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					                                                      spring 2007 •           chct 5767                        VOLUME XXii no. 1

   JWB Jewish Chaplains
   Council facilitates                                                                                 Dear
   passover observances                                                                                Chaverim:
   for Jewish troops                                                                                   Chaplain Ira Kronenberg, USA
                                                                                   	    As	 I	 begin	 serving	 as	 the	 chairman	 of	 the	 RCA	
   By Miriam Rinn, JCC Association communications director                         Chaplaincy	 Committee,	 I	 would	 like	 to	 thank	 my	
                                                                                   predecessor	Rabbi	Jacob	Greenberg	for	all	his	hard	work	

       assover,	the	most	widely	celebrated	of	all	festivals	on	the	Jewish	         over	the	past	years.	One	of	my	major	goals	as	chair	will	be	
       calendar,	began	this	year	at	sundown	on	Monday,	April	2.	While	             to	increase	support	of	chaplains	by	the	RCA.	
       Jews	worldwide	gathered	around	Seder	tables,	the	holiday	was	               	    Jewish	 chaplains	 in	 the	 military	 will	 be	 facing	
a	trying	time	for	thousands	of	U.S.	servicemen	and	women	unable	to	                many	issues	in	the	coming	years.	None,	however,	is	as	
join	their	families	and	loved	ones.	Reaching	out	to	these	isolated	Jews	           important	 as	 the	 problem	 that	 has	 arisen	 concerning	
stationed	 at	 bases	 at	 home	 and	 overseas,	 JCC	 Association,	 through	        messianic	chaplains.	This	past	Pesach	in	Iraq,	a	messianic	
the	 JWB	 Jewish	 Chaplains	 Council,	 shipped	 600	 individual	 Seder	            chaplain	took	the	Seder	kits	provided	by	DLA	in	order	
kits	and	made	travel	arrangements	for	the	military	chaplains	who	led	              to	perform	a	“Jewish	Messianic	Seder.”	When	a	Jewish	
communal	Seders,	alleviating	the	loneliness,	particularly	acute	during	            LTC	asked	for	the	kits,	he	was	told	by	his	commander	
holiday	seasons,	that	accompanies	active	combat	duty.	                             and	 the	 brigade	 chaplain	 that	 they	 were	 given	 to	 the	
                                                                                   “rabbi.”	 After	 my	 repeated	 calls	 to	 CENTCOM,	 DLA,	
                                                     continued on page 10
                                                                                   and	 the	 MNF-I	 Chaplain’s	 Office	 the	 kit	 was	 given	 to	
                                                                                   the	 Jewish	 soldier.	 Rabbis	 Robinson	 and	 Goldstein	
                   rabbi Brad Hoffman joins                                        were	 also	 instrumental	 in	 getting	 the	 kits	 into	 the	
                                                                                   right	 hands.	 Fortunately	 for	 the	 Jewish	 soldiers,	 Brett	
                   JWB Jewish Chaplains                                            Oxman	 serves	 in	 the	 Pentagon.	 He	 was	 instrumental	
                   Council staff as special                                        in	getting	the	Chief	of	Chaplains’	office	to	tell	Theater	
                                                                                   `that	only	a	rabbi	can	perform	a	Jewish	service	and	that	
                   projects Consultant                                             the	messianic	chaplain,	who	is	endorsed	by	a	Protestant	
                                                                                   denomination,	cannot	advertise	a	Jewish	service.	Should	
                                          	     Rabbi	 Brad	 Hoffman,	
                                                                                   this	messianic	chaplain	want	to	be	a	“rabbi,”	he	must	be	
                                          a	 highly	 decorated	 Navy	
                                                                                   endorsed	by	JWB	Jewish	Chaplains	Council.
                                          chaplain,	 skilled	 educator,	
                                                                                   	    While	 we	 resolved	 the	 immediate	 problem,	 the	
                                          and	 adjunct	 professor	 at	
                                                                                   larger	issue	will	not	just	go	away.	It	is	vitally	important	
                                          Saint	 Joseph’s	 University	
                                                                                   that	the	entire	spectrum	of	the	Jewish	community	be	
                                          and	Philadelphia	University	
                                                                                   united	on	this	issue.	The	military	needs	to	know	that	
                                          in	 Philadelphia,	 has	 joined	
                                                                                   although	we	might	have	multiple	endorsing	agencies,	
                                          the	 JWB	 Jewish	 Chaplains	
                                                                                   the	 Jewish	 community	 speaks	 with	 one	 voice	 and	        	
                   Council	 staff	 as	 special	 projects	 consultant.	
                                                                                   from	one	address.	
                   Hoffman	 received	 ordination	 from	 the	 Jewish	
                   Theological	 Seminary	 of	 America,	 holds	 an	 M.S.	           Chaplain, (COL) Ira Kronenberg
                   Ed	form	Old	Dominion	University,	M.S	OD	from	                   Chairman RCA delegation
                   Saint	Joseph’s	University,	studied	at	Penn	Council	             JWB Jewish Chaplains Council
                                                      continued on page 5

                                     The JWB Jewish Chaplains Council is a U.S. government-accredited agency for serving the religious and social
                                     needs of Jewish military personnel, their families, and patients in VA hospitals. It is a vital component of JCC
                                     Association of North America, the leadership network of—and central agency for—350 JCC, YM-YWHA and JCC
                                     camp sites in the U.S. and Canada, who annually serve more than one million members. JCC Association offers
                                     a wide range of services and resources enabling its affiliates to provide educational, cultural and recreational
                                     programs to enhance the lives of North American Jewry.
   LT Risa Simon, Jewish Lay Leader leads Jewish personnel
   assigned to Victory Base Complex, Baghdad, Iraq as they
   celebrate Purim.

 pUriM CELEBratiOns
 help bolster morale at home and abroad

                                                                 arabian sea: Jewish Lay Leader Lt. Josh Taylor (right)
                                                               with (left to right) Machinist’s Mate Third Class Dmitri Mata,
                                                               Yeoman Tyler Farrar, Avionics Electronics Technician Third
                                                               Class Aaron Shwarts, and Aviation Boatswain’s Mate - Handler
                                                               Third Class Amanda Weinberg celebrate Purim with fresh-
                                                               baked hamantaschen in the ship’s chapel March 03 aboard
                                                               the Nimitz-class aircraft carrier USS John C. Stennis (CVN 74).
                                                               Stennis, as part of the John C. Stennis Carrier Strike Group, is
                                                               on a regularly scheduled deployment in support of Maritime
                                                               Security Operations (MSO). MSO help set the conditions for
                                                               security and stability, as well as aid counter-terrorism and
                                                               security efforts to the regional nations. (U.S. Navy photo by
                                                               Lieutenant Chaplain Scott Callaham)

                                      Middle East: Lt Col
                                   Hayman, Major(s) Richard
                                   Greenman, Capt Avnet,
                                   1Lt Michelle McCarroll, a
                                   guest, and Chaplain Sarah
                                   Schechter, USAF, holding
                                   shlach manot from Israel
                                   and the United States as
                                   they celebrate Purim.

2 • CHapLinEs • VOLUME XXii, no. 1
                                                                               a purim message
                                                                               in tune with the
                                                                               torah mandate:
                                                                               “Do not forget”
                                                                               By Chaplain Mitchell Schranz
                                                                               	     I	 returned	 from	 Iraq	 this	
                                                                               summer,	and	we	spent	part	of	
                                                                               our	 homecoming	 leave	 at	 the	
                                                                               Edelweiss	 Inn	 in	 Garmisch.	
                                                                               Many	 of	 you	 have	 probably	
                                                                               been	there.
                                                                               	     One	day	we	took	a	trip	to	Berchtesgaden,	the	
                                                                               site	 of	 Hitler’s	 retreat,	 also	 known	 as	 the	 Eagle’s	
                                                                               Nest.	 I	 needed	 to	 see	 this	 with	 my	 own	 eyes,	
                                                                               and	wanted	to	say	a	kaddish	there	for	those	who	
                                                                               perished	 in	 the	 Shoah.	 One	 cannot	 describe	 the	
                                                                               emotion	 one	 feels	 being	 in	 the	 same	 place	 that	
                                                                               Hitler	 and	 his	 murderers	 spent	 their	 happiest	
                                                                               days,	planning	the	destruction	of	our	people,	and	
                                                                               a	world	war.
                                                                               	     A	few	days	later,	my	wife	and	I	were	trying	to	
                                                                               decide	what	to	do.	We	wanted	to	go	to	Dachau,	but	
                                                                               were	unsure	how	it	would	effect	our	children.	We	
                                                                               were	talking	about	this	outside	the	hotel	lobby.	A	
                                                                               young	 German	 woman,	 mid-20’s,	 overheard	 our	
Rabbi Yossi Mandel of the Chabad Jewish Center of Everett, WA, who led the     conversation.	She	looked	like	what	some	might	call	
megillah reading at NAS Whidbey Island, explains the Purim story to children
with Purim finger puppets.
                                                                               a	punk-rocker.	After	apologizing	for	interrupting	
                                                                               us	and	introducing	herself,	she	told	us	her	husband	
                                                                               was	a	US	soldier	from	Mexico,	then	serving	in	Iraq.	
purim celebration                                                              She	 suggested	 that	 even	 though	 she	 understood	
                                                                               why	it	would	be	hard	to	visit	Dachau,	we	needed	
at Whidbey island, Wa                                                          to	 go	 there,	 to	 see	 for	 ourselves	 what	 happened,	
                                                                               and	 what	 her	 people	 had	 done.	 We	 could	 sense	
	    Jewish	military	families	at	NAS	Whidbey	Island,	WA	celebrated	       	    her	sadness	talking	about	this,	and	she	expressed	
Purim	with	a	Megillah	reading	and	kids’	Purim	party	at	the	base	chapel.        her	hope	that	the	world	would	never	forget	what	
	    Rabbi	Yossi	Mandel	of	the	Chabad	Jewish	Center	of	Everett,	WA	            happened	to	the	Jewish	people.
traveled	 to	 Whidbey	 Island	 with	 his	 wife	 Chaya	 and	 four	 children	    	     We	did	in	fact	make	the	trip	to	Dachau.	I	was	
to	 read	 the	 Megillah	 and	 provide	 perspectives	 on	 Purim	 for	 the	      impressed	that	they	made	no	attempt	to	cover	up	
participants.	A	kids’	craft	table	helped	teach	the	children	the	Purim	         the	enormity	of	the	crimes	they	committed	there.	
story	 with	 Purim	 coloring	 pages,	 finger	 puppets,	 and	 masks.	 Rabbi	    The	 Jewish	 memorials	 are	 poignant	 and	 well-
Mandel	brought	hamentaschen,	graggers,	and	Megillahs	to	add	to	the	            maintained.	 Although	 we	 had	 heavy	 hearts	 after	
celebration.	The	NAS	Whidbey	Island	base	chaplains	dropped	in	to	              these	two	trips,	the	pain	was	lessened	by	that	brief	
share	in	the	festivities.	A                                                    encounter	 with	 a	 young	 German	 girl,	 who	 was	
                                                                               obviously	humane,	kind,	and	thoughtful.	A

                                                                                           spring 2007 •           chct 5767 • 3
   sEDEr nigHts
   aboard the Uss Harry truman
   By Lay Leader CDR Scott Moran

   	    I	 enjoyed	 a	 wonderful	 Passover	 Seder	 on	 USS	 Harry	 S	 Truman,	 led	
   by	 one	 of	 the	 crew	 members,	 MM3	 Jesse	 Kopelman.	 Jesse	 led	 a	 Seder	 for	
   approximately	forty	personnel	that	included	a	variety	of	faith	groups.	About	
   a	 dozen	 of	 these	 individuals	 are	 active	 in	 the	 ship’s	 Jewish	 community	
   led	 by	 Jesse.	 Interestingly,	 the	 ship’s	 commanding	 officer,	 CAPT	 Herman	
   Shelanski,	 is	 Jewish	 as	 well.	 The	 attached	 photo	 shows	 the	 head	 table	 for	
   the	event.	We	held	our	second	Seder	for	Jewish	personnel	on	USS	Harry	S.	
   Truman	in	the	captain’s	galley.	It	was	a	great	night	of	sharing	stories	with	
   shipmates	about	our	different	family	traditions	for	observing	Passover.	NC1	
   Rice	 helped	 the	 captain’s	 mess	 specialists	 make	 the	 matzo	 ball	 soup	 and	
   MM3	Kopelman	led	the	Seder.	The	solo	Seder	kits	I	brought	came	in	handy	
   for	matzo,	macaroons,	haggadahs,	and	more.	A

                                                                                               (l to r) CDR Scott Moran, Jewish lay leader
                                                                                            NAS Whidbey Island, WA, MM3 Jesse Kopelman
                                                                                            USS Harry Truman (CVN 75) Jewish lay leader,
                                                                                            CAPT Herman Shelanski, commanding officer,
                                                                                            CVN 75 and CDR Michael Zarkowski, at the
                                                                                            first Seder.

                                                                                              (l to r) Rice LT Julia Weber, CDR Scott Moran,
                                                                                            MM3 Jesse Kopelman, CAPT Herman Shelanski,
                                                                                            MM3 Bryce Steffens, CDR Francis Spencer NC1
                                                                                            Gabriela Rice at the second Seder.

                                                                                                 at Ft. Benning, ga

                                                                                               Part of the 100 Jewish personnel who
                                                                                            attended the first night Passover Seder at Ft.
                                                                                            Benning, GA.

4 • CHapLinEs • VOLUME XXii, no. 1
Loyal volunteers
enhance seder
at northport Va
Medical Center
By Rabbi Paul Swerdlow

	     For	more	than	45	years,	Lillian	Lublang	
and	 Florence	 Braitman	 of	 the	 Central	
Nassau	JWB	Ladies	Auxiliary	have	provided	
a	 Seder	 for	 the	 veterans	 at	 the	 Northport	
VA	 Medical	 Center	 on	 Long	 Island.	 Not	
only	are	the	patients	and	staff	invited,	but	
assisted	 by	 members	 of	 the	 Jewish	 War	
Veterans,	 they	 invite	 Jewish	 veterans	 who	
live	in	adult	homes	in	the	area.	
	     A	few	years	ago,	Phil	Weisbroat,	facility	
planner	 at	 Northport,	 suggested	 that	 I	
invite	his	father	to	lead	the	singing	at	our	
Seder.	 Richard	 Weisbroat	 is	 an	 attorney	
who	loves	to	sing	Jewish	liturgical	music.	
His	 wife	 and	 he	 have	 become	 fixtures	 at	
our	annual	Seder,	adding	so	much	with	his	
beautiful	 singing	 voice.	 Cantor	 Michael	
Trachtenberg	 joined	 our	 hospital	 family	
as	 a	 volunteer	 over	 a	 year	 ago.	 He	 not	
only	 shares	 his	 musical	 talent	 but	 he	 has	
become	a	regular	visitor	to	veterans	in	our	         As “the wise son” in the Passover Hagaddah, Dr. George Mallis, chief of cardiology
nursing	home.	A                                      at Northport VA Medical Center, reads, while Rabbi Paul Swerdlow listens.

                                                                                          rabbi Brad
     rabbi paul swerdlow
     nominated for MCa                                                                    Hoffman
                                                                                          continued from page 1
     Distinguished service award
                                                                                          Relationships,	 and	 is	 a	 clinical	 member	 of	
     	    Rabbi	Paul	Swerdlow,	lead	chaplain	at	Northport,	Long	Island	VA	                the	 American	 Association	 for	 Marriage	 and	
     Medical	Center	has	been	nominated	to	receive	the	Military	Chaplains	                 Family	Therapy.	He	is	also	a	certified	mediator.	
     Association	(MCA)	Distinguished	Service	Award	for	2007.	A	chaplain	                  Rabbi	 Hoffman	 founded	 PERSONAbility	
     from	 each	 branch	 of	 the	 Armed	 Forces	 and	 the	 VA	 is	 awarded	 this	         Consulting,	a	firm	to	match	personality	styles	
     special	recognition	each	year	for	excellence	in	pastoral	care.	Chaplain	             with	leadership	skills	and	to	train	individuals	
     Swerdlow’s	 selection	 is	 historic	 because	 he	 is	 the	 first	 rabbi	 ever	 to	   in	 leadership,	 interpersonal	 communication,	
     receive	the	MCA	Distinguished	Services	Award.                                        organizational	 development	 and	 conflict	
     	    Rabbi	 Swerdlow	 has	 made	 trailblazing	 efforts	 and	 continues	 to	          resolution.	 He	 presented	 educational	 and	
     initiate	on	behalf	of	VISN	3-wide	spiritual-care	programs,	including	                training	 seminars	 at	 the	 Conference	 for	
     palliative	 care,	 clinical	 pastoral	 education,	 and	 outreach	 efforts	 to	       Alternatives	in	Jewish	Education.	
     military	 chaplains	 in	 the	 local	 area	 ministering	 to	 returning	 OIF-          	     Rabbi	Hoffman	served	six	years	on	active	
     OEF	veterans.	In	addition,	he	serves	as	the	chair	of	the	Chaplain	Field	             duty	with	the	US	Navy.	He	became	a	reservist	
     Leadership	Council	Education	Committee	and	is	a	life-long	member	                    in	 1996.	 Since	 that	 time	 he	 has	 preformed	
     of	the	MCA.	The	award	will	be	presented	on	Thursday	evening,	May	                    many	 short-term	 assignments.	 His	 most	
     17	in	San	Antonio,	TX.	                                                              recent	 was	 with	 the	 1MEF	 in	 Iraq	 for	 the	
                                                                                          High	Holidays.	A

                                                                                                 spring 2007 •       chct 5767 • 5
  Hanukkah lights

  in afghanistan
  and iraq
                                                               Lay Leader Major Craig Wertheim leads Hanukkah candlelighting in Balad, Iraq.

                                                               Chaplain Gary Davidson, USAF, prepared a special Hanukkah gift package
                                                               (hanukkiah, candles, yarmulke, Siddur, Machzor, dreidel, chocolate gelt) for Senator
                                                               Arlen Spector from Pennsylvania during his brief visit to his base given during the
                                                               senator’s stopover in the Persian Gulf.

First night of Hanukkah. Lay leader CPT Tina Kirkpatrick
conducts Hanukkah services from the 1394th DSB
in Afghanistan.

Gifts for the troops. (l to r) SPC Justice, CPT Kirkpatrick,   Lt. Jonathan Freimann at the Embassy Annex in Baghdad writes: “I had just lit
CPT Lapidow.                                                   the candles when we got a “duck and cover” alarm from a mortar attack, so I am
                                                               in full gear by the candles.”

6 • CHapLinEs • VOLUME XXii, no. 1
Lay Leader Capt paul
Becker, Usn, writes
from Bahrain:
     Hag Sameach from Bahrain!
	    Rabbis	 (LT)	 Daniella	 Kolodny	 and	 (CDR)	 Joel	
Newman	 were	 in	 theater	 Passover	 week;	 Joel	 in	 Iraq,	                           nate’s notes:
Daniella	in	Bahrain,	and	they	embarked	on	EISENHOWER,	
STENNIS,	 BOXER	 and	 BATAAN	 (good	 timing	 for	 large	                               Rabbi Nathan M. Landman
decks	 nearby).	 Lots	 of	 great	 Passover	 and	 care	 packages	
                                                                              In an effort to provide more direct individual
arrived	this	year	from	the	Navy	and	our	new	benefactors,	
                                                                         support to Jewish personnel in the armed forces and
“Operation	Far	From	Home.”	Once	again,	our	very	small	
                                                                         their families, the JWB Jewish Chaplains Council is
NAVCENT	 contingent	 partnered	 with	 the	 very	 small	
                                                                         compiling an e-mail roster of names and addresses
Bahrain	 Jewish	 community	 for	 a	 combined	 small,	 but	
                                                                         at home and abroad so that messages of timely
meaningful,	 holiday	 gathering.	 It’s	 the	 quality,	 not	 the	
                                                                         interest and gift packages may be sent from time
quantity	that	counts.	
                                                                         to time. If you know of personnel who should be on
	    In	the	spirit	of	opening	our	doors,	we’re	happy	to	have	
                                                                         the receiving end, please send the information to
shared	 Shabbat	 dinner	 with	 NAVCENT	 Senior	 Chaplain	
                                                                         Rabbi Robinson at:
(CAPT)	Don	Lerow	and	shared	the	first	Seder	with	Deputy	
Chaplain	(CDR)	Ron	Stake.	A

Lay Leader LtC
amy Blumenthal
in Kuwait celebrates
30 years of army
reserve service                                         	

	     Lt.	 Col.	 Amy	 Blumenthal,	 support	 operations	 plans	
officer,	 377th	 Theater	 Support	 Command	 (Forward)	 and	
Jewish	lay	leader,	Camp	Arifjan,	Kuwait,	recently	celebrated	
her	 30-year	 anniversary	 with	 the	Army	 Reserves.	 In	 1979,	
Blumenthal	 was	 accepted	 into	 the	 National	 Guard	 Officer	
Candidate	Program,	the	only	woman	in	her	platoon.	For	a	
person	 who	 wanted	 no	 extra	 attention,	 she	 found	 herself	
getting	 picked	 on	 and	 singled	 out.	 This	 did	 not	 stop	 her,	
however,	 from	 pushing	 all	 the	 way	 through	 the	 course.	“I	
did	graduate	in	1980,	and	I	try	to	live	by	three	things	they	
constantly	taught:	respect	noncommissioned	officers,	never	
forget	where	you	came	from,	and	be	professional,”	she	said,	
and	added,	“You	can	still	be	a	soldier	and	a	lady.”
	     Lt.	 Col.	 Blumenthal	 knows	 the	 only	 constant	 in	 life	 is	
change.	“We	come	to	work	every	day	and	something	is	different;	
all	that	matters	is	how	they	evolve	and	make	it	better.”
	     At	her	request,	Hadassah	groups	from	Richmond	and	                 Lt. Col. Amy Blumenthal
Danville,	VA	and	Winston-Salem,	NC	planted	41	trees	in	
Israel	to	date	in	memory	of	Israel’s	fallen	soldiers.	A

                                                                                             spring 2007 •     chct 5767 • 7
     Chaplain avi Weiss writes from Ft. Lewis
     before heading for Korea

   made	 a	 decision,	 together	 with	 several	 involved	 members	          chapel.	 The	 garrison	 command	 and	 garrison	 chaplain,	 and	
   of	 the	 community,	 to	 direct	 the	 community’s	 children	 to	         their	spouses,	not	only	sat	through	all	the	Divrei	Torah,	but	also	
   local	 synagogue	 Sunday	 schools	 —	 there	 are	 Orthodox,	             stayed	to	play	dreidel	and	enjoy	the	Hanukkah	refreshments.
Conservative	 and	 Reform	 congregations	 within	 easy	 reach	              	 Fixing	the	JWB	Torah,	which	was	accomplished	with	$500	
—	 rather	 than	 organize	 our	 own	 program	 for	 such	 a	 small	          from	JWB	and	$4700	in	donations	from	community	members,	
number.	For	adults,	instead	of	a	Sunday	school	class	as	in	the	             provided	 an	 opportunity	 to	 bring	 the	 Jewish	 program	 to	
past,	 I	 developed	 a	 twelve-week	 curriculum	 based	 on	 Joseph	         the	 attention	 of	 the	 command	 element,	 earning	 friends	 and	
Telushkin’s	 Jewish Literacy	 and	 advertised	 the	 Wednesday	              advocates	 at	 the	 highest	 level	 and	 ensuring	 —	 I	 hope	 —	 its	
evening	 series	 broadly	 through	 the	 weekly	 “Jewish	 Sound”	            continuity	even	with	relatively	small	numbers	of	Jewish	military	
bulletin	and	all	the	chaplains	on	post.	An	additional	draw	was	             and	dependents,	under	the	leadership	of	Dr.	Karen	Fitzgerald,	a	
that	 for	 the	 first	 (sign-up)	 class	 we	 showed	 the	 Israeli	 movie	   long-time	Jewish	lay	leader.
Ushpizin.	 The	 class	 drew	 a	 strong	 and	 loyal	 core,	 including	       	 Regarding	 the	 Thanksgiving	 Community	 Ecumenical	
members	of	the	Jewish	community,	the	post’s	Catholic	chaplain,	             Service:	I	was	the	featured	speaker	for	this	program,	which	was	
a	non-Jewish	chaplain’s	assistant,	and	several	non-Jews	with	a	             held	in	Main	Post	Chapel	and	spotlighted	accordingly.	My	address	
strong	and	long-standing	interest	in	Judaism.                               was	ready	and	I	was	going	over	the	finishing	touches	the	Tuesday	
	 Combining	our	Torah	(Re-)Dedication	with	the	community	                   before	Thanksgiving	when,	just	before	midnight,	I	was	informed	
Hanukkah	party	created	a	major	event	on	Fort	Lewis.	Advance	                that	 my	 father	 had	 passed	 away.	“Plan	 B,”	 which	 I	 had	 already	
publicity	 brought	 out	 non-military	 Jewish	 participants	 from	          arranged,	was	for	a	young	female	Protestant	chaplain,	CH	(CPT)	
nearby	 communities	 (Olympia,	 Tacoma)	 as	 well	 as	 non-                 Valeria	Van	Dress,	to	present	my	speech	for	me.	In	preparation,	we	
Jewish	participants	from	the	post	and	beyond.	Senior	military	              spent	over	an	hour	on	the	phone	while	I	was	sitting	shiva	with	my	
leadership	was	well	represented:	The	deputy	post	commander	                 siblings	in	San	Diego.	The	address	was	very	well	received,	and	I’m	
held	one	of	the	chuppa	poles	in	our	outdoor	procession	to	the	              convinced	that	Val	did	a	better	job	than	I	would	have	done.	A

     personals                                                              Baruch Hashem
                                                                            For	 SGT	 MAX	 PHILLIPS,	 son	 of	 CHAPLAIN	 SETH	
     Congratulations to:                                                    PHILLIPS,	 USN,	 after	 his	 return	 from	 a	 12-month	 tour	
                                                                            of	 Iraq	 to	 resume	 his	 studies	 at	 Virginia	 Tech.	 Max	 was	
     CHAPLAIN	 DONALD	 LEVY,	 USAF,	 on	 his	 promotion	 to	
                                                                            unhurt	in	the	recent	shootings.
     the	rank	of	Major	on	May	1,	2006.
     CHAPLAIN	JOSHUA	NARROWE,	USAF	on	his	promotion	                        Condolences to:
     to	the	rank	of	Major	on	January	1.                                     The	 family	 of	 CHAPLAIN	 SAMUEL	 SOBEL,	 USN/Ret.,	
     CHAPLAIN	 and	 MRS.	 BRETT	 OXMAN,	 USAF,	 on	 his	                    who	died	in	Norfolk,	VA	on	April	5.
     selection	for	promotion	to	the	rank	of	Col,	effective	July	2,	         Chaplain	Mitchell	Schranz	wrote:	
     and	on	the	occasion	of	the	engagement	of	daughter	LIOR	to	
     AVI	BALDINGER	of	Silver	Spring,	MD.                                    Boruch Dayan Emes.

     RABBI	 HAROLD	 ROBINSON,	 JWB	 Jewish	 Chaplains	                      I am very sad to hear about Sam’s passing. He was an
     Council	 director,	 who	 completed	 the	 2007	 Boston	                 outstanding rabbi, scholar, chaplain—above all mensch in
     Marathon	 in	 an	 impressive	 unofficial	 time	 of	 3:52.25.	          every way. We got to know him in his later years, but age
     The	 time	 is	 all	 the	 more	 amazing	 due	 to	 the	 miserable	       had in no way sapped his spiritual or mental stamina. He
     conditions	throughout	the	entire	race.	                                was beloved by all who had the privilege to know him..In
                                                                            this day when leadership is oftentimes abused and defined
                                                                            by how loud one can shout, Sam’s example by leading
                                                                            with a kind heart and gentle spirit is especially important.
                                                                            May he rest in peace.

8 • CHapLinEs • VOLUME XXii, no. 1
rabbi robinson
conducts passover
seders in guam
	     Passover	was	recently	celebrated	on	the	island	
of	 Guam	 with	 the	 helpful	 visit	 of	 RDML	 Harold	
Robinson,	and	two	Guam	sailors,	AZ2	Noah	Harnick	
of	HSC-25	and	LN2	Saint	Phillips	of	Naval	Region	
Marianas.	Rabbi	Robinson	received	an	invitation	to	
visit	Guam	in	support	of	the	small	Jewish	community	
and	his	acceptance	and	assistance	brought	great	joy	
to	 the	 group	 of	 30	 sailors,	 family	 members,	 and	
civilians	who	attended	the	Seder	on	the	first	night	of	
Passover	in	spite	of	a	typhoon	passing	through	the	
neighborhood	to	the	north	of	Guam.	AZ2	Harnick	
and	 LN2	 Phillips	 coordinated	 the	 event	 with	 the	     (l to r) AZ2 Noah Harnick of HSC-25, RDML Harold Robinson, LN2 Saint Phillips of
help	of	the	Regional	Chaplains	Office.	A                    Naval Region Marianas

    Chaplains Kronenberg and Miller
    lead Ft. Dix community seder

    	     Members	 of	 the	 Fort	 Dix	 and	 McGuire	
    Air	Force	Base,	NJ	Jewish	communities	invited	
    visitors	 from	 the	 surrounding	 areas	 to	 partake	
    in	 a	 model	 of	 the	 Passover	 Seder	 dinner.	 The	
    event	drew	more	than	sixty	members	of	both	the	
    Jewish	and	non-Jewish	populations	to	the	Main	
    Chapel	on	Fort	Dix	March	15	and	was	conducted	
    by	Chaplain	Ira	Kronenberg,	Ft.	Dix	and	assisted	
    by	Chaplain	Menashe	Miller,	McGuire	AFB.
    	     The	 model	 Seder	 was	 the	 brainchild	 of	
    Col.	 Rick	 Martin,	 commander,	 305th	 Air	
    Mobility	 Wing,	 McGuire	 A.F.B.,	 and	 was	
    organized	 by	 Col.	 Lewis	 Wetstein,	 State	 Air	
    Surgeon,	New	Jersey	Air	National	Guard,	and	
    his	committee	comprised	of	Col.	Ed	Ramras,	
    State	 Judge	 Advocate	 General,	 NJANG,	 Maj.	
    Steven	Rothstein,	deputy	chief	of	staff,	NJANG,	
    and	 Chap.	 (Capt.)	 Yaakov	 Bindel,	 108th	 Air	
    Refueling	Wing,	NJANG,	McGuire	AFB.
    	     The	 event	 was	 hosted	 by	 Kronenberg,	
    deputy	installation	chaplain,	and	Miller,	staff	
    chaplain,	305th	AMW,	while	the	funding	was	
    provided	by	the	Jewish	War	Veterans,	Post	125,	
                                                            Col. Rick Martin, Commander 305th Air Mobility Wing, New Jersey Air National
    from	Asbury	Park/Ocean	Township	and	Post	               Guard and Chaplain Menashe Miller, flank Chaplain Ira Kronenberg as he conducts
    972,	Marlboro/Manalapan.                                the Passover Seder at Ft. Dix, NJ.

                                                                                                    spring 2007 •         chct 5767 • 9
     passover observances
     continued from page 1

	 The	Seder	kits	were	expanded	this	year,	said	Rabbi	Harold	                 base	was	attended	by	30	people	(eight	of	them	Jews),	one	at	an	
Robinson,	 director	 of	 the	 JWB	 Chaplains	 Council.	 They	 now	           Air	Force	base	for	50	people	(eight	Jews)	and	a	third	at	an	Army	
each	 had	 an	 extra	 box	 of	 matzah,	 horseradish,	 gefilte	 fish,	 and	   base	for	18	people	(15	Jews).
canned	tuna,	in	addition	to	the	traditional	kosher	grape	juice,	two	         None	of	the	sites	were	in	Iraq	but	all	were	in	the	region,	and	
cans	of	kosher-for-Passover	matzah	ball	soup,	Haggadah,	and	a	               Rabbi	Schechter	wrote	that	the	military	personnel	came	from	
camouflage	yarmulke.	Also	included	was	a	phone	card	with	an	                 all	over	to	attend.
hour’s	worth	of	free	calling	time.	“The	Chaplains	Council	is	again	          	 “The	 first	 seder	 was	 in	 a	 special	 dining	 room	 sectioned	
grateful	to	Manischewitz,	the	kosher	food	purveyor,	for	donating	            off	 from	 the	 main	 building	 facility,”	 Rabbi	 Schechter	 noted.	
supplies,”	said	Robinson,	a	Rear	Admiral	who	led	Seders	on	the	              “It	was	perfect.	The	second	seder	was	in	the	VIP	tent,	and	the	
base	in	Guam	this	year.                                                                              third	was	in	a	big	warehouse.”
	 Representing	 the	 spectrum	 of	 Jewish	                                                           	 To	 open	 the	 door	 for	 Elijah	 in	 the	
denominations,	 the	 rabbis	 deployed	 this	                                                         warehouse,	 one	 of	 those	 present	 opened	 the	
year	 included	 both	 reservists	 and	 active	                                                       huge	metal	garage	door.
duty	 officers	 throughout	 the	 branches	 of	                                                       	 At	the	first	seder,	they	heated	kosher-for-
the	U.S.	Armed	Forces:                                                                               Passover	rations	and	plain,	steamed	vegetables.	
	 In the Middle East/Southeast Asia:	                                                                Rabbi	Schechter	reported	that	all	of	the	seders	
Shmuel	 Felzenberg	 (Army,	 Afghanistan);	                                                           had	enough	Passover	food.
Sarah	 Schechter	 (Air	 Force,	 undisclosed	          Chaplin Sarah Schechter (center)               	 “It	was	very	important	for	me	to	have	a	
location);	Jeremy	Steinberg	(Army,	Baghdad);	         celebrates first Passover Seder at an          kosher	 seder,”	 she	 wrote.	“And	 communities	
Daniella	 Kolodny,	 (Navy,	 Fifth	 Fleet);	 Joel	     undisclosed Middle-East base.                  very	generously	sent	us	tons	of	food.	The	last	
Newman	(Navy,	Iraq)	                                                                                 base	I	visited	had	too	much	food	—	macaroons,	
	 In the U.K.:	Henry	Soussan	(Army,	Leeds,	England)                          solo	seder	kits,	etc.,	to	the	point	where	they	were	begging	people	
	 In the European Theater:	Donald	Levy	(Air	Force,	Ramstein,	            	   to	 take	 the	 food	 home	 because	 there	 was	 not	 enough	 space	 to	
Germany);	Seth	Philips	(Navy,	Naples,	Italy)                                 store	 it	 all.	 The	 dining	 facilities	 were	 fully	 cooperative	 and	 let	
	 In the Far East:	Avi	Weiss	(Army,	Korea)                                   us	 use	 their	 kitchens.	 Where	 they	 could	 not	 provide	 the	 right	
	 Chaplain	Schechter	led	three	seders:	one	at	her	undisclosed	               ingredients,	we	could	buy	them	in	town.”	A

     Yom Hashoah service held at nellis aFB, nV
     	    A	Holocaust	memorial	service	was	
     held	 at	 Nellis	 AFB,	 NV	 on	 Thursday,	
     April	 19,	 conducted	 by	 Lay	 Leader	
     CMSGT	 Carl	 Vetter.	 Guest	 speaker	
     was	 Dr.	 Carl	 Loder	 ,	 history	 professor	
     at	the	University	of	Nevada,	Las	Vegas.	
     His	 subject	 was	 “Timeline	 of	 the	
     Holocaust.”	 Professor	 Loder	 believes	
     the	German	people	could	have	stopped	
     the	Holocaust	from	happening	in	1933.	
     Once	 the	 government	 suspended	 the	
     German	 constitution,	 the	 Nazi	 plan	
     couldn’t	be	stopped.	

     (L to r) SSgt Christina Gibson, CMSGT Carl
     Vetter, A1C Dominique Harmon, MSgt Jeff
     Jumper, Dr. Carl Loder, Professor of History,
     University of Nevada, Las Vegas.

10 • CHapLinEs • VOLUME XXii, no. 1
We get letters:
(The following letters were forwarded by Chaplain Sarah Schechter from the Middle East)

  Dear Rabbi Schechter:
                                zing and
  Thank you so much for organi
  hosting the Seder. It was
  lovely. A touch of home.  It brought
                                 of often.
  back memories. Some I think
                             e a very close
  My cousin Rikki who is lik
                               my Grandpa
  sister to me. I thought of
                               coins that
  Nathan giving us chocolate
                               rs. Nathan
  I haven’t thought of in yea
                             Russia via
   Wiener. When he came from
                                cer at the
   Vienna, the immigration offi
                                 ed on Vienna
   Port of Baltimore got confus
                                  accent and
   and the name because of his
                              original name
   changed it to Wiener. The
                              up with a
   was Winokur. My mom ended
   “spaghetti” name anyway.

    Thanks again.                                       This is my first Seder and
                                                                                     Passover away
                                                        from home in a deployed
                                n.                                               environment and
    I hope to see you again soo                         it was very fulfilling and
                                                                                    almost like
                                                        living the story of Passov
                                                                                    er out. Being
    Be well,                                            out here in the desert giv
                                                                                    es Passover a
                                                        new meaning for me and tru
                               CW4                                                  ly this is the
    Gerry Garryowen Ventrella,                         setting for the wandering
                                                                                    Israelites after
                                                       their escape from Egypt.
                                                                                  Not being with
                                                       family is hard, especiall
                                                                                  y during the
                                                       holidays. However, the Jew
                                                                                   ish communities
                                                       of the US have been so sup
                                                                                   portive and
                                                       have sent so many food ite
                                                                                   ms specifically
                                                       for Passover. I feel ver
                                                                                y grateful that
                                                      I am not forgotten and tha
                                                                                   t communities
                                                      back home truly support
                                                                                the troops and
                                                      what we do. By celebrati
                                                                                ng Passover with
                                                      strangers and literally
                                                                                opening the door
                                                      for all to take part see
                                                                                med quite special
                                                      and is one of the true mea
                                                                                  nings of the
                                                      Seder; to tell all the sto

                                                      1Lt Daniel Avni , 379th

                                                                               spring 2007 •   chct 5767 • 11
Dewitt Clinton Hospital Ft. Belvoir,
Va hosts Holocaust survivor nesse godin
at Days of remembrance Observance                                                              Alan P. Solow
By (LTC) Betty Simmons                                                                         Allan Finkelstein
	    On	 13	 April	 2007,	 DeWitt	 Army	
Community	Hospital,	Fort	Belvoir,	VA,	
hosted	 Mrs.	 Nesse	 Godin,	 Holocaust	
Survivor	and	President	of	the	Jewish	Ho-
locaust	Survivors	and	Friends	of	Greater	
Washington.	This,	full-house	event,	was	                                                       JWB Jewish Chaplains Council
the	crowning	glory	of	our	“Days	of	Re-                                                         Rabbi Philip Silverstein
membrance”	 commemorative	 week.	                                                              Chairman
Mrs.	 Nesse	 Godin	 has	 appeared	 before	                                                     JWB Jewish Chaplains
many	distinguished	audiences.                                                                  Council staff
	    Mrs.	 Godin’s	 storytelling	 style	                                                       Rabbi Harold L. Robinson
and	 profound	 theological	 references	                                                        Director
provided	 a	 moving	 experience	 for	 all	                                                     Rabbi Nathan M. Landman
present	 that	 afternoon.	 Several	 per-                                                       Deputy Director
sons	were	heard	to	say	that	their	lives	
will	 forever	 be	 changed	 as	 a	 result	                                                     armed Forces and Veterans
of	 her	 conveying	 her	 experiences.	                                                         services Committee
Through	her	telling	of	horrific	events	                                                        Sidney F. Miller
and	of	strength	in	the	face	of	unimagi-
nable	odds,	she	brings	to	light	the	im-                                                        Chaplines
                                             Mrs. Nesse Godin with DeWitt Hospital Com-        Rabbi Nathan M. Landman
portance	 of	 loving-kindness,	 giving,	     mander, COL Kenneth G. Canestrini following his   Editor
avoiding	 gossip,	 and	 appreciation	 for	   presentation of the Commander’s Coin at Days of   Dan Hertzberg
all	of	Hashem’s	blessings.	A                 Observance ceremonies.                            Design

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