JEWS, MOSLEMS, AND CHRISTIANS

Video of United Hatzalah by Popular Israeli-Arab Vlogger Goes Viral
by TheTower.org Staff | 11.15.18

A video of the Israeli first-responder organization, United Hatzalah of Israel, produced by the popular Israeli-Arab vlogger (video blogger), NAS Daily, became the most-viewed video about an Israeli non-profit in just one week, The Jerusalem Post reported Wednesday.

NAS, as Nuseir Yassin is known, produces one-minute videos on topics of interest that he posts to Facebook, where he has 10 million followers.

Though most of Yassin’s videos garner between 2 and 10 million views, in one week the United Hatzalah video was viewed by 22.5 million people. (The number is now at 25 million.)

Introducing the United Hatzalah video, Yassin wrote that the organization is “one of the most impressive things I’ve seen in a while.”

“The change has been palpable,” Eli Beer, the founder of United Hatzalah of Israel, said of the international response to the video. “People around the world have been sending us messages, friend requests, and requests for help. They have expressed interest in setting up their own versions of our life-saving model in their cities and communities. We’ve had a lot of interest in particular from India, the Philippines and various cities in the United States.”

Yassin, who has been traveling around the world for nearly three years, usually makes one-minute videos, and signs off with “That’s one minute! See you tomorrow!” However, the United Hatzalah video runs nearly four minutes.

“The people at United Hatzalah of Israel are doing incredible work. All for free. All to save lives. Here is how they did it,” Yassin wrote. “Thank you Eli Beer and the team of volunteers for reaching out to Nas Daily and letting me film your operations. All around impressive.”

The video currently has 11,000 comments and has been shared over 400,000 times.

“Our model can save lives around the world, so we are excited that we received this exposure and that Nuseir succeeded in spreading our message around the globe so quickly,” Dov Maisel, the Vice President of Operations for United Hatzalah, explained. “We look forward to working with all interested parties to help them develop our lifesaving model and saving more lives all over the planet.”

Vice President of United Hatzalah Michael Brown added, “We are incredibly thankful to Nuseir and his team for the light that they have shone on our operations and on the coexistence that exists between our Jewish, Muslim and Christian volunteers in Israel. As an Israeli Arab, Nuseir has a valuable perspective on coexistence in Israel and I am glad that he was able to tell our story.”

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AITZ CHAIM BEGINS LAY SERVICES ON THE FIRST FRIDAY OF EACH MONTH

At the most recent Aitz Chaim board meeting on October 28, 2018, the suggestion was made that it might be nice to hold regular monthly lay services at The Bethel, to give us a chance to get together and celebrate Shabbat, and perhaps have a meal. Devorah Werner has offered to lead these lay services. The first one will be held on Friday, December 7, 29 Kislev, and we will have our community Chanukah celebration afterwards. So we will meet downtown to light the Diane Kaplan Memorial Chanukkiah at 5:30 P.M. and then meet at The Bethel by 6:00 P.m. We thank Devorah Werner for her willingness to step up and lead these services. We hope that having consistent services every month will bring us closer together as a Jewish community and help us to grow bigger, better, and stronger.

Happy Chanukah!

The torah portion for December 8 is Miketz Bereshit (Genesis) 41:1–44:17, Pinchas : Bemidbar (Numbers) 28:9-15 Naso-Bemidbar 7:42-47
Haftarah — Zechariah 2:14-3:1-10–4:1-7
Shabat rosh Chodesh Shabbat Chanukah

The address for the Bethel is 1009 18th Avenue Southwest. click here for map and directions.

MAJCO CHANUKIOT IN HELENA

2018 MAJCo State Capital Chanukah Event & Meeting

*** Thursday, December 6 ***

Lighting of community chanukiot and address by the Governor – noon
(MAJCo meeting to follow in capital conference room to be announced)
______________________________________

WHAT IS MAJCo?

The Montana Association of Jewish Communities (MAJCo) is an umbrella organization that includes representation from Jewish communities across the length and breadth of the great state of Montana. Membership in MAJCo is open to any Jewish community, whatever the “stream,” within Montana. (Acceptance by the current communities is required.)

Small Jewish communities in rural areas do not exist in a vacuum. Three decades ago, our Jewish communities created MAJCo, an association of all the organized Montana Jewish communities. Through MAJCo, we keep in touch and have created a community throughout this great big beautiful state.

The Jewish communities in the Big Sky currently include:
• Congregation Beth Aaron, Billings
• Chabad Lubavitch of Montana, Bozeman
• Congregation Beth Shalom, Bozeman
• Congregation B’nai Israel, Butte
• Congregation Aitz Chaim, Great Falls
• Helena Jewish Community, Helena
• Glacier Jewish Community/B’nai Shalom, Kalispell-Whitefish
• Chabad Lubavitch of Missoula, Missoula
• Congregation Har Shalom, Missoula

THE PITTSBURGH SLAYINGS AND THE SEARCH FOR AMERICA’S SOUL

THE PITTSBURGH SLAYINGS AND THE SEARCH FOR AMERICA’S SOUL
(Opinion on behalf of the Billings “Montana Interfaith Network,” submitted by the Rev. Dr. Paul Seastrand)

It is estimated that in the last 800 years, half of the world’s Jews have died violently, and on October 27, eleven more Jews in a Pittsburgh synagogue were added to that count by a man hurling anti-Semitic slurs and bullets. Yet though the history of anti-Semitism is immeasurably tragic, the slayings in Pittsburgh bring us face to face with another sobering fact: The religious and cultural diversity that is the heritage and strength of America has too often devolved into religious and cultural animosity.

Though affiliated with the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, I write on behalf of the Montana Interfaith Network which represents Christian, Jewish, Muslim, Native American, and other historic faith communities who “advocate for the dignity, sanctity, and equality of every human being.” This advocacy finds common cause, as well, with the aims of civil freedom and justice affirmed by the U.S. Constitution and its amendments. Yet starkly contrasted is an America dismayed and torn by church shootings, school shootings, racist nationalism, tribalism, and the fatiguing tensions of identity politics. This is regrettable to people of faith as well as to every citizen who is committed to “one nation under God, indivisible, with liberty and justice for all.”
Observe how certain political and religious currents in American society today bring to mind the “Know-Nothing” politics of the mid-1800s. The “Know-Nothing-Party” was pledged to defend American values and life-style from the potential of foreign domination on native-born Americans. American Protestants, in particular, feared the influence of immigrant European traditionalists and not least the increasing influx of Roman Catholics. This kind of hostile American nativism is not just a historical footnote, but lingers on in polarizing debates about immigration, white nationalism, identity politics, and racial and religious equality. Moreover, during the present election season Republicans and Democrats debate tooth and nail about border control and healthcare, yet neither party has brought forward detailed proposals and moderating attitudes that effectively move our governing process and our body politic beyond vitriolic stagnation and suspicion.

So the tragedy in Pittsburgh is not only a marker of anti-Semitism, but is another mark of the discord and debate that press the search for America’s soul. Our Founding Fathers recognized that diverse people with competing self-interests can either break or make a nation. They knew well the pitfalls of human avarice and tyranny, but anticipated (more than they realized) that constitutional divisions of power and democratic controls could preserve this nation in civil harmony despite and even because of differences of religion and inheritance. By the same token, many faith traditions recognize that civil harmony is a religious imperative. In 1995, my Lutheran denomination made common cause with the Montana Association of Jewish Communities, not because we share the same religious doctrines about God and salvation, but because we share renewed respect for each other that does not bow to stereotypes and intolerance. Moreover, we stated that “We need not share a common creed to share common deeds that enhance human welfare and strengthen the moral fabric of society.”

Such is the kind of language and commitment that advances both faith and nation. Whatever
our religion or biological and social inheritance; whether we are conservative, liberal,Republican, Democrat, or Independent; whether we drive Fords, Chevys, or bicycles; we need not share a common creed to share common deeds of justice, respect, and maybe even love. This election season is a fitting time to deepen these foundations of our common life and prove-up the search for America’s soul.

(The Rev. Dr. Paul Seastrand is a retired pastor with the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, and a member of the Billings “Montana Interfaith Network.”)

YAHRZEITS — KISLEV, 5779

RAM’S HORN POLICY FOR LISTING YAHRZEIT MEMORIALS:!
Yahrzeit memorials are listed by consecutive Hebrew month, date, and year, if known, or at the beginning of the list for one calendar year following the date of passing.

Compiled by Aitz Chaim over many years, this list is maintained by the Ram’s Horn. Please send any corrections or additions to editor@aitzchaim.com
May the source of peace send peace to all who mourn, and comfort to all who are bereaved.

Name of
Deceased
Hebrew Date of Passing Deceased Relationship to
Congregant
Dawn M. Schandelson 23 Elul, 5778
Donald Goldman 29 Iyyar, 5778 Father of Abbee Drew Syrovatka, Grandfather of Ceecee Drew
FRANCES WALTMAN 16 Nisan, 5778 Mother of Marjorie Feldman
Dr. Daniel Foxman 4 Kislev, 5762 Father of Marty Foxman
Henry Espelin 7 Kislev, 5745 Father of Dawn Schandelson
Irving Tatz 12 Kislev, 5769 Father of Janet Tatz
Joseph Magalnick 13 Kislev, 5731 Father of Elliot Magalnick
Richard Weiss 15 Kislev, 5761 Father of Laura Weiss
Diane Kaplan 16 Kislev, 5770 Mother of Kai Nealis
Mike Thorne 17 Kislev, 5777 Relative of Alan Thorne
Carl Weissman 20 Kislev, 5721 Grandfather of Jerry Weissman
Beverly Tatz 26 Kislev, 5776 Mother of Janet Tatz
Sarah Barrett 30 Kislev, 5728 Grandmother of Nadyne Weissman

YAHRZEITS — NOVEMBER, 2018

RAM’S HORN POLICY FOR LISTING YAHRZEIT MEMORIALS:!
Yahrzeit memorials are listed by consecutive Gregorian month, date, and year, if known, or at the beginning of the list for one calendar year following the date of passing.

Compiled by Aitz Chaim over many years, this list is maintained by the Ram’s Horn. Please send any corrections or additions to editor@aitzchaim.com
May the source of peace send peace to all who mourn, and comfort to all who are bereaved.

Name of
Deceased
English Date of Passing Hebrew Date of Passing Deceased Relationship to
Congregant
Dawn M. Schandelson Sep 3, 2018 23 Elul, 5778 Wife of Arny Schandelson, Mother of Brett and Scott Schandelson
Donald Goldman May 14, 2018 29 Iyyar, 5778 Father of Abby Drew Syrovatka, Grandfather of Cece Drew
FRANCES WALTMAN Apr 1, 2018 16 Nisan, 5778 Mother of Marjorie Feldman
Ethel M. Shapiro NOV 1, 2016 30 TISHREI, 5777 Aunt of Terry Thal
Leonard Weissman Nov 10, 2007 29 Cheshvan, 5768 Grandfather of David Weissman, father of Jeff Weissman, Patricia Philipps, Ted Weissman, Sally Weissman and Gale Rietmann.
Martin Renne Nov 14, 2000 16 Cheshvan, 5761 Father of Michael Renne
Dr. Daniel Foxman Nov 19, 2001 4 Kislev, 5762 Father of Marty Foxman
Norman Handler Nov 20, 2000 22 Cheshvan, 5761 Father of Wendy Weissman

YAHRZEIT OF LEONARD COHEN, 18 CHESHVAN


The second Yahrzeit (anniversary of the passing) of Leonard Cohen, one of the greatest Jewish poet-songwriters of the 20th century, was observed on October 27th, 2018.

As a tribute to his legacy, here is one of his most famous songs, Hallelujah, with the Hebrew lyrics of Psalm 150 which is recited daily in Jewish prayer.

May the memory of Leonard Cohen be for an eternal blessing.

Cantor Azi Schwartz of Park Avenue Synagogue
Arrangement: Raymond Goldstein
Music Director: Colin Fowler
Cello: Alexander Scheirele
Production Manager: Gil Smuskowitz
Recording engineer and audio editing: Doug Yoel

A LETTER TO AITZ CHAIM, GREAT FALLS

To the members of Aitz Chaim:

I write as the Bishop of the Lutherans in Montana, deeply grieving the massacre at Tree of Life Synagogue, and standing in solidarity with the Jewish community.

Christians in general and Lutherans in particular have had a poor track record when it comes to anti-semitism and its tragic consequences. Our tradition has been associated with the justification of the Holocaust, and we continue to repent that.

In 1994, our denomination joined the Lutheran World Federation in repudiating and repenting anti-semitism, saying: “We recognize in anti-Semitism a contradiction and affront to the Gospel, a violantion of our hope and calling, and we pledge this church to oppose the deadly working of such bigotry, both within our own circls and in the society around us.”

In 1995, our church in Montana, the Evangelical Lutheran Church in America, entered into an agreement with the Montana Association of Jewish Communities, pledging mutual support, education and work together for the good of all God’s people. In 2015, with representatives of MAJCO present, we Lutherans unanimously re-affirmed the agreement, pledging solidarity and prayer.

Lutheran congregations across Montana had the Jewish community in prayer during Sunday worship. We deeply regret the increased acts of anti-Semitism in our country, and pledge to work together for peace and harmony and justice for all people.

In Great Falls, where I live, Congregation Aitz Chaim has a special relationship with my congregation, Bethel Lutheran. Bethel serves as home for the Great Falls Jewish Community, even moving the youth group off site so as not to disturb the high holy days. It is a way that we can be in relationship with one another. We are so glad that you are part of our community.

As you grieve, please know that we grieve with you. And we stand ready to support you.

Shalom!

jessica Crist, Bishop

KEEPING THE FLAME ALIVE

Internationally acclaimed Israeli violinist and educator Lior Kaminetsky visited Great Falls with Soul Train in 2010 on a tour through rural parts of the United States. One of his passions is to create a documentary about rural Jewish congregations. Here is the trailer for the film, along with some other links that may be of interest.

ELCA PRESIDING BISHOP RESPONDS TO TREE OF LIFE SHOOTING IN PITTSBURGH

October 27, 2018

Dear Sisters and Brothers,
I write to you with a broken heart – for the lives lost, wounded, and shattered by horrific hatred and violence at Tree of Life Congregation this morning. We join our Jewish neighbors and enter into mourning for all that has been lost. In our grief, God is our comfort. “The Lord is near to the brokenhearted, and saves the crushed in spirit” (Psalm 34:18).

From Pittsburgh to Portland, and around the world, Jews are living in fear. Anti-Semitism is on the rise. Public acts of hatred and bigotry against Jews are commonplace. As Christians, and particularly as Lutherans, we deplore and reject this bigotry. “We recognize in anti-Semitism a contradiction and affront to the Gospel, a violation of our hope and calling, and we pledge this church to oppose the deadly working of such bigotry, both within our own circles and in the society around us” (1994 Declaration of the ELCA to the Jewish Community).
We are reminded that hate-filled violence knows no bounds – whether a Sikh Temple in Oak Creek, a Christian church in Charleston, or a Jewish synagogue In Pittsburgh. As people of faith, we are bound together not only in our mourning, but also in our response.

Therefore, in this tender moment of grief, let us reach out to those whose hearts are most broken – our Jewish neighbors. I encourage you to contact your local synagogue, or your Jewish colleagues, friends, and family members, to share your words of care, support, love, and protection. There may be specific acts you might offer to demonstrate your care, such as when the members of Faith Lutheran Church surrounded Congregation Beth Israel of Chico, California, serving as Shomrim, or guardians, as they observed Yom Kippur following a hate crime in 2009.
Such simple acts can go a long way to demonstrate our love, as an extension of God’s love. As we seek to heal the brokenhearted, we are assured that God is near. There is no greater promise in the face of grief.

In peace,
The Rev. Elizabeth A. Eaton
Presiding Bishop, ELCA