Yom HaZikaron /יום הזכרון

The day before Yom HaAtzma’ut – Israeli Independence Day – is Yom HaZikaron – Israeli Remembrance Day. The Knesset (parliament) in Israel officially designated this as “Remembrance Day for Fallen Soldiers and Victims of Terrorism.”

In 2016, Yom HaZikaron begins at sunset on Tuesday May 10th.

Appropriate observances include relevant readings during services and study of Israel’s history and the sacrifices made by so many. One might light a Yahrzeit candle, recite El Maleh Rahamim and also, with a Minyan, Mourner’s Kaddish.

The highlighted terms above include links to www.myjewishlearning.com – a great site for information about all facets of Jewish life, religion, peoplehood, history and Israel.

Here from 2015 is a poignant, personal teaching about Yom HaZikaron.

Sidonia’s Thread – Book Discussion May 17th

Sidonia's Thread Book Cover

It’s not too late to catch up with our latest congregational book discussion selection – SIDONIA’S THREAD by Hannah Perlstein Marcus.  Click here for the author’s blog.

We’re meeting at Carol G’s on Tuesday evening May 17th at 7:00 PM.  Message me if you need to know how to RSVP.

Here’s background information from Amazon:

Did you and your parent ever keep a secret that lasted a lifetime? When Hanna Perlstein and her mother, Sidonia, come to Springfield, Massachusetts from a displaced persons camp after World War II, they know no one in America. With no other family, except each other, they build a world that revolves around Sidonia’s extraordinary talent with a needle and thread to create beautiful garments while Hanna serves as her dutiful model. As Sidonia becomes well-known in western Massachusetts and northern Connecticut for her remarkable sewing talent, she continues to keep her inner secrets about her past hidden not only from her daughter but from everyone else. Determined to craft a life of pride, self-reliance and perseverance, Sidonia teaches her daughter to “stand up straight” in fashion and in life. Sidonia’s Thread uses sewing metaphors to tell the tale of these two women as though stitched together like a handmade garment. Why did Sidonia keep these significant life secrets, and why was Hanna so afraid to ask about them? When Sidonia moves to elderly housing, Hanna steals some of her old letters and photographs hoping to find clues to her paternity, her mother’s reclusive behavior, and her heritage. Combined with a trip to her mother’s Hungarian homeland and a phone conversation with her father, Hanna’s surprising discoveries inspire a revised view of her life with her mother, replacing her conflicting emotions toward her mother with true reverence.

Additional information and reviews may be found at the following sites:

A Coats & Clark blog.

A Story Circle book review.

Author interview and background from the MASS Live blog. Notes that Sidonia’s Thread was named the Best Non-Fiction Kindle Book for 2014.

B’nai Mitzvah “Season”

Bar Mitzvah Drawing ImageWelcome to our spring Shabbat mornings where almost every Shabbat from now until June 18th includes a special celebration for one of our seven B’nai Mitzvah students.

Emily F. did a great job with her Acharei Mot Torah portion on May 7th.  Max is next with Kedoshim. Then comes Adin with Emor and the twin Jeremy and Marisa with Behar.  Taking a week off the first Shabbat of June, we then find Emily B. with Bemidbar and Jane closing us out with Naso.

Remember, please, that these mornings are not “private” services, that you do not have to have received an invitation in order to attend.  Invitations that families send do, indeed, announce the service, but they also include information about family parties, which are, of course, private affairs. Shabbat services, themselves, and the Kiddush reception following, are open to all.

Do join us on Shabbat morning when we’re especially festive and, definitely, doing our very best . . . . and, come celebrate these life milestone events with our wonderful students and their families.

Shalom – Rabbi/Cantor Anne Heath

Population: Annual Survey Israel Bureau of Statistics

Just the Facts Ma’am

The Israeli Bureau of Statistics published its annual population survey just before Rosh Hashanah last week. Read all about it here.  Why?

To acquire perspective and to remain informed. News from Israel comes at us “fast and furious” especially when tensions in the area rise. Basic facts can come in handy.

May we see peace in Israel and around the world in our own day – and soon.

May you be inscribed and sealed for a good year.

L’shanah tovah t’kateivu v’tichateimu

לשנה טובה תכתבו ותכתמו

Almost 5775 – Musical Greetings

EEEEEEK!! It’s almost here – 5775. Another year. Another chance to start again. Another season to celebrate with friends and family.

Enjoy these musical preparations.

 

 

Adon Olam – Variations

Jewish Music Rocks kept us learning and enjoying music on Shabbat morning September 6th.  The first Shabbat of the month in October is Yom Kippur, so Jewish Music Rocks returns on the first Shabbat in November – November 1st..  Until then, here are more contemporary versions of Adon Olam for you to enjoy.  Check the previous post for the words in Hebrew, English and transliteration.

 

 

 

 

Surprise – A dance along with a new melody.  Quite a bit of contemporary Israeli music is choreographed for a more physical interpretation and experience of the music.

 

 

 

 

 

 

Adon Olam (Pharrell Williams – “Happy”)

JEWISH MUSIC ROCKS – yes, it’s true, the meter of Adon Olam renders it possible to sing it to almost any melody – and most Hebrew school students have, at one time or another, if their teachers are letting them have that kind of fun!!

This  Shabbat morning we ended services with the Pharrell Williams melody for “Happy” which is omnipresent in our musical worlds these days, but changed the words to a classic Jewish poem – Adon Olam / Master of the Universe – sung by Listen Up! A Cappella.

 

 

Adon Olam (“Lord of the World”) is alleged to be composed in the 11th century by Solomon ibn Gabirol. The word “Adon,” meaning master, was first spoken by Abraham in the Bible, referring to God. The lyrics speak about God’s greatness and all-empowering existence. There have been countless melodies adjoined to this hymn.

Adon Olam is the final prayer of the Musaf service on Shabbat morning and festivals. It can also be found in the composition of bedtime prayers and is recited on one’s deathbed. In the next to last line of the Adon Olam is a request that God watch over one’s soul as they sleep. The conclusion of Adon Olam mentions God’s presence and ability to bring reassurance to the people.

ADON OLAM MASTER OF THE UNIVERSE

Adon olam, asher malach,
b’terem kol y’tzir nivra.
L’et na’asah v’cheftzo kol,
azai melech sh’mo nikra.

V’acharey kichlot hakol,
l’vado yimloch nora.
V’hu haya, v’hu hoveh,
v’hu yih’yeh b’tifara.

V’hu echad, v’eyn sheni
l’hamshil lo, l’hachbira.
B’li reishit, b’li tachlit,
v’lo ha’oz v’hamisrah.

V’hu Eli, v’chai go’ali,
v’tzur chevli b’et tzarah.
V’hu nisi umanos li,
m’nat kosi b’yom ekra.

B’yado afkid ruchi
b’et ishan v’a’irah.
V’im ruchi g’viyati,
Adonai li v’lo ira.

The Lord of the Universe who reigned
before anything was created.
When all was made by his will
He was acknowledged as King.

And when all shall end
He still all alone shall reign.
He was, He is,
and He shall be in glory.

And He is one, and there’s no other,
to compare or join Him.
Without beginning, without end
and to Him belong dominion and power.

And He is my G-d, my living G-d.
to Him I flee in time of grief,
and He is my miracle and my refuge,
who answers the day I shall call.

To Him I commit my spirit,
in the time of sleep and awakening,
even if my spirit leaves,
G-d is with me, I shall not fear.

אֲדוֹן עוֹלָם אֲשֶׁר מָלַךְ,
בְּטֶרֶם כָּל יְצִיר נִבְרָא.
לְעֵת נַעֲשָׂה בְחֶפְצוֹ כֹּל,
אֲזַי מֶלֶךְ שְׁמוֹ נִקְרָא.

וְאַחֲרֵי כִּכְלוֹת הַכֹּל,
לְבַדּוֹ יִמְלוֹךְ נוֹרָא.
וְהוּא הָיָה, וְהוּא הֹוֶה,
וְהוּא יִהְיֶה, בְּתִפְאָרָה.

וְהוּא אֶחָד וְאֵין שֵׁנִי,
לְהַמְשִׁיל לוֹ לְהַחְבִּירָה.
בְּלִי רֵאשִׁית בְּלִי תַכְלִית,
וְלוֹ הָעֹז וְהַמִּשְׂרָה.

וְהוּא אֵלִי וְחַי גֹּאֲלִי,
וְצוּר חֶבְלִי בְּעֵת צָרָה.
וְהוּא נִסִּי וּמָנוֹס לִי,
מְנָת כּוֹסִי בְּיוֹם אֶקְרָא.

בְּיָדוֹ אַפְקִיד רוּחִי,
בְּעֵת אִישַׁן וְאָעִירָה.
וְעִם רוּחִי גְּוִיָּתִי,
יְיָ לִי וְלֹא אִירָא.

This and much more information about all things Jewish  is available from the Jewish Virtual Library.

Sources: Eisenberg, Ronald L. The JPS Guide to Jewish Traditions. PA: Jewish Publication Society, 2004; “What is in the Siddur? Shabbat and Holiday Liturgy”; “Adon Olam”; Wigoder, Geoffrey , Ed. The New Standard Jewish Encyclopedia. NY: Facts on File, 1992; “Song: Adon Olam”.