May, 2017 / Iyar-Sivan, 5777

May Events at the Downtown Synagogue

Special Shabbat
Friday, May 5
7:00 to 9:30 pm
We are delighted to be hosting special guest, Dr. Abdul El-Sayed, to speak during dinner after services. Details can be found below. 
Lag b'Onfire
Sunday, May 14
6:00 to 9:00 pm 
Join us for a Lag b'Omer Lag b'Onfire with food and dessert at Eden Gardens. More information below.
It's Cheese!     
Tuesday, May 23
7:00  to 8:30 pm
We're continuing our series of food and drink tastings as we invite you to indulge in a variety of delicious cheeses with cheesemonger, Zach Berg.

Rabbi's Message:  L'Dor VaDor    

Having parents and being parents are among the greatest blessings in life. And they are among life's greatest challenges.
The Jewish tradition is quite clear on the importance of the relationships between parents and children. Honoring one's parents is included in the Decalogue and the suggested punishments for a child who does not do so can be severe. And the very first mitzvah in the Torah is to be fruitful and multiply, underscoring the importance of the next generation.  We are blessed with many Jewish texts and rituals that provide a great deal of wisdom on how to honor previous generations and care for children.
And yet, in our complex and imperfect relationships, frustrated efforts, and demanding day-to-day lives, it is not easy. So whether or not we observe the secular holidays honoring mothers and fathers, they can evoke feelings of gratitude, love, guilt, alienation, joy, and heartbreak.
As a sacred community, we can support one another. We can care for parents together, and we can care for children together. And we can provide comfort in times of loss or anger or heartache. When we rely on one another to create an extended synagogue family, we make life's greatest challenges a little easier, and life's greatest blessings even better.
Thank you for being part of my family's family.

Rabbi Ariana Silverman  
Upcoming Events
All events are at IADS unless otherwise noted. For more information on some of the events below, click here.

Lunch and Learn with Rachel Klegon 
Monday, May 1 at 12:00 pm 
Rachel Klegon is the executive director of the Detroit-based nonprofit organization, Green Living Science (GLS). GLS provides recycling and environmental education in Detroit schools. Previously, Rachel worked for the Michigan Nonprofit Association, where she ran two state-wide AmeriCorps VISTA programs for Michigan Campus Compact and Volunteer Centers of Michigan. Rachel graduated from Michigan State University with a degree in Telecommunications, Information Studies, and Media and received a graduate certificate in nonprofit leadership from Grand Valley State University. Kosher, vegetarian lunch provided.
Friday Evening Services and Dinner with Guest Speaker, Dr. Abdul El-Sayed 
Friday, May 5, 7:00 to 9:30 pm 
Join us for Friday night services and dinner, featuring guest speaker, Dr. Abdul El-Sayed. Dr. El-Sayed will discuss the importance of interfaith outreach for public service and his work rebuilding the Detroit Health Department during dinner. Kindly RSVP to Kosher, vegetarian dinner provided. As a tax-exempt religious organization, we do not support or oppose any candidate for political office.
NEW RABBI SERIES: Lunch and Learn with Rabbi Aura Ahuvia  
Monday, May 8, 12:00 to 1:00 pm
Whose Torah is it: Ours or God's?
Join Rabbi Aura Ahuvia of Congregation Shir Tikvah as we explore our role in determining what Torah means, and how this is a way that God's voice enters into our daily lives. We will study the Talmudic story of the Oven of Akhnai and how we wrestle with it as we prepare for Shavuot.

Lag b'Onfire - Lag b'Omer at Eden Gardens    
Sunday, May 14, 6:00 to 9:00 pm
12273 Glenfield Ave, Detroit 
Join us to experience the happiest day of the Omer with the Downtown Synagogue and Eden Gardens Block Club for a celebratory bonfire, food (hot dogs and s'mores!), and community in the garden. Kids, adults, and families welcome, rain or shine.
Kindly RSVP by emailing .  

Hummus! The Movie at the Detroit Jewish Film Festival    
Wednesday, May 17, 8:00 to 10:00 pm
The Berman Center for the Performing Arts, 6600 W Maple Rd, West Bloomfield Township, MI 48322 
Secret recipes, a Guinness World Record and the power of hummus to bring Muslims, Christians and Jews together... in the Middle East, America and around the world.
Three Israelis from very different backgrounds are brought together by their love for a common dietary staple: hummus. Jalil, a young Christian-Arab from Ramla who has taken over his family's hummus restaurant, struggles with the urge to forge his own path. Eliyahu is a former dread-headed vagrant turned Hasidic Jew, who opens a chain of successful kosher hummus restaurants. Suheila, the only woman to own her own business in the Arab market, has won the Golden Pita Award for Best Hummus, beating ten men for the title. Weaving together their stories, director Oren Rosenfeld tastefully demonstrates how food can positively affect our culture - and is even able to transcend religious and political divides.

As a co-sponsor of this film, we are giving away 30 tickets for free! Please email to reserve yours today. 

It's Cheese! Tasting with Cheesemonger, Zach Berg      
Tuesday, May 23, 7:00 to 8:30 pm
Join us for a guided cheese tasting with Zach Berg, owner of Berg's Provisions. This event is free and open to the community. Participants will have the opportunity to sample various cheeses from across the country with an option to purchase your favorites to take home! Zach Berg grew up in Metro Detroit. After cooking his way through Michigan State University's School of Hospitality Business he got a job at Zingerman's Delicatessen in Ann Arbor. Zach quickly learned enough to start hosting, tasting, and developing cheese pairings for the prestigious deli.

Rise Up for Immigrant Families! Rally 

Because we were once strangers in a strange land... you're invited to SHOW UP to the Rise Up for Immigrant Families! Rally on Monday, May 1st at 4:30 pm at Clark Park, at Clark Street and W. Vernor Hwy. Organized by Michigan United - for more information about the Michigan United Immigrant Defense Campaign, please contact

Eden Gardens is Back in FULL SWING! 

Eden Gardens is back in full swing! Please join them on Thursdays and Sundays from 5-7 pm  to work in the garden. Thanks to everyone who voted for Eden Gardens for the Seeds of Change grant, we will make an announcement if they win. In the meantime, you can go to Eden Gardens' website to donate to their current fundraiser. Thanks for your support!

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

Oren Goldenberg, Lauren Hoffman, Ruby Robinson, Eric Hansen, Susannah Goodman, and Marty Herman for helping to lead services this month; Marty Herman for leading the Second Night Seder, DaVid Powell, Marcus Cox, Susan Dines, Rosanne Leland, Barrett Chomsky, Rick Wiener, Raj Wiener, Stephen Sandler, Chava Knox, Knox grandkids, DeShean McClinton, and Rena Friedberg for their help cooking, setting up, serving, and cleaning up at the Second Night Seder. Thank you to everyone else who volunteers their time and energy to IADS. A lay led congregation is is only as strong 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. 
New Staff Announcement 

We are pleased to introduce our new Kitchen Coordinator, Roseann Micallef. We still love having volunteers cook for Shabbat so if you're interested in helping out, please email her at
Rebbetzin's Corner

Our amazing rebbetzin is taking a month off from the rebbetzin's corner. Please check back next month for the latest installment of his wisdom and humor. 
Sad News 

Community member, Mordechai Smith, passed away on March 27th.  He was an active and engaged participant in our synagogue life. We wish his family and friends comfort in this time of mourning. 
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. 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! From November to January, you earned $51.31 for IADS. 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 Friday 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 9:30 am
Rabbi Silverman leads services the second Saturday 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 9:30. 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!  $18.00 for members in good standing and $25.00 for friends. See more photos and get purchasing inf here.



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