Watch the Virtual Panel on COVID-19’s Unique Impact on Women: May 6, 2020
Virtual Panel on COVID-19’s Unique Impact on Women: Resource List
Virtual Panel on COVID-19’s Unique Impact on Women: Resource List
What do silent children and talking animals have in common? It may not seem like much, but perhaps we can explore the connections later this month as Holy Blossom’s Israel Engagement Committee launches its summer book club! The first book we will be reading in our “Israeli Books Go Live” group will dive into the magical world of Etgar Keret and is overflowing with absurdity, humour, sadness, and compassion.
This July, escape into an incredible collection of the most extremely short of short stories; Etgar Keret’s Suddenly a Knock on the Door. In August, join us as we adventure into pre-state Israel, with Matti Friedman’s easy read, Spies of No Country. We will be meeting virtually on the last Wednesday of the month; BYOB! (Bring your own book!) For more information about this new initiative, please follow the link below.
Born in Israel to Holocaust survivors in 1967, Etgar Keret is known for his extremely short stories, graphic novels, and scriptwriting for film and television. His work has influenced many writers of his generation as well as bringing a renewed surge in popularity for the short story form in Israel. Keret is the recipient of numerous awards including the Prime Minister’s award for literature, the Ministry of Culture’s Cinema Prize, the Charles Bronfman Prize, the Sapir Prize for Literature, and the National Jewish Book Award for Fiction. Rarely extending beyond three or four pages, the stories found in “Suddenly a Knock at the Door” offers a window into a surreal world that is at once funny, sad and complex.
To further pique your interest, here is an excerpt from one of the short stories found in Suddenly, A Knock at the Door:
“Tell me a story,” the bearded man sitting on my living-room sofa commands. The situation, I must say, is anything but pleasant. I’m someone who writes stories, not someone who tells them. And even that isn’t something I do on demand. The last time anyone asked me to tell him a story, it was my son. That was a year ago. I told him something about a fairy and a ferret–I don’t even remember what exactly–and within two minutes he was fast asleep. But the situation is fundamentally different. Because my son doesn’t have a beard, or a pistol. Because my son asked for the story nicely, and this man is simply trying to rob me of it.
Whether you read from cover to cover, or only have time for a few short stories, all are welcome to join “Israeli Books Go Live” for our first gathering on July 29, at 7:30 pm.
My membership at Holy Blossom Temple has meant the world to me. From a young age, I was able to meet other Jewish kids and learn about Judaism, and as I grew up, I was able to participate as a young adult. Through my membership, I was able to join in HABSTY (the youth group at HBT) and make memories and friends that will last me a lifetime. I was also introduced to the world of NFTY, which created some of my best high school moments. Now, as a university student, I am able to go to Holy Blossom for services, gather with friends, and learn. Holy Blossom has provided me with something for every stage of my life.
My membership at Holy Blossom is so much more than just going to high holiday services; it is just my introduction to the whole Jewish Community. If considering Holy Blossom, I 100% would say do it. It’s a great place to be!
Hello, this is Ellen Cole. I’m on the Board of Directors at Holy Blossom Temple and I’m calling today to check in with you and your family to see how you are coping with these current conditions. How is your family? And how are you?
Thus begins my weekly conversation with HBT congregants. I am one of several privileged volunteers who reach out to our community for a check-in as they cope with the “new normal”.
And it truly is a privilege. Everyone I speak with is touched and grateful that we take the time and that we truly care. I share my new mantra: stay safe, stay healthy, stay home – and stay connected. But mostly I just listen.
And the feedback is always so helpful. I’ve shared recipes, tips on making masks and even who to call to change the winter tires – right at your house!
As I point out the services and programs that are available on the holyblossom.org website for Zoom minyans, livestream Shabbat and holiday services, many of them already know. Their children are attending Sunday School with David Gershon or participating as Little Blossoms.
I am so proud of what Holy Blossom is doing for its congregation and so glad I am a part of this outreach initiative. I usually do it on a Friday so I can wish the congregant or family Shabbat shalom. And I always feel that I am getting as much or more than I am giving.
This is what it means to volunteer – to get such an uplifting sense of satisfaction in reaching out – to listen and to truly be part of a congregation.
The only noticeable difference to date resulting from Prime Minister Netanyahu’s proclamation of his intention, starting last July 1, to annex parts of the West Bank was that it brought together the Palestinian arch-rivals Hamas and Fatah. They decided to set aside their deep differences that have kept them at loggerheads for decades in order to fight the proposed Israeli measure.
Their decision has led to fears in Israel that they would start a terror campaign that would cost Israeli life and limb. Netanyahu may have rightly also feared that it may have curtailed his political career and, therefore July 1 was no longer “sacrosanct.”
Other, not only Arabs but also Jews, political leaders of most countries in the world as well as many public figures in Israel and abroad had come out against the plan. But it is not clear how much they influenced the decision to delay the implementation, though Jordan’s outrage may have been a particularly important factor in view of its proximity and complex relationship with the Jewish state.
The fact that the Trump administration may have got cold feet about its “peace” (piece?) plan for the Israeli-Palestinian conflict may have been the decisive inhibiting factor.
Perhaps Gantz’s hesitation may also have had something to do with it. Not that Netanyahu seems to care about what Gantz thinks, but a split in the present government would have forced yet another election. Though Netanyahu would move mountains to blame Gantz and his supporters for it, the Israeli public might not have seen it that way. Another election would not go down well among the citizens of Israel and they may have chosen to punish Netanyahu for it.
That. Of course, would be good news for many of us, but t is not clear who in Likud would or could replace Netanyahu. It is, therefore, likely that in case Gantz leaves the coalition, Netanyahu will try to form another “transition” government in order to stay in power without testing the electorate.
His trial is due to start in less than two weeks and the publicity about it may also have a negative effect on the prime minister. The court and, of course, the attorney general, don’t seem t be the fans of Netanyahu, which may have also been a reason why he would rather talk about annexation to keep te right-wingers (though not necessarily all settlers) happy while avoiding upsetting Trump, Gantz and perhaps others. Talking a lot and doing nothing seems to have emerged as his strategy.
What next then? I dare not predict. Nor do the pundits. Let us hope that we will only talk about annexation but no action.
Yes, the situation is pathetic. And the man supposed to lead us has created it.
Jerusalem 3.7.20 Dow Marmur
Jewish texts – from the Bible to post-Holocaust theology – have a lot to say about how to respond to crisis. Whether in the midst of a personal challenge, a communal struggle or a global pandemic, we are particularly attuned to matters of the spirit when crises strike.
How have we grown since Corona struck? How have we changed – as individuals, as a society? What have we learned? What MUST we learn? These are the questions we ought to be contemplating now through study and prayer. Part of our mission as a sacred congregation is to create the settings for personal meditation, for the meaningful exchange of ideas, and for thought-leaders to guide reflective conversations among us. Our summer calendar is filled with daily offerings to stimulate your own insights.
In addition to our own in-house Holy Blossom talent, we have cultivated many good external partners over the years. This summer they are generously inviting us to join them in gleaning greater understanding from these unusual and trying times. The Hartman Institute offers a most impressive range of classes – available in real-time or host a watch party for the recordings and discussion among your own study-group. The Institute for Jewish Spirituality offers short and long Mindful Meditation Practices as well as Embodied Jewish Yoga sessions. The Hebrew University offers us thematic minicourses through the Florence Melton School — from climate change to gender fluidity to annexation to artificial intelligence and the future of Jewish denominations, to name a few. Hillel International and the Union for Reform Judaism have paired up to Ask Big Questions. Tomorrow morning begins this series which will be team-taught by our Holy Blossom Rabbis and Cantors.
When a rainy day comes or when you take a break from Netflix, indulge yourself in these rich and varied offerings.
Growing up outside of Boston, I was exposed to the writings of Ralph Waldo Emerson. One line of poetry that sticks with me from my teenaged years is: “In each pause we hear the call.” How might we leverage this Corona crisis for the good? How might we elevate our intellectual and spiritual aspirations? How might we make societies more just, more healthy? Let’s not waste a “good crisis.” Jewish history teaches us that every crisis – and there have been many – is a call that demands a pause, so that we might do more than simply survive it.
As the weekly pause of Shabbat enters, what do we hear? How might we join with one another, with fellow congregants and fellow Jews in listening for the call and discovering moral clarity in our responses?
Read the Holy Blossom Temple Bulletin online. We welcome your comments and feedback.[/vc_column_text][/vc_column][/vc_row][vc_row][vc_column][vc_cta h2=”” h4=”Get Involved”]If you can contribute to upcoming Bulletin, by writing articles, editing content, providing feedback, or by sharing photos, please click here to contact Deanna Levy and help us to continue to ensure the Bulletin remains revitalized, dynamic and celebrates Holy Blossom Temple.[/green_message][/vc_cta][vc_empty_space]
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