Comprehensive Weekly Newsletter
Wednesday, November 3, 2021 / 28 Cheshvan 5782

Knesset Member Rabbi Gilad Kariv on American Jewry and Israel
Sunday, November 7 at 12:00 pm
Join Chicagoland Reform congregations in hearing from Rabbi Gilad Kariv, the first Reform rabbi to serve in the Knesset. Previously, Rabbi Kariv was the President and CEO of the Israel Movement for Reform and Progressive Judaism (IMPJ), and served as the Associate Director of the Israel Religious Action Center. Knesset Member Kariv will speak about the current state of the relationship between American Jewry and Israel.
High Holiday Survey and Feedback Opportunity  
Before Thursday, November 18
We are now safely past all of the 5782 High Holy Days! We are looking for your feedback on what you thought worked and what we might do better for both in-person and remote participation. Please fill out this brief survey. Your feedback is very much appreciated!
In the BE Family
Send Us Your News!
Beth Emet has so many amazing members, each offering unique talents to the greater community. Share your news with all of us so we can both celebrate and get to know one another a bit better…. Especially during these (mostly) virtual times. Send your news to Bekki Kaplan, and if possible, please include a photo!
Lily Aaron Attends COP26
(2021 United Nations Climate Change Conference)
Parents: Allison & Todd Aaron
Members Since 2007
"I am so excited to be participating in such a once-in-a-lifetime event, especially at something as pivotal as COP26! My organizing in climate justice was truly sparked through regenerative agriculture, and the many intersections it has -- from food apartheid in Evanston to its ability to sequester loads of carbon back into the soil. I am beyond thrilled to be bringing this and many other aspects of my organizing to COP26, where I will be engaging with the next generation of climate-conscious young folks, strengthening my understanding of the power of grassroots organizing, and truly delving into the ins & outs of radical climate policy. I am eager to learn from those who have made amazing headway in the fight for climate justice and to take what I have gained back to my community in any way that I can. I will be sure to share everything I learn back with the Beth Emet community, where I know we will strive towards honoring the intersectionality of Judaism and climate justice."
Congregational Opportunities
Inclusion Committee Meeting-Interested in Being Inclusive?
Wednesday, November 10 at 6:00 pm
Join the Beth Emet Inclusion Committee as we examine our current practices and explore ways to create a culture of belonging and inclusivity for Beth Emet members of all abilities. We know that all individuals can contribute to our community.
If interested, please email Terri Michaels or call (847-691-8167) or email Marci Dickman
Soul Stitchers - Virtual Knitting Circle
Wednesday, November 10 at 6:30 pm
Know how to knit and/or crochet? As a tribute to Nikki Zarefsky z"l, join us for an hour (on zoom) of knitting and connecting as we create shawls to warm people during services and/or healing shawls that will bring warmth to those in need in a hospital, home or other settings. Newcomers are welcome and encouraged to join! Please send us an email with any questions.
Zoom Link- Ph: 312-626-6799 - Meeting ID: 854 1648 2781 | Passcode: 1224
Social Justice
Support the Freedom to Vote Act with the Religious Action Center
Join with other Reform Jews both at Beth Emet and across our country who are taking part in a national effort to support passage of voting rights legislation. The Religious Action Center (RAC) of Reform Judaism is calling  on individuals, communities, and congregations to commit to joining our call-in week November 8th-11th to call on the Senate and President Biden to reform the outdated filibuster and swiftly pass the Freedom to Vote Act and John Lewis Voting Rights Advancement Act. Beth Emet has committed to 20 calls. Be part of our double moral minyan. If you have questions, share them with Judy Caplan.
New Climate Action Advocacy Group Called Dayenu Kicks Off at Beth Emet
This summer saw record-breaking weather events, causing havoc from coast to coast which experts agree are related to climate change. Do you wonder how you can make a bit of a difference? One approach is to organize and make your voice heard. About 18 months ago, a small but seasoned group of Jewish environmental activists came together to launch a new Jewish national organization called Dayenu. Dayenu, signifying that we have had enough (of the devastating toll of climate change on our world), is a Jewish advocacy group with a laser focus on combating climate change. Its full name and tagline says it all--Dayenu: A Jewish Call to Climate Action. One of Dayenu’s key strategies for growing a crescendo of Jewish voices who together are fighting for climate action is to help organize Jewish Dayenu “circles” across the United States, state by state, city by city, and congregation by congregation.  

This is where you come in. In this new year, 5782, Beth Emet will launch its own Dayenu Circle, bringing to it the Jewish values of stewarding the environment, protecting the planet for future generations, and speaking out about injustice. It is fitting that we are initiating this group during the start of the Shemitah year, which reflects an ancient Jewish tradition of an agricultural rest every seventh year, but now has taken on more spiritual connotations. The important piece of this is that by doing it together our voices are amplified, building momentum and leading to influencing federal and state decision makers to get serious about meeting this challenge now. You can learn more about Dayenu by clicking on this link to its website Dayenu: A Jewish Call to Climate Action

If you’re interested in being part of Beth Emet’s Dayenu Circle, simply get in touch by email with Social Action committee member Sharon Smaller. The Dayenu Circle will be a subcommittee of the Social Action committee. 
Fall Tzedakah Box Drop-Off/Exchange
Monday, November 15 - Friday, November 19
The Beth Emet Tzedakah Committee is pleased to announce our fall tzedakah box drop-off/exchange for the week of November 15 (Monday-Friday) from 9:00am-5:00pm (Mon.-Thurs.) and 9:00am-3:30pm on Friday. Drop your tzedakah boxes off just inside the west-side entrance of the building off the parking lot. Please bring your tzedakah box to Shlomit Hoch in the office or take a new box available in the west entrance area. Note that the Lucite tzedakah boxes are located by west entrance area and the Temple Menorah Lobby. You may also use the slot at the sanctuary entrance to deposit donations.
For those of you who have not yet returned to the building, you also have the option of contributing to the Tzedakah Fund by credit card. Visit the Beth Emet Tzedakah page and click on "Donate directly to the Tzedakah Fund here." Or, you may submit a request to Debbie Gilbert, Beth Emet's finance manager, to transfer a portion of your account balance to the Fund. If you prefer to donate by check, make your check payable to Beth Emet and enter "Tzedakah Fund" on the memo line. 
As always, the contributions received are used exclusively to fund our grant program for the benefit of local and Israeli not-for-profits whose missions align with Beth Emet's social justice core values of righteousness/justice, love of one's neighbors and for the stranger, compassion, kindness, and hospitality. For more information about the Tzedakah Grant program, please view our Tzedakah page or contact committee chair, Barry Isaacson by email or by phone at 847-624-6434. For those unable to drop off their contributions during the week of November 15, please contact Shlomit to schedule your drop-off. 
Learning From One Another: Let's Talk About Reparations
Wednesday, November 17 at 7:00 pm 
Whether you are in favor of, against or undecided about national reparations legislation, this is your opportunity to deepen your understanding. Join us to share your thoughts, concerns, questions and feelings so we can all learn from each other.
This program will include small group discussions in breakout rooms. Each breakout room will have one topic which will be randomly assigned using the ten specific reparations points of the National African Americans Reparations Commission’s plan for national reparations. A moderator will give a short summary of some key points for the assigned topic, followed by open discussion so everyone can consider other congregants’ views. We will then come back together to hear a short summary of key points discussed.
Let’s see where the conversation takes us.
Click here to read the Social Action reparations group’s executive summary regarding reparations.
Young Family Programs
Shabbat ShaZoom
Friday, November 5 at 6:00 pm
Looking for a way to start a Family Shabbat dinner? Come light candles with us! Please join us for 15 minutes on Zoom with Cantor Cotler. We will welcome Shabbat, enjoy a story, and together recite the blessings over the candles, grape juice and challah. Very short and sweet - a perfect beginning to your Shabbat family dinner. 
Chanukah Concert for Families with Young Children
Sunday, December 5 at 4:00 pm
Come enjoy Chanukah songs and fun with Cantor Cotler and Guests! Holiday treats for everyone! Masks are required for all attendees. Please note, you can participate in this event in person as well as virtually.
Lifelong Learning
Adult Education
All the listings for Adult Education Courses are now up on our website with more details. Please do register in advance.
A Close Look at Torah with Rabbi Andrea London
Friday, November 5 at 9:30 am
There are many ways to interpret Torah and its nuances of meaning that are often overlooked. We will continue our learning from last year, reading and interpreting the text of the Book of Deuteronomy line by line. New learners are always welcome. Texts will be provided.
No fee for members, non-member fee $100
Zoom Link - Ph: 312-626-6799 - Meeting ID: 880 3271 0378 | Passcode: 785827
Rabbinic Inferno: Hell in Classical Judaism with Dov Weiss
Fridays, November 5 and 12 at 11:00 am
The leading rabbis of American Reform Judaism declared in the 1885 Pittsburgh Platform that “we reject as ideas not rooted in Judaism, the belief … [in] Gehenna (Hell).” Arguing that this claim misrepresents the history of Judaism, this two-part class will examine ancient Jewish discourse about Gehenna to unearth the distinctive values, aesthetics, fantasies, and hopes found within classical Jewish culture. Without such an analysis, one’s understanding of Judaism remains incomplete.
Member fee $25, or included in Friday morning package; non-member fee $35
Zoom Link - Ph: 312-626-6799 - Meeting ID: 853 8717 8252 | Passcode: 1224

Dov Weiss is an Associate Professor and Conrad Humanities Scholar (21-26) of Jewish Studies in the Departments of Religion, Classics and Medieval Studies at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. He completed his PhD at the University of Chicago Divinity School as a Martin Meyer Fellow in 2011 and was the Alan M. Stock Fellow at Harvard University’s Center for Jewish Studies in 2012. Dov’s first book, Pious Irreverence: Confronting God in Rabbinic Judaism (University of Pennsylvania Press), won the 2017 National Jewish Book Award in the category of Scholarship.
Tropical Zion: Jewish Settlements in the Spanish-Speaking Caribbean with Dara E. Goldman
Monday, November 8 at 7:00 pm
Learn about the Jewish populations of the Spanish speaking Caribbean. In the first session we will discuss the origins and development of Jewish communities in Puerto Rico and the Dominican Republic, and how they compare to other Caribbean Jewish populations. The second session will focus on the Jewish settlement in Sosúa, Dominican Republic, drawing upon some of the fictional and archival materials from the original settlers, their descendants, and historians who have studied the settlement.
No fee for members; $10 each session for non-members

Dara E. Goldman is Associate Professor of Spanish at the University of Illinois Urbana-Champaign, specializing in contemporary Caribbean and Latin American literatures and cultures, gender and sexualities studies and cultural studies. She is the author of Out of Bounds: Islands and the Demarcation of Identity in the Hispanic Caribbean (2008) and is completing a project on recent Cuban cultural production. She has also published articles on Caribbean and Jewish cultural production. Professor Goldman currently chairs the Program in Jewish Culture and Society.
OneVoice International with Ezzeldeen Masri
Wednesday, November 10 at 7:30 pm
This organization of Israelis and Palestinians — with active members in the U.S. and Europe — seeks a truly negotiated resolution of the Conflict for a just and lasting peace for Israel and Palestine within their own communities; it provides programs to reduce hate, polarization, and racism. We will hear about issues for a two-state solution and growing up in Gaza.
No fee

Ezzeldeen Masri is U.S. Outreach Director of OneVoice International. He was born in Gaza City in 1971, completed his Bachelor’s degree in Political Science and Criminology at Northeastern Illinois University in the spring of 1997, and his Master’s degree in International Relations in the fall of 2000, specializing in conflict resolution. In November 2006, he opened the OneVoice Palestine-Gaza office and was appointed as the Executive Director. He returned to the United States in 2015, and currently lives in the Chicago area.
Current Politics with David Zarefsky
Tuesday, November 16 at 7:30 pm
A continuing lecture-discussion class on contemporary public issues of interest to Jews as citizens. Special attention will be given to the policy and political issues facing the Biden administration.
No fee for members; non-member fee $10

David Zarefsky is the Owen L. Coon Professor Emeritus of Communication Studies at Northwestern University, specializing in argumentation and the analysis and criticism of American political discourse. He is a former president of the National Communication Association, the Rhetoric Society of America, and the Central States Communication Association. In 2012 he received the Lifetime Teaching Excellence Award from the National Communication Association. David is a past president of Beth Emet.
Resources for Well-BEing
Programs and materials to support us during this challenging time
Every week, this section will highlight a few resources—programs/services/guidance—to enhance our well-being. We have also created a webpage on the Beth Emet website that has a more comprehensive list of resources.
Website: Click here.
The Illinois Department of Human Services's Hotline and website are available to any residents seeking support. They are particularly suited for food, medical, shelter, and recovery needs. They are also available for those who are seeking help at home or are looking to talk to someone. 
Contact: 1-833-2-FIND-HELP (1-833-234-6343)
Address: 1114 Church St, Evanston, IL 6020
The YJC prepares job seekers ages 14 through 25 for success in the workplace. We provide job readiness, placement and employment support in partnership with employers. We have a number of exciting programs! Our "Odd Jobs" program connects job seekers with local employers and a number of nontraditional jobs including babysitting, lawn care, computer assistance and much more.
Contact: Diana Balitaan at 847-424-7873 or  847-864-5627
Community Programs
Reserve Your Seat On The Couch
Streaming, November 5-21
JCC Chicago kicks-off the 2021 Fall Festival with 8 films streaming over 3 weekends. From documentaries to dramas and accompanying Q&A's with subject matter experts, you won't want to miss these carefully curated films. Special festival passes on-sale now for a limited time.
Ellen V. & Philip L. Glass Hol0caust Commemorative Series: Kristallnacht Commemoration
Tuesday, November 9 at 6:30 pm
On the evening of November 9, 1938, the Nazis unleashed a horrific assault of devastating pogroms that marked the beginning of the Holocaust and would eventually become known as Kristallnacht – the “Night of Broken Glass.” Join us as we commemorate the 83rd anniversary of the “Night of Broken Glass” with a program of remembrance and reflection. 
***Masks are required and social distance guidelines will be encouraged at the on-site program.***