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Home » About the Federation » Our Community »  April 28, 2017
E-News - April 28, 2017
April 28, 2017  |  2 Iyyar 5777

From our CEO...
It has been another eventful two weeks.  I had planned to share two new studies released this week on anti-Semitism; one by the  Anti-Defamation League (ADL) and one by Tel Aviv University's Kantor Center on Antisemitism. Please check them out and we will discuss at another time.

Since I learned Wednesday of the passing of Shirley Goldstein, I knew I wanted to use this space to say a few words of tribute.  She may have been Omaha's biggest ally against anti-Semitism.  Her work and leadership on behalf of Soviet Jewry is world famous.  She was also a close family friend (my mother even accompanied her on one of her missions to the USSR).  To be honest, her friend list counts in the tens of thousands.  Her legendary advocacy work was known to congressmen, presidents and world leaders as she and her team of "housewives and students" fought to free Soviet Jews.  I am sure many notes of tribute from around the globe will arrive in the coming days as people learn of her passing (below is a link to a letter from Natan Sharansky to the Goldstein family).

I want to share two of many personal stories I have about Shirley.  In the mid 90's, I was in Jerusalem at a meeting with Natan Sharansky.  As we went around the table introducing ourselves, I mentioned I was from Omaha.  I knew of Shirley's connection with Natan (who became a hero of mine because of Shirley) and was about to mention her name when he stopped me and for 20 minutes spoke enthusiastically to this group of Jewish leaders about his "special" friend Shirley Goldstein from Omaha.  And even though I knew Shirley's story, it was incredible hearing it from him.  I only wish I had recorded it.  I have crossed paths with Sharansky several times and he always asked about Shirley.  He sent a letter today to the Goldstein family upon learning of her passing. Click here to read the letter.
Another time in Israel, I was working on a documentary with some Hillel students from the University of Illinois.  I had arranged an interview with Tal Brody, a former basketball player from the University who had moved to Israel in the '70s and put "Israel on the map".  As we were setting up the interview, Brody asked where I was from.  When I said Omaha, Nebraska a huge smile came over his face.  He said, "I have a cousin through marriage in Omaha.  She is a very special person and for a small woman she has changed people's lives.  Do you know Shirley Goldstein?'
With this week's commemoration of Yom HaShoah and the continued need for people to stand up and make a difference in the world, we can honor Shirley's life by committing ourselves to accomplishing even a fraction of what she did.  We can make a difference one person at a time.

Shabbat Shalom,
Celebrate Israel!

Join us on Monday, May 1st for the 2017 Yom Ha'Atzmaut Festival.
From the children's carnival and B'nai B'rith Jewish trivia quiz, to an Israeli movie and special Israeli street food reception, there is something for everyone! All events are FREE and open to the community. 

Monday, May 1st
5:30 p.m.   |  FREE Kids Carnival
6:00 p.m.   |  B'nai B'rith Trivia Quiz
7:00 p.m.   |  Israeli Movie & Reception
Learn more.
Jewish education programming with Rabbi Shlomo Abramovich
Eye on Israel
Monday, May 8
12:00-1:00 p.m.
Kripke Jewish Federation Library
Rabbi Shlomo Abramovich presents current happenings in Israel. He then joins with Rabbi Yechiel Goldhaber from Israel to qu estion whether significant societal changes are taking place in the country today.  Click for more information.

The Friday Learning Series Goes to War
Fridays, May 12, 19, 26 | 11:15 a.m. - 12:00 p.m.
Kripke Jewish Federation Library
Rabbi Shlomo Abramovich will lead a three-part series discussing the 1948 War of Independence, the Six-Day War in 1967, and the 1973 Yom Kippur War. These sessions will go beyond the event history and reviewing the facts. Rabbi Shlomo will discuss the ways in which these wars have shaped Israeli society. These stand-alone sessions are open to the community free of charge. Click for more information. 
We are incredibly appreciative of your generosity and thankful you are part of our wonderful Jewish Omaha community!
The Jewish Federation of Omaha announce Volunteers of the Year
Every year, agencies at the Jewish Federation of Omaha select deserving community members for it's Volunteer of the Year Awards. The following individulas went above and beyond in their dedication and commitments to our shared mission.
Shira Abraham | JCC
Carol Bloch | ADL-CRC
Danny Cohn - JFO
Renee Kazor - RBJH
James Polack - JFS
Albertha Schmid - IHE
 Suzanne Singer - Jewish Press 

The Jewish Federation invites you to honor these award recipients at the Annual Meeting on Monday, June 5th at 7:00 p.m. in the JCC Theater. 

All students at Friedel Jewish Academy participate in a weekly Innovation Learning class.  Pictured, Gila Feldstern and Oz Abramovich, both kindergarteners, are building and programming a robot with Lego WeDo.  1st and 2nd graders also work with Lego Robotics while 3rd through 6th graders are creating with VEX Robotics.  The robotics unit of Innovation Learning is made possible through a grant from the Foundation Grants Committee and the Special Donor-Advised Fund, both of the Jewish Federation of Omaha Foundation.  For more information about the kindergarten through sixth grade curriculum at Friedel, contact Head of School Beth Cohen at
Yachad Creativity Displayed

Beginning in May, Yachad's most creative endeavor yet will be displayed in the front vestibule of the JCC (upstairs). Omaha's Yachad group consists of about ten active members with various abilities who join together to attend activities, such as Personal Training at the JCC, a Seder at Beth El, a Purim carnival at Beth Israel, bowling at The Mark, attending ball games, having swim parties, etc. Our artists for this project were: Avi Wolfson, Lisa Salomon, Jillian Salomon, Grace Isler, Jeff Steinberg and Marilyn Zevitz. Read more.
You and Federation
Together with the  Jewish Federation of Omaha, you make our Jewish community more caring and connected. We've made a difference in the lives of so many by providing for those in need, building Jewish identity, and celebrating Jewish life.
Upcoming Events
Scholar-in-Residence - Rabbi Levi Weiman-Kelman
April 28 - 30
Rabbi Levi Weiman-Kelman is the founder and leader of Congregation Kol HaNeshama in Jerusalem, Israel.  Rabbi Weiman-Kelman is a much sought after scholar who promises to provide us with a very enlightening weekend. Learn more.
A Jerusalem Synagogue
That Changed the Way We Pray
April 28 | 6 pm
Temple Israel
Interfaith Dialogue in Jerusalem Today: How Jewish, Christian and Muslim Leaders Share Their Stories.
April 29 | 9 am
Temple Israel

Beth El's Shabbat Morning Speaker, Ivan Gilreath
April 29 | 9:30 am
Learn more.

Song of the Soul: A Jewish Prayer Workshop
April 29  |  1-3 pm
Temple Israel

My Life in Israel: A Father, a Synagogue Rabbi, a Faith Leader
April 30 | 10 am
Temple Israel

Temple Israel's Relief
Sculptures Dedication
April 30 | 11:45 am
Join our religious school and our Clergy at the entrance courtyard as we dedicate these 3 beautiful relief sculptures brought over from the Cass Street building. Everyone is welcome!

JCC Spring Sprint
April 30 | 1:30pm

Serving Dinner at the
Stephen Center
April 30 | 5 pm
Learn more.

Celebrate Israel!
Yom Ha'Atzmaut Festival
May 1
5:30 pm- Carnival
6 pm - Trivia Contest
7 pm - Israeli Movie & Street Food Reception

B'nai B'rith Bread Breakers
May 3 | 12 pm
RBJH Auditorium

Teen Israel Information Night
May 3 | 6 pm
Learn more.

A Taste of Talmud II
with Rabbi Darryl Crystal
May 3 | 6:30 pm
The premise of the class is that the Talmud is the standard upon which modern Jewish life is based. The course will introduce major themes in the Talmud including guidelines for constructive debate, the Rabbis' vision of an ideal society and the importance of affirming human dignity.

Music of Today as Prayer and Prayer of Today as Music:  What's it all About?
with Scott Littky
May 4-18  | 10 am
Often when we hear a new song it seems to grip us and cause us to look for a deeper meaning. We also see this in worship. Why is this? Can contemporary music serve as Prayer?
OTYG Board Installations
May 5 | 6 pm
Join OTYG for services as we welcome in the youth group's new leadership board. RSVP to Aliyah Lasky by Monday, May 1.
High School Senior Sendoff
and Celebration
May 5 |  6 pm
Following the service, Temple Israel's high school seniors will be given a celebratory blessing by the Clergy as they prepare to begin the next phase of their lives. The Brandon Thomas Pursuit of Passion Scholarship will be awarded during the evening. A lovely Oneg sponsored by the Gordman Family will follow the Service.

Beth Israel Shabbat Dinner Celebrates Israel
May 5  |  7:30 pm
Mincha/Maariv/Kabbalat Shabbat
8:15 pm Shabbat Dinner
Class by Rabbi Shlomo - "What's Jewish About the Jewish State"
The cost for dinner will be $12 for adults, $6 for ages 4-12, and is free of charge for those under 4.   Register on-line, email or call (402) 556-6288.

Beth El's Hebrew High Graduation/Tichon Transfer (Grade 7)/Teacher Appreciation Shabbat and Tot Shabbat/Family Shabbat
May 5 | 6 pm
Learn more.

Beth El's Shabbat Speaker:
Dr. Baruch Feldstern
May 6 | 9:30 am
Learn more.

Beth El's Torah Tots
May 7 | 10:30 am
Learn more.
Beth El's Sunday Speaker:
Dr. Baruch Feldstern
May 7 | 11:15 am
Learn more.
Teen-Wide Mitzvah Day
May 7 | 2:30-4:30 pm
Join the high school Jewish community for a day of giving back. Please RSVP to Aliyah Lasky by Monday, May 1.

Beth El's Women's Book Group
May 8 |  7 pm
Home of Judith Barnes
Learn more.

Eye on Israel
May 8  | 12-1pm
Kripke Library

B'nai B'rith Bread Breakers
May 10 | 12 pm
RBJH Auditorium
Save the Date

Beth El's Shanghai
May 11 | 1 pm 
TiYPE Trivia Night 
May 11 | 7-10 pm  
Varsity Sports, 4900 Dodge St. 
Join TiYPE 21+ for a great night of trivia! RSVP to Aliyah Lasky by Monday, May 8.

Friday Learning Series 
May 12, 19, 26  | 11:15 am
Kripke Library 
Temple's 10th Grade Confirmation 
May 12 | 6 pm 
Reservations are required for dinner; cost is $15 per person. Please RSVP to Jen Goodman
 402-556-6536, by May 10.

Temple Israel's Annual Meeting 
May 23 | 6:30 pm  

JFO Annual Meeting
June 5 | 7pm
JCC Th eater

Women's Book Event
Janice Kaplan 
June 7 | 7pm
One Pacific Place Clubhouse

Life & Legacy 3rd year Celebration
June 15 | 6:30 pm
JCC Theater
Community Calendar
Check out what's happening
in Jewish Omaha on the Community Calendar. View
all kinds of upcoming events happening around town.

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to get the word out?

Remember, this is just a sampling from Jewish Omaha! To stay informed,
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Jewish Federation of Omaha   |   333 South 132nd Street   |  Omaha, NE 68154   | 402-334-8200