Page 21234..1020..»

The power we had was astonishing: ex-soldiers on Israels government in the occupied territories – The Guardian

Posted By on August 6, 2022

When Joel Carmel went for his military service in the Israel Defence Forces (IDF), he didnt expect it to mean sitting at a computer processing permits, typing in Palestinian ID numbers all day.

Before I went to the army I considered myself a centrist, politically speaking. I knew broadly about the occupation and the combat side of things. But it was so boring, so bureaucratic It wears you down, the 29-year-old said.

You dont have time or energy to think of Palestinians as people. They are just numbers on a computer, and you click yes or no on their travel permit applications.

The sprawling system of military government created by Israels occupation of the West Bank and Gaza Strip is a world many Israelis are learning about for the first time, after the publication of testimonies from veterans exposing the permit regime that rules over Palestinian people and land.

While the 55-year-old occupation is perhaps the most well-documented conflict in modern history, less understood is the breadth and depth of the bureaucratic power wielded by Israeli military bodies.

The Israeli defence ministry unit known as the Coordinator of Government Activities in the Territories (Cogat) is largely concerned with issuing and processing paperwork: approving medical and work permits to enter Israel or travel abroad, controlling the flow of imports and exports, infrastructure planning and allocation of natural resources.

Cogats activities have rarely been studied in depth, and are not subject to independent investigative mechanisms. Along with the use of direct violence, Palestinians and veterans say the military governing body is an integral part of a system of oppression.

We were told in training that everything we were doing for the Palestinians was basically generous, a favour. We didnt question the bigger picture, like why there are no decent hospitals in the territories, so people have to travel, said Carmel, who first served in the Gaza Israeli-Palestinian military coordination office, and then in the restive city of Jenin in the north of the West Bank.

The army raids your house at 2am and then at 8am you still have to get in line for hours for a permit for the most basic administrative stuff, he said. I think thats something a lot of Israelis dont realise. Its not the carrot and the stick, its the stick and the stick. Its the same thing.

Testimonies from military conscripts who served in Cogat offices during the past decade have for the first time been collected by Breaking The Silence, an NGO established by IDF veterans which for nearly 20 years has given discharged soldiers the opportunity to recount their experiences in confidence and give the Israeli public an unvarnished understanding of what enforcing the occupation entails.

The verified accounts of several dozen interviewees including Carmel, who now works for the organisation have been gathered in a new, freely available booklet titled Military Rule. It is accompanied by testimonies from residents of the blockaded Gaza Strip collected by Gisha, an NGO focusing on Palestinian freedom of movement.

While putting together the project, Breaking the Silences interviewers found that repeated themes began to emerge: the use of collective punishment, such as revoking an entire familys travel permits; the extensive network of Palestinian agents cooperating with Cogats Civil Administration, which governs parts of the West Bank; the considerable influence of Israels illegal settler movement on the Civil Administrations decision-making processes; and arbitrary or baseless blocks on goods allowed in and out of Gaza.

The level of power and control we have was astonishing, said a 25-year-old man who served in 2020-2021 at Cogats headquarters near the Beit El settlement north of Ramallah.

I found out we were responsible for approving weapons permits for the Palestinian security forces, which is one of those details you dont really think about until the stack of paperwork is front of you. Its little realisations like that, every day, that makes the scale of the occupation really dawn on you.

And we had access to so much information. I didnt know how deep and wide-ranging the data collection is. Sometimes I was bored, so Id type in random Palestinian ID numbers and see what came up. I could see everything about their lives: families, travel details, sometimes employers.

I remember once my commanding officer pulled up the screen to show me the file of one of the highest-ranking Palestinian officials, just for fun. That was mind-blowing.

In a statement, a Cogat spokesperson said: We regret all attempts to cast doubt upon the work and the integrity of the organisations staff, and we firmly reject all attempts to ascribe the organisations efforts to one or another political agenda.

Cogat always conscientiously examines and handles cases involving deviations from the procedures, the law, or orders. Such cases are exceptions and do not reflect the practices of the Civil Administration.

Another common theme across the testimonies is the psychological impact of surrendering autonomy to the armed forces, even in bureaucratic settings.

I went to the army thinking, Ill do my service and help change things for the better from the inside. But as soon as I arrived I became part of the system, said a 24-year-old woman who served at Cogats headquarters in 2017-2018.

Sometimes Id have the choice to finish early for the weekend: my superior would never mind if I did that. Or, I could stay until 5pm and actually continue helping the Palestinians waiting to give me their papers. My wants conflicted with their needs. I cant put my finger on when or why, but my behaviour started changing.

I thought Breaking the Silence was just for combatants, but I went to an exhibit and saw that there was testimony from a girl who also served in my unit.

You just do what youre told to do in the army, but you only see small fragments of the whole. It has been a long journey to understand what I did during my military service and what it meant.

See the article here:

The power we had was astonishing: ex-soldiers on Israels government in the occupied territories - The Guardian

Tree of Life hires Brownstein- POLITICO – POLITICO

Posted By on August 6, 2022

By CAITLIN OPRYSKO

08/05/2022 05:28 PM EDT

Updated 08/05/2022 07:39 PM EDT

With Daniel Lippman

The nonprofit organization overseeing the redevelopment of Pittsburghs Tree of Life synagogue has tapped a host of lobbyists at Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck to help the synagogue secure federal assistance for a new complex planned to be a sanctuary, museum and memorial honoring the victims of the 2018 mass shooting there.

Brownsteins David Reid, Marc Lampkin, David Cohen, Steven Demby, Nadeam Elshami, Brian McGuire, Brian Wild, Andrew Usyk, Sage Schaftel and Radha Mohan will work to identify federal resources and potential sources of funding to aid in the effort, which is the subject of a separate fundraising campaign to pay for the renovations and operate programming and outreach for the new center.

The synagogue last year secured a $6.6 million commitment from the state of Pennsylvania to redevelop the site, which has been vacant since a gunman killed 11 worshippers and wounded six others in the deadliest attack on Jews in U.S. history. And the synagogue has tapped the architect Daniel Libeskind, who designed the master plan for redeveloping the World Trade Center following 9/11 and who has designed other Jewish museums and Holocaust memorials.

Our communitys resilience in the face of a hate-fueled massacre has given root to a reimagined Tree of Life, reads a website for the redevelopment. Through remembrance, experience, and action, we educate and inspire individuals and communities from across our nation to recognize and stand up against antisemitism.

FARA FRIDAY: Russias state-owned media agency is budgeting its most money yet for a D.C.-based production company that produces pro-Kremlin media content in the U.S., according to documents filed with the Justice Department this week, even as shows from Russian news agency and radio broadcaster Sputnikwere booted off of mainstream platforms in the wake of Russias invasion of Ukraine.

Rossiya Segodnya, the state media group that controls Sputnik, renewed its contract this week with Ghebi LLC, which has been paid nearly $5 million since 2020 to produce radio and web content targeted at the U.S. and Canada.

According to copies of Rossiya Segodnyas previous contracts with Ghebi filed with DOJ, Ghebis $7 million budget for the next 12 months is its largest yet. Its initial contract had a budget of $5.2 million, while the contract renewed last September stipulated that Ghebi could spend no more than $6.7 million to produce content.

The limits set out in those contracts are far more than what Rossiya Segodnya has actually paid Ghebi for its work, DOJ filings show. In the six months ending on March 31 a period that included Russias build-up of troops along the Ukrainian border as well as its February invasion and the ensuing global backlash Ghebi reported close to $2 million in payments from Rossiya Segodnya.

Thats $76,000 more than in the previous six months, and all of that spending is more than double the $825,000 Ghebi reported receiving from Rossiya Segodnya during the first six months of its contract.

Happy Friday and welcome to PI. Send lobbying tips and your firm's strategies for surviving rote-a-rama: [emailprotected]. And be sure to follow me on Twitter: @caitlinoprysko.

SINEMA BLESSES BILL AFTER TAX TWEAKS: Senate Majority Leader Chuck Schumer announced last night that he expects every Senate Democrat to vote for the partys expanded reconciliation bill, after Sen. Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.) demanded changes to its revenue stream that the business community had complained about.

Sinema sought the removal of language tightening the so-called carried interest loophole, and she also won changes to portions of the corporate minimum tax structure to remove accelerated depreciation of investments from the agreement, POLITICOs Burgess Everett reports.

That won Sinema tepid praise from trade groups that had lobbied against the corporate minimum taxs impact on manufacturers. Taxing capital expenditures investments in new buildings, factories, equipment, etc. is one of the most economically destructive ways you can raise taxes, the U.S. Chamber of Commerces Neil Bradley said in a statement, adding that Sinema deserves credit for recognizing this and fighting for changes.

Bradley still took aim at the tax added to the bill to recoup the cost of watering down the book tax and removing the carried interest provision, a levy on stock buybacks, which Bradley argued would only distort the efficient movement of capital to where it can be put to best use and will diminish the value of Americans retirement savings.

Bradley, along with the National Association of Manufacturers Jay Timmons both said in statements that their organizations are still reviewing the bill, but continued to bash its drug pricing measures. We remain skeptical, Timmons said.

The Small Business Investor Alliance, which represents lower-middle market private equity funds and investors, cheered the removal of language targeting the private equity industrys prized carried interest tax rate, though Sinema vowed to work on the issue outside of the current bill. We are very thankful that she went beyond the headlines and listened to our concerns about the disproportionate negative impact on small business investors that changing carried interest would entail, SBIA President Brett Palmer said of Sinema. Arizona small businesses have a great champion.

PHRMA THREATENS PAYBACK: Steve Ubl, who leads the nations top industry group for drugmakers, is offering a final salvo to Congress as Democratic lawmakers inch closer to passing their sweeping reconciliation package that includes drug pricing measures and threatening swift retaliation if they dont listen, he told POLITICOs Megan Wilson.

PhRMA and its 31 board members sent a letter to every member of Congress on Thursday afternoon, urging them to vote against the package. PhRMA, not accustomed to losing legislative fights, has waged a multimillion-dollar advocacy campaign against the drug pricing measures, and is crafting contingency plans if they fail.

In addition to hinting at running campaign ads against Democrats in tough races this fall, the industry is assessing its legal options and pondering future regulatory or legislative fixes. Regardless of the outcome in the coming weeks, this fight isn't over, Ubl said in an interview. Few associations have all the tools of modern political advocacy at their disposal in the way that PhRMA does.

MIXED SIGNALS: Even as the Business Roundtable signed on to a letter yesterday imploring senators to knock out the reconciliation bills corporate minimum tax and decrying the legislations potential impact on manufacturers, one of the groups top leaders was participating in a virtual roundtable with President Joe Biden where she endorsed the bill as-is.

Thursday was not the first time General Motors CEO Mary Barra has split from the business lobby she helps lead, as Hailey Fuchs explored earlier this year, nor is it the first time the Biden administration has held her up as an ally of legislation reviled by the business community. You started all this, the president told Barra during the roundtable.

Thank you for the opportunity to voice our support for the Inflation Reduction Act, Barra told Biden during the event. Barra took over at the beginning of the year as chair of the Business Roundtable, whose membership comprises the chief executives of the countrys largest corporations.

A day after Schumer and Sen. Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.) announced the framework for the bill, the Roundtable said on Twitter that the book tax, which is being revised to the benefit of manufacturers at Sinemas behest, would undermine proven bipartisan incentives that encourage capital investment.

Barra didnt address the bills tax provisions explicitly from the White Houses roundtable. But as currently proposed, she said, the measure would help drive further investments in American manufacturing and sustainable, stable and secure supply chains.

THE NRAS SUPREME COURT SHADOW LOBBYING: In a piece for POLITICO Magazine this morning, The Traces Will Van Sant examined amicus briefs filed in support of the Supreme Court caseNew York State Rifle & Pistol Association v. Bruen, which resulted in a June ruling dramatically expanding access to guns across the nation.

Out of the 49 pro-NRA friend of the court briefs filed in the case, Van Sant found the NRA has given financial support to at least 12 of the groups and individuals who lobbied the court on its behalf.

Though a full accounting is impossible, some recipients collected several million dollars from the NRA during that period and before filing briefs in Bruen. Only one of those 12 briefs disclosed the connection, meaning that neither the justices nor the public were told that 11 of these ostensibly independent voices owed their livelihoods in part to the NRA, the interest group behind the case.

The amicus briefs in Bruen provide a window into the NRAs long-standing legal strategy how the organization has spent hundreds of millions of dollars over the past few decades constructing an advocacy network of lawyers and institutions capable of identifying, supporting and advancing cases likely to weaken gun restrictions. But the briefs also demonstrate the limits of current Supreme Court ethics rules.

Kyle Christian will join the University of Kansas as associate vice chancellor for federal relations. He joins from Thermo Fisher Scientific, where he helped lead federal government engagement.

Harout Harry Semerdjian is now government relations officer for the Port of Long Beach. He was director for global trade and foreign investments for the L.A. Area Chamber of Commerce.

Becky Tallent is now vice president and head of government affairs at Anywhere Real Estate. She was senior director of U.S. government relations at Dropbox and is a John Boehner and John McCain alum.

Joey Nelson is now a regional director for external affairs for AT&T. He was triangle regional representative for Sen. Thom Tillis (R-N.C.).

Joan Vollero has been promoted to be senior vice president at communications consulting firm Prosek Partners, where she focuses on special situations, including crisis and litigation support for class-and mass-action matters.

Chris Hayward has joined Citis global public affairs team, where he will continue in his role as the banks head of change management. Jennifer Lowney is now in an expanded role as Citis global head of communications. Separately, Gawain Patterson was elevated to the title of director of strategic initiatives and Lloyd Brown II is the banks new Community Reinvestment Act officer.

Jaymi Light is now U.S. federal government relations strategist at SAS. She was a government affairs principal at Cigna and is a Todd Young alum.

Jay Jariwala is joining Sidley Austin LLP as senior director of regulatory compliance for the food, drug, and medical device compliance and enforcement practice. He was a team leader/combination products subject matter expert at the FDA.

Madison West is now senior director of global corporate responsibility at Intel. She was vice president for ESG at government contractor Maximus.

Illinois Colorado 2022 Victory Fund (Sens. Dick Durbin, Tammy Duckworth, Rep. Joe Neguse, Nikki for Congress)Kirkmeyer Victory Committee (Kirkmeyer for Congress, Colorado Republican Committee, NRCC)Laxalt Victory Fund (Laxalt for Senate, Nevada Republican Central Committee, NRSC)Our Guy's Victory Fund (Coach Guy's Leadership PAC, Our Guy for Congress)Pekau Victory Fund (Illinois Republican Party - Federal, NRCC, Pekau for Congress)

None.

Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck LLP: Tree Of LifeEdnexus Advisors, LLC: MursionWatershed Results LLC: Conservation InternationalWatkins & Eager Pllc: Fleet Morris Petroleum, Inc.

American Defense International Inc.: SensonorK&L Gates, LLP: Alternative Investment Management Association LimitedLucas | Compton (Formerly Known As The Lucas Firm, LLC): Freeman Health SystemUniversity Of Southern California: University Of Southern California

CORRECTION: An earlier version of Influence misstated the entity that hired Brownstein Hyatt Farber Schreck. It is a nonprofit organization overseeing Tree of Life's redevelopment.

Originally posted here:

Tree of Life hires Brownstein- POLITICO - POLITICO

How Mass Shootings Have Rattled The American Jewish Community – Newsy

Posted By on August 6, 2022

Many recent mass shootings have largely hit Jewish communities, and now the communities have had to come to grips with tragedy.

Its been exactly one month since a gunman opened fire at the 4th of July parade in the Chicago suburb of Highland Park. Seven people died in the attack, with dozens more suffering injuries.

The shooting rocked the community, with a diverse set of victims. They included a 78-year-old Latino grandfather, a 63-year-old Jewish synagogue employee and a couple in their 30s who died protecting their two-year-old son.

Its a story where Highland Park joins the list of communities that are now synonymous with tragedy: Uvalde, Buffalo, El Paso, Parkland, Sandy Hook, Columbine.

These communities found strength in the aftermath of mass shootings. In a lot of those cases, it comes from houses of worship. In recent years, many attacks have hit largely Jewish communities.

Roughly half of Highland Parks population is Jewish. To be clear, law enforcement officials have not announced a motive for the shooting, but posts connected to the suspect have included hateful comments about multiple minority groups, including Jews.

Regardless of the motive in Highland Park, a rise in the number of anti-Semitic attacks have left American Jews on edge.

A survey released in April by the Jewish civil rights group the Anti-Defamation League found that anti-Semitic incidents hit an all-time high in 2021, with the number of incidents nearly tripling since 2015.

Last fall, polling done by SSRS for the American Jewish Committee found that 90% of American Jews felt anti-Semitism was a problem in the U.S., with 82% saying they thought anti-Semitism increased in the previous five years.

These fears translate into tragedy and loss of life. In the last few years, there have been several attacks on synagogues in the U.S.

In January, a gunman took four people hostage during a service at the Congregation Beth Israel synagogue in Colleyville, Texas.

In April 2019 on the last day of the Jewish holiday of Passover, an openly anti-Semitic shooter killed a woman and wounded three others, including a rabbi, at the Chabad synagogue in Poway, California, not far from San Diego.

That attack followed an attack in October 2018, where a shooter with anti-Semitic beliefs killed 11 people and wounded six others in a shooting during a Saturday morning service at the Tree of Life synagogue in the heavily Jewish Pittsburgh neighborhood of Squirrel Hill.

Three congregations shared the synagogue, all of whom had to come to grips with tragedy.

"We knew that obviously something terrible had happened, and we sort of knew who," said Stephen Cohen, New Light Congregation co-president. "It was the terrible things that happened, too, but it wasn't until later in the evening that the coroner's office actually was willing to release and confirm who survived and who did not that day. The following week was spent attending funerals."

"One funeral after the other, after the other, if you could even get into the funeral homes," said Barbara Caplan, New Light Congregation co-president.

New Light Congregation lost three of its members that day Richard Gottfried, Daniel Stein and Melvin Wax. Each of the congregations that had been using Tree of Life Synagogue moved out.

But in the weeks afterward, members still sought the connection to their faith.

"People were looking for reassurance that we were all still going to be able to be together," Caplan said. "They wanted the reassurance we could still be there to hug each other, be there for services."

In Squirrel Hill, healing has become more than just a matter of faith. Government officials, synagogues and nonprofits came together to form a partnership that provides mental health options to the community.

"There's really no one way to heal," said Ranisa Davidson, 1027 Healing Partnership program manager. "There's no one right way to heal, so what works for somebody is not going to work for another. When you have a community trauma like the mass shooting that occurred in Pittsburgh, it's hard to find ways for an entire community to heal."

That healing can cut across communities and bring places that suffered tragedy back together. In Squirrel Hill, members who were invited to Mother Emanuel Church in Charleston, South Carolina, which suffered a mass shooting of its own in 2015, remembered how connected they felt.

"The pastor called us up to the front of the room, and we expected him to say benediction or something nice," Cohen said. "Instead, he called up the entire congregation to come and hug us. There must have been about about 500 people in the room, and we are probably about 10 to 15 individuals. We were just surrounded by love, by compassion, and it's events like that that make you feel that you know that we are family, that we are all one. We are all trying to face this together and to try to move on."

Synagogues have a role to play in healing for the community, even when the attacks arent explicitly anti-Semitic.

They can provide help in the weeks, days, sometimes even the immediate moments after a mass shooting.

Rabbi Bradd Boxman of Congregation Kol Tikvah in Parkland, Florida saw that firsthand when his synagogue became an emergency place of refuge during the 2018 mass shooting, less than a mile away from Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School.

"When it all began, because we're only a half a mile from the synagogue and the synagogue being a vibrant center for our youth in the first place, they thought to run to the synagogue, even though the non-Jewish kids went to Dunkin Donuts and 7-Eleven and other places," Rabbi Boxman said. "Our kids came here. They knew that this would be their they're their their home where they could be taken care of."

Rabbi Boxman said that a rabbi has a major role to play in guiding communities through the immediate aftermath. Parkland, similar to Highland Park, has a large Jewish population. Five of the 17 victims in the Parkland shooting were Jewish, and four of them had connections to the synagogue.

"I think in any trauma, you run on adrenaline," Rabbi Boxman said. "I learned as a rabbi that the most important thing I can do is to try to be the calm in the midst of the storm, and you deal with your pain and sorrow afterwards. But a leader, I think, has to kind of absorb a lot of that, and so just trying to get the families through the first days and weeks of mourning."

Hes quick to point out that its about more than just healing and care in the moment; congregations can also help push for change.

He and several young members who later helped organize the March for Our Lives movement against gun violence spoke with Florida officials and protested at the state legislature.

"I understand that they say that religion is there to to comfort the afflicted but also to afflict the comfortable," Rabbi Boxman said. "Coming out of the reform Jewish tradition, that's the prophetic tradition. I believe strongly that... we live by standing up for the values that we cherish, and if we just speak them idly in the synagogue, that they don't manifest themselves in real action outside the synagogue, then we are false to ourselves. So, we've had to walk a line."

Sometimes, that advocacy does lead to change. Florida passed a red-flag law to tighten gun purchases.

After Highland Park, the House of Representatives passed a ban on semi-automatic assault weapons, but that bill may not make it through the Senate.

Here is the original post:

How Mass Shootings Have Rattled The American Jewish Community - Newsy

New Kids’ and YA Books: Week of August 8, 2022 – Publishers Weekly

Posted By on August 6, 2022

Here we round up new and forthcoming childrens titles, including a middle grade book about siblings discovering a magical box in the woods, a picture book featuring a multiracial girl traversing the globe to visit her grandmothers, a picture book highlighting important Black male leaders, a middle schooler overcoming her fear of gym class, and more.

The Daredevils by Rob Buyea. Delacorte, $17.99; ISBN 978-0-593-37614-0. While preparing for a school year that will separate them for the first time, siblings Waylon and Loretta discover a long-buried box with a note, challenging them to find and conquer your own rite of passage.

Nana, Nenek & Nina by Liza Ferneyhough. Dial, $17.99; ISBN 978-0-593-35394-3. While visiting her grandmothers in England and Malaysia, Nina uncovers the differences and similarities bound together by love, in this joyful narrative of multicultural childhood. The picture book received a starred review from PW.

Black Boy, Black Boy by Ali Kamanda and Jorge Redmond, illus. by Ken Daley. Sourcebooks Explore, $17.99; ISBN 978-1-7282-5064-9. Highlighting influential Black male figures from sports to politics to music, this picture book inspires the vision boys have for their own futures.

Surely Surely Marisol Rainey by Erin Entrada Kelly. Greenwillow, $16.99; ISBN 978-0-06-297045-9. Gym class is Marisols least favorite subject and when their class begins playing kickball, she must overcome her fear of failing by getting help from her brother, in this companion to Maybe Maybe Marisol Rainey.

Surviving the Wild: Sunny the Shark by Remy Lai. Holt, $13.99; ISBN 978-1-250-78545-9. When Sunny the Shark is caught in a plastic ring she must find a way to free her fin and get back to the hunt.

The Undead Truth of Us by Britney S. Lewis. Disney Hyperion, $17.99; ISBN 978-1-368-07583-1. After her mother turns into a zombie before her death, Zharie begins to see zombies everywhere, including in her new neighbor and friend Bo.

Tristan Strong Punches a Hole in the Sky by Kwame Mbalia, illus. by Olivia Stephens. Disney/Rick Riordan Presents, $12.99 paper; ISBN 978-1-368-07500-8. In this graphic novel adaptation, when seventh grader Tristan Strong accidentally opens up a portal allowing monsters to enter his world, hell need the guidance of old American heroes and ancient gods to help them close the portal.

A Synagogue Just Like Home by Alice Blumenthal McGinty, illus. by Laurel Molk. Candlewick, $18.99; ISBN 978-1-5362-1086-6. A rabbi learns the value of community when his synagogue needs repairs he cant handle on his own.

How You Grow Wings by Rimma Onoseta Algonquin, $18.99; ISBN 978-1-64375-191-7. After struggling in their abusive home, sisters Cheta and Zam are torn apart when one sister is sent away and the other stays home. The YA book received a starred review from PW.

Parfait, Not Parfait! by Scott Rothmn, illus. by Avery Monsen. Roaring Brook, $18.99; ISBN 978-1-250-26581-4. Playing off the grouping exercises so familiar to kids, and idiosyncrasies of spelling and pronunciation, readers will differentiate between parfaits and similar-sounding words.

For more childrens and YA titles on sale throughout the month of August, check out PWs full On-Sale Calendar.

Go here to read the rest:

New Kids' and YA Books: Week of August 8, 2022 - Publishers Weekly

ARCHIVES: Bemoaning the state of Jewish education today, a history J. – The Jewish News of Northern California

Posted By on August 6, 2022

In some corners of the Jewish community, one hears no end of jeremiads on the state of Jewish education in the country today. Grumble grumble, they all leave after their bnai mitzvah, and its all the parents fault! Grumble grumble, we have to spend more money on day schools or risk losing the next generation to assimilation! Grumble grumble, if they dont learn to keep Shabbos theyll intermarry or worse, become anti-Israel!

There is nothing new under the sun.

Since the earliest days of this newspaper, theres been no shortage of reporters, teachers, parents and community leaders (and others, no doubt) lamenting the imperfections and shortcomings of Jewish education throughout our country and region.

The Jewish Educational Problem in America read a simple and direct headline in our July 1, 1927 issue, and it sat atop a 168-word article by the education director of Temple Emanu-El, then the publisher of this publication. The succinct article provided some numerical analysis: At present only about 200,000 of the Jewish children of elementary school age are receiving some form of Jewish education. Five hundred thousand or half a million are receiving no Jewish education whatsoever. And it concluded abruptly: The situation is even worse with regard to our young people. In very many communities their Jewish education is sadly neglected.

A year later, Michael M. Zarchin of the Jewish Educational Society wrote in our Aug. 17, 1928 issue that Jewish educational effort can not be permitted to remain in the chaotic, helter-skelter conditions in which we find it today. He thought it was a big problem that Jewish education in that period had already begun to solidify around the synagogue. Rather than having each congregation see to the religious education of its members children, he believed there should be large, communal religious schools open to all. Tough luck for Mr. Zarchin; the congregational model continues to dominate almost a century later.

Talk of Jewish education slows down in our archive during the Depression and World War II. But in the 50s, with suburban synagogue life booming, various Jewish education groups were constantly proclaiming it the week of Jewish education or the month of Jewish education, and putting out calls to parents to send their kids to religious school.

In an editorial in our Sept. 17, 1954 issue, we wrote in support of one such call: Thousands of Jewish children in our community are not receiving the religious education that is due them. Let us hope that the Call to Jewish Parents will fall on responsive ears and that it will accomplish the constructive results for which it is intended.

Clearly, it did not. These calls seemingly went unheeded for years as similar pleas were issued annually.

By the 1970s, full-blown panic and despair were setting in with regard to Jewish education. To wit, on April 30, 1971, about 40 college students stormed into the offices of the San Francisco Jewish Welfare Federation (which several years later changed its name to the Jewish Community Federation) to demand better support and funding for local Jewish education. The members called themselves the Jewish Education Coalition. David Biale, a UC Davis professor of Jewish history who was then a 22-year-old senior at UC Berkeley, told J. last year on the 50th anniversary of the sit-in that the Jewish Education Coalition was a front organization for the Radical Jewish Union.

Biale was among the activists who plotted and carried out the subversive yet peaceful event, which lasted from 11:30 a.m. Friday until 9 p.m. Saturday. Jews Liberate Federation beamed a headline in RJUs newspaper, the Jewish Radical. Though this paper did not report on the sit-in at that time, the action drew local TV and media coverage, and during the event the word got out and several rabbis came and visited us and expressed their solidarity, Biale recalled. Among them was Rabbi Wolfe Kelman, a leader in the Conservative movement. He happened to be in town, had heard of our initiative and felt he wanted to celebrate Shabbat with us, one of the activists recalled. He was clearly signaling to us that there was a part of that so-called Jewish Establishment which not only did not oppose our actions, but wholeheartedly validated and supported them.

A few months later, a letter to the editor in our Nov. 12, 1971 issue blasted the Federations for inadequate support of education. There is no question that Jewish education in San Francisco and its suburbs is in a sorry state, the letter writer declared.

A year later, in our Dec. 22, 1972 issue we wrote in an editorial of an American Jewish Committee officials prognostications on what would happen to Jewish youth if the sorry state were allowed to continue: Jewish youth are made vulnerable to the Jesus movement because they are permitted to grow up without the benefit of a solid Jewish education. In spite of endless talk of Jewish education over the decades, the editorial sadly but assuredly declares: Jewish education and intellectuality are still not high priorities in the Jewish communal life of America.

Jewish Education Failing: No Clear Image For U.S. Jews reads an April 7, 1978 headline on a JTA article that we ran. In it, a scholar declares that the current disarray in Jewish education is unique in Jewish history, confident, like so many Jews before him, that things are now much worse than they used to be.

The issue continued apace in the 1980s. On Nov. 8, 1985, a headline read Expert warns of weaknesses in U.S. Jewish education. His formula for solving the problem included such concrete, innovative bullet points as Make homes more Jewish and Provide regular and sustained Jewish education.

On the front page of our Nov. 16, 1990 issue, a JTA headline read 2-year Jewish education study urges overhaul. The reporter writes matter-of-factly of a study that has concluded what everyone already knows that the Jewish education system is troubled and needs more money. (The study, of course, had already cost a cool $1 million.)

We could go on. In recent years, similar complaints can still be heard throughout the Jewish world. Next time you hear one, just remember: Theres nothing new under the sun.

Read the original:

ARCHIVES: Bemoaning the state of Jewish education today, a history J. - The Jewish News of Northern California

Stephen: Spirit-given boldness and forgiveness in action – Leawood – Church of the Resurrection

Posted By on August 6, 2022

Daily ScriptureTHURSDAY 8.4.22 Acts 6:5, 8-12, 7:54-60

Acts 6

5 This proposal pleased the entire community. They selected Stephen, a man endowed by the Holy Spirit with exceptional faith, Philip, Prochorus, Nicanor, Timon, Parmenas, and Nicolaus from Antioch, a convert to Judaism.

8 Stephen, who stood out among the believers for the way Gods grace was at work in his life and for his exceptional endowment with divine power, was doing great wonders and signs among the people. 9 Opposition arose from some who belonged to the so-called Synagogue of Former Slaves. Members from Cyrene, Alexandria, Cilicia, and Asia entered into debate with Stephen. 10 However, they couldnt resist the wisdom the Spirit gave him as he spoke. 11 Then they secretly enticed some people to claim, We heard him insult Moses and God. 12 They stirred up the people, the elders, and the legal experts. They caught Stephen, dragged him away, and brought him before the Jerusalem Council.

Acts 7

54 Once the council members heard these words, they were enraged and began to grind their teeth at Stephen. 55 But Stephen, enabled by the Holy Spirit, stared into heaven and saw Gods majesty and Jesus standing at Gods right side. 56 He exclaimed, Look! I can see heaven on display and the Human One [or Son of Man] standing at Gods right side! 57 At this, they shrieked and covered their ears. Together, they charged at him, 58 threw him out of the city, and began to stone him. The witnesses placed their coats in the care of a young man named Saul. 59 As they battered him with stones, Stephen prayed, Lord Jesus, accept my life! 60 Falling to his knees, he shouted, Lord, dont hold this sin against them! Then he died.

In Acts 6, the earliest church identified seven people to care more effectively for widows who felt passed over. Luke identified one of them, Stephen, as standing out because of the remarkable ways the Holy Spirit was at work in his life. But that exceptional faith and boldness had a cost. Stephens Spirit-empowered words (cf. Acts 7:48-53) so enraged many of the same religious leaders who had demanded Jesus' death that they didnt even seek Roman approval, but stoned Stephen to death.

Lord Jesus, Resurrection is big and respected. But through this church, the Spirit calls me to live above and beyond my cultures values and wishes. Give me the daring to keep letting the Spirit guide my life. Amen.

* William Barclay, The Gospel of Luke (Revised Edition). Louisville: Westminster John Knox Press, 1975, p. 77.

View post:

Stephen: Spirit-given boldness and forgiveness in action - Leawood - Church of the Resurrection

LGBTQ Jewish leaders step up to combat monkeypox, stigmatization J. – The Jewish News of Northern California

Posted By on August 6, 2022

With San Francisco having emerged as the epicenter of Californias monkeypox outbreak with nearly 400 confirmed cases as of Tuesday, the day after the citys state of emergency went into effect local LGBTQ Jewish leaders are stepping to the forefront.

One prominent gay San Franciscan, state Sen. Scott Wiener, began urging city leaders early on to declare the state of emergency, saying it would create significant flexibility around testing, contracting for services and administration of vaccinations.

The window is rapidly closing to contain the monkeypox outbreak & avoid it becoming a permanent fixture.

The public health failure around monkeypox has been profound. We need to move faster to get people vaccinated & need far more vaccines ASAP. https://t.co/iWNFeLTQwU

Senator Scott Wiener (@Scott_Wiener) August 1, 2022

Wieners quick call to action was applauded by Martin Rawlings-Fein, the head of the trans and nonbinary committee at Congregation Shaar Zahav, San Franciscos historic gay and lesbian synagogue. Rawlings-Fein, 44, a trans man who lives in San Francisco, is working with his committee to develop resources and education concerning the virus, and to offer information and support for congregants seeking a monkeypox vaccine.

Were kind of the canaries in the coal mine, Rawlings-Fein said. Were the people, [40] years ago, people didnt want to touch us, he added, recalling the stigma that the gay community faced during the AIDS crisis.

Our synagogue has this tradition of linking arms and singing Hinei ma tov, because were all together, he continued. That tradition began in the 80s in response to [stigmatization]. People needed to be touched, they needed to be held on to, to let us know we matter.

Now its the monkeypox virus, which is transmitted through prolonged skin-to-skin contact, thats putting the tradition on hold and keeping people apart. Having a public health crisis on top of a public health crisis, its a big deal, Rawlings-Fein said.

We cant and wont leave the LGBTQ community out to dry.

Saul Sugarman, 35, a gay Jewish writer and fashion designer in San Francisco, waited in line for four hours on a recent morning to get the monkeypox vaccine. He knew San Francisco General Hospital had run out of vaccines the previous day, so he made his way to Steamworks, a gay bath house and sex venue in Berkeley that hed heard would be administering a few hundred doses.

I do feel grateful to have gotten it, Sugarman said of the vaccine.

One of Sugarmans colleagues in the fashion world contracted monkeypox last month and has been quarantining for weeks. He texted Sugarman a photo of a lesion on his finger.

All of that made me very nervous, Sugarman said. It also made him want to get vaccinated right off. The people waiting in line for vaccines at Steamworks were all men, said Sugarman, who is worried about the public discourse around the virus stigmatizing gay men.

I worry about creating any stigma associated with the gay community, especially when, to my eyes, we are doing everything we can to remain safe and vaccinated, Sugarman said.

Rawlings-Fein has been helping his friends and neighbors get the vaccine, though he himself is still on a waitlist. After being closed for several days due to a lack of vaccines, the vaccine clinic at San Francisco General Hospital reopened Monday, and the citys health department received 4,220 additional monkeypox vaccines, according to a tweet from the San Francisco Department of Public Health.

We have been informed that SF will receive 4220 monkeypox vax doses this week. It is still unclear when these doses will arrive. We will keep the everyone informed of when the @ZSFGCare clinic will open for walk ins. For more info about appointments go to https://t.co/9bZiFVD2wI pic.twitter.com/zvAOhDdS47

SFDPH (@SF_DPH) July 27, 2022

Rawlings-Fein said its up to the entire San Francisco community to break down the stigma and to understand monkeypox is not exclusive to the LGBTQ community. But it does affect the LGBTQ community first.

Wiener, a member of Californias Legislative Jewish Caucus and its Legislative LGBTQ Caucus, noted that San Francisco was at the forefront of the public health responses to HIV and Covid-19, and we will be at the forefront when it comes to monkeypox. We cant and wont leave the LGBTQ community out to dry.

Read the original post:

LGBTQ Jewish leaders step up to combat monkeypox, stigmatization J. - The Jewish News of Northern California

Deaths announcements for the week of Aug. 5, 2022 J. – The Jewish News of Northern California

Posted By on August 6, 2022

Obituaries are supported by a generous grant fromSinai Memorial Chapel.Denise Amiel AbecassisFeb. 3, 1939July 9, 2022Denise Amiel Abecassis

Denise Amiel Abecassis (Dina bat Rachel) passed away on July 9, 2022 at age 83, surrounded and held by her family and friends.

Denise was born and raised in Mazagan, Morocco, in 1939, by her parents Abraham and Clara Amiel, and alongside her three siblings, Mesod Amiel, Solange Abecassis (nee Amiel, and Jacques Amiel. In 1967, Denise married the intelligent and dashing Simon Abecassis, and became stepmother to his two sons, Jacques Abecassis and Claude Abecassis. Shortly after, the family moved to San Francisco, California. In 1968, Simon and Denise had their first child, Kathy Abecassis Bitton.

From a young age, Denise demonstrated a deep passion and keen mastery for sewing and design. In Morocco, she often sewed her own clothes and unique custom pieces for her friends and family. Upon arriving in San Francisco, Denise extended her mastery to the community around her, often taking on complex pieces for local sewing shops and establishing herself as a businesswoman. In addition to this work, Denise spent nearly five decades in the fine jewelry business, working with her brother Jacques and her brother-in-law Samuel Abecassis at Sams Fine Gold. Walking into their store, it would be impossible to miss the sophisticated woman sitting behind the counter dark hair that was always neatly swept back, charcoal that emphasized deep brown eyes and rosy lips that gave way to a soft smile. Denises magnetic charm evenly matched her outgoing personality and business style. Whip-smart, communicative and funny, she took pride in the customers she serviced and the friendships that her work blossomed into.

For over 50 years, Denise donated her time, cooking and during the occasional holiday Moroccan ululations to her local synagogue, Anshey Sfard. Congregation Anshey Sfard proved to be a home for Denise and her family, welcoming generations of her family upon arrival in the U.S. and serving as the familys sole place of worship to this day.

While her position as a jeweler, a volunteer and a mother kept Denise more than busy, she still found the time to raise and love three generations of her family. Known as Meme to her grandchildren, and Tata Denise by her scores of nieces and nephews, she demonstrated the full breadth of being a grandmother and aunt she was fierce, sassy and generous. Everyone knew that she was not to be crossed in synagogue, nor was she unashamed to trick little ones into bringing her sweets or the older ones to take her shopping. But at the end of the day, she always made sure that everyone was fed, and then fed again, and that she could plant a soft kiss on the inside of their ear, that sent an echoing ring reminding them of her love.

She was our matriarch.

Denise will be greatly missed by her daughter Kathy and her husband Jacques Bitton, as well as her three grandchildren, Francesca Bitton, Gabriella Bitton and Stefania Bitton, whom she spent every Shabbat and weekend with. Denises memory will always be cherished by her sister and brother, Solange and Jacques, and her many nieces and nephews, including Danielle Abecassis, Clara Abecassis, David Abecassis, Eric Amiel, Valerie Amiel, Rafael Amiel, Marco Amiel, Simon Amiel, Joelle Vinakur (nee Amiel), Ester Ofir (nee Amiel), Katia Hershkovich (nee Amiel) and Claire Amiel.

Memorial services were held on July 12, 2022.

Sinai Memorial(415) 921-3636

Marjorie Kay Feder (Margie) passed away peacefully from complications of Alzheimers and pneumonia just before her 88th birthday. She was born in San Francisco, daughter of Adele Harris and Sidney Kay. Her brother Alan Kay predeceased her. Margie graduated from Lowell High School, went on to UC Berkeley and lived in the AEPhi house. She then met her first husband, Claude Rosenberg, a pension fund manager and philanthropist, and married in 1953 after her freshman year.

She is survived by her daughter Linda Rosenberg Ach (Andy) and son Douglas Rosenberg and five granddaughters: Amanda Ach, Sara Ach, Liza Ach, Julia Rosenberg and Lauren Rosenberg.

Margie loved life, had a warm smile, welcomed everyone and was kind to all. She always had a positive attitude and moved forward. She loved tennis, skiing, golf, piano, opera, dancing and bridge and adored her granddaughters the most. Margie spent lots of time with each granddaughter at home and on various trips and with the family. She was elegant and beautiful.

After her marriage to Claude, she went back to school to finish her Bachelor of Arts degree and then went on to be a successful Real Estate broker in San Francisco.

She then married Cliff Farmer and helped raise his six kids while they were married: Zanita, Melissa, Ricky, Jincie, Elizabeth (passed) and Jeffrey. She maintained a close relationship with the kids after their divorce. She then married Jack Feder, whom she had known in high school. They had a wonderful marriage and spent lots of time in Silverado until his death in 2008.

She then married Bill Feis, a retired lawyer from Los Angeles whom she met on a blind date. They had a fun-loving time in San Francisco and Palm Desert these last 13 years.

And special thanks to Melania and Flor who were with her 24/7 with loving care and friendship.

Janice Katz, a retired special education teacher and revered member of the Jewish and Bay Area communities for decades, passed away at home on July 30, 2022 after a five-month battle with cancer. She was 86.

A resident of San Mateo County for more than 50 years, Janice considered Peninsula Temple Sholom her second home. Among her many contributions to the Sholom community, she prepared and delivered welcome baskets for new members; served as a religious school committee member; and for 15 years co-chaired the Gemilut Chasadim committee, which brought support and comfort to those facing personal challenges. In 2015, Sholom Women honored her with its Woman of Valor award. She also co-chaired the North Peninsula Yom HaShoah committee for three years.

Born in El Paso, Texas, to Lithuanian immigrants who loved their new country, Janice was the youngest of two daughters. Living on the U.S./Mexico border, she learned to speak fluent Spanish and later served for 11 years as a Spanish interpreter and volunteer coordinator for Samaritan House, a free medical clinic in San Mateo that serves patients who cant afford care.

Together with the love of her life, her late husband Dr. Irving Katz, she collected art and appreciated symphony, opera, and theater. She made vibrant, creative flower arrangements for all occasions, often with blooms Irving grew in their garden. Irving liked to refer to Janice as the Jewish Mother Teresa.

Janice is survived by her loving son Andrew and adoring daughters Leslie (Jonathan) and Rachel (Andy). She is also survived by her brothers-in-law Bernard Katz and Bruce Katz and sister-in-law Shirley Nussbaum. Nieces, nephews, cousins and countless friends of all ages cherished her thoughtful, generous heart and turned to her for advice and wisdom. Her calendar was filled with hundreds of reminders for birthdays (both human and pet), as well as anniversaries, graduations and yahrzeits, and she made calls and sent cards for every occasion.

The family asks that those who wish to send a donation consider Peninsula Temple Sholom; Samaritan House; or Home and Hope, which aids the homeless.

It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of Bernard Monetta on July 30, 2022, at the age of 95. He led a wonderful balanced life of love, family, professional career along with travel and leisure. Bernie was born in Toledo, Ohio, to William and Kate Monetta. The family soon moved to Vallejo, Calif., where he became an Eagle Scout and attended Vallejo High School. He often noted that his high school years, spent with seven close-knit guys who were inseparable, were some of the best of times.

Bernie was called into the U.S. Army in WWII and was stationed at Hickam Air Force Base in Honolulu, where he repaired B-17 bombers. Following the war, he used the GI Bill to study optometry and graduated from Pacific University College of Optometry in 1952. He opened his own practice, Dr. Monetta Optometry, in the Stonestown Shopping Center in 1954. He practiced for over 30 years and the practice continues today with his son, Robert, on Ocean Avenue.

Escaping the fog in San Francisco, Bernie met the love of his life, Nadine, on a summer day in Marin County. They were married in the Gold Room at the Fairmont Hotel, where they also celebrated their 50th wedding anniversary. They had a storybook marriage lasting almost 62 years. They traveled the world, but their hearts were truly left in San Francisco. They were members of Lake Merced Country Club and of Monterey Country Club while spending time in their Palm Desert home.

Bernies two sons, David and Robert, were the joys of his life. His daughters-in-law, Lisa and Natalie, were the daughters he always wanted. His grandchildren Alexander, Kayla, Zachary, Jacqueline and Dominic kept him young at heart. Although Bernie was an only child, his closeness to his late brothers-in-law, Louis and George Everett, and Leonard Hurwitt, as well as his late sister-in-laws Yvonne Hurwitt and Peggy Everett was unparalleled. He was a loving uncle to Charles Everett, Suzy and Steve Stemerman, Laura and Rich Everett, Sharon and Alan Levins, Nancy and Matt Browar, and Joan and Mitch Berger.

Bernie was the last of his familys generation in an unusually close extended family who will be remembered with warmth and loving devotion.

A funeral will be held at 1:30 p.m. Friday, Aug. 5, 2022 at Salem Memorial Park in Colma, and a celebration of life reception will follow at 3 p.m. at the Olympic Club, 599 Skyline Blvd., San Francisco, CA 94132. All family and friends are welcome. In lieu of flowers, donations in Bernies memory can be made to the American Heart Association.

Sinai Memorial(415) 921-3636

We are sad to announce the passing of our mom and nana, Lynne Schaer, after a brief battle with Covid.

The daughter of S. David and Hannah Marcovitz, Lynne was born and raised in Philadelphia, PA. She was a proud graduate of the University of Pennsylvania, earning a degree in education, which led to becoming an elementary school teacher. Lynne went on to marry Dr. Leonard R. Schaer of Buffalo, N.Y. in 1956, and they remained married until his passing in 2015.

Lynne and Len moved from Buffalo to El Cerrito, CA in 1964 and then settled in Walnut Creek, CA in 1965, where they raised their three sons, Steve, Alan and Larry. In addition to being a full-time mom, Lynne was an avid gardener with many beautiful rose bushes in her backyard, enjoyed cooking, including trying out new recipes for many cuisines, led tours at the Bedford Gallery at the Lesher Center for the Arts and supported charitable organizations that focused on helping people with extra needs. She and Len enjoyed attending the theater, concerts and museums along with traveling to many countries around the world.

Lynne was preceded in death by her husband, Len, and her son, Steve. She is survived by her son Alan, and his wife, Cindy, of San Ramon, along with their two daughters, Danielle and Talia. She is also survived by her son Larry, and his wife, Julie, along with their daughter, Kat, of Apex, North Carolina.

A funeral was held on July 6, 2022, at Gan Shalom Cemetery in Briones, CA, during which we shared stories of Moms love of the arts, her gentle nature, and the extra effort she made to teach her sons skills and talents that will last them a lifetime.

Donations in Lynnes memory may be made to: Congregation Bnai Shalom in Walnut Creek, Hadassah, Dogs for Better Lives in Central Point, Oregon, or to the charity of your choice.

Sinai Memorial(925) 962-3636

Dr. Sam Thal came to San Francisco, the city he loved, in 1955 after receiving his M.D. degree from the University of Washington School of Medicine and doing a residency in internal medicine at the Mayo Clinic. He worked for the Department of Veterans Affairs in the East Bay and was on the UCSF Clinical Faculty for 47 years, retiring as Clinical Professor of Medicine.

He was a longtime donor and/or volunteer for the American Conservatory Theater library, Merola Opera Program, San Francisco Ballet Horizons Foundation, the Castro Senior Center, the Gay and Lesbian Historical Society, and the Bay Area Physicians for Human Rights (BAPHR). He served on the BAPHR Board of Directors for over 30 years and was also secretary, historian and editor of their newsletter. In addition, he was a member of New Leaf (closed in 2010), Gay and Lesbian Medical Association, Commonwealth Club, American Legion Alexander Hamilton Post 448, Prime Timers, and other medical, cultural and historical organizations. He was a founding member of Congregation Shaar Zahav, San Francisco.

He died July 25, 2022 at The Sequoias San Francisco. A private memorial service was held at the Hills of Eternity Memorial Park. Donations in his memory may be made to any of the organizations listed above.

Sinai Memorial(415) 921-3636

Our beloved Father and Grandfather passed away peacefully on July 26. We will always remember his quiet, happy and jolly outlook and positive energy. He was preceded in death by his beloved wife, Aline, brother-in-law of Alfred (Freddie) and sister-in-law Sara Lehine.

Michael is survived by his loving son, Daniel, daughter-in-law Jeannine; his cherished granddaughter, Hailey; Uncle to Richard (Laurie) Lehine; and Great-Uncle to Ian and Paige Lehine. Michael will be missed but will remain in our hearts forever. At Michaels request, please make memorial contributions to the American Cancer Society.

Sinai Memorial(415) 921-3636

Norma Weiss, a longtime Los Altos resident, passed away on July 13. She was born in New York City in 1926 to immigrant parents and she graduated from Hunter College in 1947 with a major in psychology and a minor in philosophy and sociology. With her husband, Jerry, along with her young family, they followed his parents west to Los Angeles in 1957 and then moved north in 1963 to Sunnyvale and to Los Altos in 1973.

She taught special education in the Sunnyvale School District from 1968-1981 and during that time, at the age of 50, she also completed a masters degree in education from the University of San Francisco in 1975. While teaching in Sunnyvale, she was also a member of the Curriculum Council from 1977-1983, and a member of the Community Advisory Committee for Special Education from 1979-1982.

In 1985, after retirement from the school district, she received an instructor credential for the California Community Colleges in special education and in 1990 she received a similar credential for language arts and literature.

With these credentials, she became an instructor in the Lifelong Learning Program at Foothill College, where she taught Introduction to Literature and other classes. She loved reading and also led book and film groups and taught various classes at the JCC, and at senior centers such as Lytton Gardens in Palo Alto.

Norma was always curious and active, and loved learning, helping and doing. She did not sit still, she kept a beautiful home and loved to cook and entertain. After retirement, in addition to the classes she taught, she played bridge every week, did needlepoint and knitting, and was active in Hadassah and sisterhood. She had many friends whom she loved and she had a great sense of humor, bringing a smile everywhere she went.

Along with her husband, she was one of the founders of Congregation Kol Emeth, where they remained members after some 60 years. Together, they created a warm and comfortable home for their children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren, and were excellent role models. She is survived by her three children, Deborah, David and Elisa (Rabbi YY Rubenstein), two grandchildren, Nicole and Jason (Sharona), and three incredible great-grandchildren, Ariella, Shir and Daniel.

May her memory be a blessing for everyone that knew her.

Sinai Memorial(650) 369-3636

Follow this link:

Deaths announcements for the week of Aug. 5, 2022 J. - The Jewish News of Northern California

These are the victims of the Highland Park parade shooting – Chicago Tribune

Posted By on August 6, 2022

The parents of a toddler. A father of eight and a grandfather to many. A synagogue employee known for her kindness. A family man who loved the arts.

A mass shooting during the Highland Park Independence Day parade has now claimed the lives of at least seven people and left some two dozen others injured, ranging in age from 8 to 85 years old.

Those killed were:

Here is what we know about the victims of the shooting.

Katie Goldsteins neighbor Andrew Chevalier said she brought him a pie when he moved into the house across the street from hers a few years ago. Every holiday season since, she has brought cookies and other goodies, even going so far as to provide gluten-free options for his wifes dietary restrictions.

She had a super warm personality ... (she was) someone you look forward to seeing around, he said.

According to Chevalier, his two-year-old daughter had taken a liking to her as well, saying that Katie Goldstein made sure to stop and listen to her toddler babblings when they were playing in the front yard.

Chevalier, who had originally planned on attending the parade, said he had texted Katie Goldstein to check in that she was OK after hearing about the shooting. The fact that she didnt get back to him by the end of the day was unusual, he said.

>>> Read the full story here

The family of Eduardo Uvaldo, 69, prayed for a miracle after the grandfather was shot while attending the Highland Park Fourth of July parade. His daughters, on social media, pleaded with others to join them in prayer, sharing a photo of Uvaldo sitting in front of the Louvre in Paris, wearing a blue shirt and a soft smile.

Highland Park Fourth of July parade shooting victim Eduardo Uvaldo, right, and his wife Maria Uvaldo in an undated photo. (Uvaldo family)

But Uvaldo didnt make it and two days after the shooting, requests for prayers for a miracle turned into prayers for strength for the family he leaves behind. Uvaldo died just before 8 a.m. July 6 at Evanston Hospital, surrounded by his family, said Jackie Tapia, a close family friend.

Uvaldos funeral was held at The Memorial Chapel Funeral Home, 1521 Washington St., in his hometown of Waukegan, drawing approximately 500 guests, including Gov. J.B. Pritzker, Lt. Gov. Juliana Stratton, and Highland Park Mayor Nancy Rotering.

>>> Read the full story here

Toddler Aiden McCarthy was found in the chaotic aftermath of the July 4 mass shooting in Highland Park as strangers sought to reunite him with his family.

The following day it emerged that the parents of 2-year-old Aiden, Irina and Kevin McCarthy, were among the seven people killed when gunfire erupted at the start of the local Fourth of July parade.

Irina McCarthy, 35, and Kevin McCarthy, 37, both of Highland Park, left behind a 2-year-old boy, Aiden McCarthy. (GoFundMe)

Aidens grandfather, Michael Levberg, told the Tribune July 5 that he was eventually reunited with his grandson after Aiden was taken to the local police station.

When I picked him up, he said, Are Mommy and Daddy coming soon? Levberg said. He doesnt understand.

She was laid to rest eight days after the shooting. Our hearts are shattered. The pain is unbearable. There are rivers of tears. We dont want to be here, nor should we be here today, Rabbi Dovid Flinkenstein said at the service.

>>> Read the full story here

Steve Straus, 88, was an exceptional joke-teller, an avid reader and a culture vulture who enjoyed the artistic fruits of the Art Institute and the Chicago Symphony Orchestra, family members said. Energetic beyond his years, Straus commuted on Metra five days a week to his office downtown, where he worked as a stockbroker.

Straus, said his son Peter Straus, was very curious about the world.

A longtime Highland Park resident who was born and raised on the Chicagos South Side, his son Jonathan Straus described him as a product of Chicago.

>>> Read the full story here

Nicolas Toledo, 76, had arrived a few months ago from his native Morelos, Mexico, to spend time with his family after retiring several years ago.

Toledos family said he was the father of eight and a grandfather to many whod spent most of his life in the Chicago area but had returned to his hometown after retiring several years ago.

Nicolas Toledo, seated, was a father of eight and a grandfather who was shot and killed during the Fourth of July parade in Highland Park. (Toledo family)

At the start of the parade, he was sitting in a wheelchair surrounded by children, grandchildren and great-grandchildren when the gunshots rang out; he reportedly was killed instantly.

Today Nicolas is our guardian angel, his granddaughter Xochil Toledo wrote about Nicolas Toledo. We ask you (to) please keep our family and all the families of this horrible tragedy in your prayers and stay strong as a community.

>>> Read the full story here

A woman who worked and worshipped for decades at a synagogue in Glencoe was among the victims of the deadly shooting at the Highland Park parade, synagogue leaders confirmed.

Highland Park Fourth of July parade shooting victim Jacki Sundheim, worked at North Shore Congregation Israel. (North Shore Congregation Israel)

Jacki Sundheim coordinated events and bar and bat mitzvahs at North Shore Congregation Israel, according to the synagogues website. Authorities said six people were killed and 24 others wounded when a gunman opened fire just as Highland Parks Fourth of July parade was kicking off.

Sundheim also taught preschool at Congregation Israel, where she was a lifelong member, according to a message from the synagogue. It also said her work, kindness and warmth touched us all and that she guided innumerable among us through lifes moments of joy and sorrow, all of this with tireless dedication.

>>> Read the full story here

Cooper Roberts, the 8-year-old boy who was paralyzed at the July Fourth mass shooting in Highland Park has been released from pediatric intensive care after almost a month of turbulent recovery.

As Cooper gets closer to returning home, the Roberts family said they feel all the prayers being sent their way and are grateful for and humbled by the outpouring of support.

Cooper Roberts, an 8-year-old boy paralyzed from the waist down after being wounded at the Fourth of July parade shooting in Highland Park, has been released from pediatric intensive care after almost a month of a turbulent recovery. In the first photo taken of and shared of Cooper following the massacre, he is seen smiling and hugging the family dog while sitting in his wheelchair. (Roberts family photo)

Though she remained optimistic about Coopers recovery, the painful memory of the shooting reminds her that his life will never be the same as he learns to live paralyzed and deals with emotional stress over the situation. Coopers twin brother, Luke, was also injured.

We were shot. I can hardly say it. None of us Cooper, Luke, me, our family, the other victims and their families, our community will ever be the same, Roberts said in a written statement. Seven people were murdered that day, and our hearts go out to their families, friends and all whose lives they touched. And we are among the dozens of others injured, shattered, hanging on and fighting through.

>>> Read the full story here

Chicago Public Schools teacher Zoe Kolpack was shot in the femur while attending the parade with her husband, Stephen; their two young children; her parents; and Stephens family, according to family friend Samantha Whitehead, who is raising money for medical costs.

Whitehead said Stephen Kolpack and Zoes dad, Mike Joyce, were shot in the leg as well, while Stephens brother, Nicholas, was shot in the kneecap. The injuries are not life-threatening, and the Kolpack children were unharmed, Whitehead said.

Whitehead said Zoes mother, Nancy Joyce, grabbed the two small kids and hid in a nearby building for about 45 minutes, until they were given the all-clear.

Meanwhile, Zoes dad was hovering (over) her and protecting her because she couldnt move. And she just said that, like, people were just running past her, and she was just screaming, help, help. She said she felt like it went on for like 30 minutes, Whitehead said.

In a statement, CPS said it was devastated to learn that one of our CPS teachers and her family members are among those who were injured in the (July 4) mass shooting in Highland Park. Zoe, who has worked for the district since 2017, teaches preschool at William Dever Elementary School on the Northwest Side. CPS said support services will be available to support the Dever Elementary staff and students as needed.

See the original post:

These are the victims of the Highland Park parade shooting - Chicago Tribune

How do you get summer vacationers at the Shore to keep the faith? Bless their boats. – The Philadelphia Inquirer

Posted By on August 6, 2022

Sunbathers, bikers, and boaters were out and about, just like any other day down the Shore except on this recent Sunday, a small procession was making its way from the Episcopal Church of the Redeemer in Longport to the seawall across the street.

A young man in shorts carried a large metal cross and walked with a priest in vestments, a gaggle of congregants and a kilt-clad bagpiper playing America the Beautiful. As the church bell tolled, they looked out at the dozen boats bobbing in the bay.

Gods blessing upon you and upon the water that you ply, the Rev. Henry Hudson, a visiting chaplain via Selma, Ala., intoned through a megaphone to the gathered seacraft, including cruisers and Longport beach patrol rowboats, and jet skis. Raising his right hand, he read from Psalm 107:23-32, where God calms the stormy sea. May you stay safe upon the waters, and may you enjoy the beauty of all Gods creations. Amen.

Call it religion, Shore style. Along the Jersey coast, houses of worship offer special beachside programs to connect with the seasonal crowd. The mission: to keep faith a focal point amid the R&R.

For us, its an opportunity to engage the community around us, Hudson said. Its an informal moment, where the church can reach out into the lives of the people here and say, As you go, praise God, and give thanks to God for the beauty of the creation around you.

Early in his visits to the Longport church, the priest said he was asked to bless the bay and then boats. That seemed appropriate given that the 1908 Spanish-style church sits across from the waters and its stained-glass windows celebrate marine life (jellyfish, octopus, horseshoe crab). I thought, Jesus blessed boats. I can do that, Hudson said. Somewhere along the line, bikes were added to the lineup, and on this day, he wished safe travels for those on two wheels and in strollers.

Its a free insurance policy, said Lee Scanny, a retired union carpenter who lives in Linwood and attended the blessing from his 23-foot boat that he uses for fishing and cruising. Ive got through some lousy stuff in my boat, unexpected storms. Id like to think the Man Upstairs had something to do with that.

Church trustee Anne Peterson Martin, a Longport resident who helped organize the blessing, said Redeemerconsidered a summer sanctuaryis always looking for ways to bring the community into the church and the church into the community. Next year, she said, the plan is to take the priest to the boats on the bay for individual blessings.

Over in Ventnor at Shirat Hayam, a conservative and reform merged synagogue whose name means Song of the Sea, services move to the sandpit at South Newport Avenue and the Boardwalk for several Friday evenings through the season.

Theres no reason that worship has to be serious, Rabbi Jonathan Kremer said, adding that about 150 people attend, settling in beach chairs and partaking in prayer and song. Sometimes it should be. More often than not, it should be just joyful, calm joy, or maybe exuberant joy. At the beach, its more exuberant.

Ellen Glassman of Broomall is a weekend regular to Margate, where she and her husband have a home. We always say that Shabbat feels magical when your toes are in the sand and the seagulls are overhead and the waves are rushing in, she said.

For many coastal houses of worship, the outdoor rituals also offer a way to attract newcomers to the fold even if only for the summer months.

Chabad at the Shore in Ventnor sets up a tent to sell its challah bread, attracting a line 100 deep, said synagogue director Rabbi Avrohom Rapoport. On the side, theres a little stand where people could make a prayer and don a tefillin, he said of a ritual usually done inside the synagogue. By bringing all these traditions outside the building, it helps people know that we are here. Saturday services can attract 150 people, as much as five times the winter crowd.

Founded in 1869 as a Christian resort town for holy leisure, Ocean Grove has more than 100 outdoor religious programs at the towns Boardwalk Pavilion, according to Michael Badger, president of the Ocean Grove Camp Meeting Association. That includes Lighthouse: Songs & Currents, Under the Umbrella Bible study, and many beach baptisms.

Much of Jesus history was on the waters edge, Badger said. People connect in places where they are on the edge, the edge of a mountain, the edge of the ocean. It opens them to the expanse of nature and opens the window of the soul to see God.

Sometimes, the Shores proximity proves an unexpected boon. People come from faraway places, from North Jersey, Philadelphia, Connecticut, Avinash Gupta, chairman of Siddhivinayak Temple USAs executive board said, adding visitors to the Hindu temple can triple in the summer weekends to as many as 100 people. They can take Gods blessing and at the same time visit Seaside Heights or Seaside Park. They have a dual attraction.

For Pastor Bill McGowan of Zion Lutheran Church in Barnegat Light, ministry at the water helps keep houses of worship vibrant.

On Fathers Day this year, he and other pastors, along with a rabbi, gathered dockside for the annual Blessing of the Fleet that took in a few dozen clamming and scalloping fishing boats, 60- to 80-footers. After the ritual, the scores of spectators get free boat rides through the inlet. Its a real community day, he said.

The church also holds services at the Bay Breeze Pavilion Sunday mornings as well as other Shore activities with a religious twist, including Blessings and Burgers for the local beach patrol and sunset worship services by the bay.

The secret is to always go out and spread the message, McGowan said. People have a lot of time constraints. Sometimes, when theyre on vacation, they have some extra time and find their way into church.

Read the original post:

How do you get summer vacationers at the Shore to keep the faith? Bless their boats. - The Philadelphia Inquirer


Page 21234..1020..»