April 2018 / Nisan-Iyyar 5778

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April Events at the Downtown Synagogue
New Membership and Membership Renewal 
The Downtown Synagogue has spent a great deal of time these past few years exploring whether and how to move beyond the traditional membership dues structure, a discussion happening all over the country in large and small synagogues. As a congregation with a long and successful tradition of free services and programs, we are pleased to announce that we too are altering our model to make membership contributions voluntary. We are replacing our annual Membership Drive with an Annual Campaign in order to raise the funds we need to continue to operate. To apply for new membership or to renew your membership for the 2017-18 year, please fill out the form and mail it back or apply/renew online!   

Rabbi's Message: Lifelong Learning
One of the central tenets of Judaism is a commitment to lifelong learning. The Synagogue is proud to be offering more educational opportunities than ever before. In addition to our ongoing programs, we have two adult education series beginning this spring. And we are always eager to hear what else you would like to learn.
JTot Detroit, which has proudly served families raising Jewish kids in the City of Detroit, is growing so rapidly that we are discussing starting a Jewish education program for 4-6 year olds and their families this fall.We will be formalizing the plans at an upcoming retreat, May 5-6, at Tamarack Camps (please see below). If you, or someone you know, may be interested in a Detroit-based Jewish family education program, please let me know.
As we grow as a community of learners, please do not hesitate to be in touch if there are other topics or formats that interest you. If we don't yet offer something at the Synagogue, I would be happy to refer you to other educational opportunities in Metro Detroit and online.
May we share in the delight of new ideas and even more questions,
Rabbi Silverman
Upcoming Events
All events are at IADS unless otherwise noted. For more information on some of the events below, click here
Tots and Teva
Saturday, May 5-Sunday, May 6 at Tamarack Camps
Join with other families of young kids as we share Shabbat, play outside, and roast marshmallows May 5-6 at Tamarack Camps. For those interested, a portion of the retreat will also be spent planning for a Detroit-based family education program beginning this fall. Registration and more information can be found here . This program has been made possible by a generous grant from jbaby Detroit and the Jewish Federation of Metro Detroit.

Perspectives on the #MeToo Movement
Tuesday, April 10, 7:00-8:30pm
Join us for a panel featuring different perspectives on the #MeToo movement from three different areas: activism, media, and law. The panel will feature Kim Trent, president of Enough Sexual Assault in Detroit (Enough SAID 490 African-American Challenge) - a grassroots volunteer campaign to raise more than $650,000 to process 1,341 abandoned DNA rape kits in Detroit; Kristen Jordan Shamus, award-winning Detroit Free Press reporter and columnist focusing on women's issues, lifestyle and family stories in metro Detroit and throughout Michigan with more than 20 years of journalism experience; and Blanche Cook, Wayne State University Law School professor who focuses on Criminal Law, Criminal Procedure, and Race and the Law and is actively involved in shaping the emerging nationwide discourse on sex trafficking and victims' rights as it relates to evidentiary issues, race-class-gender profiling, and sex-trafficking statutes. The panel will be moderated by Rabbi Ariana Silverman. This event is open to the community. Wine and cheese will be served.

Motown Dance Patron Party 
Saturday, April 14, 7:00-10:00pm 
We're celebrating our friends and supporters as we share a joyous night of appreciation, performance, and community! We will be starting at 7:00pm in our historic building in downtown Detroit with Motown songs, dancing, hors d'oeuvres, and drinks. At 8:00pm we will thank our wonderful supporters with a champagne toast and the exquisite voice of local award winning singer/songwriter Britney Stoney and end with Havdallah at 10:00pm.
This is a RSVP-only event. To attend, please email us. If you would like to still support our 2017 "Keep it Free" Annual Campaign, you may make a contribution on our website.
Doing Jewish: A Story from Ghana - Food and Film Screening
Monday, April 16, 7:00-9:00pm
Please join Repair The World: Detroit, the Downtown Synagogue, Hazon Detroit, and the JCRC/AJC in partnership with the 20th Annual Lenore Marwil Detroit Jewish Film Festival. Enjoy a pre-screening with traditional African bites provided by chef Phil Jones beginning at 7:00pm. The film will begin promptly at 7:30pm.
About the film: Step into the Jewish community in Sefwi Wiawso, Ghana - Exploring isolation to global connection and the challenges and rewards they face along the way. Made over the course of five years, Doing Jewish: A Story from Ghana is a work of love. The affection between the filmmaker and the Sefwi shines as an unspoken part of the story. This is a fascinating study of Judaism and belonging. Tickets are $10 in advance and $12 at the door. 

"We Dont Want Them": A Conversation and Exhibition on Housing Discrimination in Detroit
Wednesday, April 25, 7:00-8:30pm
The "We Dont Want Them" exhibit is part of the Race2Equity Community Engagement Campaign through the Michigan Roundtable for Diversity and Inclusion. The exhibit has toured throughout Metro Detroit since 2010 and has been viewed by hundreds of thousands of people. The exhibit has been in communities at libraries, schools, colleges, places of worship, and business organizations. The "We Dont Want Them" exhibit serves as a tool to begin looking deeper into the issues of racial equity in Metro Detroit.
The exhibit will be on display in our social hall and accompanied by a conversation with Marsha Music, writer and noted life-long Detroiter with roots in Detroit and Highland Park, where she was an activist and labor leader, and Professor Howard Lupovitch, Associate Professor of History and the Director of the Cohn Haddow Center for Judaic Studies at Wayne State University and fourth-generation Detroiter. 


An Introduction to Judaism with Rabbi Ariana Silverman
Tuesdays, April 17 to June 12, 7:00-8:15 pm
This course is primarily intended for those considering conversion. It is open to anyone interested in learning more about Judaism. 
Seven of the Ways Judaism Evolved in only 100 years (and what that may mean for the next 100 years) with Rabbi Ariana Silverman
Thursdays, May 3 to June 14, 7:30-8:45pm
Judaism is a religion that is thousands of years old and has always been evolving. Due to the leaders of the past 100 years, across the denominational spectrum, there are now girls becoming bat mitzvah and women leading congregations, openly LGBTQ rabbis, Tu b'Shevat seders focused on EcoJudaism, and apps that allow you to read the entire Talmud on your phone. How can they enrich the Judaism we practice today? And what might be coming in the next 100 years?   

Neither class is a drop-in class and participants are encouraged to sign up for and attend the entire series. It is highly recommended to register with your BFF, significant other, or coworker, so the discussion can continue even after the class is done. Please contact Rabbi Silverman with questions or to register. Suggested donation for each class is $100/person or $118/pair.
We're Looking For Volunteers!  

Repair the World is helping us take our old prayer books to B'nai David Cemetery to be buried and we need extra hands to help out. If you're available on Saturday, April 28 from 3:30-4:30pm at the synagogue, please register to volunteer
New Ways to Get to the Downtown Synagogue! 

Now that the QLine is up and running, park along the route, hop on the train, and join us for Shabbat services and programs. We are only two blocks from the Grand Circus station! For more information about pricing, routes, and stations, visit their website. We are also located one block from the nearest MoGo station!  
Mazel Tov! 

Mazel tov to Daniel and Nicole Friedberg and Rena and Larry Friedberg on the birth of their son and grandson, Henry Tucker Friedberg on March 29th! 
Eden Gardens Fundraiser 

Eden Gardens Block Club is doing a fundraiser to raise money to build a playground! Visit the crowdrise site for more info and to donate.  

IADS Volunteer Shout Out 
In recognition of all of our March volunteers:

Ruby Robinson, Lauren Hoffman, Jeff Herbstman, Oren Goldenberg, and Marty Herman for leading services this month; Sam Woll, Marcy Epstein, Rebecca Waisanen, Liz Kannon, Jacob Smith, and our partners at Breakers Covenant Church International and JCRC/AJC for all their hard work on the interfaith seder; Thank you to everyone else who volunteers their time and energy to IADS. A lay-led congregation is only as strong as its volunteers.

If you're interested in volunteering, please contact Vicki Sitron at (313) 962-4047 or

We apologize for any names left off the list. Please let us know and we will recognize you next month. 
Get Involved!
Green the Synagogue!
If you are interested in being part of an effort to make our synagogue more environmentally sustainable, please contact Rabbi Silverman.

Help Us Cook!
We're always seeking volunteers to help us in the kitchen! We pride ourselves on our delicious home cooked Shabbat and Lunch and Learn meals. If you want to contribute to the synagogue by cooking, please contact our Kitchen Coodinator to get on the schedule.

Clean House!
As we work to clean up and clear out in our Synagogue, we ask your cooperation. If you notice a spill, please wipe it up. If you drop crumbs, please clean them up. If you use the kitchen, please clean up. If you have extra papers or handouts, please take them home to recycle them, or, if needed, leave them in the designated box in the library for ritual burial. Just a reminder: please no food or drinks (other than water) are allowed on the 2nd floor. As we continue to create our welcoming communal home, please help us to keep it inviting. As the saying goes, "it takes a village." 
Gemilut Chasadim - Our Caring Community 
As life presents challenges, surprises, and celebrations, please let the Downtown Synagogue community know, so we can acknowledge your experiences. Please share your information with us here.

Amazon Smile
The Downtown Synagogue is now on Amazon Smile! If you use to buy useful and useless things, a percentage of eligible purchases gets donated back to us. Please bookmark this link and don't forget to use Amazon Smile when you shop Amazon. Thanks for your support!

Shop at Kroger
Make sure to register your Plus Card and designate IADS as your Kroger Community Rewards Program, if you haven't already done so. When you shop at Kroger, swipe your Plus Card each time you shop and the synagogue benefits. It's that easy! For more information, or to sign up, click here.
Don't Forget!
We hold regular Shabbat services! 

Shabbat services every Friday night at 7:00 pm
Rabbi Silverman leads services the first and second Fridays of every month
Liven up your weekly routine by joining us to welcome Shabbat. In the midst of busy schedules and tantalizing local events, Friday nights at IADS remain a signature weekly rhythm. Whether you have joy you wish to share in song or you are feeling in the mood to just be quietly present, we have a place reserved just for you. Services at 7:00 pm followed by a deliciously prepared Kosher vegetarian dinner. End your hectic work week with ruach and community.

Torah study (before Saturday services) at 9:00 am
Shabbat services every Saturday morning at 10:00 am
Rabbi Silverman leads services the first and second Saturdays of every month
Where would Jews be without the Torah? Torah is the center of our Saturday Shabbat service. It is a mitzvah to make a minyan so we can read the Torah and people can say kaddish. Please come to the Saturday morning Shabbat service at 10:00. We want to pass the Torah l'dor vador.

Contact us if you have questions or requests pertaining to our service schedule.
Purchase Your IADS T-Shirts Today!
Our incredibly soft tees have been seen all over the city. Grab yours today before they run out! T-shirts are $18. Contact the office for more information.



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The Isaac Agree Downtown Synagogue
1457 Griswold - Detroit, MI - 48226 - (313) 962-4047