EMBRACING WHAT MAKES EACH OF US UNIQUE AND EQUAL, BY RABBI CHAIM BRUK

Rabbi Chaim did an op ed in the Bozeman Chronicle. Here it is.

By Rabbi Chaim Bruk, guest columnist

Apr 25, 2018

In 2013, while anticipating the adoption of our third child, we learned that he would be biracial. I was convinced that God sent this beautiful soul to us; yet, I had a few moments of doubt. I was questioning the Almighty, whether he was the right fit for our family. I couldn’t help but wonder how his life experience would play out as a biracial Orthodox Jew growing up in Big Sky country.

My beloved wife Chavie, firm and inspirational as ever, encouraged me to remain focused. “Let us shower our baby with love and warmth,” she said, “and let God worry about his future challenges.”

Growing up in Brooklyn, I was living in a bubble. Ohio seemed remote, Texas like another country and the Mountain West states were, in our mind, like another planet. Our family traveled upstate to Catskill Game Farm, to Pennsylvania’s Sesame Place and even enjoyed a memorable trip to Orlando, but west of the Mississippi was a foreign land to me. Yet, while rural America seemed far, far-away from the life I knew in America’s “five boroughs,” I have been blessed to learn, it’s the perfect place to live and raise my family.

In 2007, Chavie and I moved to Bozeman, opening the state’s first branch of Chabad Lubavitch. We were welcomed warmly by Jews and gentiles alike and, over the years, have garnered hundreds of friendships with people of all flavors. Living in Montana, for a decade now, I’ve developed a real appreciation, and admiration, for “fly over country” and its people.

I have found my fellow Montanans to be friendly, thoughtful and intrigued by my Jewish observance. Whether interacting with a bellman in the “big city” of Billings, a rancher from Kila or a state trooper in Butte, Montanans are genuinely caring and refreshingly authentic. They care more about their family than what car they drive, feed their animals before themselves and, no matter how busy they are, would pull over to help you on the side of the road, even if was minus 22 outside.

While I miss the kosher restaurants, the Sabbath atmosphere in the street and the opportunity to speak in my mother tongue, Yiddish, Bozeman has become home, and I’m a proud Montanan. “Love thy neighbor as thyself” is not merely a bumper sticker or a campaign slogan out here; it’s a way of life.
Raising Menny, who recently turned 5, has been an extraordinary blessing and incredible experience. He’s adorable with a one-of-a-kind personality; it’s hard to keep up with his super fun energy. From his dance moves that could put any hip-hop artist to shame to his one-liners that are so precious; from his care-free attitude while painting the beige carpet in his sister’s room red to his midnight longing for seltzer, he’s a ball of life.
He’s black, wears his Yarmulke proudly and loves praying with me in Synagogue, and our Jewish community ― along with our fellow Montanans ― embraces him unconditionally. He’s not seen as that “black boy,” and I’m not seen as that “adoptive father.” They just see us as a family.

Personally, I am not color blind. I do see peoples’ visible differences, but that doesn’t ― God forbid ― make me think less of them or contemplate treating them differently. Seeing diversity allows me to appreciate their individuality, their personal story, even more than if I would’ve ignored their uniqueness. Not to recognize people’s exceptionality is to deny them a part of their experience, a part of their core self.

While Montana, like the rest of the world, surely has a few people who are ignorant and judgmental, I am grateful to be raising my family in rural America, where people are welcoming, loving and open-minded. No, there isn’t much diversity in our backyard, but it’s a place where people take to heart the timeless words of our Declaration of Independence: “We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal.”
God bless America.

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ENTENMANN’S AT ALBERTSONS ON TENTH

Kosher Entenmann’s are at Albertson’s on Tenth. There is quite a nice selection. They are in a stand-alone display back by the dairy. As with everything Albertsons gets, if nobody buys them, they won’t get them again. So get them while they’re fresh.

AN INVITATION FROM HADASSAH

YOU ARE INVITED

Hadassah Montana would like to invite all of you to join Hadassah this June for a fun filled Shabbaton type weekend at Big Sky Resort with fabulous speakers, as we educate, advocate, share our passion for Israel, and enhance the health of the world.

You don’t have to be a Hadassah member or associate to attend. All are welcome, including families. Dogs are even welcome in some of the rooms at the Huntley Lodge.

Please see the attached flyer (below) explaining how to book your room and where to send your registration. Although the event is one night only, you are welcome to come early and stay for two nights if you don’t travel on Shabbat or if you’d like a longer weekend at Big Sky.

Don’t miss this opportunity to
• Experience Havdalah and a few good meals in a welcoming community atmosphere
• Listen to dynamic speakers with a focus on Israel
• Shop for Judaica (all proceeds go to Hadassah hospitals and programs)
• Learn how you can change the world for the better in a way that is meaningful to you

We look forward to seeing you in Big Sky!

https://www.hadassah.org

• Hadassah was nominated for the Nobel Peace Prize in 2005! Hadassah, which has provided medical care in Jerusalem since 1912, reaches patients around the world, and since its founding has always “thought, worked, and lived with a philosophy called ‘bridges to peace”. “Bridges to peace” means that there is no discrimination based on gender, political, or religious ideology. When you walk in the hospital you see the different ways the people are dressed, and you realize how many different ethnic groups are in the hospital. It is completely normal to see a Franciscan priest, a girl in a miniskirt, and an Arab sheik all sitting waiting to be served by the same physician.

Hadassah offers you a direct line to advocacy! From ending human trafficking, to removing the disparity in gender equity in medical research, to many other civil and human rights issues, to Zionism, Israel and the world, Hadassah’s National Action Center offers advocacy at your fingertips. http://cqrcengage.com/hadassah/?2

Hadassah is developing cutting edge medicine and sharing it with the world! In successful trials using patients’ own stem cells, Hadassah doctors have inhibited the progression of ALS and MS in human clinical trials. Eighteen doctors and nurses from Israel, the Palestinian territories, Gaza and Iraq recently attended a course on pediatric emergency health care at Hadassah Hospital Ein Kerem in Jerusalem. Hadassah Hospital Mount Scopus hosted 200 people at the annual World Down Syndrome Day conference, held at the hospital in late March. The list is endless.

Registration Info 2018 MT Hadassah.pdf

Montana Hadassah Annual Meeting Registration Form June 16‐17, 2018 Big Sky Montana

Please join us for a fun filled weekend at Big Sky Resort with fabulous speakers, as we educate, advocate, share our passion for Israel, and enhance the
health of the world. You don’t have to be a Hadassah member or associate to attend. All are welcome, including families.

Activities begin Saturday, June 16th at 3:30 p.m. with an optional “Mahjong 101” session. Otherwise, registration and room check‐in begin at 5:00 p.m.
We adjourn Sunday, June 17th, at 1:00 p.m.

Part 1: Registration is $54 which includes breakfast and lunch on Sunday. Read further for information on where to send checks. Saturday night dinner will
be a potluck so please bring a dairy or non‐meat dish to share.

Part 2: Reserve your room (to be paid on your own, in addition to the registration fee) by calling Big Sky Central Reservations at 800‐548‐4486, option
2. Reference the Hadassah Weekend for the group rates. Since the block of rooms has now expired, rooms in the block are not guaranteed.

Saturday potluck and Sunday breakfast will be held at the Big Horn Condo. These condos have 3 bedrooms
and will hold 6‐8 people. They are configured with a king or queen in 2 of the bedrooms and either twins or bunks in the third room but may be able to
be customized.

If you are looking for a roommate, contact our Hadassah Montana Meeting Coordinator Wendy Weissman at 406‐868‐5712, wendy.j.weissman@gmail.com,
and she will help arrange it.

The Huntley Mountain View and Summit rooms have two queen beds, and dogs are allowed in the Huntley for an extra fee.

Room Rates: Various, depending on where you stay
Rates do not include a 19% tax and service fee. The nineteen percent (19%) is made up of seven percent (7%) state bedding/accommodation tax, three percent
(3%) local/resort tax, and nine percent (9%) resort service fee.

Montana Hadassah Annual Meeting Registration Form June 16‐17, 2018 Big Sky Montana

Name: ________________________________________________________________________ Hebrew Name: _________________________________________________________________
Address: ______________________________________________________________________ Phone: _______________________________________________________________________
Dietary Restrictions: _____________________________________________________________
Please mark where you will be staying and note how many will be in your room:

Number in room
Roommate(s)  
__________Huntley Lodge
_________________________________________________  
__________Big Horn Condo
________________________________________________  
__________Summit Hotel
________________________________________________  
__________Other Location
________________________________________________

What you need to remember:
Please bring a dairy (non‐meat) dish for the Pot Luck Saturday evening, toiletry items for a local women’s shelter and an item
for our silent auction fundraiser.
Please send your registration form with a check made out to Montana Hadassah for $54 in care of Wendy Weissman at 315 4th Ave North, Great Falls, MT 59401

Hadassah Montana Annual Meeting Schedule (Subject to Change)
Saturday 3:30 p.m Mah Jong 101 (Optional for those who want to attend)
5:00 p.m. Room Check‐In Begins and Registration is Open
6:00 p.m. Potluck
8:00 p.m Speaker #1
9:15 p.m. Havdalah at Sunset, followed by Silent Auction Fundraiser

Sunday
6:30 a.m. Breakfast at Big Horn Condo
8:00 a.m. Business Meeting
9:00 a.m. Speaker #2
10:00 a.m. Break to check out of your room, and optional 30 minute nature walk
11:00 a.m. Speaker #3
12:00 p.m. Lunch Catered by Big Sky
1:00 p.m. Adjourn

Hadassah Montana Annual Meeting Speakers, Subject to Change:

Dafna Michaelson‐Jenet

A captivating and dynamic storyteller, Jenet holds a BA from Stern College and an MBA from the University of Denver. In addition to directorship posts at the Holocaust Awareness Institute and The March of the Living, she is a former member of Hadassah’s National Board and serves as our Montana Chapter Advisor.

Dafna Michaelson Jenet is a Democratic member of the Colorado House of Representatives, elected in 2016. She serves on the House Finance Committee and the House Public Health Care & Human Services Committee. In 2015, she published the book “It Takes a Little Crazy to Make a Difference.” The book, which describes her yearlong tour of all 50 states in 2009, won an International Book Award in the social change category. Dafna and her husband Michael direct the nonprofit Journey Institute, offering leadership, training and development, for the journey of elevating, empowering, and engaging people to live better lives.

Barbara Raben
Barbara Raben of Henderson, Nevada is President of Hadassah Desert‐Mountain. Her past roles include (but are not limited to) Organization Vice President,
Area Vice President, Advisor, Secretary, Region Meeting Coordinator, Co‐President of Hadassah Southern Nevada, and chair of many committees. She has served
as President and Interim Executive Director of the Jewish Family Service Agency in Las Vegas. In 2017, she was appointed by Nevada Governor Brian Sandoval
to serve on the Nevada Governor’s Advisory Council on Education Relating to the Holocaust. A graduate of the Hadassah Leadership Academy, Barbara is part
of a five‐generation Hadassah family: Her mother was a chapter President, her children and granddaughter are life members, and her husband Terry is an
associate. Barbara spent many years in retail, which included owning her own candy business in both California and Las Vegas. She then spent ten years
working for the Lladro Porcelain Company and is now happily retired, and doing what she loves best ‐volunteering her time and energy to her community and
to Hadassah.

IanMerles
Ian Merles, Annual Giving Officer for Hadassah Central Pacific Coast, Desert Mountain, Great Plains, Greater Detroit, Pacific Northwest, Southern California,
Greater Southwest, and Upper Midwest regions, has been with Hadassah since June 2017. Prior to that he worked as an Assistant Area Director for the American
Israel Public Affairs Committee (AIPAC) in San Diego and Palm Springs and has worked in sales and marketing for hospice in Baltimore and in San Diego.
He lived in Israel for ten years and served as a lone soldier in the Israeli army. He is a husband to a Sabra‐Israeli nurse, Sarit, and father to a five‐year‐old
son, Galel. Educated at the State University of New York at Stony Brook as well as several rabinnical schools, Ian is well‐versed at speaking on Israel
and the Middle East.

ISRAELI TECH COMPANY ANNOUNCES PLANS TO HIRE 100 WORKERS IN MISSOULA

An Israeli high-tech company has announced plans to open a U.S. office in Missoula and hire as many as 100 employees over the next several years, according to Gov. Steve Bullock’s office.

The company, called 4Cast, “will develop and sell their decision support predictive analytics solutions, which currently target security, defense, enterprise and health care personnel” in Missoula, according to a press release. They will begin hiring for sales and software development jobs this summer. Initial positions will be advertised on their website, due to be launched in June of 2018. The company is a spinoff of the Israeli technology company Eltel.

http://missoulian.com/news/local/israeli-tech-company-announces-plans-to-hire-workers-in-missoula/article_6e614245-f7a4-5a4f-bd7a-2f5af438cb08.html

ISRAEL, ONE OF THE WORLD’S OLDEST DEMOCRACIES

Israel: One of the World’s Oldest Democracies

Einat Wilf with Shany Mor

Seventy years after declaring independence, Israel is (by one reckoning) the world’s tenth oldest continuous democracy. It had universal suffrage from its first day – yes, Arab citizens too. Israel was not the only newly independent state to emerge in the aftermath of the Second World War and to begin its days as a democracy, but it has been the only one to never fall, even temporarily, into some kind of authoritarianism. No coups, no emergency governments, no cancelled elections, no opposition leaders in jail, no suspensions of basic political or civil liberties.

Israel is one of only 20 or so countries (out of 200) that has been rated free by Freedom House for nearly half a century. Of the very few countries that have been practicing democracy without any interruptions longer than Israel, most have only done so for slightly longer (Denmark, Netherlands, Norway, Sweden) and none have done so in conditions of ongoing conflict, repeated wars on multiple fronts, terrorism, waves of immigration in unparalleled proportions, and a population of vast linguistic, national, religious and ethnic diversity.

Dr. Einat Wilf is a former member of the Knesset (2010-13). Shany Mor is a former director for foreign policy on the Israeli National Security Council. (Fathom-BICOM)
______________________________________________________________

YAHRZEITS — IYAR, 5778

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
Dorothy Meyer 27 Av, 5777 Stepmother of Diane Sherick
Ann Belfert 20 Av, 5777 Mother of Gail Belfert
Maurice Weissman 2 Iyyar, 5751 Father of Jerry Weissman
Marion Kelman 11 Iyyar, 5776 Sister-in-law of Evelyn Kelman
Sheldon Maznek 12 Iyyar, 5776 Brother of Evelyn Kelman
Ada Handler 15 Iyyar, 5740 Grandmother of Wendy Weissman
Bessie Stiegler

27 Iyyar, 5758 Aunt of Nadyne Weissman

2018 Pesach Sedar

Here is the 2018 Chad Gad Ya photo.

YOM HAZIRIKON LASHOAH/HOLOCAUST REMEMBRANCE DAY: APRIL 12

600 Holocaust survivors and their families gathered at Beit Avi-Chai in Jerusalem, marking the upcoming Holocaust Memorial Day.

AITZ CHAIM COMMUNITY SEDER IS SATURDAY, APRIL 7, 2018

Please join us for our annual Aitz Chaim Community Seder, led by Rabbi Ruz Gulko.

When: Saturday, April 7, 2018

Where: Clark and Lewie’s, 17 7th St. S., 5:30 P.M.

What: The meal will include all the traditional fixings including matzo ball soup, salad, brisket, chicken, potato, vegetable, and dessert.

By now we should have received your reservation and payment.

Looking forward to seeing you there.

DAYENU: MY ATTEMPT AT ENGLISH TRANSLATION

I wrote these words to be sung to the familiar tune, one of my favorites.

If He’d brought us out from Egypt,
And had not judged the Egyptians,,
Out from Egypt,
Judged Egyptians,
Dayenu!

If He had judged the Egyptians,
And had not destroyed their idols
Judged Egyptians,
Not their idols,
Dayenu!

If He had destroyed their idols,
And had not destroyed their first-born
Destroyed idols,
Not their firstborn,
Dayenu!

If He had destroyed their first-born,
And not given us their riches,
Destroyed firstborn,
Not their riches,
Dayenu!

If He’d given us their riches,
And had not the Reed Sea parted,
Given riches,
Sea not parted,
Dayenu!

If He had the Reed Sea parted,
And not led us through on dry land
Reed Sea parted,
Not on dry land,
Dayenu!

If He led us through on dry land,
And had not drowned our oppressors,
Through on dry land,
Not oppressors,
Dayenu!

If He had drowned our oppressors,
and not led us in the desert,
drowned oppressors,
Not the desert,
dayenu!

If He’d led us in the desert,
And had not fed us with manna
In the desert,
Not with Manna,
Dayenu!

If He had fed us with manna,
And not given us the Shabbat,
Fed us manna,
Not the Shabbat,
dayenu!

If He’d given us the Shabbat,
And not brought us to Mount Sinai
Gave us Shabbat,
Not Mount Sinai,
Dayenu!

If He brought us to Mount Sinai,
And not given us the Torah
To Mount Sinai,
Not the Torah,
Dayenu!

If He’d given us the Torah,
and had not brought us to Israel
gave the Torah,
not to Israel,
dayenu!

If He had brought us to Israel,
and not built the Holy Temple
brought to Israel,
not the Temple,
dayenu!