
August 18
Susan Eizen                                                    August 26
                                                               Myron Bloom and Nancy Moses
August 19                                                      David and Cheryle Rosen
Edwin Krauss            Anniversaries                          David and Megan Weisman
August 20                                                      August 27
Terry Graboyes          August 1                               Melody and Michael Goldberg
                        Alan Zuckerman and Rita Bernstein      Martin Rosenberg and Ellen Fennick
August 21
Sally Poulshock         August 4                               Aug 28
Ruben Sigman            Bentley and Jane Saul                  William and Sari Love
Elise Wolf Williams
                        August 8                               August 29
August 22               Hersh and Enid Kozlov                  David and Sayde Ladov
Amy Katzen
Janet Kroll             August 10                              August 30
                        Joseph and Sally Poulshock             Burton Blender and
August 23               Richard Summers and Merrily Williams           Libby Harwitz Blender
Fredric Etskovitz
Elana Hunter            August 14                              August 31
Nathaniel Popkin        Paul and Judith Farber                 Jeffrey and Frances Barton
Brian Rotter                                                   Ronald and Carla Krasnick
                                                               Brent and Laurel Landau

                       Ann Spak Thal Hebrew School                                 Playschool
                        Please Send in Your School                                 Our Summer Camp
                        Registration Forms ASAP                                    Is Under Way
                       Merle Salkin                                                Gloria Parris

                  ummertime and the livin' is easy.” All
                  true, but don't hesitate a moment longer to
                  complete School Registration Forms for the
                                                                   T      he Playschool Camp program has always been a
                                                                          wonderful way for children ages two to four years
                                                                          old to spend their summers. Many of our
                                                                   Playschool students continue their preschool experience in
    Fall session. If your child's form disappeared on your desk,   our camp. We also welcome children who are just
                                                                   beginning preschool to spend their summers with us.
    you can download it from our Web site or call the office
    for a replacement. September's important dates for             A typical camp day begins with playtime in the classroom.
    Hebrew and Sunday School:                                      The children become involved with art projects, listening
                                                                   to stories, imaginative play in the kitchen and car and
                                                                   truck areas, building with blocks, putting puzzles together,
    Sunday 9/13        Sunday School (SS) - 9-10:50 AM             and playing with table-top toys. We sing morning songs
                       Rabbi's Class and Orientation - 9:15 AM     to welcome our campers. Before it gets too hot, we take
                       Hebrew School (HS) - 11 AM-1 PM             the children outside for bike riding. Following outdoor
                       Rabbi's Class and Orientation - 1:15 PM     play, the children eat their healthy snack, which is
                                                                   generously provided by one family each day.
    Tuesday 9/15       Hebrew School and Hebrew High               When the children have finished eating, we alternate
                       Classes - 4:15-6:15 PM                      taking groups of children to the kiddie pools on the patio.
                                                                   The children always enjoy showering themselves with
                                                                   water to keep their bodies cool in the summer heat. This is
    Saturday 9/19 SS Rosh Hashanah Services
                                                                   also the time when some of the children play in our
                  9:30-10:15 AM                                    smaller preschool classroom while the remaining children
                  HS Rosh Hashanah Services                        are busy creating art projects. This summer, some of our
                  10:45 AM-12:30 PM                                art themes are the beach, outer space, insects, and
                                                                   plants. The children create all sorts of art projects
                                                                   reflecting these themes. They display their art work in the
    Sunday 9/27        No School
                                                                   Social Hall as well as taking their projects home to share
                                                                   with their families. Each week, we have a cooking project,
    Monday 9/28        SS Yom Kippur Services                      such as making Jello with gummy fish to create an ocean
                        9:30-10:15 AM                              scene or baking cookies. The boys and girls also
                       HS Yom Kippur Services                      participate in movement activities, aerobics, and playing
                                                                   musical instruments. On Fridays, we celebrate Shabbat
                       10:45 AM -12:30 PM
                                                                   with Cantor Carl leading us in songs and blessings. We
                                                                   end our fun-filled camp day after eating lunch.
    Parents and students will receive School Calendars and
    High Holy Day mailings in August.                              The Playschool Summer Camp will end on Wednesday,
                                                                   July 29. We are looking forward to the upcoming school
                                                                   year in early September, when we will welcome back our
                                                                   returning students and meet our new incoming students.
                                                                   Have a great summer!

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                                                                                                    SUMMER 2009 | 5769                7

Development Committee                                               Rabbi’s Column                            continued from page 2

                                                                    Jerusalem some 40 years after the “discovery” of the
Our Fundraising Goals for the Coming                                scroll of proto-Deuteronomy. Nor did those scribes nec-
Year—and Beyond                                                     essarily know that those exiled in 722 would be lost for-
                                                                    ever (the ten lost tribes) while those exiled later in 587/6
Michael Hafter                                                      BCE.would be saved by Cyrus the Persian’s conquest of
                                                                    the Babylonians.

F      or Society Hill Synagogue, like most synagogues,
       fundraising is a continuing challenge. We have four
       efforts currently underway, each of which is critical
to the health of the Synagogue:
                                                                    So we read the desperate yearning in Deuteronomy with
                                                                    the hindsight of history, and its beautifully cadenced
                                                                    rhetoric is tinged with pathos that its writers could only
                                                                    partially have known. Deuteronomy is a beautifully writ-
•   Annual Giving, including appeals and events that raise          ten book rendered all the more powerful by its historical
    money for the general fund, covering the shortfall be-          context. We begin reading it on July 25 this year. Join us
    tween the revenues generated by membership, dues, and           at 9 AM for Torah study on Saturdays if you are not
    tuitions, and our day-to-day operating expenses                 “downa shore.”
•   A matching grant from Partners for Sacred Places (PFSP)
    to allow us to undertake much needed structural repairs
    to our existing building                                        Social Action
•   The Capital Campaign, allowing us the opportunity to
    provide new classroom space for our schools and for             Photography and Writing Students in
    adult education, as well as allowing us to renovate and
    update our existing facilities                                  Fleisher Art Show
•   Attracting and retaining a significant number of addi-
    tional members not only to reduce budgetary pressures,          Phyllis Denbo

    but also to bring new energy and vitality to the congre-
    gation                                                                  en seventh-grade girls from the George
                                                                            Washington Elementary School participated in
Under the leadership of Bob Blacksberg and Walter Ferst,                    this year’s Photography and Writing Program.
the Development Committee has been formed to coordinate             The program was held in the new digital photography
these efforts by taking a comprehensive approach to our             studio at the Fleisher Art Center over a ten-week period
fiscal needs and focusing our efforts to achieve our goals.         that concluded at the end of May. The girls were invited
                                                                    to display their photographs in the annual student
The Development Committee’s first job was to complete the           exhibition for the residency programs at Fleisher, a four-
Annual Giving campaign for the fiscal year that ended June          week show that ended in mid-June. The students’ photos
30. The budget anticipated $90,000 in Annual Giving;                will then be hung in the Society Hill Synagogue lobby
however, in April we still had a shortfall of $50,000, much of      through the end of September.
which has now been covered. Next year’s budget anticipates
over $100,000 in annual giving. Efforts to raise it will begin      The work of last year’s group of Washington students
this summer and will continue throughout the upcoming               continues to receive important recognition. Through the
fiscal year. Several fundraising events are contemplated,           program’s director, Judy Gelles, we received an invita-
starting with a wine tasting in September.                          tion for the students to participate in the worldwide pro-
                                                                    gram In Our Global Village, a service-learning project
                                             Continued on page 12   involving a collaborative exchange of local stories that
                                                                    are shared with a worldwide community of schools. Ms.
                                                                    Gelles compiled a book of photographs taken last year
                                                                    by the students. Each student photographer is identified
                                                                    by name on a separate page in the book, followed by
                                                                    photos of himself, his family, and his neighborhood.

                                                                    Copies of this book will be shared with schools across
                                                                    the United States and in other countries, beginning with
                                                                    Tanzania. In return, George Washington Elementary has
                                                                    already received a copy of a book produced by a school
                                                                                                               Continued on page 8
    Baby & Me Group                                                                  at Shabbat services, hosting Taste of Judaism classes, send-
                                                                                     ing official SHS onesies to all newborns in our community,
    Experimenting With Summer                                                        and calling any folks who have, for some reason or other,
                                                                                     chosen to resign from the Synagogue.
    Meeting Times and Locations
                                                                                     This year, under the leadership of Andrea and Rafi, we
    Laurel Landau                                                                    hope to extend our inreach and outreach efforts and

                                                                                     explore new and creative ways to attract members to our
            ociety Hill Synagogue’s Baby & Me group meets                            “gem of a shul.”
            the needs of our growing number of young
                                                                                     If you know of any friends, family members, colleagues, or
            families with babies under the age of two. Since
                                                                                     neighbors who might be interested in joining SHS, please
    our inception in January, we have enjoyed several lively                         encourage them to send their name, phone number, or
    and informative sessions. As you can see from these                              e-mail address to our Executive Director, Betty van de Rijn
    adorable pictures, the babies have a blast (and the                              at, and she will see that a
    mothers do, too!). Although we generally meet on the                             membership packet is sent to them as soon as possible.
    2nd and 4th Fridays of each month from 1PM to 3PM
    in the rear playschool classroom, this summer we will be                         Good things are happening at SHS. Please share the
                                                                                     excitement and help us to grow!
    experimenting with alternate times and locations. More
    information will follow by e-mail.
                                                                                     Young Professionals Group
    If you are inadvertently not receiving our e-mails and
    would like to, please contact Laurel Landau at
                                                                                     Concert Under the Stars
                                                                                     Julie Wilson and Laurel Landau

                                                                                     P        lease join us for an evening at the Mann Center in
                                                                                              Fairmount Park on Wednesday, July 29. We will
                                                                                              have a picnic on the lawn at 7 PM followed by a
                                                                                     Philadelphia Orchestra concert under the stars at 8 PM.
                                                                                     Lawn tickets will be $10 at the door. Please RSVP to Julie
    Left to Right: Jeremy   Landau, Aldo Friedman, Mason Seder, & Gabriel Goldberg
                                                                                     at or Laurel at
    Membership Committee

    Congratulations to our new                                                       Interfaith Group
    Membership Committee Co-Chairs:                                                  Erica Ginsburg
    Andrea Appel and Raphael Licht
    Staci Schwartz

    P       lease join me in welcoming the new Co-Chairs of
            the Membership Committee: Andrea Appel and
            Raphael Licht. As mentioned in a previous Kesher
                                                                                     L      ook for information on summertime Interfaith
                                                                                            activities in the weekly congregational e-mails.
                                                                                            Interfaith Group articles will resume in the
                                                                                     September issue of the Kesher.

    article, Marcie Ziskind has recently stepped down as                             We are looking forward to another year of interesting
    Chair of the Membership Committee and we thank her
                                                                                     opportunities to learn and share with our participating
    again for her many years of dedicated service.
                                                                                     Interfaith Group partners: Old St. Joseph's Catholic
    Over the years, members of the Membership Committee                              Church, Old Pine Presbyterian Church, Historic St.
    have been responsible for contacting and welcoming new                           George's United Methodist Church, and the Muslim group
    and prospective members, organizing the annual Open
                                                                                     Dialogue Forum.
    House and New Member Dinner in the Sukkah, greeting
                                                                                                 SUMMER 2009 | 5769
Religion Committee
Our Thanks to Cantor Carl                                               Contact Information for College Age
                                                                                 and Young Adult
Terry Novick                                                                Children of SHS Members

         n July 31, we will be saying goodbye to Cantor             To meet his mission of attracting more young adults to
         Rebecca Carl as our Interim Hazzan. However, she           our synagogue, Rabbi Winokur wants us to build a
         will not be going far; she will be entering the Clinical   database of the young adult children of SHS members.
Pastoral Education Program at Einstein Healthcare Network,          We need the following information:
right here in Philadelphia. And, to our delight, she will
                                                                    •    Name of the young adult;
continue to teach the students in next year’s Hay class to help
                                                                    •    Single or partnered?
prepare them for their B’nai Mitzvah. (This class will                       (with name of partner and/or children);
complement the individual sessions the children will have           •    Contact information
with Cantor Bob Freedman— our new, part-time Hazzan for                      (address, phone #, email address);
next year.)                                                         •    Did he/she receive a Jewish education at SHS?
                                                                        If not, where?
We have enjoyed Cantor Carl’s many contributions to our
                                                                    •    Birth date and Bar/t Mitzvah date, and
                                                                        if Bar/t Mitzvah was at SHS;
services and our children’s education, and we are glad that we
                                                                    •    Current Jewish affiliation, if any?
will see her at SHS in the fall!                                        Any other relevant information we should know?

                                                                    Several studies have recently been conducted on the
Please join us on Saturday, July 25 at 10 AM for Cantor             Jewish lives of the NextGen and Millennials. Would
Carl’s final Shabbat service as our Interim Hazzan. To show         you like Rabbi Winokur to forward pdf versions to
our appreciation for all of her hard work and dedication this       you? Let us know and please supply your contact in-
past year, a special Kiddush luncheon in her honor will follow      formation.
services.                                                           Please respond to the Rabbi with “Next Gen” in the
                                                                    subject line @
                                                                    Thanks so much for your cooperation.
Connections Group
                                                                    Social Action                         continued from page 7
Contact Me with Your Ideas
                                                                    in Tanzania. A copy of the book compiled by Ms.
Ilene Marker
                                                                    Gelles was presented to each of the Washington stu-

          onnections had a fun spring: Mah Jongg lessons, a         dents, thanks to a generous gift from the following SHS
          private Pilates class, and a tour of Jewish               members who joined me in supporting this endeavor:
          Philadelphia! We're taking July and August off, but       Terry Novick, Judith Widman, and Ann Lebowitz
hope to have at least the first several months of the 2009–10       Steinberger.
season lined up by the start of the fall. What would make
Connections more fun? YOU! To get on the e-mail list (and
be the first to know about upcoming activities), send your e-
mail address to And please speak up if
you have an idea for a session, or if you can recommend
someone to lead an activity. Based on a spring poll, the group
is interested in cultural events, cooking, knitting, CPR,
architectural tours, yoga. And lots more!

     General Fund                                                   PFSP Restoration Fund
     In Honor of                                                    In Memory of
             The birth of Sam Levin
             Linda Joy Goldner                                             Rose Hechler
             Bob Blacksberg and Terry Novick                               Mannie Hechler
             Ruben Sigman                                                  Iris Levine
             The Ziskind Family
                                                                           Irwin Hersh
                                                                           Rina and Bill Mitchell
             Lev Ziskind’s Bar Mitzvah
             Lore Bryan
             Debby Freedman and David Wycoff                        In Honor of
                                                                           Lev Ziskind’s Bar Mitzvah
                                                                           Laurel and Brent Landau
             Lev Ziskind’s Bar Mitzvah                                     Betty and Marty van de Rijn
             Elizabeth Heit’s Bat Mitzvah
             Liza Gendler’s Bat Mitzvah                                    Michael Rochester and Carole LeFaivre-Rochester
             Nancy, Ray, Laura and Danny Swerdlow                          Brian and Juliet Englander

             Fran Gallun & Len Weinberg’s Granddaughter,                   The marriage of Ali and Scott van de Rijn
             Talia Danielle                                                The Ziskind Family
             Phyllis & Jay Denbo’s Granddaughter, Charlotte
             The birth of Carolyn & Jay Levin’s son, Samuel                Betty van de Rijn
             Rabbi Marjorie Berman for all her special teaching            Susan Berman and Rabbi Avi Winokur
             Barbara Zalkind
                                                                    Rabbi’s Discretionary Fund
     In Appreciation of                                             In Honor of
             SHS Services                                                  Marcia Gitomer
             Giuseppe Deluca                                               Her children, Risa and Peter, Beth and Andy,
                                                                           Cameran and David
     In Memory of
             Reva B. Goldner                                        In Appreciation of
             Linda Joy Goldner                                             Rabbi Winokur and our SHS family
                                                                           at the time of my sister’s passing
             Len Weinberg’s sister Elaine                                  Len Weinberg
             Bob Blacksberg and Terry Novick
             Mark Steinberger and Ann Lebowitz Steinberger                 Rabbi Avi Winokur
             The Ziskind Family                                            Jackie Ewenstein Y. H. Mirzoeff & Sons Foundation
             Robin Schatz
             Marc and Staci Schwartz                                In Memory of
                                                                           Jean Schertz Sablove
             Morris Meltzer                                                Bernard D. Brown
             Ron and Cookie Meltzer                                        Pelley and Stephen Brown

                                                                           Larry Schlosberg
             Senta King                                                    Gloria Schlosberg
             Lore Bryan
                                                                           Stuart Abramson
             Solomon Altman                                                Connie Golden
             Rita Altman
                                                                           Syde Feltoon
             Molly Weinberger                                              Ervin Feltoon
             Jacob Weinberger
                                                                    Playschool Fund
     Silver Heit Fund                                               In Honor of
                                                                           Our children
     In Honor of
             The marriage of Amy Ignatow and John Graham
                                                                           Michael and Talia Fisher
             Merle and Stanton Salkin
                                                                           The children
             The marriage of Ali and Scott van de Rijn                     Terry Graboyes
             Merle and Stanton Salkin
                                                                    In Appreciation of
     In Appreciation of                                                    Evan’s time at school
             Merle Salkin                                                  Michelle and John Large
             Joan Markman
                                                                                               SUMMER 2009 | 5769

                                                Memorial Plaque Dedication Shabbat
                                                       Friday, May 7, 2010
                               A new and special tradition was started at SHS in May 2009. We had our first
                               Memorial Plaque Dedication service where all families who had purchased a
                               plaque over the past year in memory of a loved one were invited to “unveil” the
                               plaque during a special memorial portion of a Friday night Shabbat service.
                               The next Memorial Plaque Dedication Service is scheduled for Friday, May 7,
                               2010. All are welcome to attend.
                                     Plaques need to be ordered by January 15, 2010 to be ready in time for this
                                                             annual dedication service.

                  Save the Date!
           Another fabulous
   Sunday, September 13, 4 to 7 PM
                 Watch for news
              about our special venue

                       If you know people who
                       attended last year's successful
                       wine tasting, you know that it
                       is the fundraising event
                           NOT TO BE MISSED!
                         Don't be left out! Mark
                        your calendars and plan to

                             Details to follow.

An Evening With Evan Fallenberg
Please join us on Wednesday, July 8 at 7:30 PM when Israeli novelist, Evan Fallenberg will discuss topics from his new
book, Light Fell.
Evan Fallenberg is a native of Cleveland, Ohio, a graduate of Georgetown University and the MFA
program in creative writing at Vermont College. He has lived in Israel since 1985, where he writes,
translates and teaches. His first novel, Light Fell (Soho Press, 2008), won the American Library
Association’s Barbara Gittings Stonewall Book Award for Literature and the Edmund White Award for
Debut Fiction, and was shortlisted for the National Jewish Book Award in fiction and a Lambda
Literary Award for Debut Fiction. Fallenberg’s recent translations include Ron Leshem’s Beaufort, Batya
Gur’s Murder in Jerusalem, Alon Hilu’s Death of Monk and The House of Dajani, and Meir Shalev’s
A Pigeon and a Boy, winner of the 2007 National Jewish book Award for fiction and a finalist for the
PEN Translation Prize. Fallenberg is an instructor in the Shaindy Rudoff Graduate Program in Creative
Writing at Bar-Ilan University and heads his own Studio for Writers (and Readers) of English in the
garden of his home. The recipient of a MacDowell Colony fellowship, Fallenberg is the father of two sons.
This event is co-sponsored by the Reconstructionist Rabbinical College, Society Hill Synagogue, and Congregation
Beth Ahavah of Rodeph Shalom.

     SHS Raffle and Auction Wish List
                                                                                  COMMUNITY NEWS
     Staci Schwartz, MD
                                                                                       Mazel Tov to
                                                                   Carolyn and Jay Levin on the birth of their son,
     To all SHS members:                                           Samuel.
                                                                   Nicole and Dan Perkins on the birth of their son,
     This year we have an exciting number of fundraisers           William Levi.
     planned. Though each event will be spectacular in and of      Wayne Spilove on the marriage of his daughter,
     itself, we thought we'd make them even better by asking       Samantha to Sean Teaford.
     folks to donate prizes that can be raffled or auctioned off   Judy and Stan Woloff on the engagement of their son,
     to several lucky members. Who doesn't love to go to a         Isaac to Abigail Kogen.
     party or an outing AND come home with a door prize?
                                                                                      Condolences to
                                                                   Len Weinberg and Family on the death of his sister,
     So, we are asking all of our members to please think of       Elaine Weinberg.
     some creative and glorious prizes that could be donated       Bobby Senick on the death of his father, Charles.
     for this purpose. Some suggestions include the following:
                                                                                  Welcome New Members
                                                                   Myron and Sheila Bassman
     •   a week or weekend at a member's vacation home
     •   sports tickets                                            Tom and Melissa Church
     •   theater tickets                                           Avi Galler and Debra Auspitz Galler
     •   wine                                                      Dan and Anya Rosin
     •   spa packages
     •   professional services: free consultations for services
                                                                   Ruth Schneeberg
         that your business provides, doctor/dental exams,                Asa
         photography services                                      Risa Stolker
     •   personal services: teach someone to master a skill that          Rebecca
         you have (Mah Jongg, Bridge, knitting, cooking a          Samantha and Sean Teaford
         gourmet meal or dessert, organizing a scrap book from
         a collection of photos)
     •   babysitting for a couple with young children
     •   jewelry or hand made crafts
     •   restaurant gift certificates

     If you are able to donate any of the above items, or you
     have wonderful ideas of your own, please contact Betty in
     the office at 215.922.6590, ext. 23.

     Thanks very much!
                                                                                                          SUMMER 2009 | 5769
Development Committee                       continued from page 7   Reconstructionist Rabbinical College in 2003, I have
                                                                    worked as the Director of Spiritual Development at Phila-
                                                                    delphia University and as a Spiritual Director at RRC, in
The responsibility of increasing and retaining additional           addition to teaching, counseling wedding couples, and
new members will be spearheaded by Andrea Appel and                 working with congregations in Kansas and St Croix.
Rafi Licht. If we can attract just 50 new member families to
the congregation, which would return membership back to             It’s certainly been an interesting journey thus far, and I’m
the level of 20 years ago, those dues alone not only would          expecting that this next leg will be as well!
cover the budget deficit, but also would provide much
needed services on an expanded basis. The Membership                A young student was asked by the famous Chasidic Gerer
Committee will look both within and outside the existing            Rabbi if he had learned Torah.
congregational community to attract new members, and
every member of the congregation is encouraged to help.             “Just a little,” replied the youth.
The PFSP grant is a matching grant giving us $1 for every           “That is all anyone ever has learned of the Torah.” was
$2 we raise up to $80,000. That means we have to raise              the Rabbi’s answer.
$160,000 to qualify for the whole $80,000 grant. The
money will go toward the $240,000 needed to make                    I look forward to learning a little more with all of you.
necessary repairs and improvements to the existing build-
ing, including critical repairs to the Synagogue’s roof,
windows, and security system, which must be completed by
February 2011. For the next two years, payment of the line          A Few Words from Cantor Bob Freedman               From Cover
item on your Synagogue invoice entitled “Building
Maintenance Fee” will be applied to the $160,000 goal and           cantor of Israel Congregation in Manchester, Vermont.
it is anticipated that that money will cover about two thirds
of the goal. The Development Committee will be exploring            I have been active in the Havurah and the Renewal
other means to raise the balance.                                   Movements. In the past several years I have taught
                                                                    courses and led workshops at Elat Hayyim, the Jewish
The successful first phase of the Capital Campaign enabled          Renewal Kallot, and the National Havurah Summer Insti-
us to acquire the property at 430 Spruce Street. The next           tute. Since November of 2007 I’ve been on the board of
phase will be to raise the funds for the renovation of that         the National Havurah Committee.
building and the integration of 430 Spruce with the current
building. While we will seek those contributions over a             I look forward to singing with you!
longer period of time, they are, nevertheless, vital to the
long-term viability and strength of our congregation.

A Few Words from Rabbi Marjorie Berman               From Cover

One of the opportunities of spending more time at SHS
this year means that I will have the chance to get to know
more of you! I thought I’d start by giving you a little bit of
my background.

 A native of Madison, Wisconsin, I traveled in the Far East
after college and worked with teens and families in crisis
before joining Hillel, where I served students at the Univer-
sity of Wisconsin, Swarthmore, Bryn Mawr, and Haverford
Colleges, and the University of Pennsylvania. I then com-
pleted a year of chaplaincy training at the University of
Pennsylvania Hospital before spending a year living in

I began Rabbinical School in 1997, and also studied family
and couples’ counseling at the Penn Council for Relation-
ships. While in seminary, I served congregations in Florida,
Missouri, and the Virgin Islands. Since graduating from the

                                       July - Tammuz/Av 5769
        Sun           Mon             Tue                Wed              Thu             Fri              Sat
                                                                      1         2                  3                   4
                                                                                       No Friday         4th of July
       ELM—Education Leadership Meeting                                              Night Services
       EC—Executive Committee Meeting                                                                    Shabbat
       SS—Sunday School                                                                                 Hukat-Balak
                                                                                                           9 AM
       HS—Hebrew School                                                                                 Torah Study
       HH—Hebrew High School                                                                              10 AM
       PS—Playschool                                                                 Building Closed     Services

                5                 6             7                     8          9               10                    11
                                      7:15 AM                                          No Friday       Shabbat Pinhas
                                      Minyan         6:30 PM SHS                     Night Services
                                                     Pajamarama at                                         9 AM
                                                     Barnes & Noble                                     Torah Study

                                                        7:30 PM                                           10 AM
                                                     An Evening with                                      Services
                                                     Evan Fallenberg

               12                13             14                  15          16               17                    18
                                      7:15 AM                                          No Friday         Shabbat
                                      Minyan                                         Night Services     Matot-Masei

                                                                                                           9 AM
                                                                                                        Torah Study
                      7:30 PM
                     Education                                                                            10 AM
                     Committee                                                                            Services

               19                20             21                  22          23               24                    25
                                      7:15 AM                                          No Friday       Shabbat Hazon
                                      Minyan                                         Night Services
                      12:30 PM                                                                          Kiddush for
                        ELM                                                                             Cantor Carl

                                                                                                           9 AM
                                                                                                        Torah Study
                                                                                                       10 AM Services

               26                27             28                  29          30               31
                                      7:15 AM         Last Day of                      No Friday
                                      Minyan         Summer Camp                     Night Services

                                                      YPG Event at
                                                       The Mann

                                                       8 PM Erev
                                                       Tisha B’Av
                                                                               SUMMER 2009 | 5769

                                     August - Av/Elul 5769
  Sun             Mon              Tue            Wed        Thu             Fri              Sat
SAVE THESE DATES:                                                                            Nahamu
September 11—Friday Night Services Resume
October 4—Sukkot Family Service                                                               9 AM
October 17—Tot Shabbat Resumes                                                             Torah Study
October 24—Haverim Service Resumes                                                        10 AM Services
November 14—Family Services Resumes

           2                   3             4           5          6                 7                   8
               12:30 PM ELM        7:15 AM                                No Friday        Shabbat Ekev
                                   Minyan                               Night Services
                                                                                               9 AM
                                                                                            Torah Study
                                                                                          10 AM Services
                  7 PM EC                                               Building Closed

           9                  10             11         12         13                14                 15
                                   7:15 AM                                No Friday        Shabbat Re’eh
                                   Minyan                               Night Services

                                                                                               9 AM
                  7:30 PM                                                                   Torah Study
                 Education                                              Building Closed   10 AM Services

         16                   17             18         19         20                21                 22
               12:30 PM ELM        7:15 AM                                No Friday       Shabbat Shoftim
                                   Minyan                               Night Services

                                                                                               9 AM
                                                                                            Torah Study
                                                                        Building Closed   10 AM Services

         23                   24             25         26         27                28                 29
                                   7:15 AM                                No Friday          Shabbat
                                   Minyan                               Night Services       Ki Tetze

                   7 PM                                                                        9 AM
                  Board of                                              Building Closed     Torah Study
                  Directors                                                               10 AM Services

         30                   31

Avi Winokur, Rabbi
Rebecca Carl, Cantor
Staci Schwartz, President
Betty van de Rijn, Executive Director
Merle Salkin, Education Director
Gloria Parris, Playschool Director

418 Spruce Street
Philadelphia, PA 19106

Phone 215.922.6590
Fax 215.922.6599
                                                 SOCIETY HILL SYNAGOGUE’S KESHER

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